Where are you at in your love life?
There are only TWO CATEGORIES, you are either: SINGLE OR ARE YOU IN A RELATIONSHIP
If you are SINGLE…you are either
SINGLE AND STRUGGLING
SINGLE AND AT PEACE
If you are in a RELATIONSHIP then you are
IN A RELATIONSHIP AND IN PAIN
YOU ARE IN A RELATIONSHIP AND THRIVING
Welcome to today’s episode of the show. How are you today? How’s your love life? That’s what we’re here to talk about. How to jumpstart your love life now and as you listen to this episode and reflect on your own love life, probably starting to do that already just by me saying love life that means dating relationships; your romantic life. We’re going to reflect on that today together. We’re going to help you see how you can jump-start it. How you can get it moving. Now before you maybe turn this off or pause it because it stirs up something uncomfortable, stick with me. Because staying comfortable in life and seeking comfort and being unwilling to experience any sort of discomfort is actually what gets us into trouble in the first place. It’s a huge piece of social anxiety. It’s a huge piece of low confidence or low self-esteem and it’s the biggest contributing factor to not having the life that we want. It is being unwilling to experience discomfort so as you listen to me in this episode.
If you feel a little bit uncomfortable you’re like, “Yeah I don’t know if I like that. This is not going the way I want it to in my love life. Facing that here with me is going to be the key to helping you get to the other side so with that little disclaimer, let’s dive in. Let me ask you again how’s your love life? Where are you at? Are you satisfied with it? Are you fulfilled with it? Are you struggling with it? Just notice what’s the first kind of couple things that just pop into your head as I say that and then where you’re at. I think there are only four areas. I was thinking about this before I recorded this. I think there’re really only four areas. In fact there’re only really two categories. This is going to be simple. We’re going to break this down here know exactly where you’re at. You’re either single or you’re in a relationship. The only two set options that I see here you’re either single or you’re in a relationship.
You might say, “But hold on a second, I’m dating someone kind of but I’m not sure if I’m with them or not.” In your mind you know. You either see yourself as like, “Yeah I’m single and we’re just dating and you know probably that’s not going to go very far but it’s fun.” In your mind you’re single; you might not tell them that but maybe you could [chuckles] get into that later. Or maybe you’re dating multiple people and you might see yourself as in relationships. Maybe you’re into poly-armory or something. You’re dating a couple of people and you see those as actual relationships now that might not be permanent or they might not be someone here and spend them you know the rest of your life with or they might not be monogamous but I see that could be relationship. Your being in relationship with those people so you’re either single or you’re in a relationship. Let’s start with that distinction; where are you? Are you single? Are you in a relationship or relationships? If your answer is complicated, you’re probably in some sort of relationship [chuckles]. Okay good, so we got that or with me so far; single or in a relationship.
The next thing is, there’re only two places you can be in each of those categories. See how simple we’re making this. If you’re single, there’s only two places you can be; you are single and struggling in some way or you’re single and at peace and in a relationship there’s only two places you can be; you’re either in a relationship and in some sort of pain or you’re in a relationship and you’re thriving. Those are the only core options that I see. Where are you? Are you single right now but feeling at peace about it? That means let’s break these down; I’m going to give you a little more description of each of these so you can kind of see where you’re at.
Let’s say you’re single right now but maybe you’re at peace with that, you feel good about that and so what that would look like is you are happy with yourself, you feel good about yourself, you feel like you could be in a relationship if you wanted to be you, you value yourself, you value what you bring into relationships, you are interested and engaged in different things in your life, your life feels full engaging dynamic, has purpose, has meaning, has friends, has connections and maybe you want a relationship. Maybe you’re open to a relationship and there’s not this like desperate, throbbing, aching, “I need this right now to feel okay. I’m incomplete. I suck.” “Like you don’t have that you’re just like, “Yeah I know life is good and sure I’ll be with someone at some point when I find that person and I feel ready and until then let’s keep enjoying this. This is good. I’m at peace.” That’s one place.
Lord knows when I was single I did not spend much time there. I did find my way there at times but I spent most of my time in the second category of single. Just single and struggling and there’s all different ways [chuckles] we could struggle but one of the ones that I was referencing earlier is just you’re not feeling at peace, you’re craving, you’re longing, you’re like, “Aaaah! I just don’t have anyone that I miss. I’m lonely. I need someone.” There’s a particular flavor struggling that I had for a long time which is, if you knew I was just talking about this with a client the other day, if you knew that within a year from today you were going to be in an amazing relationship with the love of your life. Like just you knew it somehow, we could have total certainty that that was going to happen, how would you feel about right now and the course for this next year?
