Dating Challenges

Getting back to dating after years of single hood can be somewhat of a challenge especially if you spent many years coming and going as you please. Once you’re in a relationship those dynamics quickly change and you have to embrace having a partner in your life. I felt vigorous about writing this post because I am currently experiencing this now. One of my dating prospects stated that he was concerned about my ability to include someone in my life. I have been independent for so long that it’s something he will keep in the back of his mind. Honestly, I was a bit shocked to hear this, but at the same time, I appreciate the sincerity. It was time for me to reflect on how I am presenting myself and what I could be saying as well. The messages that I’m putting across could be giving mixed signals that I didn’t anticipate. I would be saying I’m available and unavailable at the same time. That is not what I want, so I need to make some changes in this area. I had to set down with myself and examine what I could be exuding out to others.

The first mixed signal I was giving off was not wanting to give up on my current routine. I am a creature of habit. I would get off work, do my typical after work rituals and be okay with that. However, when you’re dating it is essential to learn to compromise. That is the first example of compromising that many people miss entirely. If you can’t compromise with making time to meet up for dates, then it’s not a good indication of starting a relationship. In my mind, I would instead make time when I’m not exhausted from work as I want to make a good impression. The other person doesn’t view it that way and thinks I’m not interested in dating. I prefer to plan dates on the weekend and days when I don’t have to work. On those days I’m more alert and present. Now I understand that this doesn’t come across the way I think it should. It’s a better idea to explain a little more about your thought process. Some jobs are more demanding than others so maybe dates during the week won’t work. It’s best to communicate and find ways to compromise that works best for everyone. Otherwise, people will come up with their own opinions, and it can impact a potential relationship.

Another mixed signal is that my plate is full in life and that I don’t have room for a partner. When my dates ask what my interests are I thought it was a great thing that I have so many things that I like. To my surprise, I come across as having too much going on and not enough room for a relationship. I even had one guy tell me that I come across as too independent and he doesn’t know what role a man could play in my life. I had male friends tell me that men like to feel needed and if that doesn’t occur they typically will not entertain a relationship. Now that I’ve been made aware of it I try my best to make sure to state that I want to incorporate my hobbies and interest with my partner. That way potential suitors don’t feel left out and that I don’t want to intertwine my life with theirs. Dating is all about could you see yourself potentially with someone, and if they aren’t presenting themselves as a candidate, it’s a turnoff. In the future, I need to be more mindful of what I’m saying as not to scare off my soulmate.

The last mixed signal is related to communication styles and being adaptive to them. In my current job, I talk a lot and often for the whole day. Of course, once I get home, I want to take a break and not be on the phone. Depending on the day I had I will want to talk more than other days. However, when you’re dating someone or trying to get to know someone communication is essential. The problem I have is at times I don’t want to be on the phone for hours. I struggle with trying to get someone to understand that because they take it as I’m not interested in them. Then I’ll try to speak with them anyway when I didn’t want to talk, and it sets a wrong impression. I try to explain why but sometimes they believe I’m making excuses not to communicate.

Another thing is adapting to the need for video chatting. I noticed many guys love to do it, but it’s cumbersome at times. Who wants to hold the phone for hours? I get it especially with online dating people want to make sure they aren’t involved in a catfish situation. However, there should be a compromise between video chat, texting and phone calls. Depending on someone’s day it can be easier to use another form of communication. I feel that I adapt pretty well to other people’s communication style even though I don’t always feel the same in return. I need to do a better job of explaining the nature of my career, so guys don’t think I’m blowing them off. I may have experienced a long day at work, and I feel like being in a mood to text only, and then tomorrow we can video chat. I have to do a better job of setting expectations around communication and compromising more often.

Dating already comes with its’ set of challenges as you learn to adapt to the other person’s expectations. You also have to be open and honest about what you’re expecting as well. Communication is vital as it solves about 90% of the problems that people face today. To overcome challenges, you must pay attention when they come up and correct them. Even though to you it may not be a bad thing but it comes across differently to other people. Be mindful of what you’re putting out there and if that has anything to do with the results that you’re experiencing. If you notice that the results in dating are less than stellar, then its time to self reflect. You could be doing things without even realizes it, and that could be hurting your chances for a relationship.

What are some of your dating challenges and how did you overcome them?

