“In 100 pages, with an intriguing bibliography, this is a quick but comprehensive overview of our generation at this moment in the 21st century. Carter’s telling is at once realistic and optimistic—and her own story is living proof.
‘Why did I write this book?’ she asks in the prologue of this new book, and then answers with a quote from Joan Baez, a troubadour for our generation:
‘Action is the greatest antidote to despair.’
Carter never looks at our generation through rosy glasses. Her even-handed reporting and clear and compassionate writing help me understand the challenges and opportunities we all face. Thank you.” – Carrie Tuhy
taking a risk for love
Nerves are often the biggest contributor to awkward first dates and can inspire a range of dating faux pas. With this in mind, here is a look at some of the worst conversations for any first date, and some tips on how to avoid them.
Managing your nerves
We all know first date jitters are completely normal and those pesky butterflies are a sign of adrenaline in your system. Nevertheless, they can make you feel a bit like a teenager all over again. It’s important to try and keep these feeling in check, and give yourself the best chance of making a great first impression. This is especially important if you’re meeting in person for the first time after meeting on a site like eHarmony Australia.
When preparing for the date, leave plenty of time to get ready and plan an outfit in advance. This will avoid a rush and help you to walk in feeling confident about your presentation.
When meeting your date for the first time, make a point of smiling warmly when you greet them. If you’re nervous, why not make a joke about it? This will help to break the ice, because chances are they are feeling just as anxious.
Finally, make sure you choose a date location where you’ll really feel at home. If you’re planning on enjoying a meal together, skip loud or formal restaurants and opt for a comfortable, laid back café.
Talking about the ex
If the nerves have set in and there’s a pause in conversation, it’s easy to blurt out the first thing that comes to mind. Sadly that’s not always the best first date topic.
Your ex-partner is a conversation you should always avoid. By bringing them up it gives the impression that you haven’t moved on and aren’t ready to commit to a new relationship. If your date asks about your relationship past, just respond with the bare facts, such as we divorced 6 years ago. It’s far too early to mention the cause, the emotional pain or any other intimate details.
For a comfortable first date it’s always best to avoid heavy, controversial and awkward topics. If you’re unsure what that might include, think anything on the lines of politics, religion, the death penalty, assisted suicide or your sexual history.
Past dates are another topic to avoid – unless of course you want to share a funny anecdote about a dating disaster. If you’re really passionate about a hobby or a sport, then it’s fine to bring it up, within moderation. But be sure to make it an engaging two-way dialogue and ask your date what they think, rather then lecturing them with your knowledge.
Good tips for date conversations
Do your best to keep the conversation on pleasant and neutral ground, with topics like your date’s career, hobbies, family and friends. If they ask you a question, always ask them their opinion in return.
Before you arrive, it helps to read your date’s personal profile carefully to find out things like their taste in films and books as well as what their hobbies are. Dating websites are great as they cater to a variety of different people. If you are looking for your own perfect match then online dating could be the option for you, no matter what your age!
Finally, always use your positive body language to show interest in what your date has to say.
This blog post was written on behalf of E-Harmony Australia, and I did receive payment for this post.
It only took me forty years to figure out just how tricky expectations can be. Have you ever noticed that life never turns out as expected? And if you can finally let go of expectations, you will never be disappointed. This goes triple for dating.
Probably the main reason I was so successful when I started dating again at age 49, was that I had absolutely NO expectations. No one could have convinced me to expect the love of my life to turn up at my door on that day back in January 2005. I was actually just trying to attract more men to my dating service inventory at the time.
Sure I wanted to fall in love again, who doesn’t? But I certainly wasn’t expecting it!
The problem begins when we get this picture in our heads of exactly what’s next in our lives. I know, we call that visualizing, and some think it is the best way to manifest what you desire. There is some truth to that, but please don’t mistake your visualizations for exact expectations.
Yes my new friend Mike, who turned up one day out of the blue, was amazing to me. But he was also so different than I would have ever expected. Our educational backgrounds were quite diverse, our interests couldn’t have been more different, and he even looked different than anyone I had pictured myself with previously.
If I had let any of these “pictures in my head” tell me that this wasn’t like it was “supposed to be,” I would have missed out on the love of my life.
