Wednesday, December 22, 2010

You Can't Change the World

Many people wonder why they don't have a significant other. They ponder their numerous wonderful qualities and then look around and see no one lining up to date them.

Well in truth you probably are quite wonderful, but here's the catch. You can't change the world. You can't change how people view you and how desirable you are unless you first change yourself. I'm not saying go out and get a nose job or liposuction, I'm saying that you should change your approach to dating.

If you don't put your best foot forward and consistently appear like you don't care, then those around you will notice. They'll see that you're not trying and assume you're not interested in people finding you attractive.

Whether you realize it or not, you send out subliminal messages with how you dress, converse, and move.

Think of it this way.
(And yes I'm totally about to use Disney as a comparison)

We're going to use Winnie the Pooh and the characters in it as a way to show you that your presentation is affecting your life.
Consider if your personality matches any of the following.

Rabbit: A complainer. You find the worst in people and things and you make sure everyone knows you're displeasure. You're pessimistic and act as if you want people to leave you alone, and surprise for the most part. They do.

Eeyore: Depressed. You have a cloud over your head and see the world and its opportunities half full. Your soul is dark and you believe that you are unloveable, and because of believing yourself unloveable, you make it hard for people to love you, due to the fact that you're not accepting of that love.

Piglet: Timid. You find yourself not believing that you will ever be in a relationship, due to your horribly shy nature, however, as with most people, once people get to know you they will find you to be exactly what you are, a generous, kind, and friendly person.

Tigger: Hyperactive. You find yourself constantly searching for something more fun than your current activity, also known as bigger-better-syndrome. You become bored easily and need constant activity. This is overwhelming for a lot of people and due to your consistent activity it can become difficult to sustain a relationship in which you are bored. So you are always searching for someone who can keep you occupied or allows you to be occupied with other activities.

Kanga: Mother figure/ or the Caring figure if you're male. People with this personality like to dote upon their significant others and friends, taking care of them. They're very loyal and love to make sure that your life with them is as easy as pie, as long as you wipe your feet before coming in the front door.

Roo: Is too young to be dating, and you know it.

Winnie-the-Pooh: The Thinker. When you come face to face with a problem, you would much rather sit and think about how the problem can be resolved, while eating something. However you seem to be much more talk and a lot less action. You tend to do the best with what you have and overall show a positive face to the world, unless the world ran out of honey. Then we might have a problem.

So the question you have to ask yourself, is what face are you showing to the world? Are you overtly energetic, a pensive soul, or a complainer? If you begin to think about your positives and negatives and how you're representing them to the world then you might realize that you can change your negatives and the face you present. This ability to change yourself, will give you the opportunity to find out if in fact how you seem to other people is the reason for your lagging love life.

I'm not saying that you have insurmountable negatives or that your negatives make you a horrible person, but the knowledge of what your negatives are in proper scope with your positives, can give you the power to present a more positive face to the world. Because you can't change everyone else, but you can change yourself.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Single for the Holidays?

A lot of people I know will be going home for Christmas or Kwanza or New Years alone this year.

And that's o.k.

Don't force a relationship just because you want to show people you're not alone, in fact, that could be the worst decision of the whole year, because after the holidays, you're going to get questions from Aunt Sue, or Uncle Tim, and Cousin Kelly until the next time you bring another date to a family gathering. Or until you break down and cry because everyone else in the room is married or engaged and you recognize your future fate as the family spinster or ornery perpetual bachelor.

So here's a few ways to accept your singleness and fend off the questions, you and I know will be asked of you at the family table.

1. Bring a best friend. Best friends are few and far between, and more often than not, they don't disappear due to a break up, unless they mistakenly send you a text calling you a bitch behind your back. Best friends are also usually already acquainted with your mother and father, so it will make the whole affair less awkward, because they'll only be meeting family they haven't met before. They're also less likely to be attacked of question of your looming engagement or babies.

2. Master the, "take a drink and cough" routine. They ask a question you're uncomfortable with or not eager to answer, such as, "so are you one of those gays?" or "do you just have a low libido?" You smile and take a drink (KEY: HAVE DRINK IN HAND, THIS DOESNT WORK WITH AN IMAGINARY DRINK). Pull drink away from your mouth, and then start coughing, as if choking, get up and walk to the bathroom to take care of yourself, when the fit is over. Also works with eating a snack, like pretzels or chips. They become so concerned for your well being, the question gets dropped.

