There’s a funny thing that happens when you decide to make personal development your career: you start using your own life as a teaching tool.
The money coach wears designer clothes and brags about her recent lavish vacation. The health coach shows off his killer biceps and abs.
This can make things awkward for relationship experts, though, because no matter who you are, you will experience ups and downs in your relationships.
But there is a secret to managing the LOWS that I want to share with you here in this article.
At the end of last year, I began to conceptualize a webinar called The Get a Girlfriend System. The material in this webinar is based on a 5-step system that I designed for anyone who wants to get into a relationship, and wants to be proactive about it.
When I thought about how I would market this webinar, I immediately went to the standard self-help spiel of “Look at my awesome life! I have an amazing husband AND, because we have an open marriage, I also have an amazing boyfriend! All this can be yours, too…”
See the standard self-help spiel is based on the idea that people will only listen to you if you project an image of perfection. Over the last few years, I have come to understand that, in fact, authenticity is what appeals most to others.
At the tail end of last year, my boyfriend broke up with me. Out of the fucking blue.
There was no animosity in the break up (which, in many ways, makes it that much harder). He had decided he wanted to be monogamous with another girl that he had started dating. They met, connected, and decided to become exclusive after knowing each other for about 2 weeks.
On the one hand, I’m super happy for him, and I really hope things work out for the two of them.
On the other hand, I miss him so much! And, I’ve got all my usual insecurities running…”Why doesn’t he want me anymore? What does she have that I don’t? Whhyyyyyyyy did he leeeeeeeave meeeeeeeeee?”
But wait, it gets better…and by better, I mean worse…
There was another guy that I had dated more casually. I reached out to him to see if he wanted to go on a date. He responded by saying he wasn’t really interested in dating me anymore.
Which is fine, because I wasn’t really interested in dating him anymore, either. But I realized in that moment that I had totally been trying to rebound with him, which, in many ways, made me feel a lot more pathetic about the whole thing.
The first Get a Girlfriend System webinar went well. I got a lot of feedback from those who attended that they found the material valuable.
And yet, something was missing. When my husband watched the replay, he said, “It’s a really good webinar, the content will help people if they really apply it, but…you don’t seem very joyful.”
That’s because I’m not feeling very fucking joyful right now!
I scheduled the webinar again for the following week, but had to cancel because I got really sick with a fever and sore throat. Which I’m sure was just a coincidence and not at all my body’s way of forcing me to take a break…
One AoF Reader emailed me some cool information about the emotional symbolism of fever and sore throat. He asked me if I was currently dealing with any emotional conflicts.
Um, well, now that you mention it…
I took that weekend to rest, reflect, and grieve the loss of the relationship, and heal. I realized that I have no regrets. I absolutely believe that it’s better to have loved and lost than not loved at all
I made peace with the situation. My sore throat healed and I felt more excited than ever to do the Get a Girlfriend System Webinar the following Wednesday.
Then (I’m not making this up)…another one of my relationships “transformed.” After a long and somewhat complicated “thing”, we agreed to cut off contact with each other for awhile. Even though it’s for the best, it’s been really hard! Especially given that this is the last in a long line of men who have exited my life lately…
And this happened last week the night before the webinar was scheduled!
And yes, I’m still married to a wonderful man, and I realize I might sound a little like this right now…
But the thing about a relationship ending is that it hurts, no matter who else is in your life. People are not replaceable, and my husband’s presence in my life, as good as it is to have him, isn’t some magical band aid that makes it not hurt when other men that I love go away.
Anyway, the day of the webinar, I was in a terrible mood. I couldn’t get anything done to prepare. I kept picking fights with my husband. To the point where he didn’t want to be around me (obviously). I was pushing him away too.
I realized I had some serious re-evaluating to do.
So, as much as I regretted doing it two weeks in a row, I postponed the webinar…again. And took time to reflect on the deeper lesson here.
And I believe that the deeper lesson is this: it doesn’t work to base your relationship success on how many relationships you have, or how long they last. Because these things aren’t always completely within your control.
So, what does it mean to be “successful” at dating and relationships?
I believe it is the ability to manage the highs and lows of dating and relationships.
Spending the last 10 years learning about dating and relationships has certainly given me the tools to greatly improve my situation. I have a truly amazing marriage and I know for a fact I would not be here if I hadn’t gone out to find and master the tools to grow, change, let go, forgive, and adopt new behaviors.
And yet, there is no magic formula that makes you impervious to rejection or heartbreak. In dating, there will be highs, and there will be lows. Both can screw you up, OR bring you closer to having the kind of love you want. It depends on how you handle things.
The people who are successful with dating and relationships are successful because they’ve learned to love the entire process. They love the beginning where everything is new and fresh. They love getting to know someone and deepening intimacy as a relationship grows over time. They can at least handle if, and when, it’s time for a relationship to end or transition into something else.