The Downfall of People Pleasing

I discussed the importance of self-care and self-love openly on this blog page. Honestly, at times I feel like a fraud because I’m not living up to the truth that I preach. One issue is that I tend to second-guess myself and scrutinized everything. I’m so concerned with making mistakes that not only do I still make them but they are worse than I could even imagine. The reason for this stress is due to my issue of people pleasing.  I get so worried about what my family may think or believe. I know it doesn’t matter what others say and it’s important to live your life for you. Trust me I get it, and I heard all those reasons before. However, when you’re always in your head none of that matters. You believe that no matter what decision you make it’s still the wrong one. If my choices are going to cause harm to those around me, then it’s best to avoid the risk. That is a horrible way to live and not the best way to view things.

I wish that I could say that I don’t care what family thinks of me, but it’s not true. I get down on myself because I want to be happier in life. Delighted people don’t focus on the opinions of others. Their primary objective is to ensure their happiness supersedes everything else around them. I can’t wait for that to me as I’m continuously struggling with this daily. The next few paragraphs are an open letter to myself about how I’m going to not only love myself more but how I will implement these changes. I hope that reading this will help others out there learn to do the same.

Thkeya what can I say we have been on this beautiful journey called life together for the past 33 years. You have made such a positive impact on the lives of so many around you. The sad part is nobody understands the pain that you deal with on the daily. You go from happiness to sadness as the wind blows. All of this nonsense is due to you not being happy within yourself. Your wants and needs have fallen to the wayside to help those in need. Especially if it pertains to your family, you will go above and beyond to help them. There’s nothing wrong with being there for them but what about you? Are your desires not of great importance? At some point, you have to take a break from saving the world and focus on you. Since you’re responsible and reliable, your family will often overlook being there for you. They don’t believe that you need assistance. Therefore, it’s hardly granted or asked.

You’re still human at the end of the day and not a superhero. You need to take your cape off to rest and regroup for your mental wellbeing. I know you’re worried because every time you do you feel like you’re selfish. In the famous words of  Iyanla Vanzant, “It’s selfish not to put yourself first.” I understand hearing all this is a lot for you. You’re most likely furious with me for even bringing this up. I don’t care what you want to hear because you need to listen to this. If you don’t make changes NOW, it will have dire consequences for you. Resentment is close to creeping in, and that’s a horrible sign. Some changes need to occur, and I’m begging you to make them sooner than later.

Of course, I would never leave you with all this to unpack and not try to help you implement changes ASAP. The first solution is to continue with therapy. I know it’s scary and you felt like you can do all this on your own. Well, therapy will help with these new demons that are coming to the surface. You need the proper tools to help deal with the range of emotions that you’re experiencing. I know you want to say you got this, but it’s a more prominent sign of strength to say I need help. Anyone who puts you down about this decision doesn’t need to be in your life period. You will gain more confidence, and that radiance that is inside will be shining out even more.

The second solution is following your heart and trust your instincts more. You know what’s best for you so stop doubting yourself. It’s exceptionally frustrating to watch you go over and over a decision when you got this. Kill the self-doubt and follow your first mind. It’s boring not taking risks anyway. The third solution is to stop waiting for a mythical time in the future to do something. The best time to do it is NOW! If you hold on for a great time to happen in life then literally nothing will ever occur. That’s not how life works. You don’t get to follow down this smooth path with rose petals. It’s bumpy, messy, confusing and filled with heartache along the way. The best you can do is pray for a perfect outcome and figure it out if it doesn’t happen. The fourth and final solution is to stop caring about what others have to say. I don’t care if it’s your 4th cousin twice removed let that negative energy go. I know it feels like you ‘re getting picked on and that’s why you take it to heart. Stop allowing it to affect you and see how quickly those opinions dissipate. The reason why they are so prevalent is due to you giving it attention. Once people know that you aren’t breathing life into their views, then there’s no reason to share them.

That was a lot to handle so take a few deep breaths. Meditate and get yourself ready to tackle these solutions head-on. The best way to implement these changes is to start small and work your way down. As you get through the first solution, then the next will be much easier to follow. I want the best for you, and I can’t see you hurting anymore. Please do yourself a favor and choose happiness always. Like Anthony Hopkins said, “None of us is getting out of here alive.” Based on that notion living in true happiness is the only way to go.

I love you, and I’m very proud of you. I choose you forever and always without question nor hesitation.

