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Let’s Go for a Walk

Posted by on Mar 14, 2014 in Blog, For Guys & Gals, Let's Go For a Walk | 0 comments

Let’s Go for a Walk

Find out what you have in common with Michael Phelps, 18-time gold medal Olympian – and how this can help you find the match of your dreams and create a fantastic relationship. Each morning as soon as I get up I go out for a walk. Often I walk only for 5 minutes, but sometimes I’m out for as long as 20 or more if I really need to percolate. While walking, I do three things which focus my mind and heart to attract success: 1. Gratitudes. I ask myself, “What am I feeling grateful for right this minute, about what ever happened yesterday, and about what is happening today.” It’s always a long list right away. 2. Action steps. What three steps am I going to take today toward my main goal? (which in my case at the moment is finishing the dating book I’m writing, and creating a dating coaching/seminar business – for you, the goal might be finding a great match and creating an excellent relationship!) 3. Feeling as if I’m Already There. Then I ask myself: “How will I feel, and what will be happening when I have reached my primary goal?” I Imagine that I am there already. I see it, feel it, touch it, hear it, taste it. But what does this have to do with Michael Phelps? I’m getting to that. I come back from these walks super charged for the day and programmed for success. On these walks I also often have important ahas about my life, and what is important for me next. In this series of blog posts I’ll share with you some of the things I realize about dating and life while I’m walking. And after each walk I write down my action steps for the day, and any other realizations that popped in while I was walking. Why does this work? First of all, it’s a FAST way to get grounded and positive. Research has shown that happy, successful people focus on what they’re grateful for A LOT. And they believe in their vision, and keep putting practical and emotional energy into it. For more info, see www.happify.com. This little routine is all about creating a positive mindset for yourself, and taking the next steps, in a manageable way, to take you toward your goal. Now here’s the Michael Phelps part. Do you remember how he used to wear headphones until the very last second when he was getting into the pool? He was listening to the Star Spangled Banner, what he would hear AFTER he won! And he was feeling how he was going to feel when he won that medal, and was listening to that music. THAT’S what creates success (however you define success) – feeling the feelings you will feel when you succeed. Feeling like you’re already there turns you into a magnet that pulls toward you the realization of that vision or dream. It worked for Michael Phelps… Now, of course, it’s not JUST about feeling as if you’re already succeeded. But when you can already taste, smell, touch, hear what success will feel like, you’re much more likely to take the necessary steps that will get you there. Like training for the Olympics a gazillion hours a day for years… Or, the second part of this morning walk routine: goal setting, in bite-sized pieces, for the day. When you’re out walking you’re already in action. And just being able to walk, and to see, hear, and feel are gigantic things to be grateful for in life. But this routine can also work for...

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Men: Why You Should Treat Women Like Dogs

Posted by on Mar 10, 2016 in Blog, For Guys | 0 comments

Men: Why You Should Treat Women Like Dogs

Why Men Should Treat Women Like Dogs: Thirteen Tips for a Great Relationship Men frequently tell me they don’t understand what women want from men. Since men and women often approach things very differently, and use different language, it can be difficult to communicate to a man, in his own terms, what a woman wants from a man. The man I’m involved with recently got a new puppy. He is a good doggie Dad. As I’ve been watching him with this new dog, it occurred to me that the keys to raising a dog well are remarkably similar to those for creating and maintaining a healthy, happy  romantic relationship. Now, of course, I’m not suggesting that men should think of women as “dogs.” Also, the truth is that a man may feel more committed to his dog than he does to his relationship. After all, a man usually gets a dog with the expectation that he will be with that dog for its entire life. He may not enter a romantic relationship with the same certainty or expectation. However, for as long as a man is in any particular relationship, many of the principles for making it successful are like the principles for raising dogs well. Here are a few of those essentials: Feed them every day, and make sure water is available to them all the time Pet them often and give them attention Give them treats, especially when they do something you appreciate- and sometimes just because it makes them wag their tails Never give more attention to other dogs than you do to your own Go on walks, get exercise, play together, and have some fun. Give them time to play with other dogs Be grateful they are there to greet you when you come home, and show them you’re happy to see them Speak to them in a friendly tone of voice most of the time – and make it short when you need to speak sternly Don’t make them wait too long when they need to get rid of doggie waste – you may not be happy with the results! Notice when they don’t feel good, and do something about it Don’t let anyone else take better care of them than you do Take them with you when you can, and go on road trips often When you leave, pet them and tell them when you’ll be back If a man treats his dog this way, he’ll have a happy, healthy, loyal, loving dog.   Ok, now let’s check out the parallels in relationship terms.   Feed them every day, and make sure water is available to them all the time A relationship, just like a dog, needs nourishment every day to thrive. You wouldn’t forget to feed your dog for several days, and expect it to be doing well when you finally came around, would you? Most dogs get fed twice a day. If a relationship receives nourishment at least once a day – and better yet, twice a day, morning and night, that gets you off to a good running start. So, what is “nourishment for a relationship? It can be simple – a kiss, a smile, a hug, a text, an email, or a phone call – making a connection that shows you care and gives her some idea of what is happening in your life. It doesn’t need to take a lot of time or even energy. It just means you are engaged and connected – and it can become part of a routine, like feeding your dog every morning and...

