Haven’t you experienced the feeling of being very lonely even when you were with another? We can feel alone when we’re with a partner and fulfilled when we’re alone, or vice versa -- it’s always coming from the self and the moment. We each have the power to change what we’re thinking. If you’re not having a nice time, change your thoughts, it’s as simple as that.
Couples can have all the love they want. All that is needed is to let go of negative thoughts about each other. Love and understanding is an inside job--love is within you, now. Love surfaces when you remove your judging, critical, blaming, and fault-finding style of thinking. When love surfaces, it manifests in you as generosity, gratitude, forgiveness, humor, and appreciation. Look for these positive feelings and your relationship will be just fine. ~Dr. Mark Howard
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Dr. Howard is a friend and colleague; our work is based on the same philosophy of living. I too, am a relationship therapist. That’s right, a single, relationship therapist. I’ve heard there is a new sitcom about relationship coaches who are single. I teach others how to get what I know I could have if I could only find "the (right) one." Maybe part of my own inability to find "the one” is the fact that there are so many from which to choose, even in my "older" age category. Now, there are not only divorcees but widowers as well, ever increasing the stockpile of available men.
Sometimes the craving for a loved-one can get really strong, easily drowning everything else out, were I to let it. It could even drown out my passion for writing. I do my best not to allow that to happen. I know that I have to dismiss negative thoughts about it — as they will never bring me what I want.
Sometimes the gem that falls into your palm is not for keeps. It may come with an expiration date attached. At some point in my journey I realized that I can enjoy those gems, though I’d like to be alerted in advance to avoid disappointment.
So, here’s what I do with a new guy I meet who seems to have potential. I’ll be completely honest and straightforward, especially since most males are initially intent on the physical connection while the female's intent is on the emotional. I’ll ask the man to decide what course he’d like to take.
One course would be to let lust lead us willy nilly wherever it wants to go, with complete abandon and the recognition that it will be fun for the duration, but not my ideal way to begin a potential LTR. Here’s my reasoning -- I would want a LTR to begin with sensuality and a slow build to the crescendo. Once physical intimacy has been reached, there’s no turning back the clock.
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However, if we spend initial time in the realm of desire and anticipation, it will become a pleasurable memory to which we can return for the next twenty years. It can be a place where we can journey together emotionally any time we choose, once physical intimacy loses its luster and we need a jumpstart.