Xoxo

Me, Myself and I

A Different Approach to Dating

All my friends would tell you that I’m terrible at dating. What can I say I’m a hopeless romantic. I typically date one person at a time, and it hasn’t been working out too well for me. I get emotionally invested too early, and by the 2-3 month time frame things fizzle out. I believe this is due to not developing a real connection and the fact that around that time your representative leaves. Everyone is on their best behavior in the beginning, and after time they start to become more comfortable. That is when the real them comes to the surface. I find myself in trouble around this time because I didn’t allow for the relationship to flourish naturally. I rush into things due to infatuation which doesn’t last as it’s not substantial. Of course, things don’t continue if you haven’t taken the time to get to know someone. Plus you have to spend more than 1-2 days a week to understand someone. Consuming small amounts of time with someone not only delays the emotional connection needed for a relationship but you don’t know the person either. If you don’t know who you are dealing with then how can you say you want to be with this person. Getting butterflies for someone is great but slow down a bit to determine true compatibility.

My friends have told me time and time again that I need to date multiple people. For some reason, some people think this means having relations with everyone that you’re dating. That is not what this means at all. Honestly, this is a way if you to date many different personalities at once and see which one is the best fit for you. Another added benefit is that it helps to keep your emotions in check. Especially if you are someone like me, this can aid you in your dating experience. I was curious to see what others had to say about this topic, so I conducted mini online research. Many guys and girls were entirely against dating multiple people. Some of the responses that I read stated that they don’t want to be an option and other people said you wouldn’t be emotionally invested in the relationship progressing. One response I thought was a big shocker was when someone is dating multiple people they aren’t viewed as looking for a serious relationship.

All of these reasons were a surprise to me, but particularly the last one gave me pause. If you are in the beginning stages of dating someone you have no idea of where things will land, of course, this person will date other people as the whole purpose is to look for their future husband or wife. How can you demand exclusivity without having that conversation first? Truthfully, when you meet the right person, you will naturally start to cut off the other people as they aren’t what you want. In dating it’s important to have an honest and open dialogue. Don’t put others down just because you don’t agree with their dating methods. Ask the right questions and if it doesn’t jive with you then find someone else on the same wavelength as you.

Whatever dating method you decide to partake in; be honest with the people you’re pursuing. It’s essential that they know and understand why you’re taking this approach. This conversation can also clear up any misunderstandings that someone may have. Due to the hookup culture that we are in is the reason why dating multiple people gets a bad rap. Explaining why it’s vital for you can make a difference in people understanding you better. For example, I went on a first date with this one guy, and it went very well. I had a few horrible first dates before this, so it was refreshing. When I texted later on that evening to say I made it home okay that’s when things went left. He proceeded to tell me that I’m everything he’s looking for and he wants to make me his woman ASAP. Typically I would be all over this and be ready to be in another relationship that ends in a few months. Because I am dating other people, I didn’t allow my emotions to get involved just yet. I’ve only known this guy for three weeks, and we don’t interact every day. I only see him once a week due to scheduling conflicts. If we had been spending more time and speaking more regularly than maybe I would entertain a relationship with him.

However, since that is not the case, I told him to pull back a bit and let things naturally play out. He gave the typical responses of you are scared and so am I. I’m not like other guys so don’t compare me to them. Seeing is believing and since that hasn’t occurred yet this is all talk as far as I’m concerned. There are things that I saw about him that I didn’t like and I ultimately decided that it wasn’t going to work. If I didn’t date multiple people, I would’ve missed all the red flags. Some may not agree with my approach, but so far it’s working out for me. I respect the one on one method, but I think it’s better suited once you decide to be exclusive. Otherwise, you are putting all your eggs in one basket for a person you haven’t determined is right for you yet.

What are your thoughts on the approach of dating multiple people? Do you agree or disagree? What are some of the methods that you use to deter yourself from getting invested too soon?

Happy dating!!!!!

Are You Too Empathetic?

Are you the type of person who can pick up the emotions and energy of other people? For example, if someone cries you immediately feel that pain and cry as well. If you see something disturbing on television, does it tend to stay with you for the rest of the day? If you answered yes to these questions, then you are very in tune with your emotions. Some may even argue that you are too emotionally ingrained in your feelings. Having these feelings can be a blessing and a curse at the same time. The blessing is that you are very empathetic to others which can be very helpful in romantic relationships. The downside is this makes you very susceptible to energy vampires. They tend to prey upon your empathetic nature and guilt you into things you may not necessarily be comfortable doing. You become so engulfed with that person that you forget who you are and lose yourself in the process. Here is when you have to be careful with your emotions and who you let in your life. It’s effortless to get caught up with other people as you feel you are helping them. The issue becomes when they are taking, but won’t be there for you when you need it. When this happens, it leaves you high and dry with nothing to show for it. You felt empty and drained of all your resources.

