When it comes to being single, there are no days like Hallmark Holidays that can bring on feelings of dread, sadness, hopelessness, anger and good old disappointment. (I know this, as I was divorced and single for six years after my 19 year marriage to a man I met at 19 years old) What’s worse is that for most these women, it’s not just Valentine’s Day itself that makes them feel the ick. The truth is, the dread can begin as soon as the third week of January approaches (that’s typically when the New Year “high” begins to fade, the guys at the gym aren’t really that interesting, and the few dates from your new membership on Match.com were less than thrilling) which results in a downward spiral that can be tough to endure.
As a result, it’s important to have a plan; a blueprint of sorts that can enable you to master your happiness factor even when the crap feelings surface, despite your best intentions.
Introducing YOUR plan for Valentine’s Day – The Dating With Dignity C.A.L.M. Process.
The C.A.L.M. Process is a Four-Step Plan to ensure that you are always able to be that CAUSE of your feelings, rather than the effect. Because it is when we allow ourselves to fall victim to the “inner critic” voice inside that whispers, “you are not good enough,” or “it will never happen for me,” that life gets tricky and sends your “attraction factor” plummeting. And when that happens, it doesn’t matter how much you “wish” for a date on February 14th.
So take a deep breath, realize that this Valentine’s Day Season does not have to be like any other you have ever had, and dig into how to stay CALM amidst the “red” holiday hooplah.
There are four components to the C.A.L.M Process:
C – CHANGE Your Mindset
A – ADJUST it Always
L – LOVE Yourself
M – MASTER your SKILLS
Today, we will dig into why it’s important to love yourself, not just conceptually, but love yourself as you would another.
For many, the concept of self-love is vague. Some may think to love yourself is to be egotistical. Others may say they “love” themselves, yet commonly use self deprecating humor or are observed endure varying degrees of abuse from their children, friends, lovers or colleagues. While there are others who may simply believe they are not love-able because of something internal or external they unconsciously or consciously view as a “defect.” They may feel they are unworthy of love, or have done something in their past that whispers, “You do not deserve it.”
The truth is this however; if you are truly desirous of a loving partnership, you must not ask another to love you unconditionally if you can not, or do not, unconditionally love yourself first.
In the beginning, falling in love with your self is often unlike what it feels like to fall in love with someone else. You may not experience “butterflies,” or dream of spending time alone with JUST you. In fact, for many who begin on this journey they are afraid of this process, and begin to realize how much they don’t even know themselves at all because they have never taken the time to full engage in the process of self-discovery. Once the journey begins, however, it can feel exactly like falling in love with someone else, because the glory of having a private moment filled with joy, peace, satisfaction, bliss — of self love – is truly, truly fulfilling. It is when you become comfortable with and, in fact, zealous about this love affair with self, that you will begin to magnetize that special someone to LOVE you in the same, sacred way.
There are three steps you can take during this Valentine’s Day Season to begin to fall hopelessly in love with YOU!
Step One: Get to Know YOU!
Before you even take yourself out on that first date, begin to notice how you treat yourself.
- Are you compassionate? How do you treat yourself when you make a mistake, are hungry, or need sleep? Do you nurture yourself when you feel sad, or get angry for having a sinking spell? Do you treat yourself as you would treat that partner you are dream of?
- Do you know what you need?
- Many of the women and men I work with don’t know what they want or need and it is during this process of discovery that we can begin to identify our feelings, needs and desires.
Step Two: Learn to meet YOUR needs!
How often when asked, “How are you feeling,” or “What do you need,” do you pause and realize you have absolutely no idea. To begin, begin to break your feelings down into the four basic emotions: Mad, Sad, Glad, or Scared . Once you know how you feel, ask yourself, “What do I need,” and then, give it to yourself! Yes, that’s right! Don’t hesitate. Don’t skimp. And don’t be shy. Take a stand for you and learn how fulfilling it is to meet your own basic needs!
Step Three: Date Yourself
In truth, dating yourself is a blast once you get the hang out it. Go to a hip and trendy restaurant and take yourself to dinner at the bar. Bring your Kindle or go without an accessory and chat up the bartender and other customers. You will quickly learn how fantabulous and fun you really can be. Perhaps even order dessert first. Whatever you do, treat yourself like the princess you truly are.
Take yourself for a hike, long walk, or an adventure trip to a small town up the road. Explore. Eat ice cream. Indulge yourself and tap into your innate sense of playfulness.
Enroll in a class you have ALWAYS wanted to take but never took the time to do it before. Enjoy the freedom of being new at something. Mess up. Ask for help, and meet other men and women who enjoy the same things as you without the pressure of participating solely in order to meet your mate!
Loving yourself is not optional when it comes to finding love. It’s a process you must go through and the rewards are, quite frankly, too many to list here. In short, take the time to discover YOU, and before too long you will assuredly attract the man who most desperately wants to do the same.
I wish for your Valentine’s Day Season to be one filled with calm, peace, confidence, hope and joy – the things that the men you want are looking for in a long-term partner! Ready for the next step?: Step 4: Master Skills