Ready to improve your odds of finding love after 40? Two long-time dating coaches share their essential secrets in this revealing episode of the Breathe Love & Magic podcast!
Today, I’m speaking with my favorite Dating Coach, Debbie Rivers, and we started this episode talking about dating trends. The first one was “Infladating” which is an awkward and ridiculous combination of inflation and dating.
I asked Debbie if she thought this was a new idea. We both laughed – No! However, in the post COVID world, things do cost more. The idea is to have inexpensive first dates, since you will be having several if you’re serious about finding love.
However, both Debbie and I always recommend a short, low budget first date vs. a fancy dinner. You don’t know if you’ll even like each other, so don’t get roped into a long, expensive meal. Who wants to sit there silently munching when you wish you could dash out the door to go home and watch Netflix?
Other suggestions are not surprising like going for a walk in a well-populated park or boardwalk, getting a cup of tea/coffee, a drink, ice cream, or appetizers.
You can get creative and find cheap, fun things to do. Maybe go to a farmer’s market which would give you lots to talk about. Often there’s coffee or pastry to enjoy as well.
Another suggestion is called “Fating” which is Fitness-Dating. Both of us agreed this isn’t something we’d enjoy. If you’re both into fitness, that’s cool, but do you want to get sweaty with a man you just met? I guess that’s up to you.
Sharing an activity is a really good idea and improves your odds of finding love after too. Why? Because it takes the pressure off if you’re doing something together that can reduce judgement and get you beyond the grilling conversations people frequently engage in.
The Downside of Labeling
Today it seems everyone has dated a narcissist, yet they only represent 5% of the population. That means you may have met someone selfish or dated a guy who was not into you, but not necessarily a true narcissist. Let’s keep things real.
The same goes for gaslighting. This is a situation in which a person spent time strategizing how to lower your self-esteem and make you feel crazy. That doesn’t happen overnight and you usually know someone a while before this takes hold of your relationship.
While it’s possible you met someone who was unkind, thoughtless, self-centered or an all out liar, they probably weren’t actually gaslighting you. It happens, but it’s not common.
The other place that labeling has become popular is with attachment styles. Many people have identified their attachment style and use this as their reasoning for why they can or can’t do something.
But in truth, this becomes a crutch or even a handy excuse for not taking responsibility for yourself. If you haven’t heard about this concept, it’s from the book, Attached by Amir Levine.
Labeling Creates Barriers to Love
Labeling can definitely become a barrier to dating and decrease your odds of finding love after 40. Another way this happens is through judgement about people, especially snap judgement.
Whenever you meet someone and can hold back on judgement, you dramatically increase the number of people you get to know and the possibility of finding a good match. It’s essential to give more people a chance and get to know them. This takes time, but the results show it’s a very worthwhile investment.
It can take up to three months to really get to know a person. Go into your dating as if you are on an open-minded adventure. Otherwise, when you put up barriers to lots of people to stay safe and avoid heartbreak, you’re actually creating walls that prevent you from finding love.
Falling in love requires a level of vulnerability. Not stupidity or being a doormat, but a willingness to take a calculated risk about who you’ll spend time getting to know.
Yes, you need boundaries and it’s important to know the qualities of the person you’re seeking. But you also have to take some risk and go down the road a bit with a few people to get to know them better. Everything can’t be decided during a single cup of coffee if you want to improve your odds of finding love after 40.
Camping Was a Deal Breaker
Debbie admitted if she had she met her partner at a speed dating event she would have said no. One thing that turned her off about him was that he wanted to take a camper and travel around Australia.
After her divorce, Debbie traveled to 35 countries, so camping held no interest at all. However, she started dating the man she’s been with now for three years during COVID. You couldn’t do foreign travel and so she agreed to the camper and drove around.
Debbie was shocked to discover she loved it! They had a great time and was so glad she hadn’t let camping be a deal breaker.
Even though she has all this knowledge about dating, she might have made a wrong turn. How did she get past this deal breaker? Debbie said he was quite persistent and asked her to, “Give us a chance and go on a date.”
Debbie says women think they are going to know the right man immediately once they meet. But that is not true and she’ll admit it readily about herself. She would have missed out on this great guy if she stuck to her barrier of “no camping”.
We both shared how our clients often end up with a wonderful man who is not the guy they expected or imagined. But they get their needs met with a good man who they wouldn’t normally have considered.
Gender: Equal But Different
Yes, men and women may be equal in intelligence, ability, and more. But in no way are we the same. We communicate and think differently and often come at situations from very different viewpoints.
When you judge a man based on what you expect from a girlfriend, you could be dooming yourself to failure. That won’t help improve your odds of finding love after 40.
Go on Three Dates
I always encouraged my clients to go on three dates with a man who has potential. If you aren’t sure the spark is there, but he seems like a good guy, go out with him again. This is part of the Ball Park Theory of Dating.
You need to spend more than an hour with someone and give a guy a chance so he can show you who he really is versus making a snap judgement. That’s how you miss out on a good match.
Yes! A 3-Letter Word That Opens Your World
I had two single girlfriends who realized they better do something different if they wanted to have more fun and meet more men. Social opportunities would crop up, but they were tired, didn’t feel like it, or wanted to stay home and watch TV. However, they recognized this would not help them find love!
These two women over 40 decided to try something truly revolutionary – which was to say “YES!” to whatever came their way.
So, they said yes to barbecues, free concerts, summer beach rentals, and more. They bought fun props to help them meet men like crazy sunglasses with margaritas or martini glasses on the frames. This made it easier to talk to men, as they were being flirty and friendly.
These two women had the summer of their lives, and today they still reminisce about the fun they had together. Learn to make saying “Yes” a new habit and see how your world opens and expands. You’ll be amazed and happy with the results.
There is so much more to discuss but this post is already too long, so you’ll have to listen to the podcast to get the rest. Debbie is full of brilliant insights and suggestions!
BIO – Debbie Rivers
Always learning the latest advances in how the brain works, especially when it comes to love, Debbie shares cutting edge tools with her clients. Her unique approach applies behavioral science, neuroscience and attraction strategies to give you the everything you need.
Debbie is a Certified Practitioner in Coaching in Gottman Method Couples Therapy, a Master Neuro-Linguistic Programming Coach, a Certified Master mBIT Coach (Europe) and a Certified Matchmaker with the Matchmakers Institute in New York.
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