Inspired Actions to Sustain Love, Dating and Relationships

Inspired, dating, love, relationships, commitment

 

Taking Inspired Actions to Sustain Love and Relationships!

Taking inspired action is my new favorite credo. Taking action that’s inspired not contrived makes me believe that my desire is permissible and reaching my goal is possible. And that, in turn, makes me more likely to keep doing what I need to do to make it happen! When my thoughts and actions are inspired I feel beautifully nourished and much less likely to quit on myself.

When it comes to dating, loving and relationships, I’ve made every mistake that any ten women could possibly make. It took me decades of trial and error and finally just being tired of repeating my same mistakes, to get to the place in my life I’m at now; happy, fulfilled, loving and loved and sustaining a beautiful relationship with my romantic partner by my side. 

Let me save you a lot of time and share three things I needed to see differently, needed to be inspired rather than tired about, in order to create the enriched romantic relationship I’m now happily a part of.

1)   Acting like someone who didn’t want to be there

When I look back to the beginning of my current relationship, I wasn’t trying to make our couple-family together, I was trying not to, because that was what I knew to do. If something didn’t go the way I thought it ought to, I questioned if I ought to be there at all. I was always thinking that I could just as easily leave him as stay. 

I wasn’t truly trying to be a couple with any man I dated before, either. I was constantly trying to placate him so he would try to be a couple with me. I saw the need for someone to be acting like we were a couple, I knew that it needed to be done, but I wasn’t doing it, I was waiting for him to do it. 

It’s one of our biggest complaints, isn’t it? Some of us feel like we’re wasting our lives waiting for a man to take an action – but what if it’s an action we ought to be taking ourselves?

How do you show up in your relationships? Are you really trying to love your man? Are you trying to be part of a couple, create a new family with him, or have you been trying to get men you date to act like they’re in a relationship with you while you keep one mental foot on the threshold, waiting for your chance to make a mad dash for the comfort and familiarity of the exit?

2)   Forgetting that not loving always hurts 

If you’re not trying to love him, to really fit in and be part of your new couple, then you will be more likely to at least think about leaving at the first hint of disagreement. Or maybe you will leave. Or maybe you’ll stay but it will be a constant struggle, many fights, many tears.

I remember all the years my story was that men left me, when in reality, I probably left almost as often. The thing is, though, I never left because I didn’t want to be there. I left because I wanted to be there a lot, and I thought that if I didn’t care too much while I was in the relationship it wouldn’t hurt as bad when it ended. Spoiler alert – that doesn’t work with friends, relatives, pets, or romantic partners.

So, my pattern was creating two consistent outcomes:

I was never becoming attached to a partner or a relationship, so all my relationships ended.

Each ending hurt worse than the one before.

You deserve so much more, and you can do so much better for yourself!

3)   Not questioning my questions

If you’re like me, there are probably habits you’ve grown accustomed to that get you through the first-few-dates-phase of your new love relationships. You might be totally unaware that your beliefs create your outcomes. Well, those beliefs start out as thoughts, and those thoughts come out as questions you’ve been asking yourself and men for a long time. 

Keep asking the same questions and you’ll keep creating the same outcomes in love that you’ve had up until now. To serve your desire for inspired dating, here are some new questions to ask as you prepare to embark on your next grand love adventure.

Stop asking, “What do I wear on my date? I wonder if he’ll like this on me?”

Ask, “What do I hope he’ll feel and how can I help him feel it?”

Stop asking, “Why won’t he commit to me?”

Ask, “Where am I not committing to myself in my life? Where am I not all in for a relationship with this man?” 

Stop asking, “What do I talk about? What if it’s awkward or boring?”

Ask, “How do I want his day to be different, better, because he and I crossed paths?”

More inspired, loving questions lead us to more inspired, loving relationships.

Okay, beautiful, that’s how you ultimately sustain a relationship with a high-quality man. You ask inspired questions that lead to inspired actions.

 

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

Your Great Love: Green Means Go!

dating, marriage, romance, love, green flags, making change

I know you may not believe me right now, but great men are everywhere – really. You might have just walked past one in the produce section of the grocery store. They’re at work, at school and yes, online! You’ve probably even had dates with some, but you couldn’t see what was great about them, the green flags, because you’ve been trained to look for the red ones.

If you’re ever going to see the great men who are all around, you need to look for what’s great about them.

Last week I told you three things you can do to start seeing more possibilities in profiles and pictures online, now let’s talk about doing that in person.

1)   Flip the coin on love and dating

It seems like such a good way to keep yourself safe, doesn’t it? If you start out on high alert from the very beginning of the process, and comb through profiles and pictures looking for what’s wrong, you won’t get caught up in a sorrowful situation.

But, my friend, here’s the flip side to that coin. If you constantly and consistently look for problems, that is all you’ll ever find because you will begin to interpret everything you can’t explain as a problem – red flag.

And if you continue to take that red-alertness with you into messaging with all men you’ll never get to a live date with any men. 

