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7 Reasons You May Be Single – Perspective

After two relationships that each lasted about 3 years I found myself reevaluating everything. Looking at what I brought to the table, what I accepted and what was expected. I had to be honest with myself. In conversation and through observation with friends and associates over the past few years, I found some common dating issues:

7. Everyone knows everyone. Well at least social media connects everyone. So that may make it difficult to date someone, one of your “friends” has not dated. That is if you care about that sort of boundary. However for some the thought of dating a popular person or someone a friend or associate dated is a turnoff.

6. We do not create interactions that facilitate the type of relationship we want. Here is an example. You want to casually date someone. Nothing serious, just brunch, happy hour, dinner or movies occasionally. The catch is you indulge in frequent communication (daily text and phone conversations or day long exchanges) and you’re planning romantic experiences. That behavior then sends a message that this is not so casual. However, because many of us are not introspective we can push it off on the other person as being clingy or pushy.

5. You don’t really know what you want or you are scared to be honest. You sort of want a Netflix and chill situation, but you also want someone to confide in. You want a friend that you find attractive, but you also want late night pillow talk. There are a good portion of us who never take time from dating to learn what it is we want long term from a partner. We live in a time where sex is readily available, thanks to social media and some people are afraid to just be honest about what it is they desire or what is most important to them.

4. You are carrying old baggage everywhere. That old relationship and the person involved that left you broken, damn near homeless and distanced from family & friends (hopefully all 3 did not occur) is now who you see in everyone. The guy/ girl who shows active interest and wants to communicate with you or senses when you’re not quite yourself is now smothering you and you push them away for the slightest resemblance of the person you never should have dated months or years back.

3. You are scared. Look I get it! You are scared of commitment. For me committing to buying a pair of underwear is a huge commitment so imagine how I view relationships. Who wants to spend months or years, countless dollars and energy dating someone only to possibly be disappointed? The answer is nobody. Here’s the thing, every interaction does not have to turn out with you blocking them on every social media channel, blocking their friends and their number and avoiding local functions so you do not see them. It may be that the young man or woman you dated just had a different vision of what short term or long term looks like. That’s ok! Forgive yourself, better yet do not beat yourself up for dating someone that did not come with a warning label.

2. You will not own your role! Too many of us (myself included) have tried to do everything for everyone. As a result we do not spend enough time working on our own shortcomings. If you find yourself scouring your potential or partners social media pages and searching through their phone only to start up an argument about an emoji a fan left. If you are dealing with a non confrontational potential or partner this can send them running for the hills or shutting down.

1. Take your time. This generation is a microwave society. We want a relationship with 5 year benefits within 6 months. Before introducing someone to your family learn as much as possible. Before you two are double dating with the other couple that you know, find out if they can handle their alcohol are they responsible or if you even have real chemistry. Rushing into a relationship where you do not give yourself time is a recipe for disaster. We have all seen it on our social media timelines. They date for a month then they flood our timelines with the infamous “bae & I” pictures at the grocery store, in the bathroom, at the movies, in the car you get it I’m sure. Or how cold we forget the annoying hashtags #whenyouknowitsreal, #futurewifey, #futurehubby, #mybackbone then 3 months later the person is wiped from social media existence after a breakup that could have been spotted with a little more patience.

This post is not about critiquing anyone other than myself. I swept around my own door and found these gems. I then saw people around me dealing with similar issues. I hope this helps someone. If so do me a favor, Like this post, subscribe below and share it with your own network!

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5 Things I learned when I gave up Social Media for Lent

 

Every year for LENT I give up something. The goal is to give up something that has kept me from being as close to God as I need to be and/or as productive as I need to be. This year I decided to attempt to give up social media and alcohol. This blog will be dedicated to what giving up social media meant for me. It meant that I would make more time to pray. It meant that I would find more time to spend with family, engaging friends and growing. Here are some things I learned in addition to the things mentioned above.

 

  1. Many of us use social media and alcohol to cover up our social anxiety.

I have always been a people watcher. So when I compare those I see on IG and the way they act in person, it can be drastically different. In fact, I have found that many people are only cool on social media. Their actions in real life are the total opposite to their actions on social media. The Snapchat Stars, the Famous Facebookers and the immortal Instagramers are not the same in person.

 

 

  1. Social Media Can Be Like a Reality Show.

 

 

Everyone on social media these days is looking to argue or voice their perspective. On any given day when YOU post your own thoughts or perspectives regarding an issue, be prepared for any number of people to @ you with their opinion of you based on your comments. Many of us draw conclusions of people based on what they post and develop opinions of people without knowing the layers of them.

 

  1. Paying Attention to the News is Important

 

 

We have all seen that “friend” or that “follower” who is constantly sharing and posting inaccurate, offensive and flat out false stories. Paying attention to credible news sources is so important and vital to attaining true knowledge. Many people today rely to heavily on social media for news. As a result we get half the story right with a quarter of the facts. There is nothing worse than someone who is adamant about a position on a topic, with all or most of the facts completely wrong.

