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Conscious Dating: Finding the Love of Your Life in Today's World
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Program #3- Ten Steps
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Program #4- Conscious
Dating: How to Connect to Your Life Vision
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Dating for Boomers: Finding Love After 50
Program #6- Scouting:
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Program #8- Conscious
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Ask Our Coaches:
Dating and Dollars: When Money's an Issue
for the money, I love dating this guy."
This column answers
questions submitted by our readers. Submit your questions to
who will forward them to our coaches all over the world. Each issue,
we'll publish a few answers from our RCI coaches.
I've been dating this guy for a while - 6 months. We're both in our
thirties, never married. Every time we go out, he wants to split the
bill 50-50 – whether it's for a weekend at a hotel, a
basketball game, or dinner – whatever. I thought this was
okay when we first started dating, but now that we're dating
exclusively, it seems like too much. He likes to go out a lot, but it's
economically challenging for me. When I bring up issues around money, I
sense "anger" arise in him. Naturally, that keeps me from saying more.
Except for the money, I love dating this guy. We have a great time and
we get along really well. What should I do? What's the money protocol
when it comes to dating nowadays?
Anne from Anaheim
First, you need to openly communicate your issue with splitting all the
expenses 50/50 with your boyfriend. Discuss this with him and try to
reach a happy medium. If you are fine with the current arrangement,
offer to continue on, but let him know the frequency needs to be cut
back. If he meets you with anger on the issue, you need to re-evaluate
In order to have a fulfilling, long-term relationship that is able to
grow and thrive, you have to be honest with your expectations and
feelings and your partner should be open to listen and understand. A
true partnership and healthy relationship is a willingness to
compromise and meet in the middle. Compromising your goals now, much
less your financial well being, will lead you further into an unhappy
relationship and dismal future.
Melanie Matcek, CM |
I empathize with your confusion surrounding money and relationships. It
sounds like you are trying to figure out what the money protocol is
nowadays in order to see if you or he is "out of line" with societal
norms, and how you or he might fix it in order for the relationship to
be sustained. Have you considered what value his money behavior has for
you and your relationship? I'm wondering what meaning his behavior of
needing to split 50/50 has for you? You might be questioning values
essential to you in a partnership such as generosity, security and
I invite you to explore whether or not his and your values are in
alignment with one another. If not, are you willing to accept his
behavior? If so, I would encourage you to get clear with yourself on
how often you would be willing for him to exhibit this behavior and
under what circumstances. How much "wiggle room" does the relationship
have before you would be willing to walk away?
His behavior (not the money) may signal that he does not have the same
value requirements for a successful relationship. If you are unclear
about what value money holds for you, I highly recommend getting a
coach who can support and challenge you in not settling for less than
you deserve in life and love.
L. Paige Armstrong,
MSW, LCSW | www.lifeenrichmentnc.com
It is really important to
be open and honest with this guy, and let him simply know you are not
able to afford all of the dates. Then he can decide whether he wants to
put a little more money out on the dates you can't afford and pay for
Another option is for each of you to split the date cost proportionate
to your income. For instance if you make 2/3 of his salary, you
contribute slightly less than half towards the date costs. If he
doesn't want to pay any extra, consider whether or not you will be okay
with this for the rest of your life if you get serious with him. This
means you will always have a very calculated financial future with him.
I am greatly concerned you are not able to communicate with him without
feeling he will get "angry." This is a huge red flag, and by ignoring
it, you are burying your head in the sand. Why is he so easily
agitated? Where else will you have this problem in your relationship in
The future success of your relationship is reliant on your ability to
communicate with him. Don't sell yourself short. Money is a big issue,
and if you don't work out something now, then there is no point in
continuing with this relationship.
Gina Daniels |
First of all, six months is really a very short time in terms of really
getting to know each other, and this money issue is likely just one of
many issues that will arise over the next few years if you continue
dating. How you feel about the resolution of this issue will contribute
to your ultimate decision regarding the long-term future of the
I'm not too much into "protocol." My view is that cultural norms do
more to harm rather than help relationships. So my recommendation is
that you work something out that feels good and fair to both of you,
and keep an eye on the process as well as the solution.
You might discuss your respective incomes and that might suggest a
money split other than 50-50. You might discuss your (and his) past
experiences; he may have felt like a prior girlfriend took advantage of
him, and once you understand that, you may find common ground. You
might decide that there are some events that he likes that he will be
willing to pay for, and others that you like which you decide to pay
for. You might consider whether there are aspects of the relationship
with non-monetary value that should be considered in the complete
If you open up the discussion to finding win-win solutions that are
outside the box, you can possibly increase the closeness you feel in
Randy Hurlburt | www.PartnersinLoveandCrime.com
and Jo Harrison respond ...
