Posts Tagged ‘love languages’

Use Your Words

Saturday, April 21st, 2012

Another challenge on the road to a lasting relationship is learning the skill of conscious communication. It’s not an inborn gift, but with practice you can become a master of clear communication. According to psychologist Marshall Rosenberg, it’s a simple process:

1. Identify the event that triggered your emotional upset. Be as objective as possible when doing this. Saying “My boyfriend is never on time,” is less useful than saying “He said he’d be here at 7:00 and didn’t show up until 7:30.”

2. Take responsibility for your feelings. Describe your feelings like this: “I feel frustrated,” or “I feel jealous.” Avoid words that reinforce a sense of victimization, such as “I feel neglected” or “I feel rejected.” When you do this, you’re informing the other person, not blaming him.

3. Identify what you need that you’re not receiving. Most of us subconsciously expect our loved ones to know what we need and to spontaneously provide it. I don’t have to tell you that this rarely happens.

4. Ask for what you want. Be specific when doing this. For example, if you want more attention from your partner, don’t just ask him to spend more time with you.

Ask him to go on a walk with you after dinner, or to a movie on Saturday night. But don’t make demands because we all have an inherent impulse to resist demands. And the cool part is that our self-esteem is raised when we’re able to fulfill a request.

Follow these four steps, and you’re much more likely to feel comfortable and at ease – both in your own skin and in a gay relationship – as opposed to going through your days in emotional distress.

Conscious communication and emotional awareness are vital components of the Chopra Center’s Perfect Health program. Learn more here.

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Pass the Wire Strippers

Wednesday, April 11th, 2012

April showers may bring May flowers, but they can also get in the way of other plans, like picnics and hikes and puddle avoidance. But one good thing about the recent wet weather is that it has inspired me to write a series of blogs about some of the challenging things you may have to get through before true gay love blossoms.

One of these is understanding how your brain is wired when it comes to relationships and realizing how it got that way in the first place. A new book by Marsha Lucas, Ph.D. explains how using the practice of mindfulness meditation can help you reach this understanding, and shows you how to rewire your brain. Naturally, the book is called Rewire Your Brain For Love.

Mindfulness meditation is recognized by top academic institutions for its effectiveness in changing the brain. Dr. Lucas shows you how, in just a few minutes of practice a day, you can change the way you interact with everyone around you, especially those closest to you. You can transform your brain, or rewire it, to support you in all matters of the heart. Keep fear from running the show. Cultivate empathy. Avoid overreacting. There’s lots more – all of it helping you find and create a vibrant, successful gay relationship.

So break out your splicers and start rewiring. And let me know how it goes!

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The Essence of Your Desire

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Dr. Wayne Dyer, Manifest Your DestinyOne of the many books I’ve been reading recently is Manifest Your Destiny: The Nine Spiritual Principles of Getting Everything You Want by one of my favorite authors – and people – Dr. Wayne Dyer.

The 8th principle is Patiently Detach from the Outcome.

It’s hard to follow, but oh is it worth it.

It addresses how we set specific goals for ourselves, but then start talking from the ego and subsequently get sidetracked. The key to overcoming this is knowing – at your core – that you’re aligned with what you need to be doing at this time in your life, and having infinite patience about the outcome.

For example, if one of your “I am”s is: I am financially secure – then you have to forget about your current situation and really think about what you want, what your end result looks like.

How does this relate to dating hunky men? I’m so glad you asked.

It means to just remember what it feels like to be in a relationship and don’t focus on the how or the what or on how many dates it’ll take to “seal the deal.” No! Think about what it feels like to have the end result. Or, as Dr. Dyer says, think about “the essence of your desire.”

The essence could be feeling miraculous, feeling wonderful, being in love, feeling amazing, whatever.

What does the essence of being in love feel like to you?

Focus on that – and the results will come; it’s inevitable!

The bottom line is: you’ve created a story and it’s become your life. Part of that is thinking that love is not possible for you. That you can’t make it happen and you don’t have that power.

But the truth is you do – we all do. Because we are always connected. We just need to remember that.

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And They Lived Happily Ever After

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Next Tuesday March 27th @ 7p – Single or in a relationship, come join me and other wonderful gay men on for my 3d Workshop “And They Lived Happily Ever After”! Looking forward to seeing some familiar faces and some new ones! This is a free workshop at the Gazebo Davies Medical Center.

gay relationships and dating workshop

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“I am manifesting.”

Wednesday, March 7th, 2012

Make I am statements and manifest your futureHere’s a great quote from Neville, a spiritual teacher and philosopher who died in 1972:

Disregard appearances, conditions, in fact all evidence of your senses that deny the fulfillment of your desire. Rest in the assumption that you are already what you want to be, for in that determined assumption you and your Infinite Being are merged in creative unity, and with your Infinite Being all things are possible.