He said, “Well I’d be a lot more relaxed. I actually enjoy myself a lot more right now and enjoy my singleness and my freedom and the ability to do whatever I want, interact with whoever I want in whatever a way that I want.” That’s interesting; so there’s a unique flavor of pain. The reason I asked them that question is because I knew that when I was single and struggling the biggest form of pain was not that I didn’t have someone in my life that was like partner or girlfriend someone that loved me that I loved, I mean that hurts or that could hurt; but the pain was I don’t have that and I’m never going to get that, that’s where the real pain is. Because if we know, “Oh! Yeah, I’m going to have that in six months.” Maybe there’s a little impatience like, “I want it now.” But we’re okay, we can wait; but if it’s like, “I don’t have that. I’m not going to have it in six months. I’m not going to have it in a year. I’m not going to have in six years.”
Then if you want to add some fuel onto the fire of struggling and suffering, you say the reason I’m not going to have that is because I’m what? And whatever your mind came up with there is part of your story because I’m messed up, because I’m ugly, because I’m fat, because I’m broken, because I got baggage, because bla bla bla bla bla. We have all these stories so why is not possible for us. Then we can also be single and ashamed about it. It’s another former struggling [laughter]. I know I had this fun too. Like if anyone does to everyone, it’s so same shameful that I’m single and that could be for a variety reasons. It could be that you’re a certain age and you think you should have a partner by now, you should no longer be a virgin by now, I had that one. Another one is that people that are and this is very cultural dependent. It could be your family your country but basically by a certain age and a lot of cultures you should be married.
That could be younger or older and so once you reach that age and if you’re not married or if you were married but then you got divorced and now you’re not, there can be this shame that comes up for us like, “Uh! There’s something wrong with me. I should be there. All my friends are there. My parents think I should be there. Others in– ” It’s not just like when you’re having that conversation with your mom and she’s like, “When are you going to give me my grandkids?” I don’t mean like in the moment of that; that could be uncomfortable. But I mean you carry it around with you. No one– your mom’s out there 24/7 saying that in your ear and we’re carrying that shame. We have that internal sense of shame. I remember my aunt, Aunt Teresa, who’s awesome. I love you Aunt Teresa. She would ask me– at times she’d just see me during Thanksgiving or something, she lives down in Southern California, and she’d say, “Hey, how’s your— are you seeing anyone? Are you dating anyone?”
I would just feel this wave of shame because the answer was no. The reason I’m not is because I’m messed up and I never will and other guys are better than me and so they can do it. Not only am I ugly but I’m also incapable and not a man. All that shit was in my head. So she says that and I’m like, “No, [chuckles] so how’s the pickle on your sandwich?” I changed the subject as quick as possible. So where are you at if you’re single? You’re struggling? You are feeling at peace somewhere in between sometimes one sometimes the other? We’re going to talk about how to get to more of the peace side because here is the fascinating breakthrough is that we think that we need to be in this state of like total dissatisfaction in order to be motivated to go find a partner or something, but the reality is that when you get more and more at peace and you’re thriving in your life then you become way more attractive and stuff just happens. You might have had an experience in your life already like that.
If you think back to the last time you got in a relationship, if you’ve been in a relationship, the last time you were in one. Maybe you weren’t even looking for one. You were just focusing on yourself and your growth and your life and your friends and your career and your passions and your hobbies and all of a sudden boom! There was somebody. That’s how life works. The more you get to a state of peace around something and surrender like it can happen, it cannot happen I’m in no rush. It’s okay. I know it’s inevitable then boom! It shows up. We’re talking about more how to get you there but we take a quick break right now and then we’re going to get into the two sides of the relationship. Two different ways we can be in a relationship which is either in pain or thriving. This is going to be extremely valuable because one of our biggest obstacles that keeps us stuck single and not finding a love that we want is actually past relationship pain, so that’s the hook. Pretty enticing hook, you want to come back and talk about pain? Alright, I’ll see you in just a minute.