Given you have been dating for 6 months, the time for protocols is now
past! There is no right or wrong way to handle the sharing of expenses.
What's important here is the kind of relationship you want to develop
with this man.
It sounds like you are taking a submissive stance here. It's not okay
with you that he earns more yet he expects you to pay 50/50 on dates.
Do you decline dates with him when you know you can't afford them? If
not, why not?
From what you said, he doesn't actually get angry. Instead it sounds
like you sense some negative energy which pushes your buttons and you
feel unsafe. There is something for you to develop in yourself here so
that you can be confident around discussing things that don't work for
you, without holding back due to fear of rejection or retribution. A
good coach can work with you to identify and break through the limiting
beliefs that are making you wary and timid of honest and open
If you are willing to discuss money with him, make sure you set up the
conversation. Tell him that you love dating him and why. Tell him you
are uncomfortable about discussing what you want to discuss but you see
the need to resolve it and to grow more confident in your partnership
with him. Ask for his support and understanding.
Then tell him what you experience around splitting bills 50/50 and ask
for his experience at those times. That way you give him permission to
be uncomfortable discussing it too, and you'll both be free to say what
you need to say. Hopefully, he'll respect you and trust you as a
The Communication Map available online at www.TheCommunicationMap.com
is a great tool for working systematically and respectfully through
difficult issues together.
If your man responds angrily then you really need to ask yourself why
you want to stay with him. Every moment you spend on a poor choice
prevents your soulmate from finding you!
Warning: Given all the above, trust your intuition about this man. If
you believe that physical violence or abuse is a real possibility, do
not raise the issue of money. End the relationship. Speak to the police
or a help line about the best way to stay safe if you fear retribution
for breaking off the relationship.
Rick and Jo Harrison
Money is one of the top three issues that cause arguments or stress
with couples. It is an area that is difficult for many people to
discuss. Think about it … we're comfortable telling people
many things about ourselves, but how many of us are comfortable telling
people how much money we make, or how much we owe? It is a sensitive
There are no rules in today's dating world that suggest who pays for
what – it is up to the couple to decide. Those who believe in
more old-fashioned, traditional gender roles, typically expect the man
to pay in the beginning of the relationship. Then, as they become more
established as a couple, the woman contributes to the dating expenses
as well. More "modern" couples are comfortable splitting things 50/50
from day one. You have to decide where you fit in that area and do what
is comfortable for you. It sounds like you may be more "traditional"
where your partner is more "modern."
If your relationship is to grow and prosper you both have to be
comfortable with your expectations of each other -- not just in dating,
but also in lifestyle, spending, saving, investing, etc. Money is a
critical area. Have you tried suggesting alternative ways to date that
would not cost so much or be as economically challenging for you?
Reassure him you still want to see him and be with him, just in a
With the economy affecting so many people today, you might use that as
a segue into the conversation. Be honest with him about your finances,
and if he reacts negatively to your suggestions of less costly dates,
or if he gets angry with you as you have sensed, run – don't
walk – to the nearest relationship coach! He may have beliefs
about money and spending that are not compatible with yours. Left
unaddressed, this situation will only increase frustration for you.
Ann Robbins | www.lifeworksmatchmaking.com
The Lost Art of Flirting
by Ann Robbins
I remember when I was in
high school and would hear someone say, "Oh, she's such a flirt."
Hopefully they were saying it about someone else and not me! It was
usually meant as a negative comment. Borderline trashy, certainly
inferring promiscuous potential. They could have said, "Oh, she's such
a hussy" and it would have meant the same thing.
How sad. Flirting is
wonderfully adventurous, seductive, and creates intrigue and excitement
in getting to know someone and in keeping the love fires burning. Done
correctly and with intent, it adds mystery and romance to any
interaction. Done incorrectly or inappropriately, it makes you wish you
could press "rewind."
Perhaps flirting has become a lost art due to technology and our
increasing dependance on email, instant messaging, texting, and other
forms of electronic communication. Perhaps we've become less creative
in the human communication arena. Perhaps we avoid it because we never
learned how, or we feel it carries the "hussy" stigma. And sadly, for
those who do know how to flirt, flirting often stops when the
relationship becomes steady and routine.
So, what is flirting? Webster's describes flirting as, "To behave
amorously without serious intent," or "To show superficial or casual
interest or liking." I beg to differ. Flirting should be intentional.