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Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 5

Posted by on Jun 25, 2015 in Blog, For Guys & Gals | 0 comments

Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 5

Handle your mistakes – but don’t beat yourself up. That just slows you down in addressing the situation, learning for the future, and moving on.   When you make a mistake, here’s a good thing to say: “I made a mistake. I’m sorry for how this hurt you. Here’s what I’m doing to fix it (fill in the blank).” And then, say to yourself, “Now, I’m going to get on with my life!”   Everyone makes mistakes. Big ones. Ones that hurt. Lots and lots and lots of them… If any of us had our lives to do over again, we would do some things differently. Maybe VERY differently. But, we don’t have our lives to live over again. We only have the opportunities in the future that we are creating in the present. Today, as they say, is the first day of the rest of your life. So, an important part of loving yourself is forgiving your own mistakes – learning from them – doing what you can to make things right – and then MOVING ON. If you don’t learn to forgive yourself for your “mistakes,” how will anyone else learn to forgive you? You need to lead by example. When you notice that you’ve made a “mistake,” here are some good steps to take: S – T – O – P ….. SLOOOOOOWWWW down. Notice the impact and the damage. THEN, forgive yourself IMMEDIATELY.If you don’t, you are likely to KEEP causing damage to yourself and others as you deny what you did, or keep beating yourself up. STOP IT. Beating yourself up doesn’t help ANYONE. No matter what they tell you. APOLOGIZE – It can be simple. You don’t need to spill blood over it. FIX IT IF YOU CAN or minimize the damage if you can’t. NOTICE WHAT YOU’VE LEARNED FOR THE FUTURE so you don’t have to make the same mistake again. MOVE ON….....

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Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 4

Posted by on Jun 24, 2015 in Blog, For Guys & Gals | 0 comments

Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 4

What do you like about yourself, inside and out? Make a list. You don’t need to let anyone else see it. Remind yourself of what you like about yourself every day. You need to become not only your own best friend, but your own best cheerleader, coach, and mentor. If not now, when? Start with what you DO like and appreciate about yourself – mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually – and go from there. I’m not kidding. Make a list. No-one else needs to see it. There is nothing wrong with appreciating yourself. I’d like to say that again: no matter what we’ve been taught, there is nothing wrong with appreciating ourselves. This is not a sign of egotism or selfish pride. It’s also not an indication that you lack humility. If you can’t appreciate and respect yourself, it is unlikely others will either. You need to know your own skills, blessings, and gifts to be able to use them well – in service to yourself, and to others. Can a bird fly if it has no awareness of its wings?...

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Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 3

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Blog, For Guys & Gals | 0 comments

Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 3

Give yourself the love and understanding you wish from others: compassionate love – and tough love, without judgment. How can you be your own best friend, every minute of every day? We teach others how to treat us by how we treat ourselves. This is, perhaps, a cruel fact of life. We live in a “hall of mirrors,” with life mirroring back at us the thoughts and feelings we hold in our own minds, hearts, and bodies. If we want others to treat us better, we need to treat ourselves better first. We show them the way. So, if you want love from others, become your own best friend. Learn to notice when you are beating yourself up. It is a habit which is deeply ingrained in most of us. How can you learn to listen to what you are telling yourself, about yourself, and speak to yourself kindly, as if you were your own best friend in the world? What can you appreciate about yourself RIGHT THIS MINUTE? What can you be grateful for about yourself RIGHT NOW? Appreciation and gratitude are the most powerful levers to shift your inner climate. They won’t take away your awareness of what you need to do or change about yourself or your life – they will just help you love yourself NOW as you are, which is an essential first step. This is simple. But it takes lots and lots and lots of practice. So, it is not easy. Your mind will come up with many “buts” – about the mistakes you have made – about the reasons why you are at fault, or are not “worthy.” Bring your attention back to what you are grateful for about yourself and your life – and start from there. Otherwise any changes you make will be like building a new building on quicksand. Your strong foundation needs to be loving yourself. And loving yourself is a daily practice, and a work in...

