I set a goal this August to clean my closets and garage. This was a daunting task, one I had been putting off for years. My closet had been stuffed to its max with clothes from a different era. An era in which I was not only much thinner, but one in which I spent time going out on weekends in my search for love. In addition to mini skirts and expensive halter tops circa 2005, there were splatter paint jeans, pink corduroys and pairs of jeans that were worn so long they had ripped in that one corner of the back left pocket; the sign they have been worn too long. I also rummaged through the dirtied, cluttered drawers in my bathroom filled with Smashbox, Stila and Mac makeup from the late 90’s, dozens of tiny tubes that contained stale perfume samples, and at least ten pounds of half-used bottles of hair product. The clutter didn’t stop there. My garage was also a disaster, as it had been storing relics from an era of parenthood that had long passed. I had toddler toys, clothes, puzzles, chew toys, enough books to begin a library, and two strollers. As my children are almost 14, 11 and 7, it was time to remove these items from my house. I needed to create space.
Which is, according to my research, experience and Laws of the Universe, the secret to attracting lasting love. One of the first steps in the Dating With Dignity process to MANifest love is what I call the The Dating Fast, a pre-determined period of time which requires that one completely stop all forms of activity directly involved with the pursuit of relationship. Some women call it “space,” some a “cleanse,” while others just call it horrid. They simply don’t want to do it.
Online daters admit that the act of checking email, reviewing profiles of prospective partners, composing emails, and instant message flirtation provides them with hope. Others crave the little crumbs of validation that come in the form of winks, smiles or requests to video chat. Other women claim it is entertainment that effectively fills a void when they are home alone, susceptible to feelings of loneliness.
Some women prefer speed dating, or going to bars or restaurants with the goal of meeting someone who might ask for their phone number. Once again, there are expectations and often disappointments. If things go well and numbers are exchanged, however, only tidbits of attention are dolled out, often haphazardly, via circular text messages that rarely lead to an invitation to more than “meeting up,” “hanging out,” or “getting together…sometime.” Most important, most of these interactions are with the wrong men; men with whom these women truly don’t even want to build a relationship.
Nevertheless, they believe, “something….is better than nothing.” Yet, if one is truly looking for lasting love with a man who will provide the time, attention, and affection they deserve, is it truly better to accept less?
I think not.
In fact, what ultimately happens in this no-win cycle is that harmful limiting beliefs are perpetuated. As women engage in this cycle they are fed a steady diet of “proof” that their beliefs such as “there are no good men out there,” “men just want sex,” “men don’t get it,” “men don’t call back, “ are true. The result? Women are at risk of consciously or unconsciously bringing they beliefs and the resultant negative energy into each interaction, sabotaging the exchanges they have with men, resulting in frustration, cynicism and gloom.
The Dating Fast puts a quick stop to this vicious cycle, allowing women to take pause. Clean their emotional closets. Do the work. Toss their past hurts and disappointments in a Hefty Bag and take them out of the garage that has become their broken hearts. Quite simply, The Dating Fast provides women an opportunity to get rid of negative thoughts, limiting beliefs and baggage from another era of their lives. Their pink corduroy pants and Smashbox eyeshadow whose name may have been John, Michael or Dave.
The Dating Fast is not easy. In fact, emotions will most assuredly bubble to the surface when the computer beckons and you must refuse. During those evenings when there is nothing on TV and you have watched your favorite episodes of “That 70 Show” too many times to count, be sure you will question what it is you truly want. Are you willing to settle for just “anything,” or are you willing to search inward. Take time to nurture yourself. Create new opportunities for friendships. Take up hiking. Investigate yoga. Go wine tasting. Or take a cooking class. Not with the intention to meet men, but with an intention to fill the void in your heart. The Dating Fast provides opportunities to create joy; new, deeper connections to friends and family,; and time to appreciate the quiet and solace of being with, and falling in love with yourself