Lesson learned! Eight years later, I still struggle every day not to let the picture in my head get in the way of my best reality.
Imagine a world where everyone loved themselves. Imagine if we all found ourselves to be enough. I personally believe this would solve many of the world’s problems. So, where to begin?
First of all, we must get far beyond our cultural obsession with self-consciousness and self-image. Imagine a world where we all realize that we are each so much more than our self-image.
Can you accept that there is truly nothing wrong with you? This is the essence of healing the self.
Just for a moment, try to see yourself as whole and complete. I have always loved this quote from Buddha:
Can you stop improving yourself long enough to appreciate all that you are? Perhaps YOU are what you seek. Perhaps if you stopped improving yourself, your life would improve. So many gifts remain unopened from your birthday. Perhaps the only thing missing in your life now is the real you.
The fastest way to improve your life is to accept yourself in all of your humanness.
Ask yourself, “When do I feel like the real me?”
Fill in this blank for yourself:
One way I could be even more authentic right now is _______________.
First I heard on a PBS special about pets, that many of us today have had longer relationships with our dogs than with significant others. Then this morning I heard that many are so in “love” with their ipads, that they would rather break-up with their significant other than break their devices!
What’s going on here? Dr. Randy Gunther, a psychologist writing over at Psychology Today believes that our apparent addiction to ever newer technology may be causing us to also be constantly seeking novelty in our intimate relationships. She says: “The multiplicity of connections and continued motivations that great, long-term relationships require are hard to come by and easier to leave behind, especially when another new and more exciting experience is easy to find.”
It is always easier to give up than to make any real commitment to a more long-term liaison. New love is always exciting at first, but I do not want to live in a world where commitment and loyalty are not valued.
I have noticed that even those who struggled with love and commitment in their 30s and 40s, often mature enough in their 50s and 60s, and finally learn how to truly love others well.
I personally found new value in true love at age 49. In fact, after much consideration, I decided that finding genuine love was my most important goal in life. For what is life without love?
I wanted so much to believe that there were still great love stories, and I could be a part of one of those. I found the first step was to find new ways to simply believe in love again, even after decades of bad relationships. I needed to find ways to let go of my past negative experiences, and find renewed faith that love could be beautiful, strong and selfless. When I did that, I finally did find another who felt the same way about love and about me.
Aging has it’s advantages, and one is the certainty that none of us get out of this alive. Accepting that fact is the first step towards finding new value in enduring love.
After all, who doesn’t want to believe in a love that lasts “til death do us part?”
With Valentine’s Day coming right up, a few of us might be wondering exactly what love means.
Sure, when we have it, we generally know it, but then it changes through the years, and sometimes it dies. This is often called a “midlife crisis” when one or both partners decide that love either never really existed, or else it has simply disappeared for no good reason.
Some get angry because their husband or wife does not love them anymore, or does not want to try to work things through somehow. There are so many different types of problems in relationships and each is unique. Some can be worked on, others cannot. But nothing will change if one partner blames the other for all of the problems.
What I hate to see is a husband or wife who insists on trying to shame or guilt the other partner into staying, when love is so obviously non-existent. In general I believe that we all know when it’s time to accept reality and move on. Do you really want a man you have “guilted” into staying with you? Why not believe in yourself enough to move on to something better for both of you? Grow up and leave the nastiness behind.
Unfortunately, leaving a bad relationship behind does not solve any of your own problems. Often we lose faith in love eventually, after a number of bad breakups, but there is a very good reason for this. We finally realize we will continue to attract the wrong type of relationship unless we change something inside of ourselves; the broken, mean, negative feelings we hold against ourselves.
If you think this might be you, ask yourself this question: “Would you want to marry you?”
Most of us go out looking for someone to save us in our relationships with others, but we attract what we are now, with comparable levels of generosity, caring, insecurity or self-hate.
The first rule of love is you get what you are. So who are you when it comes to love? Are you a victim, a martyr, someone who is trying to save others? I found that personal change was the only solution to my love problems.
Learn how this works with: How to Believe In Love Again: Opening to Forgiveness, Trust, and Your Own Inner Wisdom.
Give you and your friends the perfect Valentine’s Day gift, for those who really want to get it right next time!