Hey welcome back. So two areas of single; you’re either single and struggling and all the ways I talked about just now or you’re single and feeling at peace or you’re in a relationship and you’re feeling pain or you’re thriving. It might not be 24/7 that you’re feeling pain and no sense of fulfillment or love or connection; that’s usually not the case but you know what I mean. Like it’s not great, it’s not amazing, it’s not like, “Wow! This is an awesome relationship. I love this. This is a total magnifier of my life.” Even that, even a relationship that is a total magnify of your life doesn’t mean it as it doesn’t have any pain or any challenge. In fact a relationship does have periods of pain and challenge, conflict that we need to grow through. So I’m not talking about like some sort of weird, state blissful, state that’s devoid of any challenge. I’m just talking about in general, when you’re in a relationship that’s thriving man! It’s good.
If you’re listening to this and you’re one of the few that have achieved that and experienced that in your life on a daily basis congratulations. That does not happen by accident this is a thing that sometimes I go on a jag about this is we have this weird entitlement to relationship success. That doesn’t make any sense to me. It’s like most and not you because you’re listening to this so you understand that in order to create an extraordinary life; we need to develop ourselves, we need to educate ourselves, we need to keep growing constantly but most people and somewhere back in them in your mind you might have this too so that’s why I want to call it out. We have this like entitlement that’s like, “I shouldn’t need to do anything or grow anyway or learn anything. I should just be able to like quote the right person.” Then with no effort, no discomfort, no growth everything works out great forever and it doesn’t work that way; I’m sorry, no.
If you want to have an extraordinary relationship you want to thrive in your relationship. You got to be growing there’s so much shit to work through of communication styles that you learn growing up, watching your parents that were totally ineffective. Maybe your parents avoided conflict and they were just kind of distant like roommates. If you replicate that guess what kind of relationship you’re going to have? Distant-roommate kind of relationship. If your dad blew up and yelled a bunch and that’s how he dealt with his feelings because he didn’t know how to communicate vulnerability or fear or any other uncomfortable emotions for him, he just yelled at your mom, then you might have anger that comes up in relationships. You might have a tendency to blow up, you might have a tendency to– maybe you like, “I’m not going to be like him.” But it comes out like it’s a sharp remark so you just do a more subtle push away of your partner. If you got anxiety and this is one I had to work through a ton. You have anxiety, fears about they’re going to leave, fears about you not being good enough, fears about being yourself around them; guess what you got to do?
You got to grow and work through that stuff or the relationships not going to grow, it’s not going to thrive, you’re not going to feel really good in it. There is it something that really is unfortunate in our culture is that we have this entitlement that is supposed to go easily and we don’t need to grow, and if we do need to grow that’s a sign that we’re messed up and people feel ashamed about that and that’s fucking crazy. I cannot tell you how many people when they realize they need to read a book about relationships and communication. Or God forbid go to some sort of counseling sessions or couples counseling or coaching to learn how to communicate, they feel like failures. They’re like, “Oh! My God. There’s something wrong with me. This is depressing. I need to do this.” And it’s like, “Dude or Dudette, what area of life do we not need to learn and grow in in order to do it well?
I can’t think any sport. Can you imagine any sport like, “I should need to learn it at all or practice anything. I should just know how to play soccer or football or basketball incredibly. I should just know how to sink a 3-pointer. Practice? Oh! My God. That means I’m a failure.” Isn’t that absurd? What about your work? What about your career? How much time have you spent educating yourself, learning things at school and on your own time; reading and talking to people and figuring out things and solving problems? We know that in our career the only way to progress and get more experience is to do it and to figure out, read things, talk to people, solve problems and it’s the same thing in your relationship. If you really want a relationship that’s thriving, that’s the biggest commitment you got to make. But if you’re in a place, your relationship is a lot of pain then there’s probably not growth. Maybe in you there’s an unwillingness to learn what you need to learn.
There’s a book that I highly recommend to everyone who is in a relationship, it’s called ‘After the honeymoon’ by Dan Wale; ‘After the honeymoon’. I remember I was talking with a friend over breakfast, this was a while back, about his relationship and it was– she says this and then I say this and I’m listening to it. I’m like that’s not optimal communication, no one’s being vulnerable, they’re just slinging accusations at each other, he’s feeling hurt and defensive, she’s feeling hurt and defensive [chuckles]. It’s the story of a fight we all know that one. As we talked about it, I asked him questions. I shared some ideas and then at the end of breakfast we were standing outside the restaurant and I was like, “Hey man! There’s a book I’d highly recommend and if you read it I think it would profoundly help you in this and really take away a lot of this pain and suffering, and help you feel more loving and at peace in your relationship. He said, “Oh! Yeah what’s the call?” And I said, “It’s on the ‘After the honeymoon’ by Dan and you want to write that one down after the honeymoon by Dan.
