I know the emotional tightrope it takes to balance between staying positive about dating but not getting your hopes up too high because one more disappointment could crush you. I’m going to tell you a story that seems like it has nothing to do with dating but everything to do with how to balance getting too excited about a first date.
Last Wednesday my son was staring out the window at a landscaper across the street blowing leaves.
This kid is OBSESSED with leaf blowers!
So I decided to hop onto Amazon and order him his own toddler size version of one.
I made the mistake of telling him about it and that the mailman would drop it off on Friday (yeah Amazon Prime!)
Kai doesn’t yet understand days of the week, or the concept of a future and past for that matter – not a bad way to live! – so he couldn’t understand why his leaf blower hadn’t arrived.
Friday rolled around and after he got up from his nap, I pulled the shiny new leaf blower out from behind my back in a surprise.
I’m telling you, for the 2 1/2 years I’ve known him, I have NEVER seen him more excited!
He went on and on about his new leaf blower, and the mailman that delivered it to him (who might as well be Santa Claus in his mind), and how he was going to blow all of Koa’s dog hair away.
It was truly a joy to see.
Here is a pic his Nana took holding it over his head, mask on and everything 😉
When he went to bed a few hours later we decided it would be best to put the leaf blower away, despite pleading to sleep with it in his crib.
Now, for as much excitement as I got to witness, I’ve also never seen him in so much despair.
It took him hours to fall asleep. Sobbing. Begging for the toy back.
I almost caved numerous times but stayed strong, even though my heart was breaking a little for him.
Now, why am I telling you this?
Because two year olds can’t act (maybe some can? I don’t know), but mine can’t.
What I witnessed was a pure display of human nature when our mind’s don’t get in the way.
He showed me our natural tendency to roller coaster from extreme joy to extreme pain at the loss of that joy.
I often have client’s who are dating tell me, “You know Alexis, I don’t let myself get too excited about anyone anymore, in case it doesn’t work out.” And I feel a little sad whenever I hear this.
I intimately know what it’s like to get really excited about a guy I recently met, only for them to slowly pull away, making me want them even more, feeling more disappointed when it doesn’t work out.
It goes beyond disappointment to something deeper like hurt or even shame.
“How could I let myself get TOO excited and fall so fast again? Clearly I must have pushed him away or done something wrong.” my Inner Mean Girl was quick to tell me.
You might think that getting excited will jinx the outcome, or you might be trying to save yourself from disappointment.
What we’re saying to ourselves, unknowingly, is protect.
And I get it! We want to protect from the pain of being let down.
But can you see how this can turn into becoming reliant on life going a certain way for us to be excited and happy about anything?
Here’s the thing: where there’s excitement and a desire for something to turn out a certain way, to control the outcome, the other side of that is naturally fear.
Fear of not having it.
Fear that it won’t work out.
Fear of it going away and our fragile heart being broken yet again.
I’ve heard personal development guru’s say that the answer is not to get too attached to the outcome.
This can be a helpful shift.
However, for many of us short of a practiced zen monk, how can we navigate this non-attachment?
The truth is that it’s not always possible. We’re human! We get attached to concepts, ideas, people, future visions!
What if I could guarantee that you’ll never get hurt again in your life? Or have your heart broken?
You’d probably be interested, but there’s a cost.
To ensure you never get hurt again, you can also never get too excited again or even fall in love.
Would it still be worth it?
I know that for me it wouldn’t. There wouldn’t be anything to look forward to. Life would become bland.
Without the lows we can’t appreciate the highs.
You have to be willing to slowly knock down the walls that have built up around your heart. These walls have done their job to protect you from hurt.
Instead be willing to do the thing that seems most counter-intuitive of all.
To say, “God (or the Universe, Spirit, whatever you believe in), I am ready to find true love. Even if it means getting hurt again. Even if it means potentially going through the pain I’ve felt in the past to get there. Even if I can’t control the outcome. I am willing…please let me attract any guidance, resources, assistance I need to take that next step, and then the one after that.”
Believe me, it is hard but so worth it. You are deserving of that true love.
Now I’d love to hear from you!
In the comments on the blog share an experience in the past of being hurt and what you learned from it.
Hundreds of incredible souls come to this community every week for inspiration, and your comment just may be that spark they need.
P.S. Try a love step for this week! Allow yourself to get excited about anything big and small.