Part of my mission as a personal matchmaker and dating coach is to consistently bring to your experience of dating more fun and more life-enriching opportunities as you move forward in your journey toward loving relationship.
What do you do, or maybe a better question is what should you do when you experience a Dating Disappointment? When things go….just…badly?
Our personal matchmaking community is like a laboratory — we get to study a challenging and mysterious piece of our Client’s world (the Love Life) under a microscope to see what’s happening. We get to see how our Client deals with the good and the not-so-good things that are woven into the dating adventure.
Over these past twenty years as a matchmaker and dating coach, I’ve learned that how someone shows up here in our community is also very often a reflection of how they are being out there in their lives in general. Good, bad, and sometimes ugly…
Every little thing that happens along the way in your dating process is an opportunity to practice — Practice what? Practice the very skills you’ll need to be successful in the relationship you’re looking to find for yourself.
Think of a couple whose relationship you truly admire. Got one? Me too. So let’s ask ourselves what admirable qualities they’re demonstrating in their partnership. How are they being with each other? And then we can practice bringing those qualities to our relationships, both old and new. Even on and especially on a date., even when and especially when…things go badly.
How are you handling mishaps? If you’re dating you can count on them, and in relationship, even the best of them, we know there will be disappointments. Let’s take a look at how you’re managing the ups and downs along the way.
When you’re on time and your date is late — do you choose to get angry or do you roll with the punches and keep your cool? Whenever we’re stuck waiting, be it at the doctor’s office or in freeway traffic, it’s an opportunity to practice patience, understanding, flexibility and compassionate communication. Are you the one honking your horn? Or are you the one taking the deep breath, smiling, being the courteous to everyone, even those who are in your way?
When you’re thrown off balance by the turn the road just gave you, practice breathing and find something to appreciate, smile or laugh about. Bringing these skills with you into your future relationship will enable love to flourish. Practice taking those deep breaths…now…and all along the way in your journey toward loving partnership.
Has someone you were interested in disappointed you? Maybe things went well on a date and you expected there would be another date happening and….poof….the vanishing act. How are you handling it when the person you’re interested in isn’t demonstrating the level of interest you’d like to see? Do you find yourself getting angry, shutting down, allowing negativity, bitterness, unhappiness or insecurity to creep in or maybe take over?
Bruce’s date, last Monday evening. Susan was late. She had written down 5:30, he’d written down 5:00 — and traffic was bad besides — Bruce called her after waiting for 20 minutes, she realized her mistake and apologized. He handled it just right — he made some calls, replied to a few emails, and… he kept his cool…even though he’d been waiting at the restaurant for 45 minutes by the time she arrived. And you know what happened? They had a really nice date and she was so appreciative of his graciousness, she’s having him over for a Memorial Day dinner at her place tonight. A mishap that served as an opportunity to strengthen (vs. derail) the match. Nicely done, you two…it’s a great night for an al fresco dinner date.
What do you do when you’re disappointed? I’m practicing responding postively to life’s mishaps so that each and every bump in the road provides an opportunity for growth and for contribution. It’s not always easy, of course, but I’m enjoying learning how to do that just a little bit better.
Amy really liked Don and thought their first date had gone so well, ending with what she described as “an electrifying kiss” and his suggestion that they get together again. A week later, not having heard from him, she wondered what she should do — Sit tight? Email him? Call him? Extend an invitation? Dr. Pat Allen would say she should sit tight, do nothing, wait for him to resurface, wait weeks in fact. Some dating experts would say it’s fine for her to reach out to him. Here’s what Amy did — she shared with me that she tends to get discouraged and her spirits can fall when she’s waiting for a guy to call her. She also knows that being outside when the weather is great makes her happy….every time….so she extended by email a last minute opportunity to some of her pals to join her for a sunset hike today, and at the last moment, before hitting the “send” button, she added in Don as a recipient. And guess who’s the ONLY person who could attend? Right. Amy and Don are hiking Busch Canyon this afternoon. Right now, in fact.
Both of these dates are happening…right…now. That’s the kind of success that warm this matchmaker’s heart.
When things go well, are you noticing? Are you smiling? Are you looking for opportunities to express gratitude and to reciprocate with generosity? And when things don’t go well, how are you making lemonade happen? I’d love to hear some of your stories about how you’ve turned a dating disappointment into something worthwhile or even magical.
Keep on loving out there. And Happy Memorial Day to you and to everyone who matters to you.