On our recent Meetup, The Relationship Landscape, Erel was asked how he kept faith in dating even through rejection and disappointment.
Like most of us, Erel thought after of parts he missed.
He was kind enough to fill in those dots in case it was of use to anyone else.
I managed to get his permission to share this with you.
Here it is…
How do you have faith in the future?
I had explained that it was faith, though not something mystical or religious but I don’t think I fully explained what this meant and I felt that people didn’t quite understand it.
I had to go away and self-reflect to find the source of my faith on this occasion and hence my thoughts below.
Faith is emanating from self-confidence that comes from having an awareness of self-worth, and that comes from my knowledge.
Knowing what I can bring to a relationship; and I stress the word “know”.
This is because having reflected on my long marriage I can see that I bring a lot of things to the table (e.g. loyalty, genuine caring/love, self-sacrifice, honesty, tolerance, staying the course, etc.) because I had all these characteristics during my marriage.
I already delivered these, day in day out. This knowledge was enough to reaffirm my self-worth and value in a relationship.
And knowing this I realise I don’t have to be “grateful” or “relieved” because a woman has shown me attention.
And quite frankly, if these qualities are not what she is after than we are not right for each other anyway and I wouldn’t want to have a romantic engagement with her.
All this gives me faith that once I meet someone whom I feel special towards and, assuming she feels the same way, I can watch out for the characteristics that I am looking for.
I am confident that if she is my type she will find what I bring to the table to be what she has been looking for.
So, “all that I have to do now” is to expand my circle of friends in the hope that I will meet that someone special.
This knowledge (i.e. I will be what she is looking for) gives me comfort and allows me to enjoy my journey until I meet her.
After that the journey will continue … together!
How do you prepare yourself for failure?
In terms of failures, I know and accept that life is not perfect just like I am imperfect.
So I will make mistakes on this journey just as things are not always going to work out for me every time. This is inevitable.
That doesn’t mean I am useless, worthless, a bad person or anything like that.
It’s a matter of gaining experience; none of us are born with this knowledge. We have to learn it as part of our lives.
And the confidence in myself tells me that given time I can figure out the problems and learn from my mistakes.
I have solved many life problems in my life as have all of you. But quite often we overlook our successes and only concentrate on our failures and difficulties, which can give us a skewed version of reality.
Becoming more aware of my successes in life tells me that I can solve problems and this is no different to any other problem in life.
Like all the other problems that you and I solved in our own lives, it requires both knowledge of how to go about it and the will to get on with it, and to keep learning and retrying when you make mistakes.
So in conclusion, knowing what I am worth in a relationship gives me confidence and faith that when I meet that special person it will work out.
And so I will keep trying and meet people and eventually I will be OK. You just have to trust life.
How do you reconcile heart and mind? Which rules?
- This is in the context of relationships when you meet someone new who you find attractive
- Definition/assumption: Heart = emotions/what feels like (excitement) –normally positive
- Mind: Logic / gut feeling
So in the context of romantic interest … How do you reconcile heart and mind? Which should rule?
Neither … They are both important.
The thrill of the new
When we meet someone new, the excitement of something new, the awareness of someone’s interest in us, confirming that we are attractive, interesting, worth talking to, worthy of attention etc. can be quite intoxicating.
This is especially true if we don’t have the self-confidence/faith I talk about in the previous point (because if you don’t have that self-confidence you are already at a low point anyway).
This excitement can blind our logic (more so if you don’t have that confidence). Our desire to have at last found the “right person” makes all those dreams of happiness we have been longing for flood back and this can be overwhelming causing us to be “blinded”.
Certain signs that we pick up (some subconsciously, which when compounded become gut feeling) tells us things aren’t quite right but if we are too captivated by the “dream of the future” we ignore these signs and thereby make a mistake.
Why We need the x-factor
Hence we need that “X-factor” where the heart “jumps” when we meet that person; something about them is special.
However the logic and gut feeling also has to be allowed to surface by supressing our feelings temporarily to allow us to evaluate the person.
Otherwise how would we know if they have the right qualities or are simply playing us like a charlatan?
And, even worse, there are people out there who are so broken that they don’t even consciously know they are playing you and appear to be all that you need so that they can get what they need (e.g. security, money, sex, “safe space” to indulge in their addictions).
In order to see their “bad” habits we need our mind because our heart will ignore those because those “bad” habits are inconsistent with the fairy-tale and spoil a good story and so our heart will demand that we forgive and forget.
Our minds, on the other hand, will tell us that habits are recurring and if this is something we don’t like, how good a match are we?
If they don’t change are we OK to live like this for the rest of our lives?
Hence we need to let our heart tell us if this person is special but we need to allow our mind to tell us if this person is right for us.
Logic allows us to see things as they are, and sometimes it’s not pretty, while our heart tells us if this person is someone exciting for us – the one with the “X-factor”.