Plus 3 Tips to Help You Get In The Game.
(Click here to read Finding Love – Part 1 – Getting Into The Mindset For Love To Happen)
I wish I could say that finding love came easily to me. I’ve seen many people around me stumble upon the love of their life with what seems like hardly any effort.
That was far from what I went through.
In my first post, I wrote about the process I underwent to get me to a place where I could be fully receptive to love. In this second post, I will detail the specific action I took to prepare myself for meeting the love of my life.
Making Space for Love
After I ended my relationship with the college guy in March of 2010, I finally felt like I could move forward with my life and be fully open to finding true love.
As summer rolled in that year and I hadn’t met any potentials yet, I began to get nervous. I had just turned 29 and I felt like my timeline for getting married and having kids was passing me by.
I feared that I was getting too comfortable with being by myself and not putting the effort I needed to find someone.
It’s easy to get lazy.
We get into a routine that supports living the single-life and, even though we genuinely hope to meet “the one”, we aren’t even aware of how our habits are preventing us from meeting them.
I remember hearing a story about how a lady who was looking for a partner opened up her life to having someone by first pretending that she already had that person in her life. She left a spot on her driveway for her pretend partner as well as space throughout her house. She even went so far as leaving room on her bed for him.
It seems crazy, but I think it’s a good exercise for getting out of the mindset of being single. It helps to break up a routine that is focused just on yourself and gets you thinking about what it takes to have someone else involved in your life.
Besides, when you’ve left space for someone, you will be constantly reminded that you need to meet that someone.
The big question then becomes:
How do I meet someone?
Tip #4: Be Opportunistic
(For tips 1 through 3, read this post: Finding Love – Part 1 – Getting Into The Mindset For Love To Happen)
That summer of 2010, I wasn’t feeling as though I was meeting very many new people and yet I knew that I needed to meet more people to increase my chances of finding the right person.
So, I made a list of all the places and different avenues that I might meet “the one”.
I first started with areas that were already a part of my normal routine. These were:
- At work
- At church
- At a party
- Through friends and family
- At a show (I was in a band at the time and we often had shows at local clubs)
Then, I expanded this list to include places that might seem unlikely, but that I’d heard about couples meeting such as:
- While grocery shopping
- At a hospital or clinic while caring for my elders
- At a restaurant
- At the library or bookstore
- While taking my dog for a walk
- While shopping for clothes
These lists helped me to realize that I could meet “the one” at any time and at any place.
Thus, I needed to be ready.
I needed to be opportunistic.
Being opportunistic meant not only that I had to be open to meeting “the one” at any time and any place, but it also meant that I had to be willing to take action to make things happen.
In other words, I could not be lazy.
I could not just sit around waiting for things to happen. I had to be proactive.
Sometimes we fall into the trap of the narrative that “it’ll happen if it’s meant to happen”. So we don’t do our part because we figure that when the time comes, everything will just work out the way it’s meant to. We will make the right choices and everything will be fine.
Life, however, does not work that way. Our preparedness can make a difference.
Just as with an interview or an exam, being prepared can be the difference between a missed opportunity and success.
I knew that God was going to do His part and give me the opportunity.
The question was:
Was I prepared and willing to do my part?
Being prepared simply meant that I had to keep my eyes open and see when an opportunity presented itself. Also, it meant that I needed to be confident to take action. If I had to initiate the conversation with that guy in line at the grocery store or ask for a guy’s number, I had to be ready to do it.
Additionally, I realized that I needed to take advantage of any and every opportunity offered to me that would allow me to meet new people. Thus, when I was invited to an event, a party, a class, out for a drink, or just for coffee, I went.
Even if I didn’t feel like it because I was tired or it didn’t seem all that interesting or fun. I reminded myself that I needed to be opportunistic and I went.
Lastly, I made a goal to take a class that would allow me to be more social. For that, I decided to take salsa lessons with my sister.
Salsa lessons not only gave me opportunities to meet people in the class itself but it also gave me an excuse to go out more often to dance which then presented more opportunities.
Tip #5: Dress to Attract
When I realized that I could meet “the one” at any time and any place, I knew that I needed to up my game in terms of being able to attract someone.
Additionally, I wanted to be sure that I was dressed so that I felt confident in engaging in a conversation when the moment presented itself.
The last thing I wanted was to have a chance to meet a potential and be too embarrassed because I hadn’t taken a shower or didn’t have make-up on.
Appearances certainly are not the most important thing, but there’s no question that clothing and how we are groomed says things about us. For example, if I’m having a rough morning, you can find me with no makeup and wearing a t-shirt and sweat pants.
Likewise, if I’m having a rough morning, I will likely want to avoid talking to anyone new.
We’re in the process of selling our house and our agent told us that we needed to do some work on the exterior of our house so that, as someone approached our house, it gave the impression of being well-taken care of.
Similarly, how we dress communicates how well we take care of ourselves.
Thus, the goal with dressing to attract is simply to:
- Be attractive
- Help your confidence
- Give the impression that you take care of yourself well
And because you can meet someone at any time and any place, you need to be dressed to attract AT ALL TIMES!
Of course, you’ll probably have some rough days. That’s life and that’s okay.
Also, dressing to attract does not mean you need to look like a model. It just means you need to be well-groomed.
When I realized that I needed to dress to attract at all times, I started wearing make-up and nice clothing every day. I was working in a lab mostly by myself at the time. In fact, I hardly interacted with anyone for the majority of the day (those were lonely days for me). And I normally didn’t dress up or put on make-up except for when I was going out. But I made a point to do my make-up and dress nicely just in case “the one” happened to pop into the lab that day.
Tip #6: Be Adventurous
Once I was able to both kick myself out of being lazy and I had the habit of dressing to attract every day, I was ready to get out and be adventurous.
Being adventurous means:
- Not having any expectations about how anything is supposed to turn out.
- Allowing God to surprise you with new people, events, and situations.
- Saying “YES!” to these surprises and going wherever they lead you.
- Enjoying the ride!
How These Three Tips Led Me To “The One”.
During the summer of 2010, I started regularly going to a club for salsa dancing. I met a friend there, who I’ll call Reuben, who invited me out to an 80’s dance night called Lipgloss.
We started going to Lipgloss regularly and eventually invited other friends who weren’t into salsa but who still wanted to go out for dancing.
On October 15, 2010, my friends invited me out for a birthday bash at Lipgloss.
It was a Friday night and I had gotten home from a 1.5-hour commute after work. I was exhausted and wanted nothing more than to hop in bed and do nothing for the rest of the night.
But I reminded myself that I needed to…
So, I texted my friends and told them I would meet them in 3 hours.
I jumped in bed, took a two-hour nap, then got up.
It was hard to get moving. I was not in the mood and I was tired. I debated texting my friends and telling them I was staying in.
But I told myself “tonight could be the night God has planned for me to meet the one”.
So I forced myself to get dressed. Besides, I didn’t want to miss my friends’ birthday party.
Dress to Attract
Knowing that this could be the night I met “the one”, I picked out a bright colorful dress that I loved wearing. Then, I flat-ironed my hair that was cut in a short bob and put on makeup that I knew would look good in the dark.
When I arrived at Lipgloss, my friends were all already there and having a good time. My friend, Reuben, offered to take my coat to coat check for me, but first, he needed to talk to the bouncer about some rowdy individuals on the dance floor.
I followed Reuben to the front of the club and stood at the edge of the dance floor while he went to speak to the bouncer.
There was no one around in the area I was standing in and I must’ve stood out because two girls came over to me and pulled me onto the dance floor. They proceeded to take my coat off just as Reuben returned to take my coat to coat check.
I went out on the floor with the girls and joined their circle of friends. We introduced ourselves and danced together for a few songs when a guy in our circle that was dancing across from me shouted to someone behind me.
“Hey man! How’s it going?” The guy shouted.
“Good!” Came the response from someone behind me.
“Haven’t seen you for a long time!” The guy said.
“Yea, it’s good to see you!”
At which point I turned around to see Paul standing about ten feet behind me.
I recognized Paul right away but I couldn’t remember his name. He was a friend of my brother’s best friend in high school.
I had a crush on him back then, but by the way he treated me then, I was quite sure that he wouldn’t remember me.
Not that he was mean. He was the cool, talented, nice guy that everyone wanted to be friends with so he had a lot of friends. Therefore, even though we’d hung out several times, I just sensed that he never really registered who I was.
So the question was “Should I say hi?”