3. Avoid people, hang out solely with your brother/sister/cat.
(However this just perpetuates your image as the perpetual bachelor/spinster/crazy relative).

4. Faint.

5. Create an imaginary significant other. (This is harder in the age of facebook especially if you're friends with your family members).

6. Say you're trying to find yourself, before you drag an unsuspecting victim into the reaches of your crazy ass family.

7. You could also be between boyfriends/girlfriends.

8. Say you've met someone, but it's just not serious. Another form of the I'm dating lots of people, just no one serious.

9. If you're baking savy, stay in the kitchen and bake for the evening. Bake, NOT cook, because baking requires precise measurements, which requires your utmost attention, which means you can't answer Great Aunt Maud's questions about why you haven't had a boyfriend for the last five years or why your last girlfriend disappeared. Even if they haven't finished the 10 cakes you bake, at least you don't have to answer their questions, and you can send everyone home with a cake for a present.

And my personal favorite, JOKE.
10. Bring up their failed romances. It's known as the dodge and jab approach. They ask, "so are you still seeing that cute construction worker?" and you respond, "no, i really found him rather boring, but what ever happened to your first husband? He was so sweet."

If the last method is employed, be ready to jump and run, because depending on how hard you jab, they might actually slap you.

So while you'll be going home for the holidays, alone, you wont be without an arsenal of tactics to defend yourself against nosy relatives and curious family friends.

Their questions will be more piercing and more mocking than your older relatives/friends, because they're attempting to one up you. Responses to them should usually include an embarrassing story in order to make them realize you wont play nice if they wont. If you can't get in your response immediately, bring it up later in front of their significant other. Otherwise, they'll think they can walk all over you.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Ain't No Walk in the Park

So this might have taken me a bit longer than most people, but after years of dating, I have established something.

Dating is hard.

You can spend months with Mrs. Perfect on Paper only to discover she's in love with someone else, which is totally o.k., because you only dated her because your friends told you how perfect she was. But now you've wasted all those months where you could have dated Mrs. ACTUALLY Perfect.

You could spend a year dating the wrong sort of guys and then date the right sort of guy, only to have them swept away with graduate studies.

You will spend countless minutes on the worst date of your life praying that the girl across the table will morph into the last girl you dated, because she was perfect and this girl can't seem to keep her mouth closed while she's eating.

The question is how can we take this crazy world of dating and make it into something positive, where everyone comes out with the love of their life?

It's difficult to say, because a huge hinderance in dating someone you don't know, i.e. the majority of people you will date, is that you don't know them. That's the whole process. Even if you've dated them for two months, you still don't know the reason to why all of the sudden they seem like hell on wheels.

And this is where the majority of early, promising relationships fail. Lack of Communication.

And you're thinking, but I talked to her all the time!
Yeah, but did you ask about her day? Did you ask why they seemed to be pissy? You have no way of knowing unless you ask. Without the ability to honestly and openly communicate with your interest, you'll be losing the most important building block of a healthy relationship.

A while back, I went through hell. My closest friends were the only people who really knew, aside from my family, and all the ladies at my mother's office (gotta love her). I, also, happened to also be dating someone at the time. The guy's lack of compassion or curiosity for my own plight, while I had been nothing but supportive for his constantly-consistently-high-levels of stress, doomed the relationship from the first moment my uncle decided I needed a taser. (I did not tase the guy I was dating, but Oh yes, my life got ugly).

Now I'm not saying that you're supposed to lean on the person you're dating for all your emotional support and needs, because early on in a dating relationship that's more annoying than necessary, but being able to talk about the big struggles in your life as they occur, allows bonds to be formed between the two of you.

So the moral of the story is this. IF you want to make a relationship work. If you are tired of being single and think, just maybe this one here, the one I'm dating now, could be a great relationship, remember this. IF YOU DON"T COMMUNICATE, If you don't make an effort towards learning about the person and attempt to establish a healthy communicative partnership where you share hopes, dreams, struggles, and life; you're dooming yourself to go through the entire process again.