My brother is single and upwards of 30. This is not a problem, really. Lots of people get married later in life. Indeed, being married is not the end-all be-all of existence.
But, I have a feeling he would like to find someone to love forever. Someone beautiful, funny, interesting, creative…someone that is exceptionally rare and amazing. It’s not that he isn’t interested in a long-term relationship, he just doesn’t see how he can find his unicorn in a sea of horses.
Fortunately, I have done my share of unicorn-wrangling. And I have distilled my knowledge for you, so that your own unicorn search might be easier and the rest of your life is just a tetch more enjoyable.
1. Believe in Unicorns
You may be thinking, “I don’t want a unicorn. I don’t even believe in unicorns. Why would I read this stupid article about a thing that doesn’t exist?”
Because unicorns DO exist, and I can prove that you want one.
Maybe your unicorn is a leggy, blonde 19-year-old with an IQ of 140 and a father who owns the San Antonio Spurs. Maybe your unicorn is a job where you get paid to ride rollercoasters or test Twinkies. Maybe your unicorn is finishing your novel, getting pregnant, or getting a huge high-5 from a man made out of bacon. Impossible-seeming, awesome, and totally attainable with the right perspective.
Although it seems self-evident, you have to believe if you want to get your unicorn. Not only must you believe they exist, but you must believe that one exists that was created for you. And, when you believe that is true, the magic of the universe works to make it true.
2. Be Observant
What many people don’t realize is that unicorns often look just like any other horse. In fact, unless you look very carefully, you might not ever realize that a unicorn is right in front of your face.
In order to see the unicorns for who and what they are, it takes more than a cursory glance. It requires suspending your belief for just a moment, and recognizing that maybe, just maybe, every person you meet is secretly a unicorn. Once you realize that, you’ll begin to see unicorns everywhere, and finally realize that your choice is not about finding a unicorn, but choosing the right one for you.
3. Decide on a Color
Now that you know how many real unicorns there are out there, it’s time to decide on a color. Do you want a unicorn with long legs and a blonde mane? Have you always imagined a dark-eyed unicorn with a love of books and superhero movies? Since there are so many to choose from, you need to be specific about what type of unicorn you really want to bring home.
But, instead of focusing on external features, the best likelihood of success will come from you choosing one that has a beautiful internal landscape. Choose a unicorn with faith, kindness, and a desire to serve. Perhaps pick one that loves the arts, or believes there is good in everyone. After all the other unicorns have aged and their horns have started to sag, your unicorn will still make you laugh, make you think, and give you comfort in the last days of your life.
4. Be Your Best Unicorn Bait.
When you’re unicorn hunting, you don’t want to scare the wildlife. One of the hidden blessings of attempting to capture a unicorn is that they will find you if you are the kind of person they are looking for. As a rule, unicorns are drawn to the pure in heart. They are drawn to people who have light that shines from within. They are drawn to people who laugh and want to make others laugh.
Once a unicorn sees that you’re the kind of person they want to be around, it is much more likely that he/she will allow you to get close enough to touch. And when they get close, don’t be afraid to reach out and hold on tight. The right unicorn has spent a lifetime waiting for your arms around its neck.
5. Know Your Riding Limits
Even a creature as magical as your perfectly chosen unicorn isn’t going to be easy to maintain. They’ll need special food, special exercise, special everything, really. Duh. They’re magical. You can’t feed them Taco Bell every night and expect them to survive.
So, you need to know your riding limits. Can you fulfill the emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical needs of your chosen unicorn? Does your unicorn have strange habits that make you nervous that they might bolt at the soonest sign of trouble? Does your unicorn want to start galloping before you’ve even firmly planted yourself in the saddle? These might be signs that this filly is just not the right fit for you. If that’s the case, let them go. You’ll find the right one eventually, and, when you do, you’ll be glad you didn’t settle.
Maintaining Your Unicorn
If you’ve done the hard work of capturing a unicorn, don’t waste your good fortune by forgetting how miraculous it truly is. Every day, do those little things that help you see the magical qualities that make your unicorn more than just an everyday horse.
And, if even if you don’t find the unicorn you’re looking for, perhaps there is an important lesson to be learned. Perhaps, just by learning to believe in them, you can see finally see that the real unicorn is you.