Valentine’s Day is here. A time of celebration for some. A day of great emptiness for others. Think about the pressure that men and women 25+ put on themselves when it comes to dating. They have convinced themselves that they will be happy when they are in a relationship. That the right person will “complete” them.
It’s not only about finding the perfect date, but finding the perfect venue, getting perfect weather, wearing the perfect outfit and having the perfect conversation – one that more often than not ends up being forced, formal and frustrating!
Well, take a breather from it all, Valentine’s Day or not! Dating is like the romanticism of travel. Prior to a vacation, there is imagery of perfect weather, fabulous food, lots of rest and reading, etc. Fast forward into the trip after two days without your luggage (including your raincoat), the rooster that has perched itself out of your “ground-level-overlooking-the-parking lot-room” window, and you’d like to sic some of your own revenge on this Montezuma person!!
The solution? Stop romanticizing the future. Live in the here and now. Appreciate yourself first. Then relax about the whole dating thing. Here are a few tips to help:
1. Stop romanticizing: Instead of going into each date worried about perfecting it so as to secure “this one” being “the one” approach it from the standpoint of a fun meal with someone you may learn a thing or two from and if at the end you have a friendship or more out of it, then it was a success.
2. Stop trying: When you are on a date, do not worry about the next date. Instead, just enjoy the other person’s company…for that moment. You will come across as more genuine and less desperate. This, ironically, increases your chances of getting that second date.
3. Stop doing: Instead of signing up for 40 different online dating sites, going on 90 dates in 30 days, ending up broke & miserable – and still without a relationship, let it go. Go to events without the goal of meeting your spouse. Rather go there to have a good time and to meet new people.
4. Appreciate yourself: One woman I met in my travels “married” herself several years ago. The purpose was to continually remind her of her commitment to doing for herself what she would do for a spouse. She would love, make time for, and respect herself. Only after having this type of relationship with herself could she begin to have a similar relationship with a man.
This year, have the best time and the best relationships during Valentine’s Day by being goal-free.