This week's question comes from Nora:
“Hi Orna and Matthew,
I’m tired of dating and meeting guys who aren’t serious about a relationship. Please tell me how do you date for your soulmate?
I am reaching out, as I’m a hot 40-something-year-old woman who has a lot to give. I know I’m a catch and yet all the men I go out with don’t really pursue me or don’t even seem interested in a relationship. In the beginning, it seems as if they are really into me, but it peters out quickly and I’m left wondering what is going on.
Apparently, there is something I don’t know about how to find the right guy for me. I don’t need a man; I simply want to share my life with my soulmate.
Any advice you can give me?”
If you want to stop wasting time dating men who don’t pursue you for a relationship and start dating for your soulmate, then you’ll want to change the way you think about dating altogether.
Most people learn to date in a haphazard way from the time that they start going on dates as teenagers until they partner up with someone. Dating ends up like playing darts blindfolded. If you’re lucky, you’ll hit the dartboard and only the luckiest actually hit the bullseye and end up with their soulmate.
This accidental approach to choosing a mate relies on a lot of magical thinking like “Love happens when you least expect it,” or “With the right person, it will always be easy.”
Somehow taking a more intentional approach to love is seen as unromantic and gets a bad rap. As if there’s something wrong with approaching dating the same way you’d approach changing your career or becoming healthy and fit. The fantasy that you’re supposed to just bump into the love of your life at the supermarket or Starbucks is making many people feel inadequate when it comes to love, and we want to assure you that it’s your mindset and strategies that are the real problem.
Everything worth having in life is worth setting a goal and being intentional about so you can leverage your opportunities and increase your chances to achieving it. And living the rest of your life with the love of your life is one of the most worthwhile goals you could ever have.
Accidental Dating Leads To Frustration And Heartbreak
The dating habits you cobbled together along the way are leaving you feeling frustrated, which means it’s time for an upgrade on your dating strategies.
The most common mistakes people make when dating actually lead to more frustration and heartbreak. These mistakes include:
- Jumping into exclusivity before you really know who someone is.
- Relying too much on attraction and chemistry and ignoring possible red flags.
- Being so particular that no one measures up to your standards.
- Being so easygoing that you forget about your own needs.
- Putting too much focus on avoiding being scammed.
- Putting little to no effort into how you present yourself online.
- Treating your dates like job interviews.
- Looking for your soulmate in an online profile.
- Putting your self-esteem and lovability in the hands of a stranger.
- Creating an extensive list of the qualities you’re looking for in a mate and rejecting anyone who doesn’t fit the list.
You can avoid these common dating pitfalls by using better dating strategies that give you a ton of useful information about yourself and speed up the journey to your soulmate.
Our Dating To Discover™ formula slows down the dating process so that the focal point of discovery is on yourself first, instead of whether the person you’ve just met is your soulmate or not. This allows you to quickly discover what is in your way allowing you to adjust your strategies, so you stop wasting time with people who are not an ideal match.
When you use dating as an opportunity to discover about yourself (rather than attempting to spot your Beloved in an online profile) you will reap the benefits of dating in a strategic way and shorten the time to finding your soulmate. You’ll also have the opportunity to cultivate discernment through the dating process, so you don’t waste time with people who are not a good match for the long term. If you want to date for your soulmate, you'll want to break the pattern of short-term relationships that don’t go anywhere.
How To Date For Your Soulmate
Go on A LOT of dates!
Exactly how many dates you need to go on is not a specific number. However, it is essential you gather enough data by going on dates with multiple people. Most people are combing through profiles looking for reasons to say “No” to a date with someone. Too short, wrong color hair, no college degree, we’ve heard it all.
Look for reasons to say, “Yes” to a date instead. Stop creating barriers to meeting new people. Every person you meet will give you an opportunity to learn more about yourself, to get a clear picture of what you want in a beloved partnership, and opportunities for you to be authentic and ask for what you want and need.
The idea is to get as much data from the dating lab as you can. The more data you can collect about your habitual thought patterns, emotional triggers, and limiting beliefs, the more ways you can adjust your mindset and approach to finding a life partner.
Focus On Self Discovery First
It doesn’t matter how much self-growth work you’ve already done, or how much therapy, or how many relationships you’ve had. Whether you are thirty or seventy years old, your age doesn't matter. The discovery process through dating is rich with information regarding your in-the-moment blocks to love.
Resist the urge to evaluate if the person is a match for you or not until after 5 to 6 dates. Instead, put the focus on you and see what you can discover about yourself.
Use your dates to practice good communication skills by being authentic. Is it easy to be yourself when you don’t find your date attractive? What is different about your behavior and your inner dialog when your date is hot, or you sense a connection?
Do you start looking for clues about what they like so that you can adjust accordingly to win their affection and approval?
Do you go along or agree with what they say even if you disagree, just to keep the peace and hope they like you?
Twisting into a pretzel to earn love from someone is not a good strategy for lasting love. Eventually, you’re going to get tired of your own needs and wants not being met and you’ll grow angry and resentful.
Instead, start tracking your emotions and your behaviors on your dates. Notice the difference in yourself when you found a date attractive vs. when you didn’t.
Ask yourself 2 questions after each date:
- How did I feel during the date?
- How did I feel when I immediately parted from my date?
Track the answers as you continue to date multiple people. This will give you important insights into your own emotional and behavioral patterns for love and dating.
Attraction Is NOT A Requirement For A Date
Chemistry and attraction are a requirement for a relationship, but not at all for a date. It’s just a date! You’re not committing to spending your life with this person. To truly put yourself in the dating lab you’ll need to collect data on your dating strategies and behaviors through many different experiences with a lot of different people.
Stick with us here because going on a date with someone you are not attracted to is how you will make some of your best discoveries that will lead you to your soulmate.
We’re not suggesting you get into a committed relationship with someone you don’t find attractive – quite the opposite. We don’t want you to settle for less than you desire, but a date is only an hour or two out of your life.
Also, when you release the need to find attraction before going on a date you will find more people to date. This allows you to evaluate yourself and your dates from an entirely new perspective – one that will ultimately lead you to select a match for long-term satisfaction and commitment over time.
When you are not attracted to your date, you don’t have a lot at stake or high expectations it will lead anywhere. This gives you the opportunity to be authentic and to simply be unapologetically you.
The goal of dating is finding the person who wants YOU and not someone else, or someone who is simply convenient for right now. This is how you find a partner who gets you, who claims you, who ultimately will stand by you no matter what.
If you’ve been using your dates to investigate your strategies and practice being authentic, then you can start to evaluate and see if the person is a good match for you or not after date 5 or 6.
This does not mean that you are ready to get into an exclusive relationship just yet.
Be careful that you don’t rush into a commitment too early and take yourself off the market. Anyone who wants to jump into exclusivity with you will patiently wait for you to be ready to commit. If they don’t wait for you, then they’re not a good match for you long-term anyway.
Putting off exclusivity allows you to evaluate your dates for who they really are instead of through the rose-colored glasses of excitement. Never give a stranger the benefit of the doubt.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is they Date Backwards™. They give the benefit of the doubt to a stranger and then once they’re in a committed relationship, they take off their rose-colored glasses only to find fault and disappointment with their partner.
It’s only after you’ve pledged to share your life with someone that they have actually earned the benefit of the doubt. Extending grace with your soulmate is a skill that is required for love to last and stand the test of time.
So date without the rose-colored glasses, and set them aside for later on when the agreement to share the rest of your lives together has already been secured.
Additionally, putting off exclusivity will mean you’ll no longer have a bunch of short-term relationships. This speeds up the process of recognizing a soulmate through the dating process. You will date multiple people for a longer period of time and only go off the market for the man who has made efforts to win your heart.
The Roadmap For Lasting Love
Utilizing the dating process to discover about yourself first, you will uncover things you never considered before like the vision of your ideal relationship and how it functions.
How do you feel when you spend time with this person?
How do the two of you navigate miscommunication or disagreements?
How do they respond to you when you’ve been triggered, or upset?
How do the two of you reconnect and repair after there’s been a dispute?
Are they accommodating or demanding?
Your answers to these questions are the important foundation of the vision that will ultimately guide you to recognizing your soulmate out in the world. This is much more indicative of a lasting partnership than looking for someone who enjoys the same kinds of music and hobbies as you.
Do not shy away from uncomfortable conversations throughout the dating process. You’ll learn more about yourself and the potential of your date when you can risk and speak up about what is important to you.
Look For Someone Who Is A Match To Your Values.
Connecting with someone who has the same values as you do makes that person a candidate for a long-term match.
Through the dating process, you’ll want to notice where your date spends their resources: time, energy, and money. This will reveal to you what they truly value in life.
It’s not possible to have a conversation with someone about their values. The reason a conversation about values is useless is because, for example, no one will tell you they don’t value honesty. Values are something you discover as you spend quality time with them.
There will always be challenges in life (whether you are in a partnership or not). Life will throw you curveballs. Having shared values creates longevity in an intimate relationship. You can always find your way back to each other no matter the challenge because you both have the same priorities.
Ultimately the dating process is a selection process and it’s just as important to know who to deselect as it is to select.
Dating with our tried-and-true strategies will invigorate your dating process because you’ll never waste time on short-term dead-end relationships that send you back to the dating pool over and over again.
Break the cycle by allowing yourself to date with a different agenda. Forget what you think you know about the dating process and start soulmating instead. Download our complimentary ebook, “7 Steps To Soulmating™.” You’ll receive our top dating strategies that have helped thousands to change their negative love patterns and finally create their soulmate relationship.
Orna and Matthew Walters are Soulmate Coaches who have been featured guest experts on Bravo’s THE MILLIONAIRE MATCHMAKER. They uncover subconscious blocks to love so that you can select an ideal partner to share your life with. Follow them on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.