Here’s the fix. Notice when you feel curious.

 After you move from reading profiles and assessing photos like the romantic detective you’ve become, you can reach out to some of the men you find interesting. Or you can choose to respond to some of the men who’ve reached out to you. Or both. 

All it takes is for a man to pique your interest, just a little tickle..

Start with messaging in the app and see what sparks your curiosity. And if he’s not adept at moving the conversation forward, ask about things you’d like to know about him. Develop a list of questions about fun, light topics that are interesting to you. The point of this is not to engage in a serious conversation immediately, it’s simply to see if you share common interests and see possibility and if you’re intrigued enough to move onto a phone call.

2)   Hear the love 

Have you heard online dating coaches say that you ought to go from messaging to meeting as quickly as possible? I get the reasoning behind it, after all, you’re not looking for a digital pen pal, but … 

One of the essential qualities I looked for in my partner is that together we have good, clear communication; that’s an imperative. Before you meet someone there are various touch points to make a communication connection, why would you pass up any opportunity? The first was writing, the second is speaking!

And if you want to be sure the person you’re meeting is who he says he is, an extra step is not a big deal, it’s a heck yes!

Here’s the fix. Listen for the alignment.

This sets me apart from a lot of other coaches – I suggest you always have at least one phone call before you agree to meet someone in person. Always. 

I think there’s a lot to be gleaned from hearing a man’s voice. This is someone whose voice you might be hearing for a long time, it ought to be pleasing to you! Can you imagine hearing it first thing in the morning or last thing at night? One thing I noticed immediately that made me want to know more, is that my boyfriend has such a great voice!

Also, while on the phone you can assess whether the man you’re speaking with is the same one who was messaging you. Does the conversation flow the way the messaging did? Is his humor similar? Is he picking up the conversation verbally where it left off on the app? Does he know who he’s speaking with or does he keep confusing you with someone else?

If the conversation feels a little stilted it’s not necessarily a red flag warning – some people (men and women) just don’t care for speaking on the phone and might converse more easily in person. You can let him know you’re happy to do that – after you speak on the phone at least once. That’s not a big ask.

And if he does confuse you with someone else, it doesn’t mean absolutely that this is a scam. As someone who’s done it a couple of times myself innocently, 😔 please give him some grace; but if it starts to seem like he’s just not paying attention, that’s a different story.

3)   Love meeting in person!

Do you find meeting someone in person difficult? Is it hard to schedule a time that works well for both of you? Is it stressful to get ready; decide what to wear, style your hair, take your look from work to wow? 

Do you live in a city where driving and parking are part-time jobs? 

Do you wish you could go back to the days that some of us consider chivalrous, when men asked women on dates, and picked them up, took them out and drove them back home?

Here’s the fix. Experience love in your time, not anyone else’s! 

Did you let yourself believe you didn’t have time to learn your business? No. Take that same approach to scheduling dates. And if you have a system for getting dressed for work you can develop one for dates that leaves you feeling more like a romantic partner than a boss. 

Embrace having your own wheels! Until you’ve spent enough in-person time with a man, have found out more about him, his family, his friends, his life, enjoy literally being in the driver’s seat.

When you’ve checked the boxes with your systems – scheduling, dressing and traveling – it makes being on the actual date so much more fun! You don’t have to be distracted, you can do the only thing you’re there to do – see and be seen, talk, laugh, share, listen. Focus on him to see and hear what makes this man great. Does he have a great sense of humor or knowledge about a topic you’ve always wondered about? Does he run a corporation that’s donating funds to your favorite cause? Has he traveled to all the places you’ve been to yourself?

There’s something great about each and every one of us, although whether or not this is someone who’s great for you … that’s for you to decide after you’ve had a few more dates.

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

Is this a good time to go online for love?

love, dating, relationships, marriage, deciding, seeing into the future, when is a good time?

 

Looking for love, dating or marriage online?  Now’s the time!

I used to think that fall was a terrible time to go online because of the upcoming holidays, believing that everybody was already coupled up and that I would just drift in a sea of unread profiles and unseen pics.

I was so wrong! My now-boyfriend and I had our first official date last October 28th. We’re coming up on our 1st anniversary and if I’d decided last year that all the good ones must already be taken, someone else would have taken him!

Here’s the thing, the run-up to the winter holidays has always been a good time to seek love online. The only reason I thought it was bad was because that story kept me safe. Coming up with excuses to not go online was second nature to me, as cozy as a soft blanket. 

Do you think you’ll have to give up too much of your current lifestyle and activities to be with a man? Will you disappoint the ones who depend on you to be the steadfast, single friend? Perhaps you’re simply feeling comfortable with your singleness and feeling resistant to change. 

If you’d like to spend this New Year’s Eve cozied up with your man instead of your blanket, then this is the perfect time to figure out what’s holding you back so you can move forward!

Ask yourself, what kind of relationships have I had in the past? What did each of my previous experiences have in common? Did I choose the same kind of man each time? 

