I get tons of emails from women who tell me that they hate dating, loathe it really, but are putting themselves out there and doing what they know they “should” in order to meet Mr. Right.
In fact, many women hate dating so much that they would rather:
1. Stay in a bad relationship, (After all, I put in “x” number of months or years thus far) holding tight to the possibility that this guy is better than the other duds they dated so maybe he is “it.” (At Dating With Dignity we call this a man’s “Relative Charm Factor,” e.g., relative to my ex this guy has soooo much charm and potential!)
2. Convince themselves that they are “ok” being single because they love their job, work a zillion hours anyway, have awesome friends, and enjoy going night after night to the gym or watching Housewives of Orange County and Project Runway marathons without having to battle over the remote.
3. Consistently put pressure on themselves and the men they date to determine if he is “the one,” making little ticks in the columns and boxes that live in their minds. (You know the three columns you keep diligently in your mind’s eye: Keeper, Wait and see if the chemistry grows, and box number three, Ugh.)
If you find yourself going to galleries, meetup.com gatherings, online dating feverishly, or battling with yourself over whether or not to actually go out on Saturday night with your friends to the upscale hotel bar, yet seem to have zero luck meeting men, or attracting men you actually want to date, then it is time to break free of your romantic rut. While I would love to have you enroll in my Breaking Free course that begins September 30, 2010, I don’t want you to wait until we start to begin experiencing new results.
In fact, I would love for you to consider making one very powerful shift now that can help you stop being a dating hater, and begin to increase the chances that you actually get results from your efforts—without having to lose ten pounds, shop, or re-write your profile. Here’s the deal:
Ask yourself this very critical question:
What would dating look like if I became attached to the process, instead of the outcome?
Imagine the freedom you would enjoy.
Seriously, stop reading for a moment, close your eyes and consider what it feels like in your body and mind to become attached to the process of dating. Imagine attaching to the possibility that every single opportunity, bad date, fight, break-up, first date, and even the laugh you might share about it all with your friends (versus the “I can’t believe that guy lied about being bald” conversation you might usually have peppered with sarcasm, anger, judgment, and fury that ultimately leads to feelings of despair and wanting to give up.) is it. This stuff is just as important as finding “him.” It is, after all, part of the texture and journey of your very special, one-of-a-kind, magical life!
After my horrible breakup I knew that if I continued to put the emphasis on getting the result I thought was best, I would ultimately make very bad decisions that would keep me stuck in the romantic rut I had been repeating for most of my dating life. And so I made a shift. I decided to do four things that changed everything:
1. I would create a life I loved, with our without a partner, and ultimately fall passionately in love with me!
2. I would choose to have fun dating, seeing the opportunity in every single date, break-up, or frustration. (including one of my favorite “worsts” with the Will Ferrell look-alike who showed up sporting fake blond Billy Idol hair and wife beater t-shirt, leaving me to wonder if he had stepped right out of a Saturday Night Live comedic sketch.)
3. I would turn inward regularly through coaching and therapy to figure out why I was unconsciously attracting each and every man, including the Hunters, Boy Toys, Will Ferrell types, and even the tons of Mr. Quality Casuals who started to show up after I began to change and blossom nearly five years into my dating journey.
4. I became a courageous “Intentional Dater,” making all my choices consciously. (Even the “less healthy” bad ones.)
Once I was able to be present in the process of dating and practicing these principles consistently, I let go of wanting a certain result. Sure, I was disappointed, angry, and sometimes even very sad. Yet, I was able to manage my fears. (Notice I didn’t say get rid of my fears!) I became brave, exploring the depths of all my emotions for the very first time. And ultimately, after going through the same ten step process I teach to my clients, I was ready to attract a man who was capable of having an inter-dependent, loving relationship.
There you have it.
Don’t be a hater. Join us here in the thriving community of Dignity Daters who are braving the battles, laughing boldly at the silliness of inner demons, busting free of romantic ruts, and being fully present in the experiences of dating. The results are, in fact, astounding!
Originally published on DatingWithDignity.com