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Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 2

Posted by on Jun 21, 2015 in Blog, For Guys & Gals | 0 comments

Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 2

Most people have wondered, at some point or another, whether they are “good enough.” This is partially a result of the many ways in which society indoctrinates us about who we are “supposed to be.” We wonder: “Am I smart enough? Successful enough? Handsome/pretty enough? Rich enough?” and so on. We compare ourselves to others – because that is what we are taught to do – and find ourselves lacking in some area – or many. At core, this inner struggle is a fear of not being worthy of love. That is the ultimate fear. And out of this fear, and the hurt and rejection many if not most of us have experienced in life, we protect ourselves and “act out,” doing hurtful things to others, and to ourselves. It is a paradox: out of a fear of not being worthy of love – and trying to keep ourselves “safe” from getting hurt – we do things that drive away the very love we crave. Usually this happens completely unconsciously. Sometimes the hurt we impose upon ourselves, and on others, is severe. The week I write this, we see this in a young man who shot and killed nine people in a church in South Carolina…. But this doesn’t mean we should stop loving, or believing we, or any other human being, is not worthy of love. Whether we have hurt ourselves or others in our lives, we are all still worthy of love. How could it be otherwise? Human beings are brought into the world to love others and be loved. It is fundamental to our human nature. It is when people don’t get the love that is each person’s birthright, or are taught to hate others, that violence happens. Of course, we still need to get ourselves out of harm’s way when someone is being destructive – and hold ourselves and others accountable for mental or physical violence or abuse. And ideally we would each do what we can to heal whatever damage we have done in the past, to ourselves and to others. We might need to change to treat ourselves and others better – or to attract or keep the love we crave as part of the human condition. However, the first step in loving yourself is acknowledging, as a principle, that EVERY person is worthy of love, no exceptions, including you. Can you do...

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Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 1

Posted by on Jun 20, 2015 in Blog, For Guys & Gals | 0 comments

Get Ready for Love: Loving Yourself – Post 1

A NEW SERIES OF BLOG POSTS: Get Ready for Love First Topic: Loving Yourself If you want real love in your life, the first person you need to love is yourself. This is true for all of us. How can you be who you really are – and love yourself NOW as you are? After that, you might want to make some adjustments to be your best self. Why not do this according to who YOU want to be, not anyone else’s standards, accepting all the “imperfections” that make you unique and special? Putting some attention on offering your best self – to yourself and others – can help you love and respect yourself, no matter who is in your life, or what anyone else does or doesn’t do. Offering your best will also help you attract the perfect match for you, or be the best partner you can be in a relationship. We are all “works in progress” as long as we are in this life… In this series of blog posts, spread out over several months, I’ll explore the topic of YOUR BEST SELF – and how to become that person, according to your needs and wishes. Each week of posts will address a different topic. To start with, let’s look at the topic of Loving yourself NOW as you...

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Men: How to Succeed with the First Kiss

