Over a year ago I transitioned into matchmaking from a career in education. One of my very first matchmaking clients requested a different matchmaker after our initial meeting. She loved our conversation, but felt I was too young (ouch). That made me a little worried that clients would continue to question my ability to adequately support them, particularly clients who were older than me. I've learned a lot over the last year through conversations with my clients and their matches, but two main takeaways are:
- Some people are not ready for what they’re asking for -- and to avoid that reality, they will make any excuse and point the finger at anything or anyone as a source of blame for why life won’t/hasn’t worked for them in that area of life.
- Ordinary compassion is what really matters. We’ve all faced tragic times, heartbreak, moments of weakness or doubt and there was someone we were able to turn to who provided gestures of compassion -- no special skills, age requirements or certifications.
I've learned that what’s most often meaningful when working to provide a service like matchmaking, is the natural instinct to care, an ability to listen (objectively), and being authentic — in this case, that is defined as being true to your word and doing what you’d advise others to do.
Two months ago I moved to another state and joined a few Meetup groups to get to know new people. Fellow members of a recently joined networking group found out about my role as a Matchmaker, and were eager for me to share my thoughts on various challenges they had in their own relationships. Women of all ages and backgrounds poured into the conversation and awaited my replies. Fast forwarding six weeks to now, I was invited by one of those members to work with two couples on a specific topic: How to rekindle romance -- and that's what I'll be sharing with you today.
4 Ways to Rekindle Your Romance
- Self-Inventory: First, it’s important to remember who you are, what you need and what you want most in life. Whether you’re single, in a relationship, married or divorced, there are a number of experiences you have each day that encourage your evolution and allow you to gain a sense of clarity around your personal interests, core values, professional ambitions and intellectual and romantic needs, dislikes, etc.
Taking the time to self-reflect on a regular basis is paramount to finding the right ingredients to spark romantic life. Think of a retail or grocery store -- they are constantly checking their inventory to ensure they are fully stocked with what matters most to them and the needs of their ideal customers. The same should be true for you. What is your personal brand? What do you stand for (core values or what I call, Pillars of Purpose)? What do you offer that makes you ideal for your current or desired mate?
Are you keeping inventory of the people, things and experiences in your life that truly reflect who you say you are…or are you keeping outdated “inventory,” which means you’re sending mixed messaging to your current/potential customer(s) — AKA your romantic partner(s)? Once you get clear on these things, proceed to the second piece of advice for rekindling your romance.
- Treat Yourself (and others) how you want others to treat you: Experience is the best teacher, not words! When you take the time to go out into the world and actually experience the things you said truly matter to you, you are setting the tone for others to follow. Again, regardless of your relationship status, YOU provide the standard for how others should treat you by doing for yourself what you’d like to experience with someone else.
If you enjoy relaxation from time to time, treat yourself to a spa day or take a walk to a local park and read a book while people watching…or whatever your idea of relaxation looks like, do that! If having a romantic dinner is something you enjoy, treat yourself to a date night at a place you haven’t tried before. (Sound intimidating? Start by making yourself a fancy, candle-lit dinner and savor the essence of that moment). If having someone listen to you after you’ve had a long week is important to you -- be that person who listens to their body when you’re tired — go to sleep, eat when you’re hungry, etc. You have to pay attention to how you’re treating yourself first, so that others catch up on what works for you.
But, nobody is a mind reader, so proceed to tip #3...
- Be Open: This is a two-fold step. On one hand, being open means communicating. On the other, being open means that you exercise flexibility as circumstances unfold. For whatever reason, some people just don’t seem to be vocal about their needs. They worry about what other people are going to think or say. They fear coming off as too abrasive.
It’s better to play it safe, be “nice” or just expect others to know what we need and want. WRONG! Speak up!! You can be straight-forward and kind-hearted at the same time.
When you complete your Self-Inventory and begin treating yourself to the experiences that matter most to you, you will naturally attract the romance you desire. For example, “When I went for a walk to the park the other day to read, I ended up meeting a group of people that invited me to their aerial yoga class up the block. I enjoyed that spontaneous adventure.” Maybe your previous or current romance is dull. Now that you’re following the steps outlined, you conclude that what you really want and need is some spice, some spontaneity, some new, fun adventure! By being open to how that comes, you may meet new friends, travel to new places, learn new skills, etc.
In summary, be open by stating what you want, believe that you deserve it and get ready for how the universe delivers those experiences (or new matches) to you!
- Eliminate Distractions: Lastly, keep your nose in your own business! We are often bombarded (or snooping) with what’s going on in other people’s lives…texting, social media. Binge watching reality or other TV shows give us a false sense of what others are doing -- and what we should be doing in our own lives. When you’ve done your Self-Inventory, learned to treat yourself the way you want others to treat you, and can be open with others about those desires, the details and drama of other people's lives should have no impact on you.
What we experience in our relationships is a direct reflection of what we are or aren’t doing!
Take responsibility for creating the love you desire.
Matchmaker + Executive Coach
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