Well, I needed to be opportunistic and adventurous. And even if he wasn’t “the one” (because he wasn’t interested in me then, so there was a good chance he’d have no interest now) he might lead me to someone that might be the one.
I mustered up my courage, turned around, and walked over to him.
“Hey! I know you!” I said.
“Oh yea, how are you?” He responded to my surprise.
“Oh, you remember me?” I asked.
He played it off as though he remembered me and we chit-chatted about current events in our lives. After a few minutes, our conversation was coming to an end and I was about to take my leave when he interjected and asked if he could buy me a drink.
“Yes!” I told him.
He’s being opportunistic too, I thought, maybe he is interested.
We ended up hanging out, dancing and talking all night. I introduced him to my friends and he introduced me to his.
At some point in the night, he confessed that he didn’t actually remember me and asked me to explain how we knew each other. It was funny and charming to know that he played it off just to keep the conversation going.
That night ended up being a full night that took us from the closing of the club at 2 am to hanging out at the apartments of friends.
I got home just before dawn the next day.
It was the best adventure I had had all year.
All the time spent together that night made us feel like we were already the best of friends.
In the following weeks, we continued talking and hanging out and now… here we are, 9 years and many adventures later.
This post is the second of a three-part series on finding love. You can read the previous post here: Finding Love – Part 1 – Getting Into The Mindset For Love To Happen. In the next post, I will share what I did to figure out which potential partners were wrong and ensure that I was moving forward with the right one.
Congrats on the house! I remember when we first broke dirt (a decade ago). It was an amazing feeling. 🙂
As for finding love, your steps are a lot of work. I’m glad it worked for you but I think the simplest path is just be yourself, have goals and ambitions, and ask God (or a higher power/spiritual being or whatever you believe in) for exactly what you want in a partner, AND be happy for who you are and the things you have. The right person will come along.
Thanks! Yeah, getting the new house is bittersweet. I’m excited but at the same time really sad about leaving our current house. We love this house and neighborhood.
Your approach to finding love is nice and simple. I think it’s a good approach if you aren’t in a rush and also if you are already naturally doing the things in my post (being opportunistic, dressing well, and have an adventurous spirit), in which case, you probably are already dating or talking to a couple different potential partners.
As for me, I was having a hard time meeting people and I hadn’t dated for a while, plus I had a strong urge to get married and have kids sooner rather than later. So, these were the things I did to get myself out there. And it worked. That summer of 2010 was when I started doing these things and over the course of the summer I dated two other guys and then met Paul.
I can relate to that bittersweet feeling. When we moved out of the condo, the kids really missed it. Kylie especially had a hard time with the change. She kept telling us that our new house was okay but she was ready to go back home to the condo (she was two at the time). It took her a long time to realize that the house was now the “home.” It’s been a long time so now when we drive by the condo (just to check up on it from time to time) she wants to come to the house.
Actually, I wanted to find the right guy when I was 21 so that we could date for two years and get married when I was 23. I wanted to have 4 kids, thus the plan. I thought two years would give us enough time to get to know each other. Never happened. It wasn’t until I was 23 I thought I met the right person. I even wrote a 15 page essay for a school paper on how I was going to marry him. After that hoopla, which ended horribly (but I’m glad it ended), I literally gave up on guys. So when I met husband at 24, I didn’t try very hard. In fact, I don’t think I tried at all. He tried so hard that I felt bad for being mean so I took down the shield I had in place and gave him a chance. So, maybe when you said you remembered us arguing a lot, it was because I was probably being mean to him. It’s just my way of saying, “Don’t pretend; don’t be fake around me,” cause I was done with heartbreaks.
Anyway, we all have our own way of meeting the right person. I just don’t know if your steps are accurate for everyone but I enjoyed reading it, nonetheless. I don’t think mine works for anyone because it was serendipitous. Well, it felt like it but I’m sure God put it all together. There’s no other way to explain it. That’s why I believe you do what’s in your heart and things will fall into place.
Yes, there are a lot of different ways that people find love. I actually just read about how the Baroness Maria Von Trapp married her husband, even though she didn’t love him, then, over the years of being together, they eventually had the most amazing love for each other.
My hunch is that you were already doing these things in my post naturally. 😉 (For example, you always dress and look nice.)