Posted by on May 15, 2014 in Blog, Featured, For Guys | 0 comments

Men: How to Succeed with the First Kiss

People say the first kiss is important. And, I’m here to tell you they’re right! When and how you kiss a woman for the first time is a critical turning point – it can seal the deal – or be a total deal breaker. But the whole situation can be anxiety-producing for a guy. Everyone is afraid of rejection when they’re dating – everyone – it is part of the human condition. And as the guy, it’s usually understood that you will make the “move” for the first kiss. A guy is supposed to be smooth and confident and into the woman, but he’s also supposed to be respectful enough not to seem like a pushy creep. That’s not always such an easy balance to strike! So, cut yourself some slack about not being perfect, or knowing exactly what to do or when to do it.   What are some things that will help you know when and how to approach the first kiss? First of all, you need to know when NOT to kiss a woman. DON’T kiss a woman unless you’ve had some indication that she wants to be near you. Signs that a woman would like to be physically close to you include: Touching you on the arm or leg Leaning toward you Sitting near you Keeping her hand in yours if you take her hand Standing with her toes pointing toward you (yes, it sounds funny, but this is actually a good indicator!) Smiling at you a lot, laughing, tossing or fingering her hair, and generally looking like she’s enjoying being with you. And DON’T kiss a woman if she clearly and specifically goes to kiss you on the cheek – or offers her cheek for you to kiss her there – or goes to give you a hug. If you intercept her and “force” her to kiss you on the lips when she’s not ready, it will probably creep her out, and she may never want to kiss you or go out with you again. (This has happened to me. It can feel really intrusive, a little scary even, and GROSS!) So, what if she IS doing some or all of the things on the list above, that indicate she would like to be physical with you? Then should you kiss her? When? On the first date? Second date? End of the date only? During the date? Sometimes, if a woman really seems to like you, and you like her, it’s nice to give her a little kiss on the lips at the end of the first date, without putting big “moves” on her. This has happened to me a couple of times and I loved it – if I liked the guy. It showed that he liked and was into me, but wasn’t trying to race me into bed. And it showed he had some guts and self-confidence. Actually, it was totally charming and romantic.   But when should you go in for the “real” kiss – the sexy one. After the second date? There’s no rule to this. However, some women have told me that if a guy she’s interested in doesn’t try to kiss her by the second or at the latest third date she 1) thinks he doesn’t really like her that much and/or 2) loses respect for him. Other women have told me they don’t mind waiting several dates before things become physically romantic – or even a few weeks. So, women are obviously very different on this score. First, it’s important to be clear about your own style...

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Ladies: Why Guys Hate Drama & What to Do About It

Posted by on Apr 12, 2014 in Blog, For Gals | 0 comments

Ladies: Why Guys Hate Drama & What to Do About It

Guys hate “drama” in their relationships with women. For most men, drama might be defined as a woman getting upset at them, blaming them, overreacting (from their perspective), and seeming irrational. Some men particularly dislike it when “drama” is accompanied by crying, and big discussions. For most guys, it can take days, or weeks, to get over an episode of “drama” and the experience will create a strong, unpleasant memory. And most guys will avoid confrontations and big discussions – and consider leaving a relationship, or just leave it,  when there is “too much drama.” In other words, drama can be a dealbreaker in a relationship. So, if you want to be in a relationship, this is important! So, why is it that men hate “drama?” (We’ll get to what you can do about it next!) Part of the answer seems to be in how men’s and women’s brains are literally wired differently. Some of this is almost cliché: Men’s brains are typically wired for “results” more than for “process.” In Men are From Mars, Women are From Venus John Gray says: “A man’s sense of self is defined through his ability to achieve results.” Dealing with emotional issues is inherently a process situation. (See the book Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti, in the ‘Relationship’ section of the ‘Resources’ portion of this Web site.) NOTE: This is also why men are less likely to be fascinated with how and why your relationship communication works or doesn’t work. In fact, many men will get impatient with the following list – while many women will eat up this information with a stick and a spoon. Also, men are not raised to focus on communication and collaboration skills the way women are. So, this is another reason they often feel out of their depth in this arena, and are typically less comfortable in it than are women. Men’s brains are more programmed to deal with one situation at a time, handling that situation, before moving on to the next. Women’s brains can move from one subject to another with great fluidity, without resolving one issue before connecting it with the next. This is why the authors of Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti say that men’s brains are like waffles, and women’s brains are like spaghetti. Further, they state: “A man will strategically organize his life in boxes and then spend most of his time in the boxes he can succeed in. This is such a strong motivation for him that he will seek out the boxes that work, and will ignore the boxes that confuse him or make him feel like a failure. …Men also take a “success” approach to communication. If they believe they can successfully talk with their wives and reach a desirable outcome, they will be highly motivated to converse. If, on the other hand, the conversation seems pointless to him, or he finds understanding his wife impossible, he loses his motivation to talk and clams up.” When a woman is upset, she usually covers a lot of ground in her communication, linking one thought to another quickly. In keeping with the idea of women being like spaghetti, and men being life waffles, this can be maddening to a man, because he gets stuck three ideas back. He stops being able to follow her, especially if he is upset, and gives up because he feels like he is “failing.” As part of their “results” orientation, men are “fixers.” When a woman is upset, it can appear to a man that there is nothing he can...

