Now, I’m not as into slapping as the girls on Jersey Shore seem to be. But every now and then I hear something from a single person that makes me wonder, “Now, what it would take to stop you saying that?” Because sometimes, what you say about your single life hurts you more than a slap even could.
Is it time to get slap-happy with yourself in love? (Image: Amy Spencer)
So, I’ve come up with a list of the Top 10 Things I Think You Should STOP Saying When You’re Single. And here’s what I want you to know about these things: I’ve said them all. Yep, every darn one.
In fact, the only reason I know about these phrases and the exhausted frustration with which you might cough them up is that they came out the same way from me. So if you recognize your own voice saying any of these things, you have to change your story.
Why? Because while it may feel good to say some stuff out loud, the more you say it, the more you’ll believe it, the more you’ll create the energy of it around you, and the further you’ll it’ll send you from the love of your life. Here’s my list. What’s on yours?
Do yourself a favor and STOP saying…
1. “I’m sick of dating.” If someone said to you, “I’m sick of going to the water park,” you’d probably say, “Then stop going to the water park!” If you’re sick of dating, stop dating. I mean, think about it. You’re dating to find love, right? But do you think you’ll find it being all “sick” and all? Not a chance. If it’s making you ill, stop doing it, get some bed rest, slurp some chicken soup, and when have your appetite back, go do some dating you feel healthy about. What to say instead: “I’m going to date when it’s fun or make dating fun.”
2. “Maybe I should just start being dumb/mean/slutty/_____.” The only way to end up in a healthy relationship is to do it being your very real self. You know this. If you’re going to try being someone less than you are, you’re going to end up in a relationship less than you deserve. What to say instead: “I’m going to meet someone being 100% myself.”
3. “There are no good guys/girls out there.” I know it feels that way because you’re not meeting any good ones near you, right now, who like you back. But there are so many good single people out there. It’s just taking you a second to get together in the same place and see it. If you acknowledge there are good folks out there, you’ll remember to ask for one. What to say instead: “There are great people out there, and one of them is about to meet me.”
4. “Maybe I should just marry rich.” I know, I know. You’re joking. But…not really. I used to say this, too, so I know that behind the cackling laugh, you really kinda mean it. So what’s wrong with this? The idea that you’ve given up on getting love so you’ll settle for something else you think will make you happy (though you know deep down it won’t). If you want to be rich, kick your own career up a notch and get so rich they’ll be joking about marrying you for it. What to say instead: “Screw rich in money. I want to be rich in love and see what comes with it.”
5. “I guess I’m too strong/smart/independent/______…” Sorry, but there’s no such thing as too much of a great thing. If you’re strong and smart and independent, rock on with your good self! However, what there may be (I’m just sayin’) is such an overemphasis of your strength, smarts or independence that your dates feel pretty darn unnecessary in your life. Don’t just reveal your tough side; open up with your wants and weaknesses, too. What to say instead: “I’m awesome as is, the tough parts and the vulnerable ones. And I’m going to show people both sides.”
6. “I’m never going to find anyone.” As I say in Meeting Your Half-Orange, boy, this strategy always works well, doesn’t it? When you say, “I’m never going to lose weight,” and “I’m never going to find parking” it’s funny, because you never do all those things when you think you can’t, do you? Haven’t you learned anything from The Little Engine that Could? Stop calling the “never” right to you and start talking about your ever happy future. What to say instead: “I’m going to find someone amazing for me. I’m going to find someone amazing for me.”
7. “Dating sucks.” Not if you find a way to make it fun, it doesn’t. It’s like anything in life. If you think driving sucks but you still have to do it two hours a day for work, you’d find a way to make it fun, right? You’d upload two new albums to you iPod, you’d download a book on tape, or you’d use the time in traffic to catch up with your Mom or best friend. If you think dating sucks, do the same thing. Find a way to make it not just bearable, but fun. Pick a new restaurant to try, hit a billiard hall, go see a Murder Mystery Dinner Theater, go dancing. Do what makes dating not suck. What to say instead: “Dating is awesome when it’s me doing it.”
8. “One thing’s for sure: I don’t want to meet him/her online.” Ooh, what a brilliant idea: Close down doors and opportunities where you might meet someone! You know what I think? You’re closing a door because you’re being too vain about “the story.” Who cares about the story of how you met; what matters is the story you create together! Consider this: Recent research from the “How Couples Meet and Stay Togther Survey” found that a whopping thirty percent of couples now meet online. Do you want to make finding love 30% harder for yourself? No? Then stop saying what you’re “sure” of and let life bring you love in it’s own unique way. What to say instead: “I don’t know how I’ll meet them, and I can’t wait to find out.”
9. “I don’t want to date anyone with kids/an ex-wife/baggage.” Oh, right, you think you don’t have your own baggage? We all do. Sure, someone else might have physical baggage (on stuff, on people) you could stick an Avery label on. But we all have pasts and personalities a psychologist could easily stick an emotional label on! Don’t let the life your partner has led before you steer you clear away before you even consider the amazing path you could forge together. What to say instead: “I look forward to seeing the interesting package wrapped around the love of my life.”
10. “I feel like I’m the only single person left.” I used to say this when I looked up one day and realized all my friends were coupled up or married or married with three kids. Everyone except me. But here’s the problem with this: What other people are doing in their lives and relationships has nothing to do with you! And by addressing other people, you’re putting pressure on yourself to “fit in” with your crew, or focusing on trying “not look stupid and lonely” to your family. But you know what you should be focusing on instead? Your life. Your happiness. Your choices. And how good you’re going to feel when you find your other half. Forget them. What to say instead: “My life is on its own awesome path and all I need to do is keep on it.”
So that’s my list. Admit it: Which of these things have you caught yourself saying? And what have you heard or said that should be on the list?
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