Take your focus off the men and take a good look at yourself, your patterns, your thoughts and actions. That’s where you’ll strike gold. It’s true that knowledge is power, because you can’t get what you want for your future until you know what hasn’t gotten you what you want up until now.

After you’ve figured out exactly what’s been holding you back, take a good long look in the mirror and say goodbye to the past, single you.

Looking for love online? Let yourself be seen 

After you’ve said goodbye to the past, single you, while you’re still looking in that mirror, say hello to the new you. The woman who is ready, willing and able to create a beautiful online profile that shares the true you, honestly and with joy! This is the way to allow your right match to find you!

You want to let your man know exactly who you are and what he can expect when he chooses to share his life with you. 

Let him see himself; talk directly to him and tell him about the kind of man you seek. Is he quietly confident or brashly intrepid? Is he celebrating many years as an employee, happy with his two weeks’ annual pre-planned vacation, or a titan who moves mountains from his laptop and can pick up on the spur of the moment and accompany you on a month-long adventure? Are you looking forward to his corny jokes or heartfelt poetry? Tell him so!

 Let him see the future; tell him the things you enjoy and how you spend your time and suggest ways you’d like to spend your time together. And be sure to let him know that this is not an all-inclusive list, that part of getting to know each other will be discovering what he enjoys and coming up with ideas for all the things you’ll enjoy and do together

 Let him see you; post clear, current, beautiful photos that complement what you’ve written and show you in the best possible way – as you are now. It’s not about pore-erasing filters or slimming poses, it’s about expressing visually what you want him to know about you and the life you’ll share.

Might some other men, some mismatches, be attracted to you as well? Of course they will, so what? The more deliberate you are about presenting yourself fully, out loud, the more interest you’ll have – and the greater probability your best match will find you.

Seeking your right match for love? Game, Mindset, Match

If you’re anything like I was, you’ve probably spent a lot of time writing and re-writing your profile, asking your friends what makes you a catch and wondering how sarcastic you can dare to be in print (based on studies, skip the snark and stick to a more playful type of humor. Sarcasm doesn’t read well; you really need to hear the tone of someone’s voice for that to sound funny). And you’ve spent as much time, if not more, taking and discarding photos, convinced you need to look taller, thinner or younger. 

If you want to create a different outcome in dating than you ever have before I really recommend you invest conscious effort working on your mindset. Okay, you’ve been hearing that word a lot lately, what does it mean? According to an online dictionary, your mindset is the established set of attitudes you hold. What does this mean for your romantic results? Your outcome in romance has a lot more to do with what you think about men and dating than it does with the men themselves.

Schedule regular time each week to work out what you need to do to go to the next level. Ask yourself real questions about your past and your present and don’t stop until you arrive at real answers. And when you uncover a belief about yourself, men or relationships that doesn’t serve you, practice thinking a new one.

Just like I mentioned earlier about how seeing your past patterns gives you power to stop repeating your old outcomes, seeing your present behavior is your first step in creating your most desired future . Notice where you’re hiding away, feeling unworthy, not being authentic. Look for a tendency to procrastinate going online or to live social events where you might meet a man in person, or otherwise sabotage your success. 

No matter if you’ve been in a years’ long relationship, had a bunch of short ‘situationships’ or you’ve never dated at all, you can, ultimately, wind up in your most desired, enriched romantic relationship, cozied up with your rightest match as the ball drops this New Year’s Eve!

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

What you need to know about Love and Relationships

love, relationships, marriage, dating, what you need to know now

Here are things you need to know about love and relationships if you’ve never been married

There are some basic things you need to know to have the loving relationship you really, really want – whether you’ve never been married, or you have been and aren’t anymore.

You are lovable and worthy and absolutely deserve a healthy, supportive, loving, happy romantic partnership with the man you choose. You don’t need to prove anything to anybody, you don’t have to convince anybody, you don’t have to do anything but love. Love yourself, love men, love other humans in general, and learn to love the process of dating, because it’s through this process that you will meet your right match.

I want to let you in on a little secret … you might not be ready to love dating, but the truth is you can learn to enjoy it, and that might snowball and you might start to have fun … and if you have fun dating, who knows what might happen? 😉 

One key to changing your outcomes in love and relationships

Although the early stages of any love relationship are similar, when you’ve never been married you may be having different experiences of dating than women who are dating again after divorce.

I used to get a lot of questions from men who were, quite honestly, suspicious. One guy on a date said, “You’ve never been married? What’s wrong with you?”

Nothing. Nothing at all, I said. I simply never chose to marry any of the men I’d dated, because I knew none of those relationships was meant to last.

Although I had plenty to say about that guy at the time, none of it printable here, I have to admit he was sent to be my teacher. I meant the things I’d said, but his attitude made me want to hide. The interaction propelled me to an important key in my evolution – asking the important questions like, if I really wanted to be married, why was I dating men who weren’t potential husbands? Obviously what I’d been doing for years – putting the focus on the men – was not helping me figure that out.  What I needed to do was invest my time and energy, and eventually money, in loving, gentle, thorough self-exploration. And I didn’t stop until I’d come up with the true answers.