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Men: How to Deal with “Drama” – And, Why it Matters

Posted by on Apr 12, 2014 in Blog, For Guys | 0 comments

Men: How to Deal with “Drama” – And, Why it Matters

Gentlemen, don’t you hate it when a woman suddenly gets upset and acts hurt or angry? Maybe you find yourself saying “She is overreacting. She is blaming me. This is unfair and ridiculous. There is nothing I can do. I am f—-d. I hate this. This is going to ruin my evening. This is going to take forever to deal with…” Below are  some very simple steps to deal with the situation that get results, require the least amount of time and emotional energy, and have the best possibility for a good outcome. (Now, why is this important – also known as, “Why should you care?” or “What’s in it for you?” According to John Gray in Men are From Mars: Women are From Venus, the number one complaint that women have about men is that they don’t listen. And when a women is upset, that is perhaps the most important time for her to feel like her man is listening. And, according to John Gottman in The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: “The determining factor in whether wives feel satisfied with the sex, romance, and passion in their marriage is, by 70 percent, the quality of the couple’s friendship. For men, the determining factor is, by 70 percent, the quality of the couple’s friendship. So men and women come from the same planet after all.” Isn’t being able to resolve things when someone is upset an important aspect of friendship? And, practically speaking, don’t you think your lady is going to love on you really well if she feels like you listen to her when she’s upset?) So, here are the steps for dealing with a woman’s “drama:”   1. Adjust Your Attitude. First of all, if a mechanical device malfunctioned, you wouldn’t take it personally, would you? Sometimes emotions just get clogged up and you need to take time to unsnarl them a little before you can go on. If a toilet started to overflow, you wouldn’t argue with it saying “That’s ridiculous. You’re overreacting to what I put in there. You’re blaming me and I don’t like it. I don’t have time to deal with this….” No, you’d just deal with it. Backed up emotions can be the same way. So, deal with it.   2. Take the heat off yourself. Don’t worry about whether she thinks it’s your “fault” or not. Let go of the defensive posture, and take a deep breath.   3. Cut her some slack. If she’s upset, she is probably feeling insecure. You feel insecure sometimes too, right? Cut her a little bit of slack.   4. Listen, and try to understand things from her perspective.   All you need to do/say is “I am sorry you are feeling upset. Tell me what is going on. I am listening.” And then try to put yourself in her shoes for a few minutes. Even if where she’s coming from seems really foreign to you, try to understand it. Sometimes just by listening for a little while, you will defuse her bad feeling quickly. Please NOTE: You are not apologizing for anything – you are not saying you’ve done anything “wrong,” you are just listening. I think of the expression “That which you resist, persists.” If you assume you understand what she’s really upset about, and dismiss her feelings, you’ll probably add gasoline to the flame and create a bonfire or an explosion.   5. Get to the root of the issue. What she’s saying she’s upset about may not be the root of the issue – it might just have been the final thing...

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The Greatest Gifts

Posted by on Apr 7, 2014 in Blog, For Guys & Gals, Let's Go For a Walk | 0 comments

The Greatest Gifts

Have you ever felt like maybe you don’t have what it takes to find and sustain a great relationship? It’s this negative self talk which is actually the greatest obstacle to us creating a terrific relationship. But, we all have it, at some point or another. Being so very hard on ourselves….. Maybe you just had another disastrous date – or crash and burn start and end to a relationship. Or maybe the relationship you’re in is having some real problems. Or you’re feeling too gunshy even to try. What keeps me going in dating and relationships in general is that I know that if I continue learning from my “mistakes” – and loving myself – my relationships will become better and better. A while back I had a set of unfortunate communications in a relationship with a man. Here is how a guy might perceive what I did “wrong”: Overreacted about something; Got upset  – (that doesn’t mean I was angry or accusing by the way – I just got hurt and said something before I had given it more space and let it settle in my own heart and mind – this is what men call “drama” and it is probably the number one thing most of them avoid); Offered opinions about what a man should do about a challenge in his life without first inquiring whether those opinions were welcome; Sent too many texts, that were too long; Got too serious about the whole thing, and too focused on it; Tried to get him to talk about it when he wasn’t ready, and didn’t give him enough space in general. From a women’s perspective, here’s what I did: Tried to express how I felt and what I needed in a non-blaming way; Cared a lot – about him, the relationship, and his family; Wanted to be helpful; Tried to communicate; Wanted to resolve things, for both our sakes; In general, tried really hard! Isn’t it remarkable that the same set of actions can be viewed or experienced so differently by two people at the very same time? Now, here’s the interesting part – because what if both perspectives are equally “true”? How could that be possible? On my walk one morning, in the middle of this situation, I found this little Santa. And I was thinking that, whatever might happen next, these “mistakes” I had made could be my greatest gifts. Isn’t Santa the ultimate gift guy? (I have no idea what he was doing in the gutter in the middle of April.) Because what I want to learn is how to communicate, and time the communication, such that a man doesn’t experience his undesirable list – from the top of this post – and instead can relate to or connect with me from my intentions, and where I’m coming from – the bottom list. People live in very different realities – and there’s not one that’s “right.” So, it’s important to learn what works in someone else’s reality – without being untrue to yourself. If I can learn to do that, then any choices I made in that situation don’t need to feel like “mistakes” – if I’m really willing to learn. Glory @@@####!!! Hallelujah! When something derails, we may or may not be able to “fix” the situation. We can apologize for the way it came across. But the situation itself may not be able to be resolved the way we would most like. That’s life. Aren’t most things beyond our control, anyway? But, something we DO have control over is forgiving ourselves for our “mistakes” and continuing to learn how to communicate most effectively from the other person’s perspective....

