I am at a big transitional time of my life. My baby left for college. My nest is empty.
And I want to welcome in a hot, fun, sexy, smart, loving, successful, athletic, soulful, 5-star guy. Oh yes, I’m dating again.
And, I’ve been doing a little research project of how I can have a blast, no matter who shows up.
‘Cause let’s be real: it’s a jungle out there.
So often, I hear women struggling in the dating scene, with complaints like:
“There are no good men out there.”
“I hate dating!”
“I refuse to date online – there are so many weirdos.”
“I am so lonely. But I would rather stay home with my Netflix than have another bad date.”
“I haven’t had a date in 5 years!”
If we’re not careful, dating can become a disappointing, disempowering, big ‘ole waste of time – fast.
But I’m committed to guaranteeing my own good time, or at least upping the odds.
After all, who wants the fate of their night to be in the hands of someone else? Especially a brand new guy who has done all the hard work of showing up for our date. (Whether or not he is right for me, he is still amazing for showing up.)
My theory is simple: if I take the time for great self-care, treat myself exquisitely, invest in my fun, and turn myself on . . . then it will be super easy to have a great date.
Shall I take you inside my date research project and introduce you to my date prep?
So far, these steps have been having a great impact and leaving me feeling sexy and beautiful and delicious and capable of creating fun out of thin air.
- Step 1: Try not to go out on a date right after work. Go home and take a shower, or in my case, I like to light some candles and soak in a scented bubble bath with rose petals.
- Step 2: Make a great music mix. I am always working on some music mix or other. Lately I have really been enjoying Chance the Rapper. His sweetness slays me. And there are a few tracks from Kanye’s Life of Pablo that are so hot. But, when I was prepping for my date last week, I found a magnificently cheesy playlist on Spotify called “In the Arms of a Woman” that was really fun and super girly romantic. Last week I was all about another Spotify playlist called “Timeless Soul Ballads”.
- Step 3: Get off. Really. I am not kidding. I take the time for some self-pleasure. The reason I do this is so that when I am on the date, I am not feeling desperate or needy. I have filled my cup, so my guy doesn’t feel like he is about to be mauled by a hungry wolverine.
- Step 4: I pick an outfit that makes me feel beautiful. I like the luxury of thinking about what I am going to wear, all day, before the date. It turns me on. I dress for me, not for him. I know that if I feel good, he will respond. And if he doesn’t, it’s just evidence that he is not my guy.
- Step 5: I tune up my mental/emotional state. I don’t know about you, but if I am in a bad mood, or I’ve been on the phone too long with Verizon or the cable company, or I’m watching the presidential campaign . . . I can start feeling some agitation at the male species (and the rest of the world for that matter). I do not want to bring that dark feeling on my date with me. So I grab a girlfriend and do a practice called Spring Cleaning (if you’re not familiar with it, learn more about it and other game-changing tools in my book). Every one of us has huge dreams, hopes, and wishes in the world of intimacy, many of which may have been dashed, or fulfilled, over our years of dating. It’s just not a great idea to dump all of our intense feelings in the lap of a brand new man or woman. At least not on the first date. So I do my best to clear my charge, tend to my emotions, and enter the date open to receiving what is.
- Step 6: Unhook from the outcome. I’m a big fan of finding your YES for whatever is showing up (in dating, and all aspects of life). So before I head into the date, I make sure to remind myself that whatever shows up is perfect for my unfolding adventure as a woman.
These practices can be completed in under an hour, if you are rushed, or you can really give yourself some time and take a super long soak in the tub, with a good book or some poetry, if you have the luxury of time.
The idea here is to use the practice of dating as a way of increasing and expanding your own self-care.
Not only is it important to keep investing in yourself, but the spillover of these practices is that you will have even more fun and gratification in the challenging world of dating.
Now, I’d love to hear from you. In the comments below, tell me:
- If you’re dating right now, or have in the past, what are your best tips for having a good time?
- What challenges have you encountered in the dating scene – and more importantly, how can you apply the ideas here to shift things?