Another key to creating the love you want

When I spent the time to figure out why I was dating men I didn’t want to be married to I realized something. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to be married at all!

That really is amazing, isn’t it? I mean, who doesn’t want to be married? Ummm, turns out lots of people!

I’d gotten so used to the idea that everybody gets married and that women are supposed to get married and are supposed to want to get married, that I never once stopped to wonder if I personally really wanted to be married. I never questioned it until the moment the man across the table on that first and only date claimed that both of his ex-wives just suddenly decided they didn’t want to be married any more, with absolutely no warning, and then suggested something was wrong with me.

Before you ask – no, it wasn’t easy to be civil when I wanted to toss my water in his face and stalk off. Although, since I was going to wake up with myself in the morning I didn’t want to have any regrets – so I plastered on a smile and bided my time until I could get in my car and get myself home.

Do the work to figure out what you want and create that, no matter who else in the world has something to say about it. At the end of your time here on this planet those naysayers will be nowhere to be found. It’s all you.

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

You Get to Start Over in Love, Dating and Relationships

love, dating, relationships, marriage, starting over, gratitude, affirmations, you rightest match

 

The following is an update on my second blog post, written more than one year after the first. This was not an intentional marketing strategy. ; I let a lot of different things stop me. I could have beaten myself up, I could have joined a 30-day challenge as atonement, but instead, one day I just decided it was time and asked the universe for a do-over on my start. Since I restarted, I have either posted a blog or produced a FB Live every week for three and a half years. 

Why am I telling you this? Because if you want to be in a committed, monogamous love relationship and you haven’t been in one before, or you’ve stopped dating because you’ve had too many negative experiences, you need to hear this – your past does not dictate your future. Just because you haven’t yet, doesn’t mean you can’t.

Even if you’ve stopped, you get to start over – but this time you’re starting from where you are now, not who you were then. You can have the love relationship you desire!

You can start over in love, right here, right now

One of the keys to creating love is gratitude

The past year has been one of immense laughing, learning, creating and unfolding. It also was one of crying, failing, demolishing and hiding. And that’s better than just okay. Why? Because I’m here, feeling stronger and more ready to move forward toward my goals than I’ve ever felt in my life – and even through all the seeming turmoil of the previous year I achieved one of the most important goals I’d ever set – after many years of working toward it, and with a lot of help from my friends, I was a foster mama to a teeny-tiny baby girl!

I think my friends would say they didn’t do as much for me as I make it seem, but the truth is that even if they weren’t physically with me, waking up every two hours for feedings, changing mountains of diapers, soothing rivers of tears, the fact that I knew they were with me emotionally made all the difference in the world. Yes, this was my dream, and I did the work to achieve it, but it was in the moments I felt most challenged that I knew I could turn to God for a loving whisper and one of my dear friends for a raucous laugh.

One of the most beneficial things I’ve ever done for myself, and my romantic life was to understand and embrace the connection between being grateful for all the love I already had in my life and creating the one kind I didn’t have yet. 

When you acknowledge all the love you receive from your family and friends and can be truly satisfied with how much you love in return, it’s like turning a key in a lock. Love is love, one kind is not better or more valid than another.

Feeling gratitude and love leads to you feeling joy, and when you feel joy everything in life is a lot more fun! And when you are having fun, you are a magnet for every good thing you can imagine, including the man who is looking for you!

Affirm your ability to create love!

What do you know about affirmations?

They’re not magic words like “abracadabra!” that you say once and suddenly there are bunnies hopping out of hats or magic phrases like “You get three wishes” and suddenly you find yourself riding a silk carpet like a sleigh through the stars.

Affirmations are statements of positive possibility! You say them in the present tense, replacing the habitual negative thoughts that whisper to you all day with intentional, fresh, new ideas that will elevate and expand how you think about yourself and affirm your right to be joyous, cherished and loved

And while you’re at it, you can affirm your right to have exactly the kind of love relationship you desire, the one that suits your unique dreams, with the partner who is the rightest match for your unique qualities. Your right relationship may be a marriage, may include children, may involve a big geographic move, or it may not include any of these things. Your life, your love, your choice.

How do you affirm a belief in a possibility for the unknown future when you’re so used to operating from probability based on what has happened in your past? You’ve probably heard it said that life is a journey and the road trip analogy holds true. Just like getting from the mainland to an island requires a bridge, sometimes creating a change in your life requires a bridge thought.

Do you feel regret for past decisions? Do you think you made choices that led you away from love and you’ll never find a way toward it again? Your gratitude practice will help you see all there is to love about yourself. It will help you see all the love you already have in your life, which is the first step on the bridge to your experiencing more. Then you can begin to replace those negative whispers with positive shouts of joy and affirm who you truly are and why you are a magnet for your right match!

