Monday, July 19, 2010
Not Getting Results? Make a Change!
Here are some excerpts from last night's expert-led chat with relationship expert Emily Shupert:
Expert Emily: Welcome friends! Glad you were able to make it out to the chat tonight! Hope you all are having a great evening! This is an "open" chat so you can ask whatever is on your mind regarding dating :)
Chatter 1: I have a question. I am a 29 yr. old female who just doesn't have the opportunity to date. I have trouble meeting people and its just really hard for me. Any advice?
Expert Emily: Great question! I like to encourage you to get your numbers up. By this I meaning get your exposure with other guys up through Cache, meeting new people at work or even making small talk in the grocery store.
Others: Get on Cache I am sure Linda would say; Do different things!!! I think any christian or community involvement would allow for interaction; I would also say show interest to guys you meet that you might be interested in, also try to go to places where you might meet people you might be interested in.
Chatter 1: I've been told all those things everyone is suggesting volunteer, work out, etc but there is never anyone.
Expert Emily: It is really difficult because we can resort to the false belief that "there just isn't anyone out there" but there are in fact many possible people...we just need to figure out what is the barrier to you meeting those people.
Chatter 1: Work is not an option, 75% of my coworkers are female and the 25% that is male is married.
Chatter 2: Well, make sure you are presenting yourself and making sure you are open.
Expert Emily: In counseling, I work with people on identifying their false belief statements....it is a form of cognitive misconceptions that is based on a ton of research but I'm gonna minimize all that info now.... Sometimes, you have false belief statements regarding yourself such as "I'm unable of healthy relationships" or "I can't find anyone because I'm too broken" or "All the relationships I enter into are the same." We have negative beliefs that we tell ourselves that are stopping us from meeting others and sometimes, well, many times this is rooted from our own journey and things we are dealing with.
Chatter 2: I would agree Emily, also the 2 articles from Expert Emily help, on cache site under expert articles.
Expert Emily: Another false belief is regarding your interactions (physical and social) with others....
Chatter 1: So how does one overcome these false beliefs (which I don't believe I have)?
Expert Emily: You might tell yourself "He wouldn't be interested in me" or "He isn't my type so I'm not gonna even be interested" or "I'm unable to talk with guys I don't know, I don't feel comfortable with talking to strangers" or "I don't know what to say."
Chatter 3: I'm curious why your job prevents you from joining Cache on your own time and your own computer and internet account?
Expert Emily: Everyone has some sort of barrier that is stopping you from meeting the man or woman of your dreams. The goal of self awareness is to be open to seeing which (not if) these things are in your life. Awareness is the first step...
Chatter 4: But maybe Chatter 1 is self confident and looking, what then?
Expert Emily: But it is really difficult to be aware of this in your own life because we cannot be objective.... I suggest you ask some people who love you well to give you some honest feedback. Ask them, "what do you think are some false beliefs that I have in my dating life?"
Chatter 1: Thank you Chatter 4 ...that is exactly what I am.
Expert Emily: Self confidence is awesome...so important but that doesn't mean that we don't have false beliefs. We all have areas of growth, so ask for feedback from others who can tell you the false beliefs you might have in your life.
Chatter 1: I have had coworkers be harassed by clients because they saw their online profile.
Chatter 3: I see your point Chatter 1.
Expert Emily: Once you are aware of these false beliefs, you are able to change them. For example, if you are a competent, business woman who is successful and working a lot but having little time or ways of meeting someone else, then you can be aware of when your false belief statements...
Expert Emily: Whenever you say, "He isn't my type because he isn't driven like me" (to a guy you haven't even met yet) or "I want to be pursued" (but you don't put yourself out there in new places and expect him to come to your doorstep). There are several ways that we can ask ourselves what is stopping us. Many times being a self confident and capable person is difficult because you are successful in all other areas of your life and can't find a break through in dating.
Chatter 5: Emily, you mean you sometimes have to say hi first? geez. I hate that.
Chatter 1: However, I don't really come in contact with potential dates and I can say "hi" first all I want but the man still has to say "hi" back.
Chatter 5: The good ones will Chatter 1.
Chatter 2: Yes, showing some interest really gets a man to react, but even just looking at him when he looks at you and not turning away makes a difference.
Expert Emily: Think of it like this...what would you do in other areas of your life if things weren't working out for you? You would change, adapt, and make things done differently in order to have a different outcome.
Chatter 2: Good Emily, we learn and act and if not working then try something different, very good.
Chatter 1: I go to church with men who are married, gay, or underage (that is not a false belief it is true and I can't change churches) - now what?