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It’s a Guy Thing – or Is It?

Posted by on Apr 3, 2014 in Blog, For Guys & Gals, Let's Go For a Walk | 0 comments

It’s a Guy Thing – or Is It?

This morning the little boy next door was sobbing his eyes out as I was getting ready for my walk. And the circumstance made me think about fear of rejection, and whether men and women deal with this challenge differently. And, how fear of rejection can be handled well during dating. So, are men more afraid of rejection than women? Do they handle it differently? And what are the keys for men in dealing with fear of rejection during dating? More on all of this below – with some thoughts about how fear of rejection can be minimized – and how you can feel like a success while you’re dating, no matter what is happening. To explain about the little boy – my home is two attached units and I lease out one side as a furnished vacation rental. Currently a man is living there while he’s back from working overseas with the military, and his four-year old son is with him part-time.  My tenant’s rental agreement is up in a few days and I assume he’s going back overseas while his son stays in town with his mom, the man’s ex. I wondered whether the son was crying in anticipation of his father leaving. Today’s heart-breaking sobbing was a departure from what I’ve heard over there in the past –  the two of them playing “monster,” with the man chasing his son around the house, and the little boy laughing gleefully. But isn’t it like this for all of us? Don’t we all fear the going away of someone we care about – just like a four-year old boy. Or being told, directly or indirectly, that we’re not “the one?” Grown up men are supposed to be tough. But what I hear from men is that the fear of rejection is often a giant obstacle to moving forward with dating, or being in a relationship. After all, traditionally, men are the ones who are supposed to “make the first move,” – walk up to the woman – ask for her number – call her- ask her out – ask her out again – make the move for the first kiss….. It’s a lot of energy – and a lot of putting themselves out there with the possibility of rejection at each stage of the game. And isn’t fear of rejection and loss, bottom line, what makes dating and relationships painful sometimes? I’ve spoken with men who’ve had a hard time moving forward with finding another relationship. or really letting someone else in, after a devastating abandonment (like their wife having an affair, and then the marriage ending in divorce.) Others seem to recover pretty quickly and move on, with renewed sense of self. Isn’t it true for all of us that: We want the love. We fear the rejection. Yes, we want sex too – and the popular understanding is that guys are more motivated by sex than women are – more on that topic in another post sometime. In my experience, and this is a gross generalization, women are in some ways more equipped to heal from rejection and move on. They have more skills for “self-soothing,” and more community that supports them in putting things in perspective, whereas guys often slug out this healing process relatively alone. But, when you get right down to it – aren’t we more the same than we are different? We both really want love – acceptance – nurturing. We both want to feel safe with someone who cares about us. By the time we’re even a little bit grown up, most of...

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Men: How to Succeed on a Date with a Woman

