In recent blog posts, I’ve talked about how important it is for you to create your dating plan for 2018. In order to create your dating plan, you must also create a plan for your Happiness as well.
You can date all you want, but I believe the most important component to successful dating, is living a happy and fulfilling life. Dating, while important if you’re single, should be just one activity that you do. You must live a happy and fulfilling life as well.
If you are living a happy and fulfilling life, this will come across on your dates, and you will be the one who stands out amongst the other ladies. You will be a breath of fresh air. There are many women (and men) who carry a chip on their shoulder, or they don’t value themselves. The way you carry yourself on a date is ultimately driven by the way you feel about yourself. How you carry yourself on a date will dictate how you make the guy feel, and if he wants to see you again.
Men don’t sit around analyzing (like most women do) how the date went. They just know how they felt when they were with you. They either felt amazing and can’t wait to go out again, or they didn’t feel a whole lot of anything and don’t try to go out with you again.
I don’t say this to be demeaning towards men as if they are too simple. In fact, it’s quite the opposite! I think its super smart and intuitive. They go with their gut more. Unfortunately, as women, we tend to analyze the date to death. I realize I’m being a bit extreme. I know men will think about it a bit, and not all women over analyze.
When it comes to dating, men just know how they feel when they are with you. If it feels great, they want to feel that more. If it doesn’t feel great, then they don’t.
If you don’t feel great about yourself, then you put a bad vibe out there, and they will feel that vibe.
If you feel good, then you carry a good vibe, and there is a much better chance the date will go well.
It’s simple. I love it.
You must have a happy and fulfilling life, and men have to feel a positive vibe while on a date with you. That is how you get to Date #2.
What does this look like?
Let’s get super strategic. I wish someone would have given me a plan, or at least given some direction with what to do with myself on a routine basis. It would have been so much easier. We read about what we should do to be happy, and we know what to do, but to implement a routine into your life is another story.
That’s what I want to do for you today. I want to get so strategic that you have to get out your calendar for the next 6 weeks and schedule activities. I want to get so specific that you have tasks that you do each day, and you are headed in the right direction. Research shows the best way to achieve major goals, is to set specific tasks each day. Accomplishing these tasks each day will get you closer to achieving your long-term goal. Simply having a goal is not enough. You have to take steps to get there.
I was a single mom of two young children, so if I could do it, then I know you can too. No excuses. Roll up your sleeves. Let’s do this!
Schedule One Activity Each Week with OTHER People
You should have one activity where you interact with other human beings each week. No man is an island, right? It can be anything at all that you want it to be. (not necessarily exercising by the way). You want to do an activity where you are interacting with other people. If you are anything like me, jogging and working out are my thing I do by myself. I wear my ear buds and tune out the world. It’s my “me” time so that doesn’t count! This is your chance to do things that you enjoy in the company of other people. Non-stressful things.
Don’t know what you enjoy? Try new things every week! How exciting would that be to try new things and have new experiences? If you do things you love, then you will meet others who have the same interests as you. You are then one step closer to meeting someone special. Plus, when you try new things, and do more activities, you have more to talk about. You become more interesting.
Are you terribly shy? That’s okay. When I first started doing this, I was terrified. Here is what I did. I signed up for something, committed to it, and did it. It was so hard at first to put myself out there and meet new people. Guess what? The more I did it, the easier it got. Before I knew it, meeting new people became second nature to me.
Not everyone will like you. That’s okay. You don’t like everyone you meet, right? You will find your people. Put yourself out there enough, and you will find your group, your person, and your “social” family.
Accept yourself, and that you are not everyone’s cup of tea, and just go with the flow. Find people that you like. Don’t worry so much about being accepted. Your peeps are out there! It will get easier, I promise.
Need some Ideas?
How about Painting with a Twist? There is one in almost every city, or something like it, where you go for two hours and paint a picture in a class. You have some wine and snacks and mingle with other people. It super therapeutic by the way, especially if you are a bit anal retentive like myself.
You can take a dance class. Ball room style, where you must have a partner! Don’t know where to find anything like this? Go to Meetup.com. They have singles dancing classes. Don’t want to dance? There are singles groups on this site, in every city that simply meet up, and do all kinds of fun activities.
Did you play a sport in high school that you enjoy? There are groups for that as well. You don’t have to be a pro-athlete. There is literally a group for almost everything. The great thing is that you can start your own group for relatively cheap, if you don’t find what you’re looking for.
Do you have children and don’t have child care? Is it too expensive to go out and pay for child care? I know some single parents don’t have grandparents around, so it’s a bit more difficult. I started my own Mommy Group on meetup.com and we did mommy night out once a month. It was very cheap to start my own group at first, and then it was free because I charged a small fee for membership that covered the cost of running the group. It was a great network of women. We helped each other out with child care, gave each other advice, or just simply listened when we needed a sympathetic ear. Of course, there were also some general shenanigans that took place to blow off some steam!