Practice feeling love

Expressing gratitude, affirming your right and ability to live a life of joy, feeling love, these are all daily practices and right now they feel like a stretch because they’re all so new, and that’s good. You’ll know you’ve done them enough when they’ve melded into one big love-building habit like brushing your teeth, because then you’ll be living love regularly, that will feel familiar, it will be your new normal.

My hope for you is that you live the rest of your days in your new normal, because days grow into weeks, that grow into years and then a lifetime. In order to move from the familiar now to growth and forward movement you need to be intentional. You’ve already created success in so many parts of your life and I’m sure it’s because in those areas you are intentional. Yet when it’s come to your romantic relationships and desires for love, perhaps you’ve left it to chance? I remember thinking that love, dating, marriage, was just something I was supposed to know how to do naturally, and if it was meant to happen for me it just would. How many times did I just use the word ‘just’ in this sentence?

If you’ve done the same, here are three things you can do to start to turn the boat toward the shore you seek – an enriched romantic loving partnership with a man who loves, respects, cherishes and absolutely adores you as much as you do him! 

Appreciate all the good in your life right now.

Know that with the right tools you can create anything you envision.

Make conscious choices to create the life you want, rather than just settling for the life you got. So right now, take a moment and affirm to yourself:

My conscious choices create the most fulfilling, loving relationship possible with my rightest match!

 

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

Refine, Renew and Love Your Relationships

love, relationships, marriage, dating, refine, renew,

 

This is a refinement of my first ever blog post from March 2017. At the time my intention was to share ideas and inspirations in a way that may bring you a different perspective and a smile. It’s still my intention today. 🙂

How do we as women succeed, when for generations success has been defined by men? What if more women aren’t generally considered successful, not because we can’t achieve the same level of success as men, but because we don’t want to achieve success in the way it’s been historically defined – making the most money?

You define your own success with love and money

My definition of success involves what I can DO with money – I will self-fund and run a foundation. It serves women and children who have to leave dangerous situations, and it’s named for my parents who loved nothing more than their home and family. I have a strong why and I am affirming my intention for the future in the present. 

Do you want to co-create a monogamous, romantic partnership with a man? What’s your strong why? I want to learn how to commit to something more important than just myself, while I also continue to grow. Do you want to be successful in your career? Why? I want to help as many women as possible create love partnerships, and live the lives they desire. 

Why do you want to do whatever it is that you want to do? What motivates you? It’s allowed to be different than what motivates other people.

You follow your heart in love and romance

The subject of motivation is vitally important because it’s the thing that keeps you in hot pursuit of your goal. It’s also one of the most misunderstood words in the English language.

Motivation means both the desire to do something and the reason for doing it and it’s a feeling. As I’ve mentioned before, feelings are what fuel your actions, and so you need to feel motivated before you can take the actions that will lead to your desired outcome. Why is it misunderstood? Because so many people think that if they do enough they will eventually feel motivated. That’s reversed – first you have to feel motivated, then you’ll do what you need to do to create what you want to create.

Decide what you really, really want. Create a belief that will support that decision and make you feel and stay motivated – and then you will do everything you can think of, for as long as you have to, until you create that exact outcome you want.

You live your own purpose in love and career

I’m passionate about helping women create massive amounts of success on their own terms. You are unique and whether it’s in business, family, friendships or romantic love, you deserve to live fully and abundantly in your purpose. Women make up approximately half the population of the planet; would any sports team succeed if half the players were kept on the bench? When women succeed we elevate all of humanity. The first step on the ladder of success is for you to define it for yourself. Fill in the following blanks:

I’ll know I’ve achieved success in my romantic relationship when _____

I’ll know I’ve achieved success in my career when ___________

Now hold up a mirror so you can see that there’s at least one area of your life in which you’ve already succeeded. You know you have.

Now that you’ve seen it in one area of your life, know you can do it again, wherever you desire. Success tools are transferable.

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  #datingat40 #midlifelove

Your 2021 story about Love and Marriage

love, love story, romantic relationship, marriage, dating

 

If, at the end of your life, you’ll get to tell whatever story you wish about your romantic relationships, what will you choose? I hope in that moment you would look adoringly at the partner with whom you’ve shared your most intimate secrets and most riotous joys and tell the story of how you treated yourself with love and compassion, never wavered in your determination to create the life you desired, invested the resources available to you, and were paid back tenfold with the most fulfilling relationship you could ever have imagined with your rightest match.

If that’s the story you’d like to tell, here are some ideas to get you started.

Thought prompts for your own Love Story!

Chapter 1: There’s only one rule when it comes to creating my rightest match for marriage

If you’re not dating men who are real possibilities for marriage and you worry about whether or not you’re following all the rules, stop worrying about ‘the rules’ and start making them. Believing that a man is supposed to look or act the way your friends think is best, and counting men out because they don’t measure up, is holding you back from finding the man who has the qualities that really matter to you.

The rules that are hanging you up are all about what you think other people will think and the only opinion that truly matters is yours. What do you value? What qualities in a partner will be in best alignment with your values? How do you want to live and love? Do you want to be married? What is important to you to accomplish in life and what kind of man will be your most ardent champion?

