Posts Tagged ‘drama’

Anybody that knows me well knows that I have always been a huge believer that we create our lives exactly as they are right now.  And I don’t mean we voodoo control life… just that life presents itself the way we we intend it to or expect it to- it’s why people that believe everybody is out to get them tend to keep finding themselves in situations where they must defend and protect themselves, and where I can walk around downtown Guadalajara, MX at night completely unscathed. And trust me, I have no idea why or how it works this way!

But as a believer in this philosophy, what happens when things work out differently than I want or expect?  What happens when something comes up that I feel I didn’t intend and maybe don’t even want?  This is where I get stuck because if I was completely in control, then it wouldn’t be this way, right?

Or maybe sometimes shit just happens.

I came across a quote from one of my favorite writers and philosophers, Kahlil Gibran:

“Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens.”

The thing is that sometimes things just feel scary, or difficult or upsetting.  My instinct is that it’s not okay to feel these things and it means something is wrong.  I usually just push those feelings down as far as I can muster, and try to “get over it”.  Smile and keep moving forward. But does this actually allow me to explore myself and my world to it’s full capacity or do I cut off some self expression when I do that?  A year ago I would have read the quote above and thought…”k, i’m doing it all right, just smile and pretend all is okay until it feels okay”.  And now, for some reason that doesn’t seem sufficient to authentic happiness and growth.

I do think it’s important to see ourselves, others, and the world in a positive, powerful light and there is always the opportunity to do that in any situation.  That is the TRUTH in life, and this is who I know myself to be deep down at my core. But there is something about the full experience of being human which includes the spectrum of emotion- joy, sorrow, love, patience, anger, fear.  And it’s good – ALL of it is good!  But it’s the thought and action after that determine who we are in this world.  After our full experience of being human, do we stand for who we truly know ourselves to be regardless of the situation we are in or our feelings we have?  For me, I’m starting to think that really is what creating my life means….

Something tells me that the awesome kid in the video below truly LOVES her life!  And her life probably includes a few tears 🙂



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I think I’ve said this before, but I love love!  Every part of it intrigues me, inspires me and challenges me.  As any and all of my friends will attest to, I love to analyze relationships, give advice (asked for or not!), and above all, I love to learn about the elusive chemistry that we are all ultimately looking for…

I mean, we are looking for that, right?

I think that it boils down to one thing, no matter what stage we are at in our lives- we look to connect in a world that is largely disconnected right now.  Whether we are looking for a life partner, a date, or a passionate finish to a tequila laden night, there is something in us that yearns for connection with another human being.

I always think it’s interesting hearing the point of view of a man on this, and I listen intently when I have the chance because I think it would save women a lot of time and energy if we just listened!  It’s why “He’s Just Not That Into You” became a raging hit.  If we truly listen (and not to the voice in our head), people will tell us how they want to connect.  It will always appear the way we want it to appear until we open our eyes and ears.  At the start of every relationship (whether it’s for the long haul or for a long night) people show interest, laugh, flirt, touch, text.  It’s all the same, which is why it becomes confusing!  When our own desires, hopes and perceptions start getting involved in defining another person’s intentions, that’s when we stop seeing the signs and absorbing the important information.

My friend Mae just went through this.  Tall, wildly bright and stunning, she would never know it if you asked her 😉  And though her humility is one of the things that makes her amazing, it gets in the way of her dating life.  She recently was seeing a man who, after giving her various signs of inconsistency and unreliability, told her “I will never be the man you want and need”.  PERFECT!  He gave her the information, right?  She can smile, thank him for an amazing time, and walk away to find what she is truly looking for…  It’s that simple, of course…(sure…!)

Well, here’s where it gets a little tricky (and it always does in love) – what if her goal is to have a relationship with a great communicator? She could take this statement as an act of great communication and personal introspection.  I mean, he kept calling and telling her she was great so maybe, just maybe, he’ll figure out that he actually could be the man she wants!

And then 4 years goes by and she realizes he told her 4 years ago…

I don’t exclude myself from this, by the way.  But I’m learning.  I’m understanding more and more everyday and I notice myself constantly interested in discussing love and dating with my couple friends, and helping out my single friends.  In my heart of hearts I’m a matchmaker, and I’m a coach 🙂 And like all coaches, usually the best ones are the ones who had to work harder, and be more technical about it.  The ones who just naturally and innately did it have trouble teaching others.

