Ridiculously Single

Are You Justifying Your Being Single?

Sometimes I meet people and I think they’re great. Then when they tell me they’re single – I’m actually a little bit shocked. I made up a name for it – “ridiculously single” – it’s ridiculous that they’re single.

Smart, secure, family-oriented, financially aware, with their own passions. It doesn’t make sense that these women are not in a fulfilling relationship. What’s going on with women like this? Are they justifying being single?

AVOIDING NEGATIVE EXPERIENCES

Fundamentally, fear is always going to be there: of rejection, of making a mistake, wasting time, getting hurt, letting people down (family, the other person…)

Being single is the easiest way of protecting oneself from these negative experiences. Make no mistake – they’re painful. Therefore, staying single keeps you safe.

There’s nothing wrong with feeling this way – it’s human. We’re human.

RESIGNATION

When I asked a girl out on a date, and she said no – it hurt. When it happened again – I shrugged my shoulders and carried on. After the third time – and when I was told (yet again) “You’re really nice, but we can only be friends” I resigned myself to life in the so-called “friendzone”.

Resigning myself to my fate; expecting that things would go a certain way – it became the new normal. Actually, it just became normal. This level of resignation kept my situation the same, and prevented any action; this was how life was.

Does this sound familiar?

HATING THE GAME

I also developed an “enlightened” answer to being single. I was above the game. I wasn’t going to chase anyone. I “needed to be in a good place before I could ask anyone out”. I had to work on myself. The real problems were all the “players”. I used to complain to myself that women said they wanted to meet a nice guy, but when it came down to it, they preferred “bad boys”.

It was nothing to do with me, and there was nothing I could do about it – the game was rigged and the odds stacked against the nice men.

Ultimately, deep down, I’d given up.

ADMITTING THE TRUTH

These three ideas are probably just a flavour. There are lots of other reasons I’m sure. The really interesting and subtle part of being “ridiculously single” is telling oneself and others “I’m genuinely ok and happy being single” when actually it’s covering up how you really feel. I used to pretend to be fine to hide the fact I was desperate. What I was pretending became the truth – and of course, everyone around me could pick up on the fact I wanted to be with someone.

Admitting the truth about why you might be “ridiculously single” is the most difficult part. Actually being willing to stick your neck out and say “I’d like to create a wonderful relationship” is the first step. This is incredibly courageous because the first thing that shows up when you share what you want – is everything that’s NOT that. Being real is the first step to moving forward.

SUGGESTED ACTIONS:

  • Write down what you think is stopping you from being in a relationship. Be brutally honest – what do you find hard to admit to yourself?
  • Consider that you’d rather be single than in a relationship. Ask yourself – what are you really committed to? Does your behaviour match your words?
  • Pick a friend you trust. Talk through your ideas.

Let us know what you come up with in the comments!

This guest post is from James D’Souza – coach and founder of findaniceman.com. As a trained coach and happily married man, he’s committed to giving the women he coaches the tools to create great relationships. His approach focuses on discovering your unique talents to attract a quality man. He’s also one of the coaches supporting Grandeur and Love as part of our authentic and personalised matchmaking service.

 

How Do You Keep Yourself Motivated To Create Your Relationship?

How do you keep yourself motivated on your relationship journey? You’ve read books, you’ve watched videos, maybe you’ve attended a seminar…

You’re here – which says you’re interested and committed to attracting a great guy. But it can be really difficult to keep going. And there are lots of reasons – from getting discouraged by a throwaway comment from a friend, to talking negatively to yourself, through to unsympathetic family. Keeping the future alive – keeping your eyes on the prize – is one way to ensure you stay inspired.

Habit Two in Stephen Covey’s classic book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People is “Begin With The End In Mind”. Now you might be thinking – what on earth does a self-development/ business book have to do with attracting a quality guy? Keep reading for some practical ideas you can use.

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Allow Yourself To Dream And Create

Covey’s idea is not just about setting goals in specific areas but also an invitation to examine one’s whole life from this perspective. There is a specific exercise in the book which – at first glance seems morbid – but is powerful. It’s easily adapted to keep you motivated to find a great man.

In the book, Covey suggests imagining your own funeral. At your funeral four people across your life will speak. One from your immediate family, one of your close friends, someone from work, and another from your wider community life. You then imagine what you would like them to say. Not what they would say – but what you would actually want them to say about you.

