It’s funny but for all the times I hear “I don’t want to be in a relationship” I also hear, “Will I ever find that ULTIMATE love?”. I respect the contrast, the juxtaposition, and the angst. I think choosing one”s partner is the most important choice a person makes. I think at different stages of life we might choose entirely new and different things in a suitable mate. For this reason if you have chosen a partner, made a commitment, and a vow, it is important to grow respectfully WITH the person you chose. There are ups and downs in anything that spans many years but I remember the look in Warrior’s eyes when I told him, with a wink, on the heels of a rough patch, “There’s only one possible outcome for you and me and that’s us, holding hands on a park bench, you old and me not nearly as old but...oldish.”. He laughed and we were made stronger.
If you are single and searching here’s my top ten thoughts on love.
1) Men and women are different creatures and need to be understood as such. Men are the single layer to a woman’s seven layer dip! I mean that with all due respect; salsa is very satisfying and complex! I’m a fan of guacamole too; it’s as “extra” as I am!! Still, it’s the layer effect of women alongside the more streamlined simplicity of men that causes friction if it isn’t simply acknowledged and appreciated. Warrior Women, your man is not your best girlfriend. If he listens through your drama 800 times and tries to “fix” the problem on 801 don’t rail against his nature and tell him “you never just listen...”; he does...but a good man sees a problem and wants a solution. Chewing on the fat of a problem is like hacky-sack for we women; men aren’t wired that way. When your guy proposes a solution remember from caveman days, that is what he was programmed to do; be grateful!!...
...Then schedule a girl’s night, order margaritas, and spill the salt with your pals. (We just love to dig through every layer ;)
2) Ladies: Stop chasing. A man into you will make the effort. Once you have made clear you are interested stop “making sure” he knows. The guy who genuinely wants YOU will take the time to text, call, see you, woo you, in an effort to “make you his”. There’s not one guy truly invested in getting to know you “too busy” to be motivated in actually “showing” up. Good Men have the hunter instinct and will not lose you with a lazy pursuit. I get dogged whenever I say this as “it’s a game”. Nope, that’s usually from a lazy dude who wants easy pickings off the ground. A guy not willing to be face to face, nose to nose, ear to ear isn’t that into you. Don’t take that to mean you aren’t worthy; that’s silly!! You are as worthy as you decide to be. I’ve also learned there are a new breed of lesser men who do not want you to outshine them and so run from a woman from whom they may be eclipsed. Wish that crew good riddance and glow! Be a shiny apple a man has to climb the tree to procure. Without effort there’s no great story. Every romantic relationship needs a love story you’ll one day be proud to tell (possibly even to your kids!!). Epic tales do not generally begin with...”once upon a time we met on Craigslist”...
3) Hey Guys... I was a naive doe when I ended up back in the forest of this new life. Meeting your husband at 21 and having him insulate you from “real world” complexities is not entirely helpful. I’m not sure when the only qualification for interaction was a dm from whoever was game; but that’s not dating. Men have to raise the bar of expectations for the partner in their life and not just sit at it. The world cannot know real, meaningful attachment over Snapchat. I hold you good guys accountable! I believe in good men! Stop believing there are greener pastures and keep your own damn lawn! The problem with the guys I see around my women friends is they don’t see the gem they have hoping there is somehow “more” in the great “unknown”... god speed, voyager to parts unknown...every Warrior is made better by his match, she’s not “out there” to be found swiping left or right haphazardly.
**Cautionary warning, delivered with love: when you finally wake up to the girl next door; she probably won’t be home.
4) Dating is Awesome. Dating people to find out who might be a good fit is important. Give it a shot allowing for unexpected matches and fun. Be as honest and clear with whomever you are spending time as you are with yourself. Ladies, if he says “let’s be friends” he means it. Stop hanging around in hopes of proving what he’s missing. If I told you the number of Snapchat stories I’ve watched, my blonde head shaking, for the attempted “proof” of being a “catch”, you’d cry. Know your worth, Warrior Women!! The right man will know it too! Guys, return to earth and call a lady, ask her to dinner, slow your roll, and let things develop and simmer. There’s a loss of that great anticipation by pushing things so fast and furious it is all over before it had a chance to properly begin. This steady stream of burnt rubber will keep you fish-tailing and tailspinning without a glance in the rear view mirror. What you may not see without a glance back is the wreckage. Women are jewels who will enrich your life; treat them accordingly.
5)Never change the terms of a relationship without warning. Have you ever fallen for a friend or had a friend fall for you? That’s a really rough one unless it’s completely reciprocal. It is not fair, and a total burden to a person, if you’ve decided to change the game unilaterally. It’s the ultimate risk (and betrayal) to make a shift without really KNOWING the object of your affection returns feelings beyond friendship. I’m not sure what to tell you to do if you’ve fallen for a friend but I will say burdening this pal with your feelings will forever alter and probably end a friendship. It feels like an unanticipated loss to the person on the receiving end of “more than friend” feelz; especially if they have never given the vibe such feelings would be welcomed. Always consider what it is YOU would bring to the altered relationship not just what imaginings you’ve held in your head. You will lose a friend by forcing an awkward choice. This loss will be squarely on your shoulders for not pressing pause and placing proper value on the pricelessness of a true friend.
