In my heart I always knew that I was not the conventional type, it was only ever a fleeting dream to marry in my mid 20s and have 2.5 children by the time I turned 30. My life was turned upside down in my teens so that dream faded away as quickly as my childhood innocence when my Mum had that life defining car accident.
Since the age of 16 I have been just as fascinated as the next person about the opposite sex, unlike some people though I have always chosen to learn by experience rather than sit on the sidelines and pick things up as I go along. Immersing myself in each and every date, risking all for the sake of taking a chance and giving every opportunity my absolute best shot. Yes it was exhausting and heart breaking at times however I knew this was my way of learning.
Being judged by others, taking a different date to most major life events over the years and comparing myself to countless friends in traditional circumstances did not dampen my resolve to do it my way!! In my heart I know that my way was the right way for me, and that is all that really matters in life! We have no right to judge anyone else for any of their decisions, their behaviours or their way of doing life.
So as I approach the wonderful milestone of 40 years young there are some tips from my years of dating that I would love to share:
♡ be KIND! I know that I bang on about this in all areas of life however I bang on from experience! It is easier to judge, belittle and put someone else down than it is to take on some responsibility for a bad date or failed relationship. Be kind to everyone whose life you are privileged to enter in whatever way that may be, and at the same time be KIND to yourself. The energy that you express during and after a date or relationship will be reflected back to you!
♡ be YOURSELF! It is only a matter of time before that fake accent, little lies about travel or any other bending of the truth catches up with you. Sometimes first dates feel like a performance and we find ourselves embellishing things just a little, or maybe a lot. In most instances this is done as a way of making ourselves appear and feel better, when in fact we would appear and feel better if we just had faith in our real selves and let that shine!
♡ open your MIND! Yes of course we all have non-negotiable traits and values when getting to know someone however, does a cm in height really matter in the bigger picture? If someone lives outside of your neighbourhood or even a little further does that rule them out of the bigger picture? How about what someone does for a living, what they read or what they wear? It's OK to have some awareness around what you are attracted to and what you find appealing however from experience I can honestly say that you should not let this dictate your pursuit of love. Open your mind to ALL of the possibilities, personality types and even shoes!
♡ do not SETTLE! Listen to your gut, your heart and your experience. If you have doubts, there is most likely a very good reason. Yes it may be easy to make excuses, settle for less than you deserve now because it feels as though there is nothing better out there! Most of the time this does not work in the long run, it will come back to haunt you one day when your needs have been neglected for so long that you can longer sweep that under the carpet.
♡ ditch the DESPERATION! Anything done from a place of desperation is guaranteed to create issues. We must work on our own sense of self worth, cultivate inner peace and keep calm! Desperation cannot be hidden, no amount of proclaiming to yourself or others that you are ready will mask the scent of being desperate. Trust me, been there done that!
♡ embrace the MISTAKES! I am far from perfect, the mistakes that I have made, the parts that I would rather forget, the times that I wish I had done things differently - they would fill an entire book! Without them though I would have no depth of learning, a less acute sense of self and no idea what it is that I really want. Diving in and learning the hard way has given me the most amazing sense of who I am and what I want.
♡ learn to FORGIVE! release the past, in the most loving way possible. Holding onto thoughts, regrets, painful memories and anything else that is not positive will hinder your pursuit of love. Forgive yourself for the things that you would change, forgive each and every one of your past dates, partners and friends who you feel have done your wrong in some way. Release them all, along with any feelings of bitterness, resentment and pain. Again I am going to say trust me, and hope that this truly reaches you! The process of forgiveness is one of the most powerful things that we can do to create space for greater things and greater people.
OK I am just scratching the surface here...may need to be continued!!