If you’re dating in mid-life, you may notice that it’s a very different experience than dating when you were a teenager or young adult. The game has changed. At mid-life, many folks become more discerning (and more cynical) as they enter the dating scene, and ask themselves, “Is this a red flag or an opportunity for growth?”
I wrote a blog post last month on this subject, and said that dating in mid-life is like getting a dog from animal rescue versus one from a new born litter. The creature comes with baggage — and so do you.
The person you’re dating may see your inconsistencies and call you on them. It can be very confronting. Is conflict a red flag, or an opportunity to learn to negotiate? Is anger a signal that something’s amiss, or an opportunity to practice tolerance and patience? Are mistakes remembered and thrown back in revenge, or used as opportunities to understand, learn and forgive? Do you judge harshly, or take the opportunity to look at how your own behavior may in some ways be similar to those you criticize? Can you take responsibility for your actions, or do you play victim and simply blame the other? Are you set in your ways, or willing to adapt, adjust, and grow?
When you’re younger, you haven’t yet set your ideas and opinions into stone. You’re willing to try out new things and change. You’re open to new friendships, jobs, activities, hair styles and clothes. But somewhere along the way, you get settled into habits (even if they’re ones that don’t serve you) and you may become unwilling to change.
As you date in mid-life and experience challenging circumstances, ask yourself if you can expand your ability to accept and grow.
Dear Readers, If you enjoy my point of view, please check out my just released book, The Wilde Woman’s Guide to Organizing in Five Simple Steps: Using Mindfulness to Change Your Habits.