This exercise allows us to get in touch with our deepest principles and influences. This is a great starting point for understanding how to build our lives around what is really important to us.

I suggest adapting the exercise. Instead of imagining your funeral – imagine your husband/ partner/ significant other is speaking. What would you want him to say? How would you want him to express himself? What would he do? What would he wear? Allow yourself to dream and create.

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Get Clarity For Yourself

This exercise gives you some direction for your relationship journey. You can start to see what you really want. The really great part is that it actually influences the actions you take today – right now. (Which incidentally is Habit Three – “Put First Things First”).

More deeply – if that prize, that future, that goal is big enough and inspiring enough – it can keep you motivated on a day-to-day basis. It can shake you out of your discouragement; keep you out of self-sabotage; and it can give you something to refer to when the people around you are excessively negative.

By creating an inspiring future – it’s outside your thoughts and opinions. That incessant self-talk can be overly negative. Having an outward expression can allow you to go beyond the self-talk. A bit like using affirmations to shift thought patterns.

And this is only one future – it can constantly evolve. It’s not fixed – and more than you are. As you grow, so your expression of your inspiring future for your relationship changes. So your ideas will change too. Allow it to do so – remember it’s your creation!

Your inspiring future for your relationship journey isn’t limited to written expression – it could be a vision-board. The visual representation of a collage goes beyond words by using imagery. I have recommended both methods when coaching clients. I’m always amazed by what they create. They’re amazed too at the clarity they get from engaging in the exercise – and you can get this for yourself.

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Ideas For Action:

– Set aside time to do the adapted funeral exercise.
– Write down whatever you create. (I recommend completing Covey’s funeral exercise for your wider life anyway, but for Grandeur and Love, focus on the area of relationships).
– Reread what you’ve created after a week – update it if necessary.
– Moving forward, re-read it every few days – hone it if you feel the urge.

OR…

– Take a more creative approach and put together a vision board for your future quality guy. Suggestions for vision boarding include:
– Get a whole bunch of old magazines
– Don’t use words – focus on using images and colour
– Have a go at creating one without using scissors – tear paper only
– Remember it’s about articulating something beyond words

– Trust the process – allow the whole picture to emerge – there is no right way to do it!

What do you see about your future on your relationship journey? Let us know in the comments!

This guest post is from James D’Souza – coach and founder of findaniceman.com. As a trained coach and happily married man, he’s committed to giving the women he coaches the tools to create great relationships. His approach focuses on discovering your unique talents to attract a quality man. He’s also one of the coaches supporting Grandeur and Love as part of our authentic and personalised matchmaking service.

 

Our Top 5 Summer Date Spots

Our Favourite Summer Date Spots

It’s June. The sun is out (sometimes), people are happier, our wardrobes are colourful. Summer is finally here….

We tend to find there’s always more dating when the sun comes out. So here are out top 5 favourite locations  at the moment!  Whether it’s that first date, rekindling the romance on that 56th date or even if you just want to have a fun night out with some friends, check these places out and let us know how it goes!

Rumpus Room

A roof top area overlooking the amazing views of St Paul’s, along with the classy decor and sensational cocktails. What more can you want on a summers evening?

Rumpus Room says… 

“Expect lush greenery, plush sofas and comfortable lounge spaces, perfect for enjoying the iconic view morning to night-time.”

Jin Bo Law

The Asian inspired bar overlooks views of The Shard, Walkie Talkie, The Gherkin and Tower Bridge. Impress your date with cocktails in the summer heat for after-work drinks or for brunch drinks with friends!

Dalloway Terrace 

A perfect venue for British weather. It’s indoors and heated when needs to be, with a picturesque background for summer-worthy photos! Perfect for cocktails and mocktails, catering to all.

Coppa Club

The all day restaurant is the perfect place for a date at any time. Breakfast, lunch or dinnk food and drinks to cater for all types of dates. Check out their spectacular Paradise Pods this summer!

Coppa Club says… 

“The [Paradise Pods] will be splashed full of bright bold colours, lush palm leaves and spiky cacti. Knockout views of London’s iconic skyline, an outside beach bar and a bohemian themed terrace, makes this the ideal spot for sundowners.”

Sushi Samba

Head to Sushi Samba for great food and a breathtaking close up view of The Gherkin, The Thames and beyond. Gorgeous cocktails with a great view. Definitely one to impress your date!

Let us know how your date goes!

For more date locations this summer, click here!

Top 10 Date Questions

Our Top 10 Questions to Ask on a Date 

Sometimes dates can be awkward. It could be it’s the first date and you’re not sure what to talk about or it’s the second date and you’ve already exchanged all the pleasantries!

Either way, it’s always good to have some back up… So here are our top 10 questions to ask to keep the conversation going!

(NB: Don’t ask them all at once, you don’t want it to turn into an interview!)

  1. If you could have any job aside from the one you have now, what would it be?
  2. What was the most memorable family trip you took as a kid?
  3. Which family member are you closest too?
  4. What was your favorite age?
  5. What’s the last movie you saw?
  6. What’s something you’ve always wanted to try?
  7. What’s your hidden talent?
  8. What’s your favorite joke?
  9. Would you ever get a tattoo?

Bonus 3 questions if you’re feeling confident! 

  1. What small seemingly insignificant decision had a massive impact on your life?
  2. If you could have the answer to any one question, what question would you want the answer to?
  3. If you unexpectedly won £20,000, what would you spend it on?

Questions are a great way to break the ice and keep the conversation flowing. It’s a chance to get to know the other person and it can give you an insight into whether you’d want to see them again!

Next time you’re on a date, try one or two of these conversation questions and let us know how it goes!

5 Key Things to Remember When Dating

Here are our 5 top tips for dating this summer. From making the best first impression to planning that second date!

Make a lasting first impression

Be confident, make eye contact and remember to SMILE!

Don’t limit yourself

Dating is a fun way to meet new people and explore what you want in life, and a chance to figure out what you don’t want. Have fun, enjoy the experience and learn!

Know your dealbreakers

Enjoy dating and meeting new people but also be aware if there are any things you feel are non-negotiables in a partner. If in conversation, she says she never wants to have kids and you’ve already picked out the names for all 3 of yours – best to stay clear (NB: Keep these to 2-3, you don’t want to limit yourself completely).

Be the date you want to have

It takes two to tango. Put your phone away, be engaged in conversation and don’t bring up your ex. Ensure you’ve put all efforts in to make it a great date.

Date Number Two

For the second date, go and do an activity that you can both do together. It could be a painting class, mini-golf or even an archery session. It’s good to see what you’re both like outside of drinks and dinner. It’s a chance to let loose and really see how you are together!

Dating is fun so be yourself, have a good time and see where the date takes you. Let us know how the date goes!

Do’s and Don’ts for Dinner Dates

Whether it’s the first, second, or even the fifth date, a dinner date is bound to happen so here are our Do’s and Don’ts to ensure the best experience possible!

Do plan ahead. Plan where you’re going and what you’re wearing. Organising beforehand means you don’t have any last minute panics.

Don’t wear something that you wouldn’t normally wear. You want to feel comfortable and be as confident as you can be. It’s best to go with your go-to confident outfit!

Do keep an open mind, even if your partner ordered that one food you can’t stand. You never know where this date might go!

Don’t go for the messiest meal on the menu. We suggest staying clear of the Spaghetti Bolognese!

Do compliment your date. Whether it’s on their smile, the date venue or their sense of humour. Everyone loves a compliment!

Don’t talk with your mouth full. We know it’s an easy one but sometimes the conversation can be that great, you just don’t want to take a break but please do! You’ll thank us for it.

 Do have fun! Enjoy yourself. This is the time for you to learn what you want and don’t want, and to meet new people!

Don’t drink too much. No one wants to see the drunkest version of you on the first date! Keep it to 1-2 drinks max.

And most importantly, have fun!

Men: How to Get That Second Date

Men… Let’s talk about you!

(Women, before you disappear, it’s worth a read to gain some insight into how men work. Trust us.)

Did you know studies have shown that men only use around 3000 words per day, with women using a range of 7000-20,000 words per day?!

Now before you jump back and worry that I’m going to make you use a 1000 of those words right now, think about this… If women use around up to 20,000 words per day, conversation must be an important aspect for them right?

On a first date, it’s important to build on connection vocally. Ask her about what she likes to do in her spare time and what her job is like. Women work on rapport so they want to know you’re interested in more than just the ‘facts’ of life.

(Women: This let us know that when a man is sitting there quietly, it really isn’t a reflection of you… He just really likes keeping the words to 3000!)

Top Tip: We recommend coffee dates for those first meetings. You can focus on getting to know each other without the nerve-wracking idea of having to worry about whether you have food in your teeth or on your shirt!