Is there a group for single moms in your town? Get a group of single moms together and take turns babysitting your kiddos for free. You could literally come up with a schedule and alternate child care between the mom’s so you can have a life, and help other women at the same time.
Meetup.com has a ton of groups to search though including:
Outdoors and Adventure
Sports and Wellness
The list goes on. If you can’t find something here, then you just don’t want to put in the effort. There is no excuse. Happiness and laziness don’t go together, so if you want to be happy, you had better get moving!
There is also something called Events and Adventures in Houston, TX that I heard a commercial for on the radio the other day. I thought it sounded super fun and I totally would have checked it out when I was single. They have them all throughout the U.S. in various cities so check it out.
The internet is such a resourceful place. There is literally no excuse!
Read Every Day
What? Yep, read every single day something that helps you to be a better a person, or a more interesting person. Read something educational or inspirational, and not negative. I don’t care if it’s a short article, or a self-help book that you read a little bit each day. Remember, happiness is a choice and you have to take action. Happiness will not just fall into your lap. Find something positive each day, and when you are feeling down in the dumps, remember what you read, or a great quote you saw. If you work by a computer (doesn’t everyone?), pin a quote that resonates with you on a post it note as a reminder.
I have a Facebook Page I follow that posts Buddhist quotes. I love it, and I used to visit it every morning. I still visit it a lot actually. I would search for quotes that I needed that day, and I would share them on my page. I would often go back and refer to it when I needed to get through the day! Now I read articles or my psychology books.
Just make sure you are educating yourself and reading. When I was learning how to date again, I subscribed to some dating gurus and self-help blogs and read at least one or two articles every day. I would subscribe to their newsletters so it came in my inbox, and I would take a break at work to read a bit. It helped to get my head into a good place.
Already pretty happy? That’s awesome! Read and learn about something new. Anything. I don’t care if it’s the news. When you read every day, you always have something new to talk about and you are more interesting. My husband always told me that he loved talking to me, because he always felt like he either learned something, or we talked about things that we’re happening in the world. We always had something to talk about. We still do. He reads around three books a week!
Get Outside and Put Your Phone Down
I started going for walks and jogging when I was down in the dumps. There is something about nature, and trees, and the sky that truly has a calming effect. It gives your brain the opportunity to process and think about what is going on in your life, without the disruptions of technology.
We are so plugged in these days, that we don’t spend time day dreaming anymore. Remember when you used to day dream? Remember when you were young and you would simply do nothing? Whether it was making a mud pie, chasing lightening bugs, or just sitting on the grass and hanging out? I know it’s hard to remember a time when we didn’t have our phones attached to our hip. Sometimes, I miss the days before the internet existed.
Put down your phone, tablet, laptop, or whatever technology you are addicted to. Take a break from it. Its literally taking over your brain. Just spend at least 30 minutes, three times a week, and unplug. We get so caught up in the online world, or work, that we simply don’t take time anymore to smell the roses.
Sign up for Online Dating or Hire and Match Making Agency
You should try to have a date each week (remember a date can be a 20-30 min. quick coffee, tea or lunch meeting). You can do this at lunch time, or stop and have a quick drink after work. You have got to have at least 2-3 dates lined up each month. Two dates minimum, if you are going to meet your guy.
I talked about this last week so visit this post for more specific help on that.
This means, if you are doing match.com, or another dating website, then you need to search through online profiles at night and reach out to at least five men each week. Once your roster is full, you can ease off. Remember you should be dating at least three men at once. More if you have time. Read my post Old School Dating for how and why you should keep your roster full. (Especially if you are a serial monogamist like I used to be).
I know this sounds like a lot of work, but once you have your roster full of at least three men, and you are taking time out for yourself, you will be so happy. If you can swing it financially, hire a matchmaker or dating agency. They will find the men for you, schedule your dates, and you won’t have to spend time searching through dating profiles.
You will be dating, which is good for your self-esteem. When you meet new people, and have men asking you out, it just feels good. Not because you need to have a man to feel happy, but it feels amazing to be desired, and pursued. It feels even more amazing when you get a life, and you are out living it.
Do things you enjoy, keep your dating roster full, and live your own life.
There is nothing sexier than a woman who has her head on straight, is happy, lives her own life, and makes things happen. It may sound like a lot of work at first, but eventually if becomes routine and occurs more naturally.
Before you know it, you will be a woman in demand.
So, I talked earlier about getting out your calendar. Seriously, get out your calendar, plan your week, and write it down. Plan next week, and after you have one successful week, plan the next. Put pen to paper and schedule your life. It’s been shown that when you write stuff down, it becomes more real. When it becomes more real, then it’s more likely to happen.
I know it may seem silly, but it works. Make your plan, STICK TO IT. Not sure about this? Try it for 3-6 weeks. Get yourself a journal (if you don’t already have one) and rate your happiness at the end of each week. Track it like a project. Yes, you should be putting that much effort into your life. You’ve only got one life. What are you waiting for?
I did it, so can you. You’ve got this!
Are you struggling with happiness? Read more here.
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