Managing Expectations in Dating
Susan was excited about her date that evening. She spoke with Brian a few times on the phone and felt an instant connection. She called her girlfriends and her mom to announce that she finally had a date with a guy that could be the one. She arrived at the restaurant in her new black pants and silk top that she purchased at the mall earlier in the day for the special occasion of meeting Brian for the very first time. After three long, deep phone calls, they arranged the date at a posh downtown restaurant to meet.
As she drove to the meeting place, she daydreamed about them returning to the same restaurant one year later celebrating the first date year anniversary. The excitement turned to fear as she walked up to the hostess. Her stomach tightened with nervousness knowing the time of truth is at hand. She had felt her heart pounding as the hostess escorted her to the table where Brian was sitting. Taking one look at him, her heart immediately sank. She faked a smile as she thought about the long evening ahead with this man who was not her type.
Managing your expectations is a great way to be free from emotional upsets in dating. Think about the qualities you expect from your potential mate. As you box yourself in to that picture, you are not allowing any room for other options. If Susan could have thought of the evening as meeting a new friend, an entirely different scenario may have occurred. She would have been more laid back, enjoyed the evening with Brian (even if he wasn’t her type) and might have become good friends with him. Brian could have a cute friend that she liked more a few months down the line. Instead, if something (or someone) doesn’t turn out the way you expect, you shut your mind off from other possibilities.
As you surf the net or in the real world for dates, you can’t help but have a picture in your mind of what your ideal person is like. Ask yourself if your expectations real or a fantasy? For many singles, their ideal is so beyond reality that they subconsciously block true love. This is typically a defense mechanism inside that is afraid of intimacy disguised behind the words, “I just don’t want to settle.”
It is a part of human nature to have expectations. Have you ever gone on vacation and imagined how the place would look? It never really matched what you imagined. Think of all the events in your life where you expected a certain outcome and it turned out differently. Many times, the real result was better than you expected. In love, many people report to me that their ideal partner is nothing like they imagined but more than they could have ever wanted.
When you meet a new person, they reveal only their surface qualities at first. Your initial impression is based on maybe 1% of their total being and is typically physical. That preliminary judgment can change the more you open up and get to know them. You can probably think of a time when you met someone you weren’t attracted to and then became really attracted to them when you saw their true personality. My rule: give each person that you have a nice first date with at least two more dates before you decide if they are dead wrong for you.
When you do your daily visualizations of your future partner, avoid putting a face on the person and focus on the feeling of love. This will open up your mind and widen the net of possible partners. Your typical type in the past could have caused much heartache in your life, so why not open up to something entirely different? You should never, ever settle, but know that the person you are meant to be with will be nothing like you expected.