I’ve been date coaching for many years now. I’ve talked to hundreds of women and doled out tons of advice. I’ve told them how to use their SEE factor, how to gauge interest, and in some cases, how to just move on. All of them have been quite appreciative, however, not all of them have turned their situation around. Me being a perfectionist really grappled with this. I want every woman I speak with to have long lasting results, not just short-term improvement. At first I thought, is it me? Am I not explaining myself well? Am I not getting through to these ladies but they’re too polite to say so? When an old client of mine came back earlier this year after reverting to her old lascivious ways, I worried that I was not being as effective as I could be. I continued to read, research and learn my craft. And then it dawned on me. I’m only half of the equation. I can lead the proverbial horse to water, but I can’t make it stop dating an asshole. As much as I want to help, I can’t want change more than my clients do. I can only give them the road map. It’s up to them to follow the directions.
I have said it so many times but I will say it again. Dating takes discipline. It’s like dieting at times. You have to fight the urges and cravings on a daily basis. Just as bagels and ice cream can wreck havoc on your figure, spending the night too soon with someone can wreck havoc on your relationship. But it’s not all about will power and self control. I’ve seen some very disciplined women still make bad moves. When it comes down to what makes one person swim, while another one sinks, it’s all about their student mentality.
Life is not a chick flick. Love doesn’t happen like the movies. The people that find it, keep it, and stay married for many, many years are the people that invest time into learning about themselves, their partner and their relationship. If you really want to get good at love, you have to school yourself on it. You can’t expect to be an ace at relationships without any sort of education. True, some people are naturally blessed in the romance department, just as some people are gifted pianists, or outstanding cooks. For the rest of us though, we need to learn these skills. The more we learn, the better we get.
When was the last time you picked up a book about relationships? When was the last time you went to a lecture, consulted a coach, or took a class about dating? Chances are, you probably think you’ve been investing time into love, but searching Match.com profiles is not what I’m talking about. It does no good to find the guy, if you don’t know what to do once you get him.
My client, Julie (not her real name,) is a stunner. Men zero in on her the minute she enters a room. She’s got tons of charisma and knows how to flirt like a pro. She never has a shortage of dates. But Julie cannot hold down a boyfriend from more than three months. Three months and the guy moves on to someone else. When she decided to sign up for date consulting, she was 31 years old and void of all hope that she would ever marry.
“I don’t know why I am so unlucky in love,” she told me. “Nothing ever works out for me. I meet guys all the time. You would think at least one would turn into something, but it never does.” Julie was baffled. Her friends told her she was cursed. Her mom told her she was too pretty and intimidating. Her Dad said she was picking the wrong guys.
The truth is, Julie’s big problem was actually fear. Deep down, she was terrified she would end up alone. Whenever she started dating someone, she immediately began treating them as if they were her boyfriend. She would assume “this is it” with every guy she met. She assumed they were in love with her because they had asked for her phone number. She assumed they wanted to spend all their time with her, without really even knowing her. And she assumed whenever they didn’t do exactly what she wanted, they would leave her – and she would immediately get angry and frustrated with them.
Julie had no idea that she was unconsciously sabotaging her relationships. Once we pinpointed the problem, Julie’s work was just beginning. Today, she has to constantly work at keeping her fear at bay. It’s not easy to do, but she has a plan in place and is working on it. Without identifying this problem and working at the solution daily, Julie would keep dating the way she always had, and getting the results she always got.
Instead of sitting around with your girlfriends complaining about men and why they are the way they are, go to the bookstore and pick up a book. Learn something new. Go to one of the many events that are geared towards dating. Consult a dating coach, or hire a matchmaker. Love is the byproduct of a meaningful relationship. Wouldn’t it make sense to brush up on your interpersonal communication? Wouldn’t you want to put some time into learning about the opposite sex? If you spend time educating yourself on love, you may be surprised how fast you go from a C- to an A +.
If you want to get better at relationships, contact me for a one-on-0ne date consulting session. Or pick up a copy of my two books, “Was it Something I Said” and “You Lost Him at Hello”!