It should send a signal, more subtle than overt, that you have an
interest in someone, that you notice them, you like them. Done
correctly, it is a series of mutual exchanges in which both parties are
having fun and anticipating what's next.
Flirting for Dummies
Don't know how to flirt? Watch a 5-year old. They are masters at
flirting. But don't worry, you, too, can be an effective flirt.
Flirting can be learned, and it needs to be practiced to be effective.
It is one of the elusive forms of communication and can be interpreted
in a variety of ways. Thus, it must be planful and targeted. Otherwise,
it comes across as insincere or superficial.
Most agree that communication is 55% body language, 38% tonality or
speaking style, and 7% spoken word. That means 93% of all communication
occurs through techniques other than our choice of words. It is not
what you say, but how you say it!
• Eye Contact
- The first step in flirting is to establish good eye contact. You can
hold the gaze just a few seconds longer, blink once slowly, and allow
your eyes to say, "You have my attention." Combine with a smile for
- This shows warmth, friendliness and approachability. Allow your whole
body to smile, not just your face. Practice in front of a mirror.
• Listen Actively
- When speaking with someone, give them your full attention. Do NOT
answer your cell phone or look at other people around you. Maintain eye
contact, ask questions, and show interest.
• Personal Space
- If you're talking with someone and want to show extra interest, move
a little closer. Lean toward them. You will know you're too close if
they back up. If this occurs, do not keep moving forward!
• Touching -
A sure sign of interest is to touch - subtly of course. A slight touch
to the arm or hand shows active engagement and interest! If you receive
this from someone it is a 100% sign you have their attention.
• The Wink
- Winking is an amazing art form all of its own. There is the full
wink, in which you completely close and even squint one eye. A much
more effective wink is the ever-so-slight wink. Barely perceptible.
Combined with a smile, it gets killer results! If you don't know how,
- The little unexpected things you do to let someone know you're
thinking about them are a great way to keep romance alive! A note in
his briefcase, a "just because" card, a chocolate anything ... think of
ways to surprise him with the little things.
• Humor -
Keep it light, have fun. Without being too aggressive, humorous teasing
is a great way to flirt. A little silliness and humor go a long way!
• Keep flirting
out of the workplace -
While you may think flattery will get you everywhere, do not mix
business with flirtatious behavior. It is inappropriate and can be
misinterpreted, regardless of how harmless your intentions. And worst
case, it can be viewed as harassment.
• Do not to be
too obvious or pushy -
Flirting is typically used to help create a positive outcome ... you
want to send an, "I like you" signal to someone.
• No means No
- If it is not well received - stop!
Keep it light, enjoy yourself, and allow others to enjoy you. The more
you practice the more natural it will become. If you make it a fun game
it will add mystery, excitement, romance and anticipation to your
Be gracious, kind, subtle, sweet, nice, approachable, and have fun! You
will find the long lost art of flirting a most effective way to create
and keep romance in your life!
2008 by Ann Robbins. All rights reserved in all media.
is founder and president of LifeWorks Matchmaking, a professional
matchmaking and relationship coaching firm. She is a Certified
Professional Matchmaker, a member of the Professional Matchmaking
Network through the Matchmaking Institute of New York and a
professional Relationship Coach through the Relationship Coaching
The Law of Attraction for Singles
Interview with Cher
month, RCI coach Cher Tanner talks about the Law of Attraction and how
singles can use it to find the love of their life.
Kachaturoff: What's the Law of Attraction?
Just as there are the physical laws of nature such as gravity, there
are meta-physical laws of nature that are equally as immutable, one of
which is called the "Law of Attraction." It works on the premise that
if you hold yourself open with a proper intention, in a proper space,
you will draw to you that which fills the space while fulfilling your
Try imagining being an
ancient Grecian amphora vase filled to the rim with the elixir of your
pleasure, provided by an abundant universe simply for the asking. I
think you'll agree it is a powerful idea and explains the buzz around
the book and movie, The
Secret,which repackaged this
ancient precept for the 21st Century.
What is the underlying process to use the Law of Attraction?
As described in The Secret,
the underlying process is straightforward and appears to be as simple
as following three basic steps for goal achievement: 1) Ask
for what is wanted, 2) Believe
that the universe will provide it, and 3) Be ready to Receive
it. By following these deceptively simple steps, the Law of Attraction
can be used to draw to you what you want.
Following that theory,
with the right mindset, you should be able to turn yourself into an
irresistible "love magnet" compliments of the Law of Attraction. The "Ask"
step requires you to be thoroughly clear on what it is you truly want
from a relationship. Once you have a true picture of what that looks
like, you need to imagine who the person would need to be to create
your amazing love match.
To "prime the pump" of
the Law of Attraction, viscerally feel and see you and your heart-mate
in relationship. By creating a vision board with images, words,
anything meaningful to capture you two in your relationship, it will
bring your dream into reality. Then Ask
the universe to give this
Once tangible, you can
savor your relationship making it easier to Believe
which is Step 2. You must believe. Anyone using this practice must
believe that his/her heart-mate exists and that the universe will
actualize that special person into his/her life. You should continue
savoring to actively participate in the creation process.
will support your vision. Keep them positive and in the present tense.
For example, "My perfect partner and loving relationship fills my
life," or "I am having a loving relationship with the woman of my
dreams." People grow to believe the affirmations because they are
falling in love with this special someone through self-hypnosis.
Another great exercise
is, "Wow, What A Match!" Here you write vivid, comprehensive,
emotion-laden descriptions of you and your heart-mate living in perfect
harmony. What would they look like? Make it full of images rich with
feelings using your senses to beckon your special someone into your
life. Then, carry them around with you so that you can read them and
visualize them often. It's important to understand that this will
happen in its right time. Remain patient. I can't stress that enough.
And don't worry about how
it will happen.
So to summarize to this
point, initially you're Asking
with clarity, Believing
with conviction, and the next, Step #3, is to turn it over to the
universe, your god, whatever it is that you hold worthy and expect to Receive
it. In order to receive this special person, the space must be ready
Let's consider again
being that Grecian vase. Space needs to be available for the elixir to
flow into it. So, if we are busy with extraneous, wrong people, there
won't be any room in your vase for your love to inhabit. If your vase
is filled with grain instead of the fine wine you desire, you'll remain
thirsty, filled with angst, and convinced that you're never going to
find your true love. Also, you need to be clear on which vase you are
and what elixir will work in your best interest. You can't use an
amphora when a lekythos is required. They serve different purposes, and
are valued differently.
The same caveat applies
where your readiness is concerned. If you desire love, you need to be
loving. If you desire tenderness, you need to give to the world a
compassionate heart. Your shape can be less than perfect, there can be
cracks that have been repaired, but you need to be the right vase, at
the right time, ready when your elixir of love gets ready to flow.
In what ways could a single man or woman use the Law of Attraction to
find the love of their life?
Go about the business of becoming a co-creator with the universe by
taking the right steps, thinking desirable thoughts, asking for the
outcome you want, being confident it will happen, and welcoming with
open arms your greatest love relationship. This is not magic, but
magnetic, and becoming a "love magnet" is truly a secret weapon.
If the Law of Attraction doesn't seem to be working for someone when it
comes to dating, what might be standing in the way?
There could be a multitude of reasons but let me touch on the top two
that I consistently encounter.
"Not being ready" is
number one. And the major problem would be not having insight into
"who" one is at this moment in time in his or her life. People get so
caught up in living, overwhelmed with responsibilities to job,
children, family members, church, etc. that they don't take time for
introspection, re-evaluation of life purpose, beliefs, values, etc.
Until people take time to do that, they can't possibly know what kind
of person fits into their life, not to complete them, but to complement
them, to build a shared future together.
to wait ...
The second reason
blocking success is the one's "unwillingness to wait" for the right
person. By "to wait," I do not mean sitting at home expecting your
heart-mate to fall into your lap. No, I'm talking about not choking out
the space in one's life by filling in the missing piece with any person
that comes along because you don't want to be alone, or you must have
someone on your arm for the holidays and seasonal parties, or summer's
coming and anybody's better than nobody to spend your time with, etc.
Sadly, I see many people
who are overly anxious about being alone so they'll settle for just
about anybody, compromise their personal self-worth, and then continue
to rail that they aren't able to meet Mr. or Ms. Right. Instead of
settling (and I am not suggesting you shouldn't have occasional dates
with friends or nice people you meet but have determined don't
complement the future you visualize), a person should be making every
attempt to have the fullest, most well-rounded life as a single person
while waiting to feel the magnetic pull of the Law of Attraction.
Copyright © 2008 by Cher Tanner. All rights reserved.
Cher Tanner is
a trained RCI relationship coach. She works with boomers over 50 who
want to find their true heart-mates. She is also a certified Authentic
Happiness Coach trained under renowned psychologist Dr. Martin Seligman
as well as a member of the International Coach Federation. www.FastTrackHappiness
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Conscious Dating Newsletter for Singles Tara@relationshipcoachinginstitute.com
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