I used to date a man who didn’t open the car door for me. There are a lot of women in the world who would count him out forever just because of that, and they each would have missed out on time with someone who was smart and funny and sweet. Instead of counting him out based on him not behaving the way someone else might have thought he ought to, you know what I did? I asked him to please open the door for me. And from that moment on, he did.

Decide for yourself who your rightest match is, not your friend’s, and then go out into the world of dating and meet that man.

Chapter 2: I made choices and took actions that served my romantic relationship, even when it was hard 

Yes, it’s hard to put your needs, your wants, your self, before someone else. But if you don’t do it at least some of the time you are going to spend a big chunk of the rest of your life shopping – for gifts for other women’s registries and outfits for other women’s weddings.

The next time someone asks you to do them a favor, especially if it conflicts with plans you had for yourself, especially if it conflicts with the time you promised to write your online dating profile and select pictures, say no.

If the thought of this fills you with dread this is a golden opportunity! You are being given the chance to practice the incredibly important life skill of learning when and how to prioritize your needs and create the life you deserve.

Start with this – ask yourself why you are considering saying yes. Seriously, sit down and ask yourself why you want to do this thing for this person at this time and don’t get up until you have an answer. This will give you a lot of useful information!

In Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, Elizabeth Gilbert says, and I paraphrase, that in order to make time to accomplish our dreams, not only must we say no to doing things we don’t want to do, we must be willing to say no to things we want to do, too.

There are just so many hours in a day, and so many days in a year, and if you are not in the relationship right now that you promised yourself last year that you would be, you will be performing the utmost kindness to yourself by taking a concrete step toward changing that outcome for 2022.

Chapter 3: I look for the green flags everywhere, and find them!

Remember that game we played as children? We’d line up in a row and someone would start to shout out directions and we’d have to follow them or be counted out – Red light! Green light! One, two, three! Green lights meant go and red lights meant stop. For children it was lights, for adults it’s flags, although the meaning is exactly the same.

How many times have you heard other women talk about red flags or been on a date and thought it in response to something he said, or scrolled through your social media feed and seen those words in BIG RED LETTERS?

Yes, it’s important to immediately acknowledge warning signs of impending disaster – if you’re driving a car at 180 miles per hour. If you’re on a date with a man you’ve carefully screened before meeting it’s so much more important – and useful – to look for the GREEN FLAGS. 

Perhaps part of the reason you’ve had so much trouble dating is that you’ve trained yourself so completely to see red flags that nothing less than danger gets your attention. Since red means stop it makes sense that you are not finding men who are viable candidates for going forward from the first one or two dates. 

If you want to be in a romantic relationship with a high-quality man who is your best match, you must find things you like about the men you meet and date. You must learn how to see the signs that someone’s a great possibility; the green flags. Green, after all, means GO!

This is your story. You get to tell it your way!

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating  

Back to School for Love and Marriage

back to school, learning new things, love, relationships, dating, marriage

 

Do you get the same nostalgia I do at this time of year? I yearn for new shiny shoes, new itchy sweaters and new hard-bound books with paper bag covers. Yes, even the sweaters! 

I think it’s because of the possibility that I’ll learn something I don’t yet know that will change everything when I apply it! If you’d like to be in a committed romantic relationship with your rightest match before the end of this year, how can you learn to change everything?

Do you only meet men who engage in lengthy conversations but don’t take the initiative to ask you for a proper date? Or men who tell you they’re really into you and then drop out of sight without an au revoir? Or maybe the men you date only, ever, want casual vs. commitment?

What if …

It’s not about who you attract, it’s about who you’re attracted to

You may believe that you’re attracting this type of man over and over because it says something about your worthiness to be in a relationship. I know it’s not about your worthiness, because you are already 100% worthy. The truth is you are attracted to men who reflect back to you what you think about your worthiness. This feels very comfortable because it’s so familiar.

Do you believe all the men your age only want to date younger women? Have you ever wanted to start a conversation with a man but stopped yourself because you didn’t think he’d find you interesting? Do you want to be in a committed relationship, but think you have to wait until you’ve lost 10 pounds to start dating? Any of these thoughts feels like the truth, but isn’t, it’s simply a thought you are thinking that keeps you safely within your comfort zone. You don’t have to change your habits or make space in your closet or risk having your heart broken.

If you want something different, you’re going to have to do something different – and that starts with thinking different thoughts. The next time you catch yourself thinking one of the comfortably uncomfortable thoughts that’s been keeping you stuck, flip the switch. Try a pattern interrupter like saying, “NO!” out loud, followed with, “That’s not true, and I’m thinking a more useful thought!” Then do it.

Dating is hard because you think it is 

Think back over all the dates you’ve had in your lifetime and be really honest – haven’t some of them been good? Haven’t you had fun, had a few laughs, had some flirtations? Haven’t you gotten home on more than one occasion and hoped you’d see him again?

