Friday, March 28, 2014

Being Single is not a Crime

 Some people embrace being single and others find it scary and lonely.  Which category you fit into depends on your outlook and interpretation of what single means.  If you interpret single as meaning alone, lonely, and unwanted, just waiting for life to start, then you will most likely experience a host of negative emotions.  However, if you look at single as just where your life is right now and accept and embrace it, you will most likely live richly.  Whether single or in a relationship, it is your responsibility to make your life have meaning.   You have to be the proactive person in guiding your life.  Reach out to people by doing the things you like and exploring activities you think you might be interested in.  Join a club or an organization, take up a sport, and go to events in your community. 

You are more likely to meet someone with similar interests if you do the things you like.  Also, as you gain in confidence you are more likely to meet someone else who is healthy and confident.  Whatever you do, don’t settle.  Selecting a life partner is one of the most important decisions you will ever make in your life.  Do you really want to spend your life with someone you don’t really love or respect?  That would be so unfair to both of you.  Patients often ask me, “What if I never meet anyone?”  If you never meet anyone you want to spend your life with, accept it and go on and make your life amazing.  When you work on expanding and enjoying your life and bringing meaning to your life, so may opportunities will open up to you that you probably can’t even imagine right now. If you are embarrassed or ashamed about being single, challenge those negative thoughts.  The best way to challenge those thoughts is to look for evidence in your own life to support the meaning your life has.  Make a list of things you want to experience and places you want to visit.  You have to be the one to make your life worth living, not someone else.

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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Dating Rules For Success

1.      Do not pretend to be someone other than who you are.  If you don’t like heights, don’t agree to go bungee jumping just because you told your date that you won an award for bungee jumping.  Pretending can get you into all sorts of trouble.
2.      Do not pretend to like something that you do not like.  If you don’t like brussel sprouts, don’t pretend as you could spend the rest of your life trying to feed them to your dog or hiding them in nearby house plants.
3.      Do not complain about your current or past dates or your life. Nobody likes a whiner.
4.      Do not talk badly about other people.  If you do talk badly about others, your date that you like so much, may be wondering what you will say about him/her and there may not be a second date.
5.      Be kind.  Kindness is under rated and people of all backgrounds respond positively to kindness.
6.      Be interested.  Everyone has a story.  Really.  Any story can be interesting if you listen.  And if it is not interesting, than share your interesting stories.  At least you will get practice talking about yourself.  When their eyes glaze over, it is probably time to move on to another topic.
7.      Be patient, as your date may be nervous.  Nervousness is cute and tells you that the date is important to the other person.
8.      If asked what you would like to do, make a couple of suggestions.  Have a couple of ideas for later in the date that don’t involve a lot of money.  That shows consideration on your part.
9.      Ladies, eat something.  Everyone knows that females do eat. Guys, don’t comment on what she is eating.  This is self-explanatory and if you don’t get it you may not deserve a second date.
10.  Thank your date for the date and let them know if you are interested in seeing them again.   If you don’t drop a hint, like “I look forward to seeing you again” or “It is ok for you to call me again”, your date may not realize you enjoyed yourself.
11.  Do not have unrealistic expectations of this date.  It is just a date.  For those of you with some co-dependency issues, a date is just a date and not a lifelong commitment.
12.  Follow your instincts about another date.  If your instincts say yes, go out again.  If your instincts say no, do not go out again.  It is important to trust yourself.
13.  Ask questions, don’t just talk about yourself.  If you monopolize the conversation, you may come across as boring and narcissistic and you miss the opportunity to get to know more about the other person. 
14.  Be on time.  This is a pet peeve for many people and can kill a second date.
15.  Be courteous.  Old fashioned though it may be, “thank you” and “excuse me” still go a long way in impressing other people that you have some social consideration.
16.  It is reasonable to date multiple people, but don’t discuss other dates with your current date and once monogamous, outside dating is discouraged.  This is self-explanatory.
17.  Expect the man to pay, but offer to contribute.  If he takes your money, he may not merit a second date.  This is an individual decision, but I think the guy should show you that he is really interested and also generous. 
18.  Let the man make the initial date.  Hints are fine. “We should get together some time” is a good old standby.
19.  Don’t have sex on the first date.  You don’t really know who you are with yet and what are you telling the other person?  You are telling them that you don’t really respect yourself.

20.  If you have children, don’t keep it a secret.  Children are part of a package and some people are just not interested in a package.  

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