Posted by on Apr 2, 2014 in Blog, For Guys | 0 comments

Men: How to Succeed on a Date with a Woman

Recently I received a marketing email from a dating coach about how a man can succeed with a woman on a date. I forwarded it to a man I know who is dating, who I feel presents himself very well, and asked  “What do you think of this?” He emailed back to say he thought it smelled like snake oil: a “fool-proof  system” that is only for fools. And he promised he’d tell me what he does when he’s on a date with someone he’s getting to know. So, we talked about it last night and he shared his approach, which makes a lot of sense to me in terms of what works and what doesn’t. Here’s what he recommends for early on in the dating process: Be relaxed. You can’t get to know someone, or help them get to know you, if you’re not relaxed and open. Be confident in yourself. You need to accept yourself as you are, and be authentic in how you present yourself. This means being straightforward, without playing mind games, or trying to manipulate or “trick” the other person somehow. Be comfortable in your own skin. Whether you’re a movie star – or not (as most of us aren’t), you need to feel comfortable with yourself in order to really connect with another person. Listen. What are the woman’s interests? What does she care about? How can you relate to that from what you are interested in and care about? Be curious. Build conversation from what she cares about, and from what she is saying in the moment. Make eye contact. Smile. Be present. This was the essence of what he said. Now, of course, he is someone who comes across as fundamentally accepting himself, seems generally pretty relaxed, laid back, confident, and comfortable in his own skin. He seems interested in other people, listens to them, and is a good communicator. And, from my perspective, these attributes – although incredibly important – are not always easy for a man to have, depending on his particular upbringing, experience, and history. My date also noted that if a man has trouble relaxing, does not feel confident or comfortable, or lacks good communication or conversational skills, doing some work on himself may be a good idea. (And I hope this Web site will help both men and women with these and other skills!) But attaining those attributes or skills is not some kind of “overnight quick fix – just follow these seven easy steps – add water and stir.” I’d like to add these things which are important to ME when I’m dating a man: I appreciate a man “taking charge” without “taking control.” More on that in a future blog post; Chivalry DOES matter – to me at least. See the blog post about that which is already up on this Web site; and The first kiss – when, where, how – IS, actually, quite significant. More on that in another blog post as well. I’d also like to be realistic. People get nervous on first dates – both men and women – so it seems to me it makes sense to give each other a chance – and not to expect perfect ease, confidence, relaxation, transparency, and authenticity on the first date. Realistically, both people need to get a feeling of whether someone new is worth or “safe” opening up to before showing all their cards. None of us wants to waste time or emotional energy. And noone enjoys rejection. So, guys, don’t bust yourself if you’re not completely, totally relaxed, funny, and...

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Staying Centered During Dating

Posted by on Mar 31, 2014 in Blog, Featured, For Guys & Gals, Let's Go For a Walk | 0 comments

Staying Centered During Dating

Do you know how when you really like someone, you can feel yourself getting pulled off your center? Sometimes all you can think about is when you’re going to see that person again, and what will happen. There’s all the excitement and euphoria, and the nervousness and anxiety. And the same thing can be true when you feel very rejected. You can lose your sense of yourself for a time, and your mind can get caught up in thoughts about the other person or the situation- hurt, sadness, frustration, self-doubt. That’s no fun! This can be true when you’re dating. And it can also be true when you’re in a relationship. I was thinking about this today with reference to myself while I was out for my morning walk. When I am just getting to know someone I notice how very compelling that is, but also how much it has the potential to pull me completely off my center. I can find myself doing none of my usual self-care routines – morning walks, saturday meditation with a friend, exercise, yoga class, vitamins…. And, of course, sticking to routines is not the goal of life – and being flexible and going with the flow is a good thing – as is enjoying what is actually happening in the moment. However, I was noticing that I invest a lot in myself in relationships – to be my best self – and then it can be easy, in the sway of attraction, both the good feelings and the “bad” ones, to throw that work out the window. And the very qualities which attract someone to me can begin to slip away if I don’t stay centered in myself. It seems to me this can be true for other people too. This is also why dating and relationships can be such a great teacher – for me, anyway. Because I want to be my strongest, best self no matter who is or isn’t in my life – and no matter whether I like what is happening with them, or I don’t. And relationships inevitably bring up all the fragile, sensitive stuff for each of us as well. Or, at least they do for me…. Again, I was reminded of this on my morning walk because I came across a couple that was having a shouting match as they were driving in a small, shiny, yellow pickup truck, with one of them finally getting out of the truck and slamming the door. Ouch! Probably most of us have been there at some point. All that hurt and vulnerability. And a friend who just broke up a relationship was talking about this yesterday – saying she notices that when she is NOT in a relationship, she feels very strong and together, and when she IS in a relationship, she feels all sorts of vulnerability come up when things are not going the way she wants them to. Of course, the opposite is true for some people as well – that NOT being in a relationship brings up lots of “stuff” for them to work on in being alone. It’s all the same thing really. Dating – and relationship – as a teacher, if we choose to look at it that way – for how each of us can learn to be grounded in our best selves – no matter who is or isn’t showing up – and what the other person is or isn’t doing. Hmmmmmmmmmm…… (This blog post is part of the ‘Let’s Go for a Walk’ series. The first post in this series...

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Gentlemen, Is Chivalry Dead?

Posted by on Mar 10, 2014 in Blog, For Guys | 0 comments

Gentlemen, Is Chivalry Dead?

