Date Smarter: Compartmentalize!!

roseAre you getting tired of dating, weary, wondering if there’s someone out there for you, tortured about what your romantic future might be?

The REAL trouble is in the wondering – our lack of comfort with the uncertainty. Whether it’s in the dating arena, a job hunt, home search process, or as we wait on college admission decisions for our high school seniors – it’s the same gnawing feeling pressing on our psyches.

We know we shouldn’t be doing this, don’t we? We know that to wonder about things and worry about things makes the not knowing all that much worse, and yet we still do it.

The tool that’s been helping me manage uncertainty has been this – to do something every day that’s linear – a project that has a beginning, a middle, and an end. I like to choose an activity that I can do and be finished with and have a particular result that makes me all warm and glowy inside.  One weekend I planted my garden. Today I fertilized the rose bushes. I’ve been tackling the organization and de-clutter of our home on a daily basis, drawer by drawer. Who knew that sorting a sock drawer could be not only rewarding but therapeutic, even transformational?

I remember some sad, lonely times during my days as a single girl, living in a new city where I knew no one. I dreaded the weekends, as there was simply too much open space on my calendar and right around Saturday evening or maybe on Sunday afternoons I’d find my spirits falling right into the dumps. That’s when I learned about the power of compartmentalizing from my dating coach.

My coach had me tackle a project every month – one month it was to buy a second hand bike and start showing up at cycling events, tracking the increase in miles that I was able to log. Reading (and finishing) a book, baking a cake or making a meal completely from scratch, sweeping a patio, getting the leaves up off the yard, cleaning house – these are what we call linear projects, that will leave you with a feeling of completeness.

Being on dating apps, dating sites and Facebook – it’s a never-ending stream of faces that all tend to blend together after a while. There’s no sense of completion, which can be demoralizing, debilitating and discouraging – so balance out your day, your weekend, your month and your year, punctuating your life with projects that lift your spirits, which take you out of your head and into your heart and body. In other words, LIVE all along the way.

Oh, and an extra added benefit – when we fertilize our roses, they grow bigger and better! Can you smell this one? Just gorgeous.

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