Dear Dating Coach,
I am a new single who started dating this year. I know that I am young and still pretty new to this process, but I already find myself struggling. Night after night I go to engagement parties and weddings of classmates and friends who seem to be finding matches without issue. I go to their celebrations, doing my best to feel happy for them, while I sit with a heavy heart. I look at their mazel and wonder why I am being left behind. I remind myself to be patient, but my entire social circle is engaged or married, and I just feel so down. I make sure to look right and behave appropriately, but I am clearly missing something. Any advice would be appreciated.
Remember that this is a judgment-free zone. I do not like quinoa. Oh, I see you healthy eaters making a note to email me after Shabbos to remind me that quinoa is a magical food that I have now disparaged. I tried quinoa with an open mind and stomach. I tried quinoa salads, quinoa soups, and even quinoa burgers. (Do not try the burgers!) I tried quinoa in different colors, salmon topped with quinoa, and quinoa mixed with cheese. I do not like quinoa. Before the quinoa fans everywhere panic however, the shocking truth is, I still eat quinoa. I know it’s healthy and I really want to like it, so my quinoa quest continues. I’m hoping it grows on me (not literally) and until then, I’ll continue to try that quinoa salad with kale (minus the kale).
I’m so sorry that you are having a hard time. While you reassure yourself that you are still very young, you cannot help but take note of the many engagements and weddings that continue to take place around you. You want to participate in their simchas, but feel dejected and lacking. You are careful to present yourself in a pleasing manner and wonder what you are missing.
Turn That Frown…
You are doing so well. Dating is a challenge that often feels like a race without rules. Perhaps now is the perfect time to breathe and regroup. You are attending events where shadchanim and many others are in attendance as well; a seemingly wonderful opportunity to encourage prospects. You stand at party after party, however, with apprehension, tension, and frustration – emotions that repel rather than connect. Try instead to smile. Smile with your friends. Smile when you are introduced to someone new. Smile when you dance in that simcha circle. Smile.
Smiling is powerful and attracts others to you, making you someone they want to meet and match. Projecting positivity will make you more endearing to everyone you encounter. People want to be around those who are joyful, and will want to introduce you to the singles that they love. To smile is a choice that does not need to be based on emotion. Chose to smile, chose to project happiness to combat the negativity that threatens you. This is not always easy, but it is possible and it does work. So, smile, and smile some more. Others will take note, and you might just like it.