I asked him– I told him about that and he said, “Oh! Yeah.” And just something about his tone, I thought I’d ask this I said, “So are you going to get it?” [chuckles] And he’s like, “Yeah, I don’t know. I’m pretty busy.” First of all I don’t have time is just a total bullshit excuse that we all use. I’m guilty of it too but here’s the thing; if something is really important to us, we make time for it. We use, “I don’t have time.” because it’s an excuse that usually people back off of. Like, “Hey can you do this thing free? I love to but I don’t have the time. Okay, that’s fine. Sure, no problem. You don’t have the time.” It’s total BS because if we really had– think about this, let’s say right now the person that you care about most in the world really close relationship and they don’t do this very often, this is really rare, they– you get a message from them and it’s like, “Look, shit’s burning down. Something’s going down big. I need you to come help me like right now.”
It’s an emergency and it’s like one of your closest relationships and they’re not always having emergencies this is like a once in a lifetime kind of thing. Would you be able to drop everything and go be with them; go help them? For most of us the answer is yes. We’d figure it out. It will be uncomfortable, it will be challenging but we’d figure it out if there was enough urgency; if there’s enough need and that’s because that’s important. That relationship is important. How we show up as a human is important with that person so when something’s really important to us we make time. I saw he wasn’t going to do it so I thought I’d just ask him one more question because it’s I don’t know it’s okay with me if he doesn’t want to have an extraordinary relationship and I said let me ask you this.
He runs his own business. Really intelligent guy; worked in real estate property management. I love talking to him about that stuff because he knows so much about it. I said to him, “How many books have you read on business, business growth, business development, finance, economics, real estate property management kind of your whole bag. He said, “Maybe 200 I don’t know, just a guess. I said, “Yeah. How many books have you read on how to enhance your communication in a romantic relationship? He said well, paused, “I think I’ve flipped through one at a bookstore.” [laughter]. I didn’t say anything else. I just laughed. He laughed and then that was the end of the conversation because it became so obvious at that point. If you want a relationship where you’re thriving that’s going to be the key and if you’re in a place where there’s pain; I mean there could be so many different kinds of relationship pain.
Like if you’re just doing more dating you’re not in a monogamous committed relationship; there can be pain of you know fear of being expressive, fear of being ourselves. “I don’t want to say this because that’ll hurt someone’s feelings.” Fear of being honest, fear of being direct; any sort of fear creates pain. Or you could be in a relationship but there’s pain there. You don’t feel fulfilled. You don’t feel satisfied. You don’t maybe, you don’t feel loved. Maybe you don’t feel cared about. So you’re going to see where are you at? Where is your center of gravity if you’re in a relationship? Are you thriving most of the time? Are you in pain most of the time? I’m going to be honest with ourselves here. Pain doesn’t have to be like electricity getting zapped or something through your body. I just mean no mild pain, dissatisfaction, heart ache. It could be any of those; loneliness even if you’re in a relationship. Find where you are. You’re either single and at peace about it, single and struggling in some way in a relationship and thriving or in relationship in some sort of pain. Figure out where you are. We’re going to take a quick break and we’re going to talk about how to jumpstart that shit now.
Hey welcome back. Now you’ve identify where you are. Probably got some insight; maybe even as you’re already listening to this and you’ve identified where you are and we described where you could. Let’s say you’re single and you’re struggling; maybe you could be single and at peace. You could be there right now. You don’t have to be in a relationship to be at peace and maybe you’re in a relationship and you’re feeling some pain and all of a sudden we were talking about my friend not reading any books and I mentioned Dan and ‘After the honeymoon’ maybe you’re seeing a pathway. Maybe there’s a pathway of learning for you and your mind if it’s like, “Yeah but I’ve tried everything.” That’s another story we tell ourselves. The answer is we have not tried everything. That’s not true in any situation because everything is infinite and no human has tried an infinite amount of things. You might feel like you are fed up and you don’t want to try anything else and that’s okay too but we just want to be honest about that and say that, “Yeah I know I’m out of juice. I don’t want to try anymore in this relationship.”