I have this issue myself, so I have a tough time not offering to help. I guess I feel like I have to or I should since the person is confiding in me. However, just because someone is venting to you doesn’t mean you have to take that on. Especially if that person is never pouring back into you, you must protect your mental peace and learn to say no to people. You can have empathy, but that doesn’t mean owning what that person is dealing with currently. There’s nothing wrong with saying this is too much for me to handle, so I need to back away. I am giving that other person time and space to work through their issues. I know people say that if you back away you are selfish and never cared about that person. I disagree with that statement. If your problems are escalating to a point where it is impossible to have a healthy happy relationship, it’s time to leave. Relationships involve two people growing together and moving towards becoming one with each other. If one person isn’t in a position to do this then how is the relationship supposed to last? You can only take so much and if that person isn’t trying to fix it then what other choice do you have? The same can be said for friendships and family members as well.

You can love people from afar, but that doesn’t mean let that drama enter your life and impact your wellbeing. For those of you who don’t have this issue, I am jealous of you. You can separate yourself from people and the problems that are surrounding them. However, to those who tend to take on the emotions and difficulties of others, we must be careful. We must be very picky about who we let into our personal and mental space. People can pick up on how we are and then it can be used to their advantage. Look out for the signs that this person isn’t as generous and using you to feel better about themselves. Listen to your gut and remove yourself from any situation that is detrimental to your health. We aren’t going any more days, months, nor years with toxic behavior. We will no longer allow this to dampen our spirits. We are moving forward in life with our peace and anything that disturbs that is way too expensive.

Do you feel that you are too empathetic? If so, what have you done to correct this? If not, what do you think makes people more empathetic than others?

The Effects of Ghosting

There was this guy I met over this past summer. We started to connect, and I thought there was a chance of a relationship growing. However, he ghosted me for 3-4 months, and I haven’t heard from him until Thanksgiving. The way he contacted me out of the blue was a bit confusing to me. I understand he was going through some personal issues and that contributed to him ghosting me. At the same time, it’s important to keep in contact as a lot can happen in short time frame. I went to fashion week, moved to a new apartment, visited Cuba for a vacation, and entered into a new relationship.  All of this occurred within the same 3-4 month time frame. I felt terrible because I was able to hear the disappointment within his voice. But this reminded me of why it’s important to stay in contact with people. If there is someone you are interested in don’t ghost them and expect them to be around later. People have lives and will move on when they see you are aren’t around. If you are experiencing something in life be honest about what’s going on. Give the other person chance, and they may still want relationship with you. Keep in mind that communication in any form calls, text,face time, email, etc. has to occur.  A lack of communication will have an impact on any potential relationship.

Most importantly if you do ghost someone don’t just show up as if nothing happened. Acknowledge that you went ghost, explain what occurred, and be open to whatever role that person has for you. For example, if they are involved, you will be just friends, maybe they still are interested in you, or they want nothing to do with you. Be understanding of what the person says and if it doesn’t work for you then move on. Proceed with caution if an option for a relationship is still on the table. Since this person went ghost the last time be sure, it was a one time thing and not daily occurrence. You don’t want to get in a situation and find out your committed,but not the other person isn’t. What are some of your ghosting stories? Did you date or dating someone that ghosted you at first? Rate, comment, and share!

I’m looking forward to reading your comments.

Until next time,

Improving Your Romantic Outlook

You should treat others the way you want them to treat you. If you want people to be honest with you, then you should do the same in return. If you don’t want to be hurt by others, then you shouldn’t do the same. It always amazes me how people are so quick to play the victim role but can’t accept the responsibility they play within their demise. For example, if I keep having bad relationships with men at some point, I need to reevaluate within myself why I keep attracting these type of men. I can make a general statement saying that all men are evil when it’s my horrible choices that are leading me to that conclusion. There is the segue to my topic of this blog post about continuously picking the wrong partners to date. I’m not calling anyone out as I have been guilty of it myself, but once you know better, you will do better. The first step of moving on from any situation is learning to treat the disease and not just the symptoms.

