I am learning so much from Alisa and from taking time to reflect on my dating experiences. I often find myself cruising the material on the blog and learning even more about dating and flirting. There seems to be an endless amount of techniques I can work on. Her advice, suggestions, and recommendations have undoubtedly helped; I have been on more dates in the last couple of weeks than I have in a long time.
There is only one down side.
The down side is that now when I’m on dates or at events, I worry too much about what I am NOT doing! I know how to flirt now, and I am learning how to fake confidence, but I am also starting to realize how terrible I am at it! Flirting, for me, isn’t quite natural yet. My goal of making a man feel great still feels awkward.
When I get home from an event or activity I worry
- about all the guys I didn’t flirt with that I probably should have;
- that I didn’t flirt enough;
- that I flirted too much with just one guy;
- that maybe I stayed in a conversation too long;
- that maybe my eye contact wasn’t long enough;
- that maybe I should have smiled a little more.
Now imagine my brain when I’m on a date! It’s constantly reeling. I almost have to tell myself to relax and just have a good time. I’m sure that with time things will even out and become more natural, but right now I’m feeling a little overwhelmed!
Help, Alisa! Once again, I need your advice!
I am so glad you wrote about this. Almost all of the single men and women I work with start to experience this same fear and frustration. The It’s Not You—It’s Your Technique manual addresses this in several ways. However, you don’t have all of the chapters yet. In the workshops I only hand out one to two chapters each month (depending on the topic) as a tool for keeping people focused on a just a few things and to help them solidify the concepts they’ve learned before moving on to more advanced techniques. You will be receiving chapters 3 and 4 this week, which will greatly decrease your anxiety and increase your skills, confidence, and ability to relax, but let me first address your concerns through using several of the concepts in chapters 1 and 2.
Chapter 1 covers the 8 Be-Effective Facts. Let’s apply facts #5 and #8 to see if they help address your fears and assist you in relaxing:
Be-Effective Fact #5—Faith works.
“Believing is seeing, not the other way around. Your confidence will be greatly enhanced if you choose to have faith in yourself, your future, the goodness of the opposite sex, and God’s interest and investment in your happiness and progress. If all you see around you are jerks, nags, weirdos, money diggers, and creeps, that is all you will attract. If you talk negatively about your future, you will create a negative future. But if you act with faith that the kind of qualities and people you are looking for are all around you (you need only recognize them) and remain committed to that truth, then you will change your focus and discover success. The more positive attention you give to those who have the qualities you desire, the more positive attention you will get back from them. The more hope you express in your future, the more attractive, interesting, and worth knowing you will be.” (Excerpt taken from the manual)
Be-Effective Fact #8—If he/she doesn’t respond, someone else will.
“If you play your role and actively participate in the process, you will have the opportunity to have a relationship with the kind of person you’re looking for. Just do your part and trust that:
If he/she doesn’t respond, someone else will.
He/she is not your only chance for happiness.
The kind of person you’re looking for is looking for someone like you. He/she will see you for what you have to offer and will respond to you.
Repeat these statements every time you meet someone new. Choose to have faith and to believe in them as you do your part, practice your techniques, and smile. As you do this you will not only look more confident, self-assured, and worth pursuing, you will begin to feel so, too. Having faith in these 8 Be-Effective Facts can be very liberating.” (Excerpt taken from the manual)
Now let’s add concepts from Chapter 2—Do You Choose Fear or Faith?
I don’t know your exact fears, but it’s common for most singles to fear not being good enough, making mistakes, losing out on a particular opportunity, appearing vulnerable or needy, etc. If these fears represent some of your recent worries, it’s no wonder you are over-thinking and worrying rather than relaxing and having fun. Often singles immediately grab hold of the idea, “It’s not me—It’s my technique” because it is comforting to know that they are not the problem. They can’t change themselves, but they can change their behaviors. This is true and liberating, but it also feeds the tendency for singles to believe that they can achieve love through perfection—perfect skills, perfect timing, perfect reactions. This is simply not true and can be destructive. As a matter of fact, the opposite is true.
It’s not your perfections that make you lovable but your imperfections. For example, I am a divorced and remarried marriage and family therapist. I have fears just like you—primarily that I am a fool and everyone else can see it but I can’t, which would make me an even greater fool. Now, as you consider my imperfections, the mistakes of my past, and my fears, am I not immediately more likable, relatable, and easier to talk with?See? It’s not my perfection that makes you feel accepted and safe but my willingness to be vulnerable and human with you. The fact that I remain confident in spite of my imperfections, because I choose to believe that my situation does not define my value (which is the #1 Be-Effective Fact), only makes me more worthy of your trust and confidence in me. I believe in my value, so it makes it easier for you to see my value too. All of this is not achieved through perfection but instead through sharing my imperfections while acting with faith in the truth.
Thus we return to Chapter 2—Do You Choose Fear or Faith? If you decide to choose faith in the truth, then life, dating, and relationships will be easier. So what’s the truth about your situation?
- You are good enough.
- The kind of person you are looking for is looking for someone like you. This person will see you for what you have to offer and invest in you.
- If you play your role, others will play their role.
- You do not need to be perfect to be in a relationship. Just practice a few techniques on each date, then relax, have fun, and trust the process.
- Fill in more or use other truths from chapter 2 ____________
Without having Chapter 3—Make Them Feel Great (which focuses on the basics of flirting and pursuing skills) and Chapter 4—Make a Good-Faith Effort: Trust, Relax, and Let Go (which would help relieve your anxieties), it’s natural for you to feel overwhelmed. Furthermore, you may be trying to do too much at once. Remember, you should have no more than three goals at a given time. These goals also need to respect your time, energy, and needs. If you set more than three goals or emotionally and physically over-obligate yourself, you will burn out.
So for now, and until you get chapters 3 and 4, only do three techniques at each encounter with the opposite sex or on each date, then sit back, relax, and trust the process. Choose to have faith that what you are doing is enough to encourage the process. After all, it’s not your effort alone that will make a relationship develop and sustain itself. It will be their efforts too. And, if one person doesn’t play their role, someone else will.
I hope this helps. And, by the way, this blog was probably one of the most critical blogs of all of them. You have no idea how many singles will be glad you stated the very thing they were feeling. Once again, it is your imperfections that make you the most likable.
Good luck, and let me know how I can be of more help. I will get those chapters to you this week.
PS. For those who want to find all 8 of the 8 Be-Effective Facts, type “the 8 Be-Effective Facts” in the search bar to see what has currently been posted. More of the 8 Be-Effective Facts will be posted over the next few weeks, so check back often, sign up for e-mail updates, or add your e-mail address to the e-mail subscription bar in the top right column.
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