Did you know 52% of women rated personality as the most important factor when choosing a romantic partner, along with 53% of men? Something both men and women can agree on is personality is key.

Although looking good is important, focusing on how showing the best aspects of your personality is vital. We know it’s easier to talk about the facts of what you do but how about letting her know what you like to do when you’re not working or what your favourite film is?

Top Tip: Women want to know about what you’re like, not what you do. Show off the best sides of your personality and leave the business talk at work.

Studies have found that women take up to 3 minutes to make a judgement compared to men who take up to 5 minutes.

A later study concluded that physical attraction, along with positive social behaviours, determine whether someone would have a relationship with you.

Those first few minutes are essential. Yes, some of those minute will be based on a physical aspect (attraction is still important, be sure to look your best without trying to hard!). However, some of these moments will be based on your social interactions on the day.

Top Tip: One of the first things women pay attention to is how you talk to the waiter or the people around you so make sure your manners are present! Be sure to keep appropriate eye contact and get on your best smile!

(Women this goes for you too, so be sure to have your best smile ready!)

Try it out and let us know how that second date goes!

Dating with Loneliness: How Do We Cure It?

You hear people say that they’ve found the one. They just knew that this person was going to be the one they were going to spend the rest of their life with. And it makes you wonder, am I ever going to have that feeling? Or is that feeling even real at all?

There are many reasons people get into relationships. Some are based on love, lust, convenience or simply just loneliness. So how do we know when it’s real?

For now, let’s focus on loneliness.

Loneliness is a longing for attention, understanding and comfort from another. It’s searching or waiting for companionship. It’s feeling incomplete on your own… It’s a weariness from doing everything by yourself. It’s thinking your prayers will be answered if you could just find someoneBrenda Knowles

Have you ever had that relationship that you look back on and think, what the hell was I thinking?? It’s likely those relationships were built out of the fear of being alone and the longing to share your life with a partner. Julie J. Exline (Ph.D.) suggested that if loneliness is in the driving seat we’re more likely to impulsively jump into ‘high-risk sexual encounters or soon-to-be-regretted relationships’ (ring any bells??). Similarly, loneliness can often be felt by those in relationships… Maybe these relationships were created out of fear rather than genuine commitment?

So how do we “cure” our loneliness?

Surprise – there is no cure, only action! I know it’s cliché but when it comes to relationships, the best place to look for any insight is within ourselves. How do you feel about being alone? What do you believe a relationship will change for you? It could just be you want someone there to change the lightbulb and share the bills, or someone to fill a void and distract you from what you’re running from.

Whatever the reason, the first place to look is in the mirror.  

Single time is the time to work on yourself. What are your key values? What is it you’re looking for in a person? It’s the time to clear out the emotional closet and make space for something new. Figure out whether your current or past experiences have been based on genuine love or simply just attachment?

It doesn’t work when you do the same thing over and over again and expect different results.

It’s important to learn to love yourself and to learn how to respect yourself. Then, when you come across someone you think you could be with, you’ll know what you deserve, what you will and won’t put up with and you’ll know exactly what it is you want from the relationship.

We all have choices and we all have responsibility. So make sure your experiences are worth it! Focus on those in your life. Let the people around you know you love them and see those friends you haven’t seen in months.

And be proactive. Use the time alone to figure yourself out and create the space for someone new! 

Rejection: A Female Perspective

“We cannot change the actions of others, but we can change how we let it affect us”

In the last post we talked about how rejection affects us all and how, sometimes, the rejection we experience may not be personal but instead an outcome of what someone else is going through. In order to help us understand the difference, we suggested splitting an experience into 2 lists to distinguish what really happened – and what we felt happened. This enables us to separate feelings from fact; ultimately, allowing us to realise these experiences had nothing to do with us at all.

This month we decided to ask a few people* about their stories of rejection  and the decisions they made from the experience. This is to illustrate to our readers that  everyone experiences what is perceived as rejection and how we let it affect us.

 

Anna | 36 | London

I was in a relationship with this guy for about 4 years. We got along really well in the beginning and I knew that he liked me. However, his work (he was a doctor) meant that he had a hectic lifestyle and looking back, I don’t think he had time for a proper relationship. Due to his work schedule, and the fact he lived quite a distance away from me, I was always having to plan my life around his and I felt I was the one making all the effort.