Expert Emily: Chatter 1, while you might not come in contact with a ton of guys in your everyday life, I would encourage you to meet at least 5 new guys a week...in the grocery store, in the church service, wherever... I don't care where it is as long as it gets your numbers up. This is just an exercise that allows you to see that there are many guys around you and they might not be "marriage material" but maybe this will help you open yourself up so that "the one" will approach you down the road and engage in conversation with you.
Others: Singles activities; cache events; concerts in the park; anything to get you out to where you can meet people. church activities other then just the worship service; and other churches activities; weddings?
Expert Emily: It is important to simply open our eyes and see that there are men and women around us and a simple smile, small talk, etc. allows us to get out of our little world and reach out to others. I think that it is more than simply being social but also showing interest and care in others...who doesn't want to be spoken to? ...want someone to notice them in the rush of every day life....that is showing hospitality in a crazy busy world.
Chatter 1: What I'm trying to get across is that I have a very limited social network because of my age, job, religious belief, etc. so I can be open as I want but the challenge is finding someone who will fit in my world.
Chatter 2: Sometimes we limit our world too much; Emily is telling you to expand even just by opening yourself up some in your everyday activities.
Expert Emily: ...good for you! You need to be specific and have high standards. But getting your numbers up isn't about standards, it is about getting your numbers up. You can't get to know if someone meets your standards until you are able to engage and get to know someone. But you can't get to know someone until you reach out and say hello.
Chatter 1: So if I'm understanding this correctly when I go to the grocery store once a month I should just start talking to random men???
Chatter 2: You should smile at men that you might be interested in.
Expert Emily: So many times I see clients who come in my office and they cut off potential dates because the guy isn't a certain type...but I think that God is bigger than that....he might surprise you beyond your type and show you someone who will be better than your type!
Expert Emily: Yes Chatter 1 ....go for it! I now it sounds silly but think to yourself, "If what I'm doing isn't working than what's the worst thing that can happen? Why not work in a different direction and try something new?" Going to the grocery store, gas station, Starbucks, etc....meet people. If you need to read emails and read, then don't isolate, but yourself in a Starbucks or bookstore or library...wherever you live in the US, they at least have a library. It is about working smarter, not harder. This is a proven technique that I've seen great success in over the years. It takes stepping out of your norm and into something different, but it works!
Expert Emily: Note to all: Don't let your past experience, sarcasm, or doubt stop you from trying this new way of working....whether it is with people online, through meeting people outside work, etc....there are so many ways to meet folks but we have to get "unstuck" first by moving in a different direction.
Yes, that is the way towards growth...challenging our thinking. Many times we get stuck in our own ways which leads us to feeling "stuck" and unable to see outside our situation. That is why I love counseling others, to challenge thinking in order to work out of a different perspective.
Chatter 2: Emily is trying to challenge you, just think is, what I am doing working? No? Then how can I change?
Expert Emily: Great point! But changing requires a great amount of courage and strength to move beyond what feels comfortable to the unknown.
Chatter 1: I run into a lot of men who aren't worth my time, so I can do all those things (i.e. church, grocery store, etc) but if I'm not finding anyone worth my time..........
Expert Emily: Anyone worth your time....let's look at that statement because that is what is stopping you... I want to encourage you stop yourself every time you say "He isn't worth your time" Just notice when you say this over the week. It is so important to stop yourself when you say something that might be stopping you from meeting someone. This is one of the false beliefs that I mentioned above. You need to be aware of when you say that statement because you are cutting yourself off from meeting someone by saying that. First step....just be aware, notice, and be mindful. Second step.... stop saying it. It is hurting you an even though you feel comfortable thinking this, trust me, as a professional, you are hurting yourself by saying this. Third: open yourself up to talking with (not saying marrying or having kids with) just talking with someone who is not your type. Fourth: Pray....ask God to open your heart and mind to others that he has for you. Ask him to show you what people are worth getting to know and ask Him to open your eyes to relationship you might not be open to before...it is a dangerous prayer to ask Him to work His will, even if it isn't a path. You never know if someone will be something more. But talk and engage with someone first but you can't do this if you say "they aren't worth me."
Chatter 1: I don't understand why I should focus my efforts on relationships that I'm not interested in or the other is not interested in. I'm not trying to be rude when I say this its just that I want a relationship that is going to progress to marriage and kids.
Expert Emily: You aren't spending hours into these people...saying hi only takes a few seconds and having a conversation is only a few min. I think you are resistant to doing something outside of what has been done but you have to ask yourself, "How is what I'm doing working for me?
These are just some of the comments from the chat, consisting of about 10 participants. Join in Expert Emily's next chat on Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 7:30 pm CST. Other leader-led chats are shown under Scheduled Events at www.cacheconnections.com.