One of the biggest issues I deal with when screening new clients is hearing about their perceptions and mindset of why they are single. Unfortunately, there are often more perils and complaints than discussion of how great dating in New York is. One of the women I spoke with recently is absolutely gorgeous, in her mid-40s, highly educated but very over the dating scene. Does this sound like you or someone you know? There seems to be a plethora of smart, beautiful and single women in many major US cities but women seem to blame themselves more than men do.
Women Generally have Negative Mindsets
When asked about her dating life and why she believed she was single, I noticed her negative mindset right away. Her story focused on her perception that men have been intimidated by her graduate degree. She explained that while she has been open to meeting lots of people, she has always felt bored. In an abbreviated initial consultation, here is what we discovered about her:
- She is an explorer at heart. This amazing woman has traveled extensively and values the experiences she has gained from these adventures.
- She is physically fit and cares about her health. As a triathlete she would like to share this experience with someone but when it comes to dating, she does not want to go on a date to a SoulCycle class or go for run. She loses interest in men who suggest this early on.
- Her career is in the helping professions. This means she is a great listener. Perhaps to a fault.
However, her version of the details above looks something like this: I’m too old to date in NYC. I am doing something wrong. Men only want to date younger women. All the good men are married.
Research Predicts that Gratitude Increases Relationship Satisfaction
We have learned from years of research that your mindset and perception of other people will determine your overall relationship satisfaction. A recent study by Kashdan (2017) found those who expressed more gratitude had higher levels of relationship satisfaction, commitment, investment, intimacy, self-expansion, and support for goal pursuit.
You do not need to wait to be in a relationship to begin to express gratitude. You can express gratitude while you are still single and dating.
A Rapport Consultation Can Adjust your Mindset Quickly
Here is what we did in her consultation to help confront the myths that are holding her back in her dating life:
- I’m too old to date in NYC became, “I valued myself enough to learn and experience life so I could become a great partner.” This woman needs to find someone who values self development as much as she does.
- I am doing something wrong became look at all the things I have done right. For her, men are constantly asking her out. She may not be interested but expressing gratitude when provided the opportunity for a date helped her see her dating strengths.
- Men only want to date younger women became some men like to date younger women and other men want a partner. Age is not the issue. Finding someone at the same emotional and intellectual level is the goal.
- All the good men are married became a list of all the amazing men she knows above 45 who are single and a reminder of how many of her friends, who are all amazing, became single at different ages due to divorce or death of a spouse.
What our Culture tells Women
When we started confronting her thoughts, she immediately felt an increase in her self-confidence. This led to an honest discussion of the culture around her and how this was affecting her mindset. Understanding her own needs, not NYC cultural needs led her to accept that she needs someone who shares her explorer traits. Understanding how much our culture shames women who are non-traditional also helped her regain her confidence. Owning her own fear of committing to the wrong person and empowering her to make mistakes and try anyway helped make the boredom disappear.
In one hour, we helped this woman change her dating life. She decided to go on a date with a younger man who peaked her interest.
Why Mindset Matters
While it is not always so easy for everyone the one thing we have the power to change is our mindset related to dating. We all miss opportunities to meet people who can connect us to a romantic interest every day. Are you missing out on these opportunities?
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill
Dr. Jennifer Rhodes
Licensed Psychologist and Founder of Rapport Relationships
Dr. Jennifer Rhodes is a dating coach and seduction expert. She provides dating strategy, consultation, and date coaching services to clients all over the world. She a dating coach based in NYC and a frequently sought out media expert on the topics of seduction, sensuality, dating, divorce, and relationships.