1) Keep a journal: Try to write in it as much as possible, about anything and everything. At the end of each month, read through it and notice detrimental actions or thoughts that keep repeating themselves- think about what you can do to reverse these patterns.
2) Get personal: Make an effort to use the phone instead of texting, to handwrite a letter vs. shooting off an email. Your relationships will thank you.
3) Don’t use a date (or a mate) to make u feel better about yourself: You should like someone for them and not because they validate a part of you that needs affirmation. A relationship based on validation is only bound for disaster.
4) Schedule a weekly “you” class: “You” classes can run the gamut from painting to flying lessons. What they all have in common, however, is that they provide you with a creative outlet, a space to reflect, and a chance to improve upon a skill, and increase your general satisfaction with life.
5) Toss your “type”: If you are still single (and don’t want to be), or tend to get hurt more often than not, something about your “type” isn’t working! So think about it: what matters to you more, a mate who is buff, blonde, and makes 100 grand a year or one who is kind, thoughtful, and funny? To recreate the person you should be looking for, break down the things that are most important to you through a MASH like method of categories, traits, and ratings. For a more detailed explanation of this method, go to http://www.meezoog.com/blog/?p=170, “The Magic Formula For Finding Your SoulMate.”
6) Trust your instincts: If something feels off about someone, you are probably right. If you know in your heart a relationship is not going to work out, don’t keep trying to make it work. Also, no one can make you like someone- at the end of the day you are the one talking to a person, going to bed with them, existing in their company. So although your mother and best friend may happily offer their two cents on your most recent date, the decision of whether or not to be with someone belongs only to yourself.
7) Read two good books a month: Preferably a Pulitzer Prize Winner or National Book Award novel and one an interest based or self-improvement type book- these will give you insight into important societal issues and themes and insight into yourself. In addition, they will give you topics and ideas to talk about on your dates, or to bring up in that pivotal first conversation with a prospect.
8) If you think that you have spotted the man or woman of your dreams, don’t make excuses; go talk to them: Either you will quickly find out that the fantasy person you have created is only that; a fantasy, or may not even speak English! (that has happened to me) or perhaps your dream mate radar is on target and they really are your future spouse. Either way, it is better to know rather than to fantasize and salivate over a stranger.
9) Forget about looking stupid/celebrate your quirks: Your embarrassing addiction to race cars or tendency to blush when someone says something complimentary may just be the icing on someone’s cakes. Your quirks are what make you interesting and endearing- don’t waste any time or energy hiding them.