After thousands of single people in my 25 years of experience, my core message is always the same: Get clear with yourself first…know yourself, trust yourself, believe in yourself and love yourself. Do this and you’ll be much happier and healthier, whether you’re in a relationship or not.
Not exactly what everyone wants to hear as we live in what’s commonly called “the microwave relationship era.”
Everyone seems to want the immediate life partnership without doing the inside work on themselves first. They think if they get ‘The’ relationship, then everything else will fall into place.
That’s usually the beginning of the end.
Then, to make things maybe even more confusing, add into the mix some interesting reports from the highly esteemed Forbes and Kiplinger.
What do Forbes and Kiplinger know about singlehood and relationships? According to them, apparently, quite a bit.
New York, Boston, Chicago, Seattle and Washington, D.C. are the top 5 kingpins of the best cities to be single, according to Forbes.com. And if you happen to live in Tampa-St. Petersburg, it doesn’t look so good as you’re near the rear of the pack at #33 out of 40 cities evaluated.
But wait a minute; Kiplinger.com says that Albuquerque, Atlanta, Austin, The Twin Cities of St. Paul-Minneapolis and Nashville are the top five “Smart” cities for singles!
Confused? You should be!
And how did Forbes and Kiplinger come up with these results?
Forbes apparently actually did some research: “To determine the best city for singles, we ranked 40 of the largest continental U.S. metropolitan statistical areas in seven different categories: coolness, cost of living alone, culture, job growth, online dating, nightlife and number of singles.”
Impressive, but what about Kiplinger? Not sure. Seems like maybe it was much more subjective (“Hey guys, what cities do you think are the ‘smartest’ for single people?”).
And going back to Forbes, what is this “coolness” factor. Sounds cool enough but how do they measure the cool factor of a city?
Here’s what they said: “To determine coolness, market research company Harris Interactive conducted a poll in July 2009 of adults from across the U.S., each of whom was asked, ‘Among the following U.S. cities, which one do you think is the coolest?’ Data were provided by Harris Interactive.”
Hmmmm…does one person’s coolness differ from another? Most likely.
But if you’re single, before you quit your job, sell your house and move north or west, you might want to consider some other much more important factors.
Let’s start by asking a simple question: “What’s your biggest dating challenge?”
Here are a few of the more common responses:
- “I’m uncomfortable approaching someone…what if they say ‘No’?”
- “I don’t know how to tell someone that I’m not interested…I have difficulty saying ‘No’ and I’m afraid I’ll hurt their feelings.”
- “I feel like my expectations are too high and unrealistic, but then I always end up with people who are well below the standards I set.”
Using the Forbes formula of “coolness, cost of living alone, culture, job growth, online dating, nightlife and number of singles” will not make singles who are struggling with these issues any more successful in their relationships.
It is truly what is in your heart, what you know and how you feel about yourself, and a few basic skill sets that will really make your relationships work.
Here’s the “not so secret” formula: Being a ‘successful single’ is, first and foremost, an inside job. First, you must know and live according to your values. Then, you must understand and adhere to your relationship ‘deal-makers’, ‘deal-breakers’ and compatibility needs. And finally, it helps dramatically if you commit to a balanced and healthy lifestyle, which includes a powerful and active support network. Do all this and you have a far higher likelihood of being relationally successful…regardless of where you live!
Because it is the inside of a person that makes the relationship, NOT the outer influences.
The month of February has been proclaimed as International Relationship Month and Valentine’s Day has been declared as International Singles Day.
If you take your time, watch, listen and probe, you will see who people really are. You must FIRST, however, know who YOU are. Follow the parameters or boundaries you set AND keep them and you will dramatically increase the likelihood of finding a healthy relationship connection. Remember, as Shakespeare said, ‘Above all else, to Thine own self be true!’