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Online Dating Magazine > Columns > Dating From the Inside Out > 03

Dating From the Inside Out
by Susan S. Davis

Integrating the Dating Goal Plan into Your Life

Last week, in Determining Your Dating Objectives, we regarded how having a dating goal plan can bolster your social dating sphere. Having a dating goal plan can help you more easily facilitate the process of finding exactly what it is you are looking for at this particular time of your life.

Ensure You Really Know What Your Objectives Are
Before you move on to the next phase of the process – incorporating dating goals into your life, if you still aren't sure or haven't taken much time to determine the kind of relationships or dates you really want, it might be a good idea to utilize one of the many dating and personality tests available to help you settle on exactly what stage you are at in your romance search, such as the ones offered by: Yahoo! Personals, Tickle, Links2Love, OKCupid! or the most in-depth of all, eHarmony.com. While some of these tests may seem a tad daunting, or even silