Why Do You Want to Date?
The world is cautiously opening up after Covid. And for singles, that could mean feeling more comfortable dating again.
Let’s don’t kid ourselves. Dating in mid-life has never been easy! And the pandemic made it even harder. From zoom meetings, to masks and social distancing in person, to not knowing how to proceed if we wanted to take a friendship to the next level, Covid transformed awkward to awful!
Now, thankfully, we are back to ordinary concerns of how to re-enter the dating scene after years of not giving it a second thought. I am here to serve as your guide!
From my own newly divorced experiences, I feel your apprehension. Three years ago, I arrived in New York City, extricated from an established life and 24-year marriage in Texas, and wondered “what next?!” My book: “Mom…You Just Need to Get Laid: The Adventures of Dating After Divorce” is an entertaining account of 15 stories that happened to me.
In this and future columns, I will be sharing tips and lessons from those stories with you. And I want to hear yours!
Let’s start with a fundamental question:
Why do you want to date?
- Maybe you’ve never been in a relationship and Covid has made you realize you’d like to be.
- Maybe you were in a great marriage or partnership and sadly lost a loving spouse or partner.
- Maybe you have gone through a significant transition and now feel ready to put the new version of yourself into the world.
- Maybe you enjoy having new experiences and meeting new people.
Any and all of these reasons are valid, healthy, and good.
Now notice I didn’t say any of the following:
- Maybe you are bored.
- Maybe you are angry.
- Maybe you are lonely.
- Maybe you are dissatisfied.
- Maybe you are unhappy.
Dating well requires that YOU be well. Said another way, being ready to date means you aren’t going to take your troubles and ask another person to solve them for you.
To be successful in the dating world, you’ll need three things going for you:
1) a healthy dose of self-confidence – more valuable than beauty, money, or a good wardrobe, your belief in yourself is your calling card. How can a date detect if you have self-confidence? By the way you walk, carry yourself and what you say. (More on making a great first impression in a future column, I promise!)
2) an optimistic outlook on life – your curious enthusiasm and “let’s have fun” outlook is the first clue prospective dates have of you. It will come through in your voice, your facial expression, and the way you build a conversation. (Again more on how to be a great conversationalist coming up soon. Promises, promises!)
3) a sense of adventure – when I moved to New York from Texas, I left behind thirty years of everything…an identity, a home, a career, friends, and a sense of time and place. I took a risk and swapped it all for a new life. Dating is like that. You take risks, but if you are smart, they will be far less than the rewards. (You thought I’d make you another promise here, didn’t you?! Well, read on!)
My July homework for you is to keep track of your dating victories. You had a pleasant phone call. You enjoyed a coffee date. You had a great evening.
Keep track even if you have only one. Or two.
And forget about your losses. The people you didn’t enjoy or connect with. The date who ghosted you. The person It doesn’t matter how many. They are in the past. Forget about them. They don’t count. Move on.
Dating is not a zero sum game. It’s a set of experiences that could enhance or even change your life. Keep that thought and you’ll do fine.
And I’ll be there with you. Send me your dating stories and questions to Kate@KateSomerset. I promise (Yes, here is the other one!) to respond. Just do me a favor: keep your message to four paragraphs, including your question. Title your email: Three Tomatoes Dating Question.
See you next month!