I used this quote in one of my recent workshops and I like to remind my clients and catches of this because it really makes sense. People in general – myself included – tend to forget that we have this undeniable force and we very strong manifesters. So if we talk about the things we are not [I’m not patient, I’m not attractive, I’m not successful, I’m not lovable, etc.] these things are just going to continue to show up in our life.

So I challenge my clients to shift their perspective. Instead, create “I am”s. Some examples:

I am passionate.

I am happy.

I am determined.

I am successful.

I am in a relationship.

I am going to travel the world.

And so on.

This exercise had a huge impact in the workshop! It did indeed change the way some participants viewed things. It opened some eyes.

Even if you don’t believe these “I am”s in the moment, you can still incorporate them into a daily ritual. Make the statements, and don’t assume they may or may not be true.

Another quote I love, that’s tied to manifestation, is “Everything that has been conceived was once imagined.” Think about how true that actually is, from the invention of the paper clip to the manifestation of a happy life, well-lived.

This concept is so powerful in relationships. If we start imagining that wonderful man in our lives, if we have the power to conceive this, with a little determination we can manifest it.

What are your “I am”s? Make a list of them. Try repeating them out loud, at least once a day. Remember, they can be wide-ranging and they are unique to you. You never have to show them to anyone. But if you’d like to share some of them, I am all ears. (OMG, I just made another “I am” statement. See how easy it is?)

More examples:

I am learning another language.

I am going skiing this winter.

I am taking an art class.

I am a great communicator.

I am worthy of respect.

Whatever it is, whatever appears on this list, it should be there because it fulfills you and makes you happy. Eventually, repetition will lead to belief in these statements and in your own power to manifest them. And the more you manifest the things that fulfill you, the more open you are to finding someone to share all your wonderful “I am”s with, and who will share his with you.

Now get to “I am”ing. I am hoping to hear from you!

At the Corner of Castro & Fabulous: How to Turn Heads When You Walk Down the Street

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

gay dating workshop for relationship successThere are lots of stories about gay men who move to San Francisco to “find themselves” or to “find The One.” I find it exciting that our city can inspire people to go to such lengths in their quest for love (be it self love, love of another, or both).

But as you move through your day-to-day life here in the city, keep in mind that as magical as San Francisco can be, it’s not magic. By that I mean that it’s a charming, thrilling, sometimes dreamlike place to live – but there’s no “Abracadabra” when it comes to creating the life you want for yourself. Even if that life is here, one of the most welcoming and comfortable places in the country for gay men.

The thing is, you have to meet San Francisco halfway. Dressing in layers (so important here!) and walking down Castro Street to see and be seen isn’t going to magically create a wake of men behind you, falling all over each other to be the first to introduce himself to you.

Unless…

There are a few things you can do to turn a few heads as you stroll the sidewalk. Here’s what I suggest:

1. Know yourself. There’s nothing sexier than the confidence that comes from self-awareness and being comfortable in your own skin. Men who feel this way on the inside exude attractiveness on the outside – and other men notice. It’s just the way it is, and it doesn’t really matter what you look like. People can sense it.

2. Own yourself. Whatever your truth, own it, embrace it, and make no excuses for it. You’re short? You’re tall? You’re bald? You’re bushy-headed? You’re over 40? You’re a redhead? Your right foot is slightly pigeon-toed? Your moustache is uneven? (gasp!) Those perceived shortcomings are quite often the thing that another man will find most endearing. If you stop being so self-conscious about your [fill in the blank], no one is going to think twice about it.

3. Show yourself. Smile at people as you pass. Be warm. Be polite. Give ‘em those pearly whites. Isn’t that why you had them whitened in the first place? If you’re in a good mood and feel like whistling, do it and don’t worry whether someone is going to think it strange

Many of my clients tell me how difficult it is to “meet guys” here and that they feel invisible, even in the heart of the Castro. But once they explain to me the way they walk down the street, and what they’re thinking as they do so, I can usually identify a few small behaviors they can change that will turn that around.

Those supposed “guy magnets” – puppies and baby strollers – may work to some extent, but puppies poop and babies cry so maybe you should move on to something far more interesting to attract a few looks: yourself.

If you find this topic compelling, I invite you to join me for a fun workshop called “At the Corner of Castro & Fabulous: How to Turn Heads When You Walk Down the Street.” It’s the first in my 3-part series entitled “You’re Getting Warmer: Perfecting Your Search for Mr. Right.” Details are below, and click on the links to learn more.

Happy Strolling (and Head-Turning)!

 

What: At the Corner of Castro & Fabulous: How to Turn Heads When You Walk Down the Street

Where: The Gazebo, Davies Medical Center  [map]

When: Tuesday, Feb 7,  7:00-9:00 p.m.

