If you’re weeping into a glass of sherry and wondering why the world is so cruel and your life is so loveless, well, you have no one to blame but yourself.
Yes, I said that. Because if you’re like a lot of women, you wait. And wait. You think you’re enlightened and independent, yet there you are clinging to this Disneyfied idea of romance, believing down deep that if you click your heels, the Right One will appear, if you just sit quietly and wait. It’s not the world getting in your way; it’s you.
You need to make shit happen. Here’s how: You need to take more risks. And you need to get rejected. In fact, my challenge to you is to get rejected no fewer than three times. Tonight, if possible. Because it means you’re getting somewhere. Also, because it’s unlikely you’ll even get that far before someone takes you up on it. (Trust me on this.)
Men already know this. They play the numbers. They’re used to rejection–they accept it as part of the game. If they ask out ten ladies, it means one or two or three will say yes. They go after what they want, and expect rejection. Regularly.
I knew a guy like this in college. He was nothing to look at, truly, but a fun, personable guy. He was never the hottest guy in the room. But he asked out EVERYONE. And the man always had a date. It’s not magic. It’s numbers.
You need to think this way. You don’t need to “act” like a man, but you need to adopt the mentality, create the calluses, and push through it. If you prefer a more gender-neutral example, think business: A salesperson doesn’t go into the field thinking everyone will say yes. But she goes out knowing that to get a return on those efforts, she needs to aim for far more than she’ll actually land.
When’s the last time you got rejected? And what did you do about it? If the answer is go home, lick your wounds, and stop shaving your legs, that’s the wrong answer.
I’ve gotten rejected lots of times–tons. It sucks every single time. It will always hurt. But it doesn’t always have to stop you cold. When I look at the past year alone, I’ve been told many times “no,” or “later,” and “maybe not.”
STRIKE ONE: I was seeing a man in the midst of a divorce; he had pursued me. Then he said he needed time; he’d be back. That was a year ago. When I asked whatever happened to him, he said he was dating other people, but decided he “didn’t want to continue our thing.” Our thing? Meaning, that thing he started? Yeah, that hurt. Moving on.
STRIKE TWO: I sold a guy a set of drawers on craigslist. I was charmed. I emailed him to let him know I thought so. We went for coffee. Then, a walk. He emailed me the next day and said I just wasn’t what he was looking for in a girlfriend. I was shocked, then hurt. Then, over it. Next? I couldn’t help but feel the need to find a dating coach; perhaps I was doing something wrong?
STRIKE THREE: I put the full-court press on a guy I met at a singles event (or rather, I happened to him–find out how to do this). I had him in the bag–I thought. He texted me the next day to go out. Then he changed the date. Then, he changed his mind.
I have more…you want me to go on? You get my point. I get hurt, sad. I don’t quit. And I’m never without a date if I want one. I just go get one.
I also find men wherever they are–not just out at some bar. Anyone you meet is game, and he doesn’t have to be in striking distance of a gin and tonic to be game. I recently visited the Apple Genius bar for help with my Mac. The guy who helped me was completely adorable. I started to leave after our session and then turned my ass right around and went back inside and, when I couldn’t find him, gave my card to another employee to give to him.
He wrote me back a very polite, service-oriented note. I wrote back telling him I was interested in him. And I didn’t hear back. For a month.
I forgot about it.
And then, weeks later, he started following me on Twitter. I called him out (“hey I know you”) and he replied, “We should hang out.”
So we did. And we are.
Be warned: The more time you spend in a gaggle of ladies, the less time you spend taking the risk of putting yourself out there in a real way–making yourself vulnerable, trying, and, failing. Failing isn’t a mistake or something you shouldn’t have done. It’s something you should be doing more.
Do it. Go out–alone. Look hot. Feel hot. Sit at the bar and get a drink. Start a conversation with someone who’s even just mildly attractive. I don’t give a shit if he’s married, gay, or about to enter the priesthood. Buy him a drink. You will probably not marry this man. But you may date him. Who knows? And at the very least, you have a fun, flirty conversation. There will be more.
Do it again. And again. Introduce yourself to guys you meet randomly, in passing, anywhere. Rack up numbers. And you will get results–and likely, a guy who appreciates a woman with a little initiative.