Think of someone you think the world of, someone you adore. Maybe your mother. Or your father. Your sister… or brother. Or perhaps your closest friend. Now think of that person’s flaws – surely, he or she has some. Really take a moment to think. You love your mom, but perhaps she can be a bit naggy on occasion. Maybe your best friend can be a stubborn [you know what] from time to time, but he’s still your best bud and you’d do anything for him.
In most aspects of our lives, we can accept that the people we love are flawed human beings but naturally we still love them anyway. Despite those flaws, we recognize the qualities that make them the unique, wonderful people they are and we cherish having them in our lives.
But for some reason, when it comes to dating, the minute we see that a new love interest is less than perfect we rush to judgment. And often that judgment is equivalent to the Spanish Inquisition – no one stands a chance from thereon in.
As I have said time and time again in this article, in this city, the cognoscenti demand the best – if just one thing is not perfect at a restaurant, clothing store, salon, etc., Manhattanites can easily find a replacement within the proverbial New York minute. And no where is this mentality manifested more than in dating. This person has a flaw – well, I really don’t think I see myself ending up with this flawed person. Clearly, it’s time to move on as there is another seemingly flawless person who I met yesterday at a friend’s cocktail party and I have a very good feeling this person does not have any flaws.
Logic right out of Catch 22.
News flash to Everyone: the quest for the perfect person will result in about as much success as finding an apartment close enough to jog to and through Central Park, with more closet space than you could possibly use, but also walking distance to Pastis and under $1,000 a month. My point: it doesn’t exist.
To be clear, I’m not talking about giving a pass to someone who is rude or dismissive to you on a first date, there’s no need to excuse that type of behavior. Nor am I am talking about settling (and should you be inclined to see it that way, consider that someone is also then “settling” for you.) What I am referring to is the scenario where, after a handful of great dates, you notice a person’s flaws such as his slight impatience when you’re running late or her mild moodiness when you forget to introduce her to a girl you are chatting with at a party. All of a sudden you see for the first time this person is less than perfect and quickly you are not sure you’re interested anymore. We’ve all been there – we REALLY liked someone but he or she showed his or her imperfections too soon and now that person has the equivalent level of interest to you as yesterday’s newspaper.
Now, Reader, I have no doubt that you’re pretty fantastic but I am sure you have your flaws too. Think for a second. Guys, the fact that you sometimes forget to put the toilet seat down is not what I’m talking about here. Or girls, your occasional insecurity about how you look naked requiring lots of compliments doesn’t count. You can’t think of any of consequence? I bet your exes might volunteer a few. But those aren’t fair, you’re thinking. Ok, how about we poll even those who love you dearly and see what they say. Even though they would likely succeed in listing a few less than ideal qualities, they certainly wouldn’t want anyone writing off their wonderful Timmy or Stacey because of them. If someone did, it would most certainly be that person’s loss! Thanks, Mom.
Unfortunately, our loved ones and best friends aren’t always around to vouch for us – hey, I know Stacey just acted like a diva but don’t write her off – she’s really a fantastic girl she just has her moments. No, people only know what they see so everyone needs to be oh so cautious. It’s like that priceless Chris Rock skit where he jokes that no one meets the real person when you first start dating – instead you meet the other person’s representative (who is the best possible version of that person and would never admit that he hates his job, or that he can be a bit self-centered in relationships, or that he follows the 10 second rule when he drops food on the floor, and so on…). Indeed, if you swap the representative for the real you too soon, chances are you and the representative are both fired. Oh, such a delicate balance – you want people to see and fall in love with the real you, but the real you might not withstand the merciless New York scrutiny.
If you’ve never tried out cold reading, it’s pretty fun.
It involves saying things about people that are generally true, but making it sound like you’ve got some kind of “insight” from beyond.
A successful cold reading involves three things (once you’ve established rapport).
1) Some kind of observation about her that is slightly more specific than the general public.
For example, something that would likely be true of ALL females would be things like, they like shoes,they are concerned with their appearance, and they worry about their weight. So when you say something, notice something about her and make an educated guess.
2) An implied compliment.
Don’t be direct. Don’t say anything about her looks. Make it about her personality, or her intelligence. Also, since everybody likes to think we are “smarter” or “more insightful” than everybody else, you can use this to your advantage.
3) An implied takeaway.
This is kind of a “pull back” designed to draw her into the conversation.
With these three in mind, a typical “cold reading” opener might be structured like this:
Excuse me, but I couldn’t help noticing you. I don’t mean to sound forward, but I’ve got a particularly strong intuition about you (open). I sense that you have a few things in your past that have just come to mind recently, particularly about [observation]. It’s been my experience that while it may seem a bit confusing, those kinds of people seem to have a much better sense of truth than others. (implied compliment). But then again, I’m sometimes wrong about this. What do you think? (take away).
Now, that might seem a big strange, but if you deliver the above congruently, meaning you believe it when you say it, she’ll be incredibly intrigued. And since you’ve basically told her she’s “better” than everybody else, she’ll want to hear more.
Obviously the more you can tie in your reading to whatever you observe about her, the better.
With practice, you can get pretty good at this. Just go hang out at Starbucks or wherever, and check out the girls, then notice something about them, think of something related to that “thing” that has a good chance of being true, and imagine coming up with some statement like the above.
For best results, do this once a week, bring a notebook with you and actually write out a few paragraphs, for a few different girls.
I am sad to see many failed marriages. People are busy. They try to emulate others. They compare their spouse with their family members and friends and thereby kill the uniqueness of their relation. Here are few suggestions to fuel your marriage to happiness and make it long-lasting.
1. Uniqueness – As a couple, you must be aware that you are a special and unique. Your story is unique. Your circumstances and experiences are unique. Opportunities and threats for your relation will be unique too. Your relation is a journey. Live through every moment. Don’t try to emulate experiences of your siblings, parents and friends. They have their own journey, which is different from yours.
2. Time – No matter how busy you are, take some time out for each other. “I don’t have time” or “I am busy with office work” does not work.
3. Individuality – As a couple, you will often be considered as a single unit. However, remember that you two are different individuals and have different identity. There can be disagreement. There can be difference of opinion. It is these differences of opinions that gives strength to your relation and provide the uniqueness. Unfortunately, you didn’t marry your clone. Between two of you have space to accommodate these differences. Before you love accept each other as an individual.
4. Communication – Doesn’t matter what medium you decide to choose but communicate as often as possible. Silence is a language too but in this era, it is not as effective as it used to be. Communicate to kill rumours. Communicate to dissolve misunderstandings. Communicate to destroy gossips. If you will not communicate, others will, not for you but about you. Your spouse must be aware of everything about you that can affect the present and future of your relation.
5. Love & Respect – Love is strength of your relation. Love each other without reason. Don’t look for occasions to express your love. Express it anyways, all the time. Your love is a reason for your family (next generation); your family is not a reason for your love. It is sad to hear people saying that they are living together for the future of their kids and not because they are in love with each other.
6. Trust – Trust each other and stay loyal. Trust and loyalty are glues that keep the relation together. If you cannot trust one another then you cannot live together, doesn’t matter who much you love each other. Love without trust is false and unreal.