Summer’s here and everywhere you go, you see them – the happy couples, walking hand in hand, laughing over a glass of wine or feeding each other oysters, displaying a little too much PDA (and yet you’re insanely jealous that they’re getting that affection). It’s your turn now – but you’ve been doing the online or meet-in-the-bar dating thing and you’ve flatlined. Time to invent the game and reinvent yourself.
1. TOSS THE LIST.
No matter where we keep them – on paper, on our laptops, in our heads – we all have those LISTS. You know, the Top 10 Things We’re Looking For in a Partner. Maybe you’ve got an image of what he needs to look like (head full of hair? Over 6 feet?) or that she needs to be a daily gym goer and able to wear a bikini? Maybe you want someone to buy season tickets to the symphony or be the one to throw those Sunday TV football-watching parties? Whatever’s on your must-have list, TOSS IT.
Now’s the turn to turn the page on what or who we THINK we want. That’s not to say you can’t hold on to what’s most important to you, but there’s a reason that OPPOSITES ATTRACT. You may want to run a half marathon and your partner may opt to browse in a bookstore, but that doesn’t mean s/he won’t be there waving you across the finish line.
Toss the list and allow yourself to be intrigued. Toss the list and allow yourself to fall in love.
2. DON’T LISTEN TO YOUR FRIENDS.
Sounds harsh? Look, your friends and family have developed a sense of who you are based on what they’ve seen of you; makes sense. But no one knows what you really want, who you really want, who you really are, more than you. Maybe you’re tired of your professional look and want to grow your hair or maybe you’ve never told anyone that you’d actually like to go clubbing or spend a few hours walking a nature trail instead of that weekly trip to the art museum. It’s natural to turn to your friends and family when writing your online profile but you’re the one who wants to be dating.
Don’t listen to who THEY think you should go out with. Listen to YOU. It may shock them – and you – to find who you’re really happy with.
3. WHAT IF?
You’re at the bar and the guy a few barstools down sends you a drink but he doesn’t seem your type. Your online dating inbox is full, but none of these women’s emails totally float your boat.
But what if you said yes?
What if you accepted that drink and spent a few minutes chatting with the guy? What if, instead of staring at your computer and hoping to get that just-perfect dating email, you just wrote back to see if there just might be something there. What if she was really great by phone and just couldn’t write an interesting profile? What if he was the funniest guy you’ve ever met but you couldn’t tell from his pocket-protector nerd look?
Right now, you’re dateless. What if you said yes?
Maybe you’ll be booking that vacation for two…!
Deborah Sloan is the founder of IT’S A DATE: ONLINE PROFILE HELP FOR GROWNUPS, helping people ages 40 and up write and create online dating profiles that stand out from the crowd. Visit www.itsadateprofiles.com to learn more – and get dating.