Free and open to everyone.

Sponsored by: The Community Initiative

415.820.9606

info@thecommunityinitiative.org

 

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Coaching, the Miss Bliss Way

Tuesday, December 27th, 2011

relationship coaching for gay male relationshipsAs you know by now, when I make my matches I go way beyond physical attributes, geographical locations, and hobbies. I dive into the personality, psyche, and motivations of my clients. I coach them through the entire process of opening up to love and finding it. Which is so much more satisfying than comparing check boxes on intake forms.

The coaching I do for my clients is extraordinarily empowering for them; it helps them approach and experience the process with a feeling of action. Like they’re participating in their own search; their own journey to love.

When you’re my client, we talk about the fears and challenges you’ve had in the past, but we don’t get stuck in the past. We look at the future and how I can support you to make a change. Now, that’s not to say I’m a therapist because I’m not. We don’t really look at the deep-seated root of the problem. But I do help with developing practical ways you can shift the behaviors and perceptions that are holding you back.

This is because, as I say quite frequently, the most important relationship you can have is with yourself. You have to look at these things if you want to be successful in your search for love.

For me, it goes back to the core value of conceive / believe / achieve. I guide my clients through making the choices that are really right for them. I raise awareness of where they hold back, and help them know what their own story is. Once we have a breakthrough, they make healthier choices for their life, which helps clears the way for them to create a healthy relationship.

But sustainable change in life doesn’t happen in one session. It’s an ongoing process and I suggest ten coaching sessions to make a shift to where you can create a healthy, sustainable relationship. Through it all, I give tons of advice, we talk through solutions, and have a ton of back-and-forth.

The result is pretty phenomenal. My clients get more clarity and understanding, feel more fulfilled, and become more empowered. It’s one of the most gratifying parts of what I do. I just love it!

I’ve even seen clients drop friends. They don’t maintain relationships that aren’t healthy or that don’t’ support their shift. The refuse to be a doormat any longer, if that was the case in their lives before. They take charge, gain power, and become a force for good and for change in their own lives. sometimes that upsets the dynamic between friends and leaves little choice but to part ways. And that’s not a bad thing; that’s growth. And if people do leave your life, know that others will come in. You’ll attract people who will be good for you, who support the new and improved version of you – friends, peers, cohorts, and ultimately, a love relationship.

In my coaching, I create a place where you’ll feel safe, and can let go of so much. Best of all: It’s a 100% completely judge-free zone. In fact, I don’t even own a gavel.

Why gay matchmaking with Finding Bliss?

Monday, December 19th, 2011

why matchmaking with finding bliss, self-aware, relationship with selfThere are two reasons to hire a matchmaker.

The first is logical: You’re frustrated with the bars, don’t have the time or energy for online dating, sick of sorting through profiles, etc. That’s the practical side of it, right?

And there’s an emotional reason to hire a matchmaker, too. It could be that you’ve experienced a lot of rejection in your life as a gay man and you want to avoid the rejection that often comes in the dating world – or at least as much of it as possible. A matchmaker pre-screens people for you, and can help in this regard.

Other emotional reasons could be that you don’t feel you deserve a relationship or it’s not worth all the effort.

I mention these to explain that I help clients create a shift in their lives, and I do that through the coaching that I do. In the course of our relationship, I constantly come back to a few touchstones that I know to be true. Mainly, that no matter who you are you are worthy of love and it can happen to you. You can give and receive love. I’ve seen it happen too many times with clients who thought otherwise. But I showed them!

Forging relationships is also hard for gay men in general because most are extremely giving people by nature, and it’s hard for them to receive or accept love. I tell these clients that they can have a fulfilled, happy life if they really want it.

One of the great parts of what I do is that when a client does meet The One, that special man to call his own, it doesn’t even matter if the introduction to that man comes through me. Sometimes, a client will meet the guy himself!

The point is that my coaching gets you to a place where it can happen – where you open to love. And this is the shift I’m talking about…the shift you make in your life that wouldn’t happen without the coaching. The one that gets you ready to find the man of your dreams. It’s the shift I go for. Everything after that – meeting the man included – is easy.

As you can imagine, making a shift like this takes time. On average, it takes one of my clients six to nine months to find someone, although this is not always the case! One client found Mr. Right after two sessions with me; for another, it took nearly two years. But it isn’t a race or a contest. It’s your life. And love happens for you the way it’s supposed to happen for you. And you know what? The client for whom it took two years told me that it was completely worth it.

In some ways, the most important match I make is the one I help you make with yourself, which I think is pretty cool.

Core Values: They Matter

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

core values for business brandsRecently a colleague and a friend reminded me that having core values for your business is important, especially when you’re a business owner and the line between your business and your own person-ness is a thin one. That is definitely the case with me!

