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  • Tracy Jenkins

Is your dating life starting to feel like a full-time J-O-B?




I’ve been on so many online dates that there was actually a point when I lost track of why I was dating in the first place.  I was on auto pilot with a mission, attached to the outcome of finding “THE ONE.


I stopped seeing dating as fun, instead it felt like work.


"Ok lets lace up the boots and get this over with."

I’ve spent countless hours rehashing, complaining, and comparing one bad date after another with my best friend (or anyone who would listen).


I’ve collected bad date stories for a book about online dating I was going to write after I finally found “THE ONE.”


I decided at some point I should just stop dating altogether because nobody in my city was actually serious about getting serious.

 

I spent all of my time living in the story I made up, the one where I wasn't destined for love (I’m sure you know the story).

 

I spent so much time creating energy and space for this story that It's no surprise I just continued getting more of the same.

 

It’s funny how we can become so protective of our stories, especially the ones that don’t serve us.


What if changing your dating life was as simple as changing the story you’re telling yourself?


I remember having lunch with a friend who had just moved to Portland and I asked her how dating was going.  I expected her (like the rest of us) to unload a bunch of bad dating stories and tell me how awful it was.

 

Instead she gave me the most unexpected response (and gift)...


“Ya know I’m really having a lot of fun meeting new people and exploring the city.  Everyone here is so different and unique, I’m just enjoying all the new connections.”  

I must have looked at her like she had five heads before letting out the biggest sigh of relief.

It was almost like she snapped me right out of the story I had been telling for so long and sat there as living proof that my way was not the only way.

  

She admitted that it wasn't all rainbows and butterflies, but because she had no attachment to the outcome of a date there was little to no space for disappointment leaving room for fun and exploration.


Because she wasn't blinded by a mission of finding “THE ONE,” it allowed her to keep the focus on HER.  She was able to identify red flags.  She could see opportunity for friendship (even when love sparks were not flying).  She was able to hear her heart speak its truth and say NO to a second date when a second date was not in alignment.  


She approached each date with a sense of curiosity and ease but most importantly with SELF-LOVE.


That conversation caused me to step back and take a look at my own approach, I could see that SELF-LOVE was not showing up on my dates.  Instead my attachment to the outcome was guiding my experiences.


From that point on, I decided that SELF-LOVE would be the most important part of my dating life and I stopped treating it like it was my J-O-B.


If dating stopped being fun, I'd take that as a sign that I needed to take a break and put the focus back on ME.

         

So what’s your story?


Have you decided that all the good ones are taken?


Have you told yourself that your standards are too high?


Have you chosen to believe that dating is hard?


Are you more attached to the outcome of the date than you are the experience itself?

What I’m about to say might piss you off but I’m going to say it because I know you need to hear it (I know because I needed to hear it).


These stories are BULLSHIT! (Said in the most loving way possible).


All of the good ones are NOT taken.

Your standards are NOT too high (if anything, they probably aren't high enough).

You’re NOT destined to be the weird single aunt for the rest of your life.


These are just stories that you’re CHOOSING to tell yourself.


They were stories I chose to tell myself too.


But guess what?


You can dump your story right now and CHOOSE to step into a new one.


You can choose to see dating as fun.

You can decide that dating is a great way to meet new people and create connections.

You can take the pressure off of yourself and simply enjoy human to human experiences.

You can stop comparing your dating life to those around you.


You can change your story!


Your dating life doesn't have to feel like a J-O-B


You can shift your mindset and begin seeing your dating life as a beautiful and powerful

form of SELF-LOVE instead of a J-O-B and a mission to find “THE ONE.”


You are one shift away from the LOVE, INTIMACY and CONNECTION you really want.


xoxo

-Tracy

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