Here at Smart Dating Over 60 we’re firm believers in using a little introspection to improve your dating life. Yet not everyone is so inclined.
So for you guys that just want to get out there and date without too much thought, here are some old sayings that will probably keep you out of trouble. There’s usually a grain of truth to most clichés.
And they just so happen to coincide with our very own mature dating roadmap.
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
Put on some decent clothes and make yourself presentable, but in a natural way that matches who you really are. It goes a long way towards igniting a spark in a potential romantic partner. And take some time to create a dazzling online profile to attract your true love.
A first impression can make or break you. If you’re online dating profile is mediocre and doesn’t accurately represent you, meeting your ideal partner is harder. They just won’t bother to contact you.
If you’re not looking good on that first date, in a way that’s comfortable for you, there won’t be a second.
There’s no need to overthink your appearance because that could be just as bad as not thinking about it at all.
“We marry our parents.”
If you’re ok with that, then go ahead and date without taking steps to get to know yourself better. But now you can’t say you weren’t warned.
Of course, the consensus among psychotherapists is that we all carry wounds from our childhood, even the best of childhoods. Our subconscious mind leads us to people who are like our parents in the hope that those wounds can be healed. That’s the short version.
If that thought makes you shudder, or reminds you of previous bad relationships, then take time for introspection. Learn what makes you tick.
“Do you want to be right, or do you want to be happy?”
If you’re a man over 50 or 60, you’ve learned that life is typically many shades of gray rather than black and white. (And it’s not just our hair.)
If you’ve made it this far in life and managed to mature emotionally, then your level of tolerance and acceptance should have grown too. I don’t know about you, but I like being happy so much more than I ever liked being right.
As you move onto those second dates and beyond, you’ll discover where the two of you differ.
No two people can ever agree on everything, even if she’s the “woman of your dreams.” Ultimately, there must be compromise if there’s ever to be commitment.
“Actions speak louder than words.”
Don’t try to be someone you’re not. Be authentic. You can’t fake who you are. Yes, you can improve your conversation and dating skills, but you can’t change your personality.
For example, if you’re a reserved introvert and you try to play a gregarious extrovert because you think your date will like you better, it’s not going to happen.
And don’t lie on your online dating profile. If it doesn’t match who you really are, it will be evident in no time at all.
I had the experience of meeting someone whose profile didn’t match reality. I asked a question about one of the athletic interests she listed in her profile. Not only did she say she wasn’t interested in that—I could chalk that up to an incomplete profile—but she denied it was even in her profile. (It was.)
“Love is blind.”
First dates are when infatuation kicks in if there’s any spark at all. Infatuation feels good and makes you look at the world and your new partner with rose-colored glasses.
But remember two things:
1) Listen to your gut. Your subconscious doesn’t wear rose-colored glasses and its always working. If you hear a little voice saying something’s not right with this date, listen to it. Then figure out exactly what’s causing the nagging feeling.
2) Remember your deal-breakers. You don’t want to let these non-negotiable items slide for the sake of some short-term good feelings.
“The grass is always greener on the other side.”
When you’re on that first date, be mindful and be present. The woman sitting across from you is unique and has a lifetime of experiences and stories to share.
Don’t start thinking about your next date with another woman. Even if you don’t plan on a second date, stay in the moment and be part of the conversation. It’s only one date.
If you’re onto second and third dates with her, and everything is clicking, don’t be distracted by the thought that maybe, just maybe, there’s someone else out there who’s just a little bit better.
You might call this the-grass-is-greener syndrome, in which you think “If only I find/do/experience X, then I’ll be happy.” In a world full of endless choices and options—including human beings—there will always be someplace else to look.
This is really a reflection of the fact that you haven’t learned how to be happy. You can’t be truly happy with another until you’re happy with yourself.
It doesn’t mean things have to be perfect. Improvement is always possible. Rather it means you learn to find happiness and joy right now, in today’s living.
“It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game.”
Play it like a gentleman. Be one before, during, and after your first date.
I suspect this should come naturally to most men over 60 who are looking for true love.
Although you might feel like a teenager again, don’t act like one.
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