Let’s talk about ways that you can jumpstart and it’s going to depend upon where you are but here is one major direction or action that you can do that’s going to– let’s say it’s called a guiding principle. It’s going to help you no matter where you are in any of these categories and that is to approach rather than avoid. To move towards the things that you tend to avoid. In life what we avoid always gets worse; so important to get that. So in life, whatever you avoid always gets worse so if you’re single and you want to be with someone and you’re avoiding talking to people and initiating conversation and approaching people, you’re avoiding that fear; it’s going to make your love life worse. If you’re in a relationship and you’re avoiding having certain conversations with your partner because you don’t want to hurt their feelings, because you’re scared of how they’re going to react. If you’re afraid of conflict, if you’re afraid of disappointing them, if you’re afraid of guilt, if you’re afraid of whatever shame that comes up for you and you talk about this.
So you don’t talk about your sex life or you don’t talk about how you feel about your sex life with them. Or you don’t talk about finances with them or you don’t talk about anything because you’re scared of that topic that’s going to make your relationship worse. It’s going to limit your relationship. It’s going to overtime create more pain. Maybe you’ll get some short-term relief because you’re like, “Oh! I don’t to talk about that.” But over time you’re going to get pain so the guiding principle here if you want to jumpstart your love life for any area of your life is you got a face, you got to move towards it, you got to face that fear. If you’re not sure how to do that, I mean you’ve got heard about this earlier in the call. There’s that dating mastery flash-sale that’s going to give you a ton of guidance and focus and ability to do that. You can listen to previous episodes of this podcast to go and really get a sense of how to deal with fear. There’re tons of episodes in here about fear. give on my books the art of extraordinary confidence has a whole– this whole book is about how to overcome fear.
There’re a lot of resources there. It’s just a commitment to saying, “Okay, what am I going to do to really shift that?” It’s not lack of resources that stops us from facing fear, its unwillingness. So are you willing to move towards what scares you? What is that thing for you? What is that one step that you could take that will move you more towards what you want even though it’s a little scarier? Think about that. That just might be your action step for today; we’ll see. What other stuff can you do to jumpstart your love life right now? What do you think as I’m talking? Is your mind already turning and your wheels are going getting a sense of what it could be for you? Because you know your situation better than anyone; maybe what you need is clarity about what you want.
Maybe you need some good models or examples of what a relationship could look like. Maybe you don’t have any of those. Maybe all the relationships you see around you suck because that’s a big chunk of the population. They’re people who are either in relationships where they’re not feeling satisfied, they’re getting divorced, they’re not happy, they’re breaking up, they complain a ton about the relationship, “Your ball-and-chain makes me do bla bla bla. He never does this and he sucks because of that and he’s so stupid.” That’s a conversation then they go home to that person and that’s like there’s supposedly the person that they’re in love with, they are in a relationship with. Maybe that’s all you see and you’re like . Maybe you need a better model. Do you have any models in your life? Anyone that you know of; maybe you don’t even know them personally. What else can you do to jumpstart your dating life? What do you think? I stir the pot here for you.
Maybe it’s doing some cleaning up or some healing of some past relationship pain. Really coming to peace with that it ended. Finding the gift in the relationship, forgiving the other person, forgiving yourself, letting something go so you can be open to something new; what would it be for you? Maybe it’s getting out there and pushing your edge and developing your social confidence so you can meet people and create relationships. Finding what it is for you and that is going to bring us to our action step today.
Your action step for today is, guess what, whatever you just came up with. That one thing that you can do to jumpstart your love life now; this is going to be a choose-your-own-adventure because you know your life better than I do at this point. You’re in there every day. I threw out a ton of ideas. We’ve talked about this for the last half-hour so now what is the one thing that you can do and just make it one thing. Maybe your mind has seven potentials and you’re like, “I don’t know what the right one is.” Just pick one and pick one that you can do today and then just get into it do it faster. The more you sort of premeditate and think about it and is it right or not. Maybe I’ll decide in 17 days and then think about maybe possibly doing it after that for the next ten days and then in a month. I’ll decide to probably maybe try taking a little bit of action. No forget that. Just now, today, right now.
What could you do? Then take that action; don’t think twice about it. Just do it and then the more you can do that in habitually get an action, and habitually go towards what might be uncomfortable or scary instead of avoid it, that’s how you transform your life. That’s what I started doing maybe 15 years ago at this point and it changed everything and every area of life starts to thrive when you do that but awesome. Thank you for being with me today. I look forward to hearing about how your love life thrives and grows. Until we speak again, may have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome. Talk to you soon.