What did you decide? I felt that I was second best to his work, family and social life and that his lack of effort was a reflection on me. He preferred the situation the way it was because it was best for him. Since that relationship I’ve found that I don’t make enough effort with guys and I get put off really easily. I’m so adamant that I won’t get myself in a situation like that again so I won’t entertain someone who doesn’t seem like they have enough time for me.

Jess | 24 | London

I dated someone last year, who on paper was my perfect guy. He ticked all my boxes and it seemed that it would work well with my family…he was basically my ideal guy. However, as we got to know each other and went on more dates I found that he would take longer and longer to reply to my messages and he would keep coming up with excuses about why he’s been so distance. It went round in a circle a few times before I eventually stepped away from that relationship.

What did you decide? I decided that, if the next person I date, isn’t consistent with his communication then I won’t put up with it. I felt that his lack of attention was personal to me as he always seemed to be on his phone. It made me feel insecure, so I decided that I’m going to set my rules and hope to not experience something like that again!

  

Bhavini | 28 | London

I met a guy online and we were dating for a few months but then out of the blue he said he couldn’t date me anymore because he had too much going on (but I think this was just an excuse because he had been acting distant before then). I didn’t hear from him soon after that.

What did you decide? At the time I felt used and annoyed at him and the situation, so I decided that I would be more laid back about meeting someone and not be so active because I didn’t want to feel used like that again.

Rochelle | 26 |London

I was in a relationship for about a year and a half (on and off) and found out during the last 6 months of the relationship that he had cheated. We talked about it and I decided I could deal with it and we could move forward. However, I eventually found out he was talking to another girl and decided to no longer continue that relationship. 

 What did you decide? I decided that I wasn’t pretty enough or I was missing something because why else would someone cheat, right? I also think I decided that this was something that men would always do and it left me with a lot of trust issues. I decided to keep my guard up more next time and not be so vulnerable and open with someone as I once was.

So…what can we take away from these stories? It’s safe to say an experience of rejection has happened to most of us, in some form or another. The decisions we make after that experience can stay with us for years, sometimes without us even realising it. But, what does this mean? It means we might enter a new relationship with thoughts we decided from our past still lingering. The presumptions that ‘he’s too busy, therefore, he doesn’t care’ or ‘she’s not replying to me fast enough so she isn’t that interested’ are created before we’ve even given someone a chance!

Without belittling our experiences, why not change the way we view them? See them as learning curves, as experiences that have shaped the way we are in the world but that do not define us. We cannot change the actions of others, but we can change how we let it affect us. Do we really want to be letting one bad experience in a relationship affect how we view the next?

 

Look out for our next blog post, we’ll be discussing ‘Men & Vulnerability’…

 

*Names have been changed due to confidentiality.

Rejection, and how we let it affect our love lives.

Rejection. It’s that feeling we all fear. Whether it is professionally, socially or in relationships, it is something that everyone has experienced one way or another. Studies that have been carried on romantic rejection have shown that the pain felt from a break up can be compared to that of a drug addiction. Experiencing this emotion can cause physical and emotional pain, highlighting just how serious rejection can be. That’s not to say that we all experience rejection in the same way, however, whether we are consciously aware of it or not, it’s something that affects us all one way or another.

Rather than accepting rejection as a life-altering experience that stays with us forever, how about looking at rejection as something that we have made to be far bigger matter than what it actually is. It could be that something else in our lives affected us and we have used this one experience of romantic rejection to fuel that fire and reinforce to ourselves that ‘we are not good enough’.

Try this. Think back to that time you felt romantically rejected. It could be with a crush, in a relationship, in the bedroom or an experience with your partner where you felt they didn’t take you into consideration. Now instead of viewing these as experiences of rejection, how about splitting it into 2 separate lists – what really happened and what you felt happened.

It could be that a partner decided that they needed a break from the relationship and this lead to you feeling that you were not good enough. However, if we look at what really happened and what you took away from the situation, it splits it into facts and feelings. Perhaps they needed a break for themselves because they felt they were not ready or they had too much going on for them to focus on a relationship wholly.

What you felt was the ‘story’ that was created to justify the situation to yourself – an invalidation of your self-worth. What we make of a situation defines how we let this affect us. If we focus on the facts of what happened, rather than the ‘story’ that we have created, we may be able to limit how much of the experience we let run our lives.

We’re all still reeling from that childhood crush we had that never liked us back. But the next time you experience rejection ask yourself this – was it really a reflection on our character or was it just one of those things that didn’t work out and really had nothing to do with us at all?