 

 

  1. Social Media, It’s not Reality… Most Times

 

 

People have started living lifestyles they can’t afford to impress people they don’t know and will never meet. A good number of people have literally catfished all of us. These individuals are truly socially awkward crying out for help, but the lack of social skills and a lack of a real support system to get help.

 

  1. Your Time Can Be Better Spent

 

 

So many of us are giving social media and those who follow us and/or we follow too much time. The time we could be spending praying/meditating, working out, learning to cook or even enjoying vacations and the people around us are spent posting about everything we do. Can you imagine the number of goals we could all have achieved by now if we opted to spend less time on social media and more time living authentic lives?

 

 

Leftovers 

The last year for me has left me conflicted when it comes to dating or in my case attempting to date. As I started thinking back on my experiences and then sharing experiences with friends I found commonalities.

We encounter so many individuals who simply have given their best to less than deserving people prior to us. That said many of us fail to take accountability for giving to people we know we aren’t compatible with. Many of us hope to influence or away someone into changing THEIR behavior.

My natural disposition is one of optimism. I am optimistic that life, love, professions and family can all be healthy and thriving.

Unfortunately what I tend to attract are extremely broken individuals. Individuals void of purpose, passion and dare I say promise. Now the individuals whom I encounter aren’t naturally broken, but as a result of their previous encounters.

My role in my relationships and interactions that have failed is clear. I myself brought broken pieces. I never really pieced myself back together, because I was seen as strong or put together my partners never thought to help me while I was busy trying to help them.

It seems so many of us can easily tell you we got back up after a fall, but the truth is many of us are really still battered and bruised from that fall. We are still aching mentally, emotionally and some of us even financially as a result of our choice to deal with broken individuals.

Let’s be clear those broken individuals are not bad or evil, they just don’t want to acknowledge they are still broken and they do not want to acknowledge they are still hurting.

So instead of giving us a fresh plate of them, of their love and of their effort they provide us leftovers. Leftover effort, leftover empathy, leftover intimacy and leftover love.

It’s so important that many of us take time to really heal. Carrying over life’s burdens from one situation not only continually damages you, but it can damage your future potential unions. Now you find that someone who is barely holding on has attached to someone seemingly strong and fruitful draining then of the energy they never really had.

They do not fill their partners up instead they keep requiring their partner pour more and more out of their cup. The domino effect of this is massive. The leftovers you provide your loved ones impact their work life, their spiritual life, their family relationships and their friendships.

Take the time to heal. Make sure you are serving people a fresh plate of you. One that is transparent yet working through your issues. Serve them the best you possible. Push through the pain, but still acknowledge it so that you can work together to fix it. Acknowledge the good that they offer and acknowledge your faults that you naturally have.

Quit serving your leftovers to everyone. The truth is nobody wants to take in something that everyone else has prepared.

What are you not saying?

Yesterday I was talking to a friend in a relationship. My friend said he was struggling with his current relationship. Nothing was wrong per say, but he was encountering a lot of extra from people he had previous relations and relationships with.

Let me stop here this post or blog is not to glorify or to absolve people who cheat physically and or emotionally. It is just to say THERE IS very real reason.

Back to the conversation while speaking to him I realized that I had done many of the same things in my previous relationships. I had entertained and engaged people who filled me up where I did not get filled up in my relationships. 

I asked him a simple question, “What is the thing he wishes he could change about his relationship or what is it that bothers him about the interaction he currently had with his partner?” He responded, “I have little quirks like the feeling of being talked down too or like I’m a child. But I get over that. ”

As we chatted I realized he was engaging with and being pursued by individuals who saw that he needed something and they were happy stepping in to provide it, regardless of his relationship status. 

The challenge for him, myself and so many others is to communicate with our partners what we need and don’t need, in more effective ways. When your partner says or behaves in a way that emasculates us as men or women if you are treated less than a woman we have to address it. We have to talk about it and teach people who we want to be treated. 

If you don’t address it those little things become bigger things that become the scape goats and doors we use to disrespect our relationships. 

As a partner who may have made your partner feel less than understand that you aren’t absolved from guilt. You may not do the same thing as your partner does when you’re made to feel bad, but your role in a relationship is to communicate in a way that your partner receives your message and is not slapped with it. 

My friend may have had an issue with the way he was spoken to, but in my past relationships I’ve felt like I’ve carried the emotional and financial weight. Which caused the universe to provide every candidate who wanted to carry that emotional and financial weight. What I should have done is communicate what I needed and what I wanted from my partner to provide them the opportunity to improve or to rebut. 

The point is simple communicate and when you are communicated with listen to fix the issue not to be right or wrong. Right never saved a relationship and wrong never ended it, but it sure did add a few more road blocks to a happy path. 

Think about that today as you go through your interactions with friends, family, and your significant others.

Flowers

Earlier this year my brother and I lost our father.  It was one of those experiences in life where it happened all of a sudden.

I had gone out of town for a cabin trip for a good friends birthday. While driving I received a call about 9:30pm that night. I missed the original call and received the voicemail left. It was the Harris County Coroners office.