No. Nor is a woman’s desire for you to be chivalrous. So, what is ‘chivalry’ and what are some of the rules of the game? And why should you care anyway? The term was originally used to define the conduct of knights in the Middle Ages. Today it refers to how a man behaves  towards a woman to help her feel safe, considered, and taken care of – particularly when the two of them are out and about together in the world. These are things a woman wants to feel with you if she’s going to stick around with you. So, if you want to “get” anywhere with her beyond a first date, these are good points to know! Now, some people may think chivalry is old-fashioned –and some people even say these behaviors are sexist. As a woman, I don’t feel that way – and I think most women won’t – even if they are confident and smart. Here are some common expressions of chivalry. And depending on how you look at it, some of these are just good manners! Getting There If you’re meeting for the first time and have never met before, let her pick a place she feels comfortable. If you’re taking her somewhere on a date, pick her up, and have a clean car. Open the car door for her and make sure she’s safely tucked in before you close it. Some ladies like it if you open the car door for her when you arrive as well. This can be difficult to orchestrate time-wise if she’s not expecting it, because you have to park, then walk around to open her door. If you try, and don’t get there fast enough, it’s a great time to keep it light and funny. If you’re walking outdoors along a street, walk on the outside of the sidewalk closer to the street. If it’s raining, hold an umbrella over her. If you’re crossing a street, take her arm if she is comfortable with that.   At a Venue or Entertainment Place Open the door for her if you’re going into a building. If you’re going down a narrow aisle, at a theater, or in a restaurant, allow her to go ahead. Ask her where she’d prefer to sit. If you’re sitting down at a restaurant, take her coat first and stow it away for her somewhere appropriate, then pull out her chair for her. If you’re at a restaurant, have her order first. When food arrives, wait until she begins eating before you start eating. Pay for her, at least on the first date, and usually for the first two or three. If you’re at a performance or club, make sure she has a seat or spot where she feels comfortable and can see well.   At the End of a Date If you drove separately, and she’s comfortable with this, walk her to her car, especially if it’s dark. If she’s driving home alone, text her on the way home if you have her number to thank her for the date and make sure she got home safely. If you drive her home, text her a while afterwards to thank her for the date.   By the way, it’s nice if you KEEP doing these things, even after you’re in an established relationship with someone. Just a tip for the future…… And another tip: You can practice all of this with women you interact with throughout your day. It doesn’t have to be anyone you’re romantically interested in. It helps you get in the habit, and...

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Ladies: How to Make a Man Happy on the 1st Date

Posted by on Feb 22, 2014 in Blog, Featured, For Gals | 0 comments

Ladies: How to Make a Man Happy on the 1st Date

So, what is a man looking for from you when he takes you out on a first date? Whether it’s just a date for coffee, and you’ve never met each other before, or he’s taking you out to dinner, he’s spending his time, and usually his money, to go out with you. Put yourself in his shoes for a moment: He’s gone to the trouble to set this date up, gotten himself out of the house and there to meet you, and may be a little bit nervous. So, what is going to make him feel glad he went on this date with you? Here are some of the things a man is looking for on a first date with you. If you do these things, you will not only have more fun, you’ll be more likely to get asked out on a second date. If you’re meeting him, be on time for the date, relaxed, and ready to interact. If he’s picking you up, be ready when he gets there. Dress attractively. Whatever the situation, men like beauty. And, honestly, they like to see a woman’s shape – bust, derriere, legs. Even if it’s a coffee date, wear something that flatters you. You don’t have to be racey, but show a little leg and skin. Fitted jeans are great. Give him a hug when you meet him if you feel comfortable doing that. Smile at him and make eye contact. Listen to him and laugh at his jokes. Give him your full attention: Don’t be on your cell phone texting or calling, or looking at the television in the restaurant. If it’s true, let him know by the way you sit and stand that you are comfortable being near him. Be enthusiastic and happy to be with him. And finally, express appreciation for the effort, time, and money the gentleman put forward to spend this time with you.   Whether you want to see someone again or not, it’s good for YOU to practice these skills in connecting with whoever you meet. By taking these steps you are not compromising yourself, or committing to anything. You are just expressing consideration and value for another human being. So, unless the man is rude and completely unpleasant, why not make this effort to “show up” for him on your first date? There is almost always something you can appreciate about whoever you find yourself interacting with. Focus on that appreciation, and let yourself enjoy whatever there is to enjoy – and notice what you’re learning!  ...

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