Defining – and holding – core values for your business enables you to recognize how those values show up in your day-to-day operations, understand why you do the things you do, and make sound business decisions that will truly support you in reaching your goals. Those are pretty important for business success, right?

So I decided to define the Finding Bliss Core Values and to share them with you, with the goal of holding them and imbuing them with the power they have to strengthen my brand, connect with my audience, and fuel my success. So here we go:

1. No judgment.  Ultimately, there is no right or wrong when it comes to love. Everything is a learning experience.

2. Quality vs quantity. This is true in many aspects of life, but especially so when it comes to seeking, finding, giving, receiving, and sharing love.

3. Speaking only the truth. I’ve mentioned this before, and it refers to having the willingness and the courage to have the hard conversations from the beginning. Small talk is fine to break the ice; we need it and it’s human nature to start with it. But once those shards are hitting the floor and melting away, move on to the stuff that truly matters. I give all of my clients this advice and follow it myself.

4. Being forgiving. Entire books are written about this topic but in a nutshell it boils down to letting go of the three R’s: Resentment, Resistance, and Revenge. I never want Finding Bliss to operate from a place of negativity, so I extend my forgiving nature to my brand.

5. Accepting responsibility. This is a biggie. Many of us struggle to recognize the times when we need to accept responsibility, or the times when doing so will better serve us than laying blame. Just realize that it’s okay to say “Sorry” and that sometimes you need to say it to yourself.  Remember that you are here, and I am here, and we are all here where we are today because of the choices we have made in life. So accepting responsibility for them is something that I, and Finding Bliss, wholeheartedly believe in.

6. Being supportive. Finding Bliss supports clients so they feel happy, motivated, and excited. To make that happen, the brand operates from a place of looking at the optimistic side of life, which I also do in my personal life. And note that being supportive means more than just supporting others; it also means supporting yourself.

7. Unconditional giving. Much like the previous value, this refers to yourself as well as to others. When I give to others, I do it without expecting something in return. I sometimes actually do ask myself the question: “What can I give?” Maybe JFK said it best: “Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.” Substitute “partner,” “boyfriend,” [or in my brand’s case, “client”] for the word “country” and you have a pretty great way of moving through life [and the business world].

8. Being impeccable. I mean impeccable in every way: with your words, your purpose, your truth. It means to keep your word because words are power;

a gift that comes directly through you. With them, you can create the events in your life [or your business]; you can create a beautiful dream or destroy everything around you. Don Miguel Ruiz talks about this in his book, The Four Agreements and I encourage you to check it out.

9. Be child-like. Children live in the present moment, with little to no worries, and they don’t take No for an answer. They are unstoppable in their optimism, imagination, creativity, and structureless pursuit of the next smile. Somewhere along the way to adulthood, we lose the vast majority of these qualities. Short of throwing tantrums and being inconsiderate, or making unsound business decisions, we should all try to be more child-like.

10. Being determined. This boils down to three things: conceive, believe, and achieve. What a great way to build a business or a brand, huh? It’s important to ask questions and be persistent in getting to the answers. An example I love to share with clients and that inspires me is Thomas Edison, who recorded some 25,000 failures in his attempt to invent a storage battery. He was once asked how it felt to fail 25,000 times and he replied: “Those were not failures. I learned 24,999 ways not to make a battery.”

I hope I’ve inspired you to think about your own core values. You should sit down and write them out; really examine them. Drill down to the center of you and figure them out, whether you end up with two, three, or ten values; whether you own a business or not. It will help you figure out what you’re looking for in a partner, and to make sound decisions when those turning points in a relationship crop up. And you know they will!

The 5 Love Languages: Physical Touch

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

The 5 Love Languages: Physical TouchThe final Love Language, according to Gary Chapman’s book, The 5 Love Languages, is Physical Touch and it’s arguably the  most fun language to speak. But it’s not all about the bedroom.

One of the best things about having a partner who speaks this language is how easy it is to recognize. We all know people who are very “touchy.” They freely give hugs [and sometimes kisses], pats on the back, thoughtful touches on the arm and other small physical gestures. With people they know well, it can show up as hand-holding and touches in more intimate places such as the face or hip. Even playing footsie.

Remember that people who speak this language aren’t necessarily “coming on to you.” Physical touch is how they express emotions. This can be excitement, concern, care, or love – among many others. It’s the very definition of body language.

Also remember that physical presence and accessibility are crucial, while neglect can signal to him that you simply don’t care. So try the power of intentional touch with your partner, even if you don’t think you can fully embrace it. You can start small and take baby steps. And you can experiment with all kinds of touch in all kinds of places. Talk about fun! In fact, consider that your homework. Go touch your partner. Then you’ll see how powerful and transformative it can be.