Wednesday, April 26, 2017

3 Signs You're NOT Ready for Dating

I hate having to tell people who come to me for dating coaching that I can't help them. But sometimes I have to break that bad news. The biggest reason? They're not actually READY for dating.

The 3 most-common signs they're not ready are:
1) They still have negative feelings (such as anger, fear, sadness, or guilt) related to what happened with their ex- or soon-to-be ex-spouse.

2) They have negative feelings about themselves, such as self-doubt, low self-esteem, or a lack of self-respect, self-love, or self-confidence. 

3) They have too much drama in their life related to their separation or divorce, such as:
- fear of leaving their children with the ex-spouse
- anxiety about getting a job to address their new financial reality (i.e., having to support themselves)
- chaos in terms of downsizing to a different house or an apartment in order to live within their means as their lifestyle changes
- worries about issues related to being a single parent, such as the effects of divorce on children, child support payments, and visitation schedules

In other words, their life is so hectic and complicated that they have little or no time and energy to search for a new partner, much less to date if they do meet somebody.

Pretty much everyone who's still married/thinking about divorce, separated, or going through the divorce process is grappling with one or more of these challenges. And trying to date when they have unresolved issues like these is an effort doomed to fail. 
Here's why:
1) A person with negative feelings about the ex- or soon-to-be ex-spouse has a lot of healing and forgiving to do (i.e., a heart that is definitely NOT open and welcoming for someone new). Grieving and healing from this loss often involves months of therapy and a commitment to forgiving the ex-spouse AND his- or herself. Carrying pain or other negative emotions into a brand new relationship will kill that partnership before it gets started because, believe me, a budding new romance always brings up unhealed past "baggage".

2) A person with negative feelings about herself/himself lacks CONFIDENCE, which is THE most important element in the success formula for dating. You need to believe you're lovable and special if you're going to attract someone else who thinks you are too. Not many folks are interested in spending time with people who are down on themselves.

3) A person with a lot of life drama/chaos is too preoccupied, distracted, busy, and scattered to focus on the dating search or, in many cases, to even have a social life of any kind. Most divorcing people I work with as a divorce support coach are so hyper-focused on making sure their kids are OK during the process they don't have a minute to think about themselves.

If you or someone you know wants to date but, for one of the above reasons, isn't ready yet, I can help. I support and guide people through the process of preparing for dating BEFORE they go back into the dating world...and would be happy to assist!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Common Lies to Watch for in Online Dating

Every client who comes to me for dating coaching asks the same question: "Don't most people lie in their online dating profiles?"

The short answer is "Yes" because a 2012 survey by the group OpinionMatters showed that 53% of online daters admitted to lying in their profiles (of course, that means that 47% don't, so you might get lucky and meet someone who's completely truthful). 

I always urge clients to be open minded and not to prejudge potential dates based on their photos or statistics until they've met them in person. You never know if there's chemistry until you're physically together. In the meantime, though, there are things you can look for when reading profiles so you can weed out the dishonest folks. If any of these things sound too good to be true, they probably are.

The top 10 things men lie about when online dating:
1. Job (better than it is) - 40% of men do this
2. Height (taller, especially if they're under 5'10")
3. Weight (losing a few pounds)
4. Physique (athletic)
5. Money they earn (more)
6. Seniority at work (more than they really are)
7. Profession (more interesting than it actually is)
8. Knowing celebrities
9. Having an assistant or employees
10. Working in the film industry
The top 10 things women lie about when online dating: 
1. Weight (losing a few pounds)
2. Age (younger than they are)
3. Physique (toned)
4. Height
5. Money they earn
6. Bust size (larger)
7. Profession (more glamorous than it is) - 30% of women do this
8. Knowing celebrities
9. Having an assistant or employees
10. Working in the entertainment industry

The reason people lie is to make a good first impression, but this backfires when they meet potential dates in person and can't live up to the image they tried to create in their profile. That's why I ALWAYS recommend being honest in how you present yourself online.  

Interestingly, as we age, we find this easier to do. In fact, research shows that the older online daters got, the less likely they were to lie. This tells me that older daters are wiser: they've learned that lying doesn't pay in the long run. You'll usually get caught in the lie, and things won't end well.

Studies bear this out: 33% of online daters said they falsified their profile so much that it prevented them from getting beyond the "meet and greet" for coffee (i.e., they never got an actual first date). 

If that's how you want things to turn out for you, go ahead and lie. If not, be honest. That, of course, starts with accepting yourself just the way you are and having the confidence to show that self to others. If you need help with that, drop me an email so I can support you...and ultimately help you get more dates using online dating.