Then why do you keep listening to all the Moaning Myrtles who think that life is hard, and dating is harder than life itself? Why do you insist on telling yourself that you wish you could be in a relationship without having to date? Not only is dating not hard, it’s actually fun when you allow it to be! By telling yourself anything to the contrary you are causing yourself needless suffering!

Being part of the ‘in’ crowd might have been attractive in junior high but in our divisively virtual world a majority of the voices that pronounce themselves ‘in’ are negative and damaging to your self-confidence and your ability to create the loving, committed romantic partnership you really want and deserve.

You are a highly successful, competent, blessed woman who lives in a very real world, not a virtual one, and the real world is where you seek that high-quality man who is your absolutely best match! You are worthy of enjoying exactly the kind of relationship you desire, and uniquely able to create it. Your willingness to feel any emotion possible is your golden ticket to whatever you want in life. Sadness, dashed hopes and temporarily injured hearts are all part of the gamut of emotions – suffering is optional.

Being married is more important than getting married

I know exactly why you’ve never been married! It’s because you just haven’t met your rightest match. But why haven’t you?

If you were raised to not ‘depend on a man’ you may have decided your career was more integral to your well-being than love. Although the money and the accolades give you a sense of security, how do you feel alone in bed with a storm raging outside your window? If, as a child, you were given positive attention for being the family caregiver, as an adult you may prioritize the well-being of your family of origin, but are missing out on the joy you’d feel wrapped in the love of your own nuclear family.

All the decisions that have gotten you here are honorable, not binding.  You get to make different choices and create different outcomes now than you ever have before.

According to TV, getting married involves stacks of money, yards of tulle and buckets full of drama. Years of observing my parents’ marriage tells me being married involves hours of sitting and talking, years of trials and errors and boatloads of trust

You are a grown woman. Think long and hard about the kind of man you want to be married to now. I’ll bet that he’s very different from the kind of man you would have liked to get married to in your twenties. 

This is your marriage. You must have it your way!

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating 

Want a great marriage? Love yourself first.

Angel wings, havem ore love, romance, romantic relationship, love yourself, marriage, dating

What if it’s not all about the men?

Have you figured it out yet? What’s keeping you from finding your rightest match and getting married?

Is it something you’re doing? Is it something you’re not? Is it all about the men? If your relationships all end for the same reason, there is phenomenally good news.

It means that you have a pattern that’s standing between you and him and it’s probably something you’re doing to protect yourself. This is good news because if it’s about you then you can change it! 

Remember my philosophy that’s so different from everyone else’s – you have to love yourself before you can let someone else love you. Protecting yourself in ways that are keeping you from creating the enriched romantic relationship you desire isn’t actually loving yourself, but it sure does feel like it, doesn’t it? 

Are you protecting yourself from being seen?

I’ve always considered myself a friendly person. I smile at strangers, even on the NYC subway! But was I really smiling?

One day when I was in Vietnam, I saw a beautiful little girl toddling along the river path. Her mother was guiding her slowly, allowing her to find her footing. I was so captivated by her, and by the sweet patience expressed by her mother, that I beamed down at her, then looked up to see her mother beaming at me. I don’t recall ever having such a strong smile returned to me by a stranger. 

I showed her what her mother-love looked like, and she returned that love to me! Love was reflecting love over and over, bouncing back and forth like two mirrors reflecting light.

From that moment forward, in public I smiled big smiles that expressed how I was feeling about people, not tight-lipped grimaces that expressed how I thought others felt about me

And enough people smiled back for me to understand that when I go out into the world in the fullness of who I really am, my people will find me. And that includes men who might possibly be my rightest match. And yours will find you, too.

I know you’ve heard the admonition to not hide your light under a bushel. What are you doing about it? You can make all the lists you want, read all the books you want, use all the dating apps you want and nothing will mean anything if you don’t reveal who you are so the one who is seeking you can find you.

Vulnerable, yes. And so very worth it!

Are you protecting yourself from risk?

How many times have you been on a date and decided right then and there he was not your Mr. Right? You’ve probably even said to yourself (or a few friends) that you didn’t need to go out with him again, he’s not for you, and capped it off with, “When you know, you know.”

Except, what if you have an inkling you might really like him? What if you felt a flutter and you just didn’t want to feel the discomfort you’d feel while waiting to find out if he feels the same about you … or not? What’s really happening here is, so as not to be disappointed later, you are deciding he’s not for you, and voila, you don’t have to risk finding out he doesn’t feel the same for you.

Think about it this way – Is it really better to avoid feeling discomfort now because you don’t want to risk feeling disappointed later?

You need to learn to override your default reaction to protect yourself because that’s what got you where you are today. And where you are today is not where you want to be tomorrow.

You need to start looking for ways to count men in rather than out or you will, eventually, run out of men. And you’ll still be single.

Tough love? Yes, and you can take it because you’ve always taken care of yourself, worked your ass off, and created the outcomes you desire. You know tough love will get you to True Love.

But why do I have to love myself first?