6)It is ok not to want a relationship; but rather “just fun” if all parties are fully informed and in agreement. Don’t be a tease on either side...don’t say maybe...don’t leave room for interpretation or hope. If you are a consenting adult; do what you do. Be careful though, people are not meant to be taken lightly.
7) Men, I speak as a woman but not for all women. I’ll probably get in trouble from the girls but I’m going out on a limb with the desire to help. When a woman says “it’s fine”, “I’m fine”, and you get the feeling nothing is “fine” LISTEN TO YOUR INTUITION!!! There’s not a damn thing ok with “fine”!! LOLOLOLOLOL!!! I speak with authority here because I am horrible about “fine”. When my feelings get hurt I hide under a blanket woven of thread finely stamped with the protection “I don’t care”, “I’m fine”, “it’s nothing”, and even “go away”... is this my greatest selling point? Ummmmm, no... but it is the raw self insulating truth of a person who has been mightily hurt. The right man will read past words and assess feelings instead of choosing to abandon courage and run. If you have fought with a person you feel you cannot live your best life without fight harder to keep them. Tell them you don’t want to go away, show them you recognize things aren’t “fine”, Show Up for the hard stuff because on the other side of that is real partnership. Life is too long not to be alongside one you love, admire, are capable of fighting with as well as fighting for...a partner in crime is the most satisfying couple to be!
8)Girlfriends, stay a girlfriend to your guy and you will have the happiest marriage imaginable. We women want to be complimented and admired, verbally cued on our accomplishments, sacrifices, beauty and charms. We want all of this from the less verbal beast of men. Fair enough, I recently told a girlfriend to give her man a clear assignment because men understand the linear thinking of cost/benefit analysis. When my friends say to me “but I don’t want to tell him” I say, “well then, good luck!”. Asking a guy to divine exactly what you need is not fair. If you do tell him sweetly and he simply ignores your reasonable desires repeatedly; he’s not a man who cares. Most men do, however, care but they want to feel valued in return. I was having a cocktail with a dear pal recently. She excitedly shared a promotion her husband earned. This promotion put him squarely into military style tactical gear of which she snapped a photo dropping him one day at work. She looked young as a school girl admiring this photo of her husband of over twenty years! I asked if she relayed her admiration to him to which she laughed adorably and said, “oh yes”... this lady is his committed wife but still his girlfriend. These two have a love others might envy but I applaud. This is what it means to “work” at a relationship. It’s not about drudgery, it’s about investment! It’s about creating habits that lead to longevity. It’s about keeping another’s heart pumping alongside yours!
9)Honesty is everything. Be honest with others as well as yourself. The greatest pain is born of deception. No swift punch of truth is worse than a drawn out lie. Transparency is important and a person of integrity offers this unsolicited. If you meet someone and begin to care a great deal for their heart but there’s “something” that just doesn’t add up; BELIEVE IT!! There will come a moment you say “ohhhhh that’s what that is/was” and it’ll hurt. Do not be a player in games with a zero sum win. I am shocked still by the number of married men who hit on me. I’m nobody’s side piece and no betrayer of women. Ladies, don’t be flattered by the attention of a man willing to devalue a woman he promised his heart. Borrow my line, “I respect the choice you made in the woman you married too much to ever consider being complicit in the betrayal of her.”. Never fall for the “my wife is a monster line”... marriages are complex dances that ebb and flow. Nobody in a marriage is available for a committed relationship to you, so have the grace, self respect, and loyalty to another not to tango with a partner not free to dance.
10)Opening your heart to another person is courageous; do not do this frivolously; but rather, discerningly. Life is an adventure with the highest highs and loneliest lows...you are better equipped for battle with the right ally. Don’t ever settle for “good enough” if you plan to marry. I tell my warrior girls the only time to say yes to a proposal is because all encompassing love overwhelms your heart and the thought of seeing this life through without this singular, one person, knocks the wind out of your lungs!! Sharing a life with another is a constantly changing set of needs and wants. One must truly commit to cultivating the garden they’ve agreed to plant. The only reason to spend your life with another is to believe yourself incapable of living without them. If the grim truth is revealed, that you can and must go on having lost them, YOU WILL BE BETTER for having loved with ULTIMATE truth!
You cannot love anyone else on this planet without first, absolutely loving yourself. In all the advice I’ve ever doled out thinking enough of oneself to expect better than just “ok” is my constant theme.
I believe everyone is entitled to love equal to what they are willing to give. I believe there are different love stories with various casts and character in different phases of your life. I believe you know ahead of the moment you make a “bad choice” that you’ll one day call it a “mistake”. I believe there is a quiet voice that everyone should obey. I believe this voice will tell you the mission of your spirit and lead you ultimately to unselfish love...Always!
Good luck xo🍀d
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