So I’m going to find a way to take this passion of mine, this deep down feeling of wanting others to have amazing, connected and fulfilling relationships and lives (whatever type of relationship or life they want!) and build something around it.  I’ll start with answering questions- sometimes with my own perceptions, but if I don’t know I will figure it out (I do have a pretty solid council of amazing women that needs something to do now that The Bachelor is over!).  Sort of like a “Dear Abbey” column on steroids…

Loving my new project and excited for where it may lead. Please feel free to send me any and every question you’d get a kick out of getting an “answer” about 🙂

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So it all started with Oprah, which most things these days seem to start with…

My mom was watching the show last year on a rare day off from work and comedian Steve Harvey was the guest.  He was promoting his new book about  relationships and specifically about how women are going wrong- seriously wrong.

So, as you may have already guessed my mom started listening a little more intently and with her kids in mind as Harvey answered  questions about love, sex and dating.  I mean, sure this was supposed to be a day off Olympic planning for her, but maybe she could use this time to help US move from the singles event to pairs 😉

Now, I wasn’t watching the show, but my mom felt so inspired to share his thoughts that she declared at dinner that we need to hold on to our cookie  (what?) and followed up with passing along his book for us to read (my mom bought and read a book about dating?).  Oh, this will be interesting…!

So I read it, and I’m going to paraphrase the sh*t out of it but here is the main concept of this book (taken from Oprah’s website):

Though a woman might want many things from a man, Steve says men only need three things: support, loyalty and sex. Or as Steve calls it, “the cookie.” “We’ve got to have your support. Whatever adventure we’re out on, whatever pursuit in life, we need your support. Then we need your loyalty. That’s your love. We’ve got to know that you belong to us,” he says. “And we’ve got to have a cookie. Everybody likes cookies. That’s the thing about a cookie. I like oatmeal raisin…but if you’ve got vanilla cream, I’ll eat that too.”

So he goes on to describe how women give their cookie away too early – all of it!  It’s  the 2010 version of “The Rules”… take your time, have a life, make sure your guy knows he’s what you want, and hold on to your cookie for at least 90 days.  Yes guys, I’m being serious.   Three. Whole. Months.

So The Cookie started to get a whole bunch of floor time at our family dinners.  It was explained, debated, accepted, rejected.  My friends thought it was impossible, my brother declared he was a cookie-monster 😉 , my sister said that this was archaic dating behaviour and we’ve moved so far past this as women, and I decided to try it out. The Cookie was now an intricate part of our daily life and yet I wasn’t ready for what came next…

A couple weeks later we all went out for some drinks at a bar downtown, and as a new guy offered to buy me drinks and attempted laughing at even my cheesy jokes, my sister (sitting beside him on the other side) started a conversation that I only jumped into at the end.

her: “you know, you won’t even get her cookie for 3 months – she’s all talk…”

him: “what’s a cookie?”

her: “her COOKIE… she seems all fun and carefree but she’s like a…a…. she’s a double chocolate chip cookie”.

him:  “those are awesome!”

her: “no, they are the cookie that looks like everything you want and are SO bad for you.  And you buy it, and it’s way too sweet and you can only take a bite before it gets to be too much”.

And there she had declared what kind of cookie I was – Double Chocolate Chip

In her mind, the cookie that never truly satisfies…. but that’s just her opinion, which is what the beauty of the cookie is – everyone has different tastes!

So fast-forward a week and we have all declared what kind of cookie each of us is, and why.  And if you are reading this you are, no doubt, going to find a cookie that perfectly describes how you are in a relationship.  And it’s yours to keep or to give away, to hold on to, or to rebake to become a new kind of cookie if you so choose.

The Double Chocolate Chip:  It’s a lot, a whole lot.  Fun, a little sinful, and you never know exactly what it will be like.

Chocolate Chip Cookie: (mae) Great balance, but has a wild side.  Classic, yet all satisfying – not a daily treat but could be a weekly indulgence!

Oatmeal Raisin:  (jenna) this is the betty crocker of all cookies.  Wholesome, hearty, the kind of cookie that will send you on your way with a packed lunch.  It’s a classic but you aren’t sure if it’s a treat or not…

Mulitcolour Smartie Cookie: (stacy) Hmmmm… who picks a smartie cookie?  Someone who is in for a crazy ride!  Someone who never knows what they are going to get but wants the adventure and all the randomness that goes with it.  But it’s an awesome cookie and almost impossible to find 🙂

The Ginger Snap:  (sally) This is a cookie that you love or you hate.  It has a cult following – I mean, if you love ginger snaps, probably no other cookie satisfies.  In fact, you may not even like cookies but there’s something about a ginger snap that transcends the cookie label!

