Lauren Korshak began her series, Secrets of a Matchmaker, last week. If you missed Secret #1, catch up here.
Secret #2: The Metamorphosis from execution to problem solving
This is one of those lessons I had to learn the hard way. I didn’t even notice it until Tawkify matchmaking pro, Julia Armet, brought it to my attention and put it into words. Now, it’s something I have to remind myself regularly and practice daily.
We're all familiar with the deadline. In all professions (and matchmaking is no exception), “getting things done” is essential. Success requires the execution of tasks. In our daily lives, the ability to execute is generally a highly valued quality. We get things done, we see results, and we are rewarded -- whether in the form of money, success, moving up the ladder, or simply the endorphin rush from checking an item off of the to-do list.
Too Often, I see daters fall into the trap of trying to tackle dating the same way they tackle their jobs -- and this strategy is a no-win.
The very same quality that solidifies success in our professions, can actually interfere with success in our dating lives. You might ask: What is the problem with approaching dating with the bounty hunter mindset?
If you think about it -- even the word “execution” is a bit terrifying. It calls to mind images of guillotines, electric chairs, high-security prisons, and other unpleasant things.
The two main issues with adopting this mindset? For one thing, it will lead to frustration and emotional volatility. For another, it leads to expectations of certain results. You might counter:
“What is the problem with expectations?
"I like my expectations...”
“A person needs standards!”
Well, my fellow daters: Expectations (for reasons I will go deeper into in a later secret), are like relationship Raid. Unfulfilled expectations lead to disappointment, sadness, guilt, and anxiety. And yes, these feelings are often directed at the person we are dating -- but they are also directed at ourselves. We dwell on them...they fester, and they lead to "stories" we make up in our heads about the other person, and about dating.
They lead to hurt, doubt, and eventually they lead to the oft-heard proclamation: "I give up!"
Instead of trying to execute dating tasks (i.e. keep hitting people up on Tinder when it feels like a waste of your time), take on a problem solving mindset. If online dating is taking too much of your time, think about other ways to meet people. Ask your friends to start setting you up. Research matchmaking services that do things differently than the average dating site (i.e. Tawkify). Get creative and involve other people to re-set your stumped perspective. Instead of getting upset that the freeway is shut down and your date is running 15 minutes late, use the extra time to socialize, or finish the work you left behind to arrive early. Are you going to enjoy the ride? Or are you going to spend countless hours ruminating on a future you've yet to realize?
Problem solve in the moment, apply logic, make a flow chart, journal about your timeline expectations, readjust them, and go take yourself on a date instead.
Take a few minutes after reading this to jot down some of your dating roadblocks. Leave space under each one, and spend a few minutes per dating roadblock in a creative brainstorm. Remember those bubble trees from third grade? Yes, those could be applicable to your dating life.
See you next week on Secrets Of A Matchmaker: Secret #3.
Therapist + Dating Coach + Matchmaker