Archive for August, 2009


Time to Undo An Un-Relationship?

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

ri lay’shun ship’: A loving connection with a person who brings out your best, makes you shine, and who cares about you as much as you care about him/her.

un-ri lay’shun ship’: A connection that’s anything else.

Now, we’ve all been sucked into vortexes of people who aren’t good for us in the long run: People who don’t call when they say they will, don’t say what we wish they would, don’t relate to us the way they should, and don’t respect us the way we deserve. I’ve been there, people. But when we finally wake up to the fact that we’re not getting what we want, it’s time to Undo the Un-Relationship!

And that’s where ScarJo comes in. Scarlett Johansson and Pete Yorn are apparently releasing an album in September called Break Up. Their first single is called Relator (which my mind reads as the word “realtor” every single time I look at it…yup, even now). But it’s worth listening to because I think it’s one of the most positive undoing of an un-relationship songs I know!

Click here to watch/listen to Relator:

Sometimes a break up is good for your soul

Sometimes un-relating is good for your soul!

See, most songs about this are about the after-effects of discovering someone isn’t right—you know, when you’re crying into your booze and wondering if rusty razor blades between your toes might not feel better. Very often, they’re wretched, lonely, moaning ballads meant to make you cry.

Relator also faces the sad fate of loss. The chorus itself says, “You can leave whenever you want out.” But the words come out in such happy chords, it reminds me of the other important feeling that comes with going your own way: The joy and freedom you feel after admitting someone isn’t right for you. Of course putting your foot down and walking away can be disappointing and disheartening in the short-run, but in the long run? This is great news for you and your heart! Better now than next year. Better today than tomorrow. Better alone for now than lonely with someone else for any longer.

If you have someone lingering on the back burner or popping in and out of your text in-box far too inconsistently, listen to this song as a reminder of how healthy letting go can can be for your soul! You deserve to be happy. And if the person you’re committed to/dating/seeing/texting/sort-of-hooking-up-with doesn’t make you feel like the best version of yourself, let go! If you’re thinking, like the song, “You don’t relate to me,” and “you don’t respect me,” it’s time to bow out, buck up, and make room for someone who appreciates you. Or, as ScarJo and Pete say, “You can leave whenever you want out.” (Besides, undoing un-relationships are so in right now.)

Greg and Amiira Behrendt said it well when they wrote, “It’s called a breakup because it’s broken.” And maybe this happy little song can remind you that you deserve a relationship that makes your soul sing as well as this duo does together. Those are my thoughts, anyway. Yours?

Big love,

Amy Signature 4

Julie & Julia: Your Optimism Gurus!

Sunday, August 16th, 2009

I finally saw Julia & Julia. I actually caught a late-afternoon show, which felt more like I’d hit an early bird special. And I don’t know about you, but I found it perfectly satisfying. (I also found it made me really hungry, but that’s what the supersize popcorn special was for.) And, as a dating optimist, I realized that both characters are an inspiration for how to embrace optimism—whether you’re feeding your belly to feeding your heart.

Here’s how to get what they had:

A woman determined

A woman determined

1. Have passion for your goal. It’s hard to succeed in something you don’t care two shakes about. They both loved food and writing, and used the passion in their guts to keep them motivated.

Daters should do the same: If you’ve lost the passion to find love itself (“What’s the freaking point?”) it’s time to get it back. Want it. Live it. Breathe it. Believe it.

2. See success at the end of the long road. Julia Child knew it wasn’t going to be easy to gain respect or success as a woman in her field. And Julie Powell knew that cooking and blogging on an insane schedule wasn’t going to be cake either. But both saw the light at the end of the tunnel and decided they were going to succeed.

You can do that in love too: Decide you are going to get the love you want. It may be a tough, bumpy road, but if you see yourself succeeding at the end, you’ll have more fun along the way.

Persevering when she wanted to quit...

Persevering when she wanted to quit

3. Don’t let set-backs stop you. Both Julie and Julia had some missteps in the film: Some dropped chickens, some rejected cookbooks, some mis-flipped food, some missed appointments. Yes they got mad. Yes they got sad. But then they got their eyes back on the prize and carried on.

Same with love: You will have bad dates and lonely nights and will want to give up. But if you stay strong and positive, you can end up with a happy ending…and maybe even a movie deal!

Suffice it to say, the characters’ love lives were an inspiration, too: Everyone deserves a partner as supportive and proud of their strong, spunky wife.

In any case, the next time you’re feeling like you want to ball up and cry on the kitchen floor, remember Julie & Julia and what they can teach us: We’ve all been there. (Oh, have I been there…) This too shall pass. And someday, I swear, when you’re settled into your happy relationship, you’ll find your former breakdowns really funny. In the meantime, keep smiling and eat well.

Big love,

Amy Signature 4

I’ve been seeing this guy on and off for about six months. We have a great connection, but he’s sometimes hot and cold with me. When I’m into him and calling, he backs off. And the minute I get mad and stop calling him back, he’s all over me. How do I get him to like me the same time I like him? —Diane

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Yep, I’ve dated lots of these guys myself: The permanently indecisive ones who like having us latched on, but don’t want to commit. It’s as if they have an invisible retractable doggie leash on us women, and the minute we get distracted and start sniffing for something better elsewhere, they lock and tug!

My question to you is this: Is this how you want to feel in a relationship? Waking up every morning unsure about whether the guy in your life is going to like you today or not? We all deserve relationships in which we feel strong, respected, adored, and loved. Is that what this relationship is giving you? Here’s my recommendation on this guy: Cut the leash! Turn off his “hot and cold” taps for good and walk away. Start thinking about what you really want: a guy who is consistently running warm for you. And, of course, some good hot stuff thrown in when you want it.

So I guess I have a question for you now: Why would you want to “get” a guy to like you? Don’t you just want him liking you for who you are without having to do anything at all? Dear daters, what do you think Diane should do?

What does it mean you’re a dating optimist? —K.

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

It means that I see dating as a powerfully positive means to get to the end you want: the love of your life. I was single for many, many, many years (I was always “the single one”), so I know what it’s like to see dating from the other side: as an frustrating, fruitless chore. But I learned through it all that if you can learn to see the experiences you have in your single life as positive, everything changes.

Yes, even those days you end up on a date with a creepy guy who salivates while he talks. And even those days you’re home alone catching up on TiVo wondering why no one ever seems to ask you out. It’s all for a good reason and my post as a dating optimist is to help you see it that way!

Man Advice from a 1943 Classic? You Bet.

Monday, August 10th, 2009

I’m embarrassed it took me this long to read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. In fact, I’ll admit, after skimming the page cover one day in the bookstore years ago, I saw the “family growing up in 1939” bit and just wasn’t in a Depression-era kind of mood. I think I read Candace Bushnell’s Trading Up instead. (And, well, I loved that, too. Bushnell sure can weave a good story.)

In any case, I finally feasted on this wonderful book by Betty Smith, and it was absolutely delicious. I can’t recommend it enough, whatever “mood” you’re in. But I’d like to draw attention to the part of the book that contains some of the best man advice I’ve seen in a while…

Francie felt sorry for Flossie. She never gave up hope no matter how many times she lost out with Frank. Flossie was always running after men and they were always running away from her. Francie’s Aunt Sissy ran after men, too. But somehow they ran to meet her halfway. The difference was that Flossie Gaddis was starved about men, and Sissy was healthily hungry about them. And what a difference that made.”

Don’t you just love that? Smith knew what she was talking about, and it’s great advice: Don’t feel starved for love. Feel healthily hungry.

Big love,

Amy Signature 4