I was confused as to why I would be receiving the call from the Harris County Coroners office. So I returned the call. The news didn’t really resonate in that moment. I learned a while back how to keep it moving. I’ve perfected a poker face, it started when I was attending college and my mother had two strokes. I was worried about her health, her recovery, and I was nervous I would have to drop out to help take care of things and then my sister was diagnosed with kidney disease. There hasn’t been much that could rattle me since.

I received the news, but thankfully I was heading to a place with very little signal and I probably needed that. Before arriving to the cabin, I sent a text to my mom to share the news and asked her to reach out to my uncle and brother. I remained on that trip for the weekend despite the internal conflict. This is poignant, because I was not forced to stay, but I did not want to ruin the trip for my friend and the other attendees.

What would transpire over the next few weeks and months changed me for the better. It hit me when I spoke at my dad’s
Memorial service. I had never told him thank you for being a role model in regards to his work ethic. I had never given him his flowers while he was here.

Talk about jarring! That realization literally almost made me choke. I’m far from perfect, but I pride myself on being fair. I wasn’t fair to him. The toughest thing is realizing I wouldn’t get a second chance to say thank you.

Over the next few months I felt abandoned by a few of the individuals I had grown close to, people who were like brothers. I hadn’t heard much from them since my dads death. I’m not sure what I expected. I know it wasn’t money, I knew it wasn’t much though. Maybe a call or a text. After speaking to a long time friend, Tiffany, a cancer survivor, I decided to refocus my energy on those who had stepped up and some who never stepped back.

I made a decision to start giving those people around me who prayed for me, called to check on me, offered to have lunch or dinner, their flowers.

I’ve made it a mission and a purpose to give those who set good examples, are selfless, and those who I know I can rely on their flowers.

Losing my father was tough, because I always figured I would have more time to keep shaping our bond and keep growing. I realized death is surely something we all will encounter and that once God calls an angel home each time we have to make a decision. Do we stay resentful of their loss or do we share the flowers we are left carrying that we never shared before.

As a result for me I hope that I’ve been a better grandson, son, brother, and friend to those around me. Don’t hold on to those flowers! Someone could use them!

*This blog isn’t one meant to target any of the friends or former friends who didn’t have the capacity to be there or chose not to be there, it’s simply a piece of the story that brings it home.*

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Imagine!

Imagine if we lived in a society that saw relationships as freedom and not restrictions. We would probably have more individuals working on themselves and developing ourselves as much as we try to develop our partners and potential partners into what we think we want.

Imagine understanding and knowing that the right person with the right kind of love could free you and open your mind rather than restrict you and deter you. We might have more power couples that encourage growth rather than trying to keep our partners stagnant and compliant.

Imagine if we understood that financial freedom requires a little restriction to provide a lot of opportunity. We might have a few more business owners. We might have a few more people who are fully insured (life, health/dental, and home/vehicle) and not just people looking good. 

Imagine if we saw marriages as long term investments instead of special events. Weddings wouldn’t be the expensive to do’s with no longevity in sight.

Imagine if we understood that despite how good of a person you are you would not please everyone! We would focus on doing what is right and not expecting everyone to do as we would do. 
 Imagine if…

Domino! 

Last weekend I stopped by my grandma’s house and it was an eye opener. I always love seeing my grandmother. She has an infectious energy. She always greets you with a smile, a hug, and a kiss. It’s in the way she has and continues to live her life and the way she carries herself.

I’ve never seen her intimidated by or shaken by another woman. Her quiet confidence and welcoming spirit always inspires me to treat other men and women in the same vicinity as a brother/ sister and not a competitor.
Last night I observed something that really just stopped me in my tracks. I was sitting there talking to her and her partner.

My grandmother and her partner, we will call him “Mr. J” (the thought of me posting her business on the Internet, would start World War 3 with her lol), were playing their usual game of dominoes on a Sunday evening.

If you’re familiar with dominoes you know you get points by calling out what you have as you lay down your domino. My grandma called out points that didn’t add up. Mr. J confidently and with sarcasm asked her what she was counting. She had miscounted. If you know my grandmother she’s rarely wrong (insert sarcasm) and she debated him for about 30 seconds before she decided he was right. They laughed and kept playing. It wasn’t the literal action or activity but the Symbolism that made me perk up and take notice. They have a friendship and a bond I admire.

 
Though he may not agree with her on everything and vice versa they challenge each other respectfully. They aren’t afraid to tell the truth or to tell the other one you’re wrong. They don’t do it to be vindictive, to prove a point, or to be malicious. It’s simple they do it because it’s right. If there is a better option or a better way of doing it they just speak up.
As of late I felt the need for genuine companionship. Not another sexual conquest, not a crush, but someone to eat dinner with, have meaningful conversation with, to talk about music, to talk about life, to play dominos (YES DOMINOS).

 
It made me hopeful that one day I’ll find that individual who won’t be afraid to challenge me. Someone who won’t be intimidated by me, but will support me for my own good as I plan to do for them. As we challenge each other our egos will not be so large that we can’t laugh when we see the error of our ways.

 
The hope is that anyone reading this seeking or currently in a relationship will find love that challenges them, keeps them smiling, isn’t intimidated by them, and ultimately allows them to just be friends when it comes down to it!