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The first thing I want you to consider is how you view yourself. Never mind how others feel about you but how do you feel about yourself? Do you put yourself down and call yourself terrible names? Understand that you are hurting yourself when you do this. Having negative thoughts about yourself can subconsciously be exuded externally and keep you from attracting the mate you want. Then others will start to feel the same way, and you will become less attractive as a result of that. Nothing is sexier than a person who has confidence within themselves and believes they are the best thing since sliced bread. I’m not saying be a jerk about it, but you have to have a strong sense of self if you want to attract someone of a higher caliber. You can’t believe you are worthless and then expect a potential suitor to think differently. Since self-esteem is an internal issue, you have to make sure you work through any of those issues before getting into a relationship. Nobody can correct this but you. Seek counseling if necessary but work through this immediately. The more broken relationships your experience, the more of a beating your self-esteem will take.

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As you grow within your career and personally your dating life should reflect that. Often we get comfortable within certain social circles because that is what we have always known. However, once you start to grow those areas that once interested you, unfortunately, do change. There’s nothing wrong with this, but nobody tells us nor prepares us for the transition to come. You most likely complain and I know I have about the lack of options out there. The conclusion I came up with is I’m looking for love in the same places I always have. The areas I’m frequenting I won’t find a professional man there so who is really to blame for my situation. You can’t do the same things you always did and expect a different result. You have to expand your options, and yes attend that networking event your friends have been trying to invite you to for months. You have to step outside your comfort zone if you want to meet Mrs. or Mr. Right.

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I hear people say and myself included that I want a man to drive XYZ and work within a particular field. Guess what? The things I was asking for I didn’t even have myself. It’s important to make sure the things you want in a partner are things you can provide as well. I think it’s unrealistic to demand your partner to a higher standard, but you don’t have the same demands on yourself. I took the time to soul-search and prepared myself for when my husband finally arrives. If the right person walked into the room right now would you be ready for that person? If you can’t honestly say yes, then you have work to do. It’s a corny saying, but you have to be the partner that you want. Remember everything you are looking for someone else wants the same. If you are unable to provide those same qualities, then you will continue to date the wrong people. Don’t look at your single hood as a bad thing. Use that time to self-reflect on becoming a better you. Once the right person comes along, you will be more than ready for your last relationship.

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Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. Please share on social media and with your friends/family.

Until next time,

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Prescription for Self-Care

When you hear the word self-care what comes to mind? For me, it’s something that I don’t do enough. I’m always running around but never take the time to focus on myself entirely. We all need time to ourselves to unwind from the stresses of the day. You can’t be fully present for others if you have yet to be there for yourself. I’m learning that I can’t give my all and saying no is okay. I still feel guilty when I do however not being there for myself is even worse. How can you say you love yourself if you don’t give yourself the same care as everything else? Internally you deserve the same amount of attention as your job, bills, etc. No more excuses! From this day forward self-care will no longer be a slogan but a complete lifestyle change.

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I concluded that I lacked self-care while being on this leadership council for a non-profit organization. I tried to make myself available to all the meetings and any activities that came up. Due to my work commitments being on this council was proving to be quite challenging. It didn’t matter however because I was determined to give back even if meant hurting myself in the process. Since this council is new, it requires a lot of time and effort. I could provide support but only in a limited capacity. I started to see that my availability and the council needs weren’t in alignment. I kept forcing myself to fit into a puzzle piece that doesn’t fit. I realize that honestly, I could give my all but at what cost? Sure I would be giving back, but I won’t be fully present as I would be exhausted. I have to take better care of myself if I’m going to be an asset. Until I cater to my needs, I can’t possibly be there for others.

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Putting others before yourself is selfish because as a human you have needs as well. Not catering to your own needs creates resentment. Taking time to recharge your batteries gives you the space you need so you can get in touch with yourself. Also, it’s okay if you can’t be involved in everything. It’s better to dedicate yourself to a few events as opposed to every occasion and not enjoying it.  Be honest about what your schedule permits. People may expect more but don’t let guilt deter you. Don’t let others have free reign over your time as you don’t get that back. You should be happy and excited anytime you are spending time on something. If your energy is continuously depleting that means you are neglecting your needs and you need to look into that. I’m practicing self-care currently, and unfortunately, it’s taking some adjustments on my part. I’m hoping you do the same if you haven’t started already. What are some of your self-care methods that you tried? Please share your comments below. Don’t forget to fill your daily dose of self-care or seek your treatment as needed.

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Until next time,

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