In other words, those who are successful at dating and relationships can ride the waves — the highs and the lows.
How to Manage a Dating High: Enjoy It, and Don’t Take it Too Seriously
The highs are exactly that: a high. It has been scientifically proven that the feeling of falling in love is practically identical to a cocaine high. These feelings are especially potent in the beginning stages of a relationship.
What goes up must come down. These chemical highs feel amazing, and your body is not capable of sustaining them long term.
A truly passionate relationship is based on something much deeper than the rush of NRE (new relationship energy), and this develops over time.
The trick is to fully enjoy the good feelings when they do happen.
My ex boyfriend is ten years younger than me. Although I’m sure being with an older married woman was a fun adventure for him, I know it’s not what he wants long term. I knew that going into the relationship. I allowed myself to fall in love with him anyway because I didn’t want to miss out on the good times for fear of future heartache.
It’s a mistake to hold back your capacity for good feelings now because you might get hurt later. You WILL get hurt later. If you don’t enjoy the good stuff now, you’re just missing out on good stuff for no reason.
At the same time, remember that the highs are feelings produced by the body, mostly to motivate you to procreate. Don’t get too attached to the person or situation that is creating these feelings.
So, enjoy the high while it lasts, and let it go when it’s time to move on!
How to Manage a Dating Low: Have Tools, Techniques, and Systems to Get Through It and Learn From It
When you’re at a low point, don’t shy away from it or try to rush to get back to a high. That’s how addicts behave. If you want to form healthy relationships, you first need to form a healthy relationship with dating and relationships.
Pain — both physical and emotional — is a sign that something needs to be healed.
When you are physically hurt or sick, you (hopefully!) have a sense of what to do to get better: you rest, take medicine, and perhaps see a doctor.
What about when you are emotionally wounded? Do you know how to take care of yourself during those times?
Probably the most valuable thing that I’ve gotten from all of my years studying personal development is a set of tools to help me through even the darkest of times (like, say, breaking up with 2.5 guys in less than 30 days…).
When I asked myself, “Well, I have no boyfriends and I’ve pushed my husband away…now what do I do?” The answer that came back was, “Follow the system.”
The deeper truth here is that the lows are just as valuable as the highs. The lows happen not because of what the other person “did to us.” They happen because of our own emotional wounds.
And if we can stay open when the lows happen and not fight them, they can help us heal and grow faster than anything else I know of. They are like the soreness you experience after you lift heavy weights.
You can’t date people just for the highs. If you do you will always be disappointed and eventually probably quit or settle. If you really want to have an extraordinary romantic life you have to date for the highs AND the lows. They are both gifts!
So What Did I Learn From All This?
I realized that the 5-step “Get a Girlfriend” system (which could just as easily be the “get a boyfriend system, which a few minor adjustments) isn’t only about attracting the relationships you want, it’s about knowing how to navigate those relationships as they grow and change over time.
I used this system to attract my husband in the first place when we first started dating in 2010.
I used this system to attract my boyfriend when we first started dating. Just because he left, that doesn’t mean I didn’t get everything I wanted at the time.
And, things are always evolving and changing. Now, I’m drawing on the 5 step system again to go out and create my next extra-marital relationship. As good as things were before, I can already tell that my next adventure is going to be even better.
I was also able to draw on the concepts in the 5-step system to figure out what I needed to do to get my marriage back on track (my husband and I are in a much better place now — YAY!).
So, the Get a Girlfriend System could also be called the “Learn to Actually Like, and Maybe Even Love, Dating” System. The “Get Really Good at Dating and Get Whatever You Want” System. The “Improve Your relationships” System.
It’s all the same thing. It’s all about learning to navigate the dating process in a way that makes it both fun and successful!
Come learn the new and improved Get a Girlfriend System this Wednesday (I SWEAR it’s happening this time!!!)
Date & Time: Wednesday, January 25, 2017, at 5:30PM PST
Register HERE to attend live and access the replay.
You’re Going To Learn…
- Why typical dating advice sucks and keeps you lonely and dissatisfied.
- A simple 5-step system to create the relationship you want in 2017.
- How “Disney fairy-tale programming” is killing your chance to find “THE ONE.”
- How to know the difference between what you think you SHOULD want and what you REALLY want in a relationship.
- How to become irresistible to the girlfriend of your dreams!
Make 2017 the year you finally get a girlfriend!
” Listen… I’ve studied a LOT (hours & hours of classes, webinars, literature) on creating attraction with women. I’ve certainly learned a lot, but Liz’s experience / webinar offers something I haven’t found before.” – Sean B.
Register for the webinar HERE and I’ll see you Wednesday night!