Do you get as many compliments as you’d like? I have a feeling that the answer isn’t no, it’s that you’re given compliments, but you don’t receive them.

When a man says you’re beautiful do you say, how wonderful! or do you wonder why he’d say that?

When a man tells you you’re sexy do you feel soft and accepting, or tense up waiting to find out what he really wants?

Have you ever actually said, “you don’t really mean that” out loud?

Have you ever tried to give someone a compliment and been rebuffed? Was the response, it was nothing, or, this old thing?, or, you should have seen me last week, I looked really good then! How did it make you feel? I know I’ve had the experience of trying to give a compliment or express gratitude that was not accepted and I felt like I’d been caught in an invisible shield that kept me from connecting.

Now think about the man you seek. How do you want to feel with him? Loved? Cherished? Desirable and desired? Well, if you don’t love yourself, cherish yourself and feel desirable yourself, if you don’t understand why he would, when he tries to give you that compliment you want, you won’t let him.

You have to love yourself first so that you can understand and accept what other people love about you. You have to love yourself first so you can allow someone else to give you what you want. You have to love yourself first so you can allow someone else to love you

This is your love. You get to have it your way!

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating 

Do you want to be married to technology or a person?

Marriage, Romance, Relationships, Business, Work Life Balance, Love, Do you want to be married to technology or a person?

Do you want to be married to a person? Maybe it’s what you’re NOT doing that’s holding you back.

After you read last week’s missive did you do an action audit? Are you doing one of these 3 things that is keeping you from meeting and dating men who are great possibilities for marriage?

If you did, good job! The first step can be the hardest – celebrate yourself for taking it! But, what if it’s not something you’re doing that’s holding you back, what if it’s something you’re not doing that you ought to? 

If you’re not any closer to marriage, what aren’t you doing?

Engaging in love and relationships in the real world

In a 2019 interview, author Frances Mayes (remember Under the Tuscan Sun, one of the most romantic stories ever told?) said she thought the internet hadn’t caught on as much in Italy because people live life in person. They don’t email each other because every day they sit and talk with their neighbors in the piazza or meet their old high school flame in the grocery store.

Lately we’ve all spent much more time in our homes and online. And even prior to the pandemic many more couples were meeting online than in person – but – that only means the original meeting. At some point you must move that interaction offline and into a space where you can meet face to face. If you don’t, it’s not online dating, it’s online writing. It’s being digital pen pals, and that doesn’t lead to marriage.

Ask yourself – Do I want to be married to technology, or to a person? Then act accordingly. One of the greatest compliments I ever received was being told I’m very European. That person meant that I enjoy being, not only doing. Be more European, be more face to face with people, be with yourself comfortably and genuinely in a way that invites others to be with you, too.

Curating a happy marriage feed

When you open your eyes in the morning what’s the first thing you do? If it’s to check your social media … What do you read? Who do you see? 

Throughout the day, are you constantly checking your feed to be brought up to date on the latest news, or incessantly posting what you’re eating, what you’re watching, what you’re thinking and then checking to see who ‘liked’ it?

Your head’s in your phone All. Day. Long. Do you see stories about committed love and lifelong marriage and images of beautiful weddings and happy couples? Are you posting and sharing stories about the kind of fulfilling love and real marriage you want – or ‘jokes’ about toxic husbands and bridezillas?

In order to be it you have to first see it. If your body is your temple, your mind is your haven. You are the gatekeeper and it’s up to you what you allow into both of those precious spaces. Do what serves you, act the way you want to be in the world. You don’t have to do or be what other people think is amusing. Because honestly, it’s not that amusing, even to them.

Loving yourself ‘til death do you part

So, here’s the part where you might roll your eyes at me, and I’m okay with that. Really. Because the one thing you are most resistant to accepting is probably the one thing you need to embrace to make the incredible transformation you keep saying you want!

You’ve heard it and read it for years – you need to love yourself before you can love someone else. And you roll your eyes or slam down your phone or throw the book across the room (luckily, I missed the lamp). I don’t know why you feel angry; l felt angry because I thought I was being blamed for not having the thing I wanted.

If someone says you ought to love yourself and your response is to feel anger, you don’t love yourself. I know this for 2 reasons.

 When you really love yourself, nobody tells you you ought to because it’s evident that you do

The times when I heard that statement and got angry it was because I didn’t love myself. I said I did, I thought I did, but I really didn’t, because I didn’t get what it meant to really love myself.

BTW – I don’t agree that you have to love yourself before you can love someone else. I believe you have to love yourself before you can allow someone else to love you. Stay tuned next week! 🙂

The only relationship you are guaranteed to be in ‘til death do you part is the one you have with yourself. Don’t you want it to be the happiest, the most joyous, honest, fulfilling, the most absolutely delicious one possible?

This is your marriage. Whether it’s a happy one is up to you.

#havemorelove #datingandrelationships #midlifemarriage #datingat50 #marriedat50 #marriedat40 #midlifedating #onlinedating