Oreo:  My personal favorite.  A little of everything.  And full of layers… it can be eaten all together in one bite, or slowly savoured, or separated into it’s different layers.  Chocolate or vanilla satisfies every mood. And dunk it in milk and it’s a whole different cookie.  This one keeps me interested…

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip:  (Lola) This is the one that I aim to become.  That I hope I’ve already become.  Classic awesome chocolate chip with a little wholesomeness.  Or another way to describe it is a double chocolate chip toned down… the 30 year old version to a 20 year old cookie 🙂

The breakfast Cookie: (hanna)  So this one is not a treat, even though you love it.  It’s the healthiest cookie there is. You could have it everyday, and you do.  But it takes awhile for you to acknowledge that you are actually eating a cookie.

The Power Cookie: (Farrah) This cookie isn’t kidding around.  It puts you in your place… it’s always in the zone.  While you may mistake it for a breakfast cookie, the power cookie is a challenge.  The extra protein, nuts and chocolate make you wonder if you can handle one in a sitting. This gives you something to chew on between bites and for some crazy reason, you keep coming back for more…

The Vegetable Cookie:  (harminder) Is there such a thing, you may ask?  Well, I declared that it exists and while I’ve since backpeddled to try to dub it as carrot cake or zucchini loaf, the truth is that as I hurled my accusation at my friend Harminder (that he is a vegetable cookie), I will never redeem myself for it 😉  And in a lot of ways he is a vegetable cookie.  He is massively good for you.  So good for you that every single friend of mine wants a vegetable cookie.  And since there are no others that I know of yet, he’s got a lot of work to represent this kind of cookie. But you marry this one.  Because, I mean, it takes guts to be a cookie that doesn’t include sugar!

So since this has all happened (over a year ago)  I’m pretty over being double chocolate chip.  I agree with my sister that it’s just a special occasion cookie and I’m more interested in being at least a weekly treat! So I think I’ve progressed, or am trying to progress to a chocolate chip oatmeal cookie.  Wholesome (just a little), with the chocolate that I’m known for and that adds a little adventure.

And as for the 90 day rule – I kind of get it.  There’s no question that  getting to know a person helps us make better decisions, and as soon as you throw in too much intimacy too soon (any kind of intimacy), it can cloud things.  But to declare a time frame seems artificial.  It seems contrived.  I think the 90 day rule is more about self awareness and growth as a potential couple than anything.  It’s so that we have time to see the ingredients behind the label of the cookie.  Cause what looks like a chocolate chip cookie could be carob, and we all know that the savoriness of vegetable cookies could be masked with a little apple or orange flavour.  But it takes time to figure it out.

So what kind of cookie are you right now?  And the question is, does it serve you?  Like, are you attracting the kind of cookie you want with the kind of cookie you are being?  Bring on the oreo 😉

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Sometimes the toughest decision to make!

I am indecisive.  It’s actually hard for me to admit but it’s true.  I wait till the last minute to make decisions, even small ones like where I’m going on Friday night or whether I am training in the morning or late in the day.  My parents say I can’t commit and even though I totally understand how it appears that way, the irony is that I believe I am a very committed person.  When I finally do make a decision, I am full on about it and often find it hard to let go of a commitment quicker than I should when the commitment no longer serves me. 

So I wonder, if I am a committed person, why is it so damn hard for me to figure out what to commit to?  Are there too many options?  Am I unfocused?  Do I actually know what I want?  And what are the implications of me being this way? There must be a benefit, or I wouldn’t be doing it, and on the flip side, there is clearly a cost.

I actually truly believe that we are a culture of ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder).  I personally find myself multitasking all the time – I will be hanging out with a friend, listening to music while responding to a text on my personal phone and reading an email on my work phone.  And I think I do it well 🙂 .  Studies have actually shown that human beings are unable to focus on more than one thing at a time.  It’s why we can no longer use our phone while driving – when our mind has to retrieve information or engage in a conversation, we reduce our attention to other details in our environment to allow for that brain activity.  It’s also why we can be in a noisy apartment unable to sleep one night and two nights later we are used to the noise and are fine – our body can “tune out” that which doesn’t help us do the most important task.

I realize that it is important to multitask- there are so many things on my plate, as most people feel, but, but at what point do I need to zero in – focus on the one important task? My brain, I’m pretty sure, doesn’t even know what that is, which is perhaps why I stay in the land of indecision for so long, NOT taking action, and not getting results.

There is a really great quote that I came upon recently that said this:

“Most people have no idea of the giant capacity we can immediately command when we focus all of our resources on mastering a single area of our lives”.

It’s true.  The best in the world are committed.  They are decisive.  They are FULL ON.  Everything they do is towards one clear goal and for that reason, decisions are a lot simpler.  For me right now, I’m decided where to play this next season, with whom, with which coach, and which league.  I’ve been sitting on the same decision for the past 4 months, and am really no closer to my final answer.  Actually, I would even say that I am further from my answer as I have put more options on the table, which has confused me even more. 

I went to an awesome seminar on Monday and then talked to a couple of great friends, and here’s how I now intend to make my decision…. from my gut.

 I have information, advice, options.  The one thing I am missing is what my gut is telling me.  Not what I should do or think is the best choice, but what I feel the best about.  And I think I am worried about following that feeling because it’s hard to justify, hard to explain to others, and hard to understand myself.  BUT, one thing I know is that trusting my gut and taking risks have always led me to something great – an experience, a place, a person…. so to say that it is risky isn’t really accurate – I actually have relevant information and my experience is my data.  100% compliancy 🙂 .  It’s like the guy that looks great on paper, or that makes sense, but that you don’t have that feeling about.  You never buy in because deep down you know, and 2 years later you break someone’s heart and realize that you knew all along and just never chose your heart over your head.  In the end, the heart rules right?

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So I was reading a newsletter that I got called “Dating without Drama”.  I know the husband of the woman who writes it, and so it’s been interesting reading about her theory on how to find THE ONE.  It goes something like this:

1.  Get busy, get interesting – fill your schedule with friends, hobbies, interests.  It’ll keep you busy so you don’t pine away for HIM to call you, will make you much more interesting to be around, and will keep him wanting more as it is much more attractive to a guy when you are a little hard to get (legitimately hard to get, not pretending to be).

2.  Follow some basic rules within the “dating phase” including some of these:

  • Only return phone calls, until you are comfortably dating him
  • Do not get physical until you are exclusive
  • “The Conversation” –  never a good idea
  • Keep dating other people until you are exclusive

 3.  Determine if he is boyfriend material (as in, take off the rose coloured glasses!)

Okay, so I know that some of this seems fake, seems game-like and seems inauthentic.  And it is!  Kind of.  Today I’m going to talk about #1…

 I got to thinking about me and my friends.  I think when we are single we are usually in one of  three situations:  1.  We are into a guy that isn’t into us,  2. A guy we aren’t into is totally into us, and 3.  We are totally single WAITING for the perfect guy (I’ll talk about this one some other time).

How backwards and frustrating is it that the guy that we are NOT into just becomes more and more interested in us?  WHY can’t the guys we want to date do that? 

I have a friend, we’ll call her Jenna.  She is totally together and knows what she wants.  The only problem?  She gets really really into a guy when she starts dating him, regardless of whether or not he is worthy of that kind of attention.  I would say that she dates down .  It’s totally obvious to all of us, but she does not see the truth about him because she decides she likes him right away, without really getting to know him.  See, she doesn’t really like him, she likes THE IDEA of him. So what happens?  This guy that should be so stoked about dating somebody like her turns it around and does a 180 or starts treating her shitty. 

The other day I overheard her talking to a guy that she is definitely not into (but likes her).  She was cool, a little nonchalant, relaxed and was explaining how she couldn’t go out with him that night.  It was perfect.  It was exactly as per “Dating without Drama” rules go!  Was this a coincidence?  In my opinion, the answer is NO.  The fact that she wasn’t really interested in him allowed her to be herself, to keep her priorities and committments (rather than cancelling plans to hang out with him), AND she had a lightness about her that if he called again or never called again, she would be fine.  This is the secret! 

So I think there is a difference between gameplaying and playing the game.   When I go into a beach volleyball competition, I would never go onto the court without a strategy.  The strategy comes from knowing my strengths and my weaknesses, as well as my opponents’.  I usually have a strategy that involves hitting one way at the start of the match in order to open up a shot for the end, when it matters.  

Basically, in sport we strategize to get what we want – a win!  And if our strategy isn’t working… ahem girls, listen up… change the strategy!  In dating, don’t just hope that you can keep the same one, which hasn’t produced results, and the “right guy” will just magically appear.  Go from bench player to tournament MVP by practicing, stepping up your skillset, your strategy and your ability to make the right play when it matters (also know as being clutch). I think that the key attitude is FUN.  In anything, when there is a sense of heaviness, and things getting tense, it’s a sign that you are on the wrong path.  You are taking yourself too seriously, and how fun is it to be around a person like that? 

Now I’m not advocating being emotionally distant from people, I’m just saying that perhaps some of us need to change our game plan- ditch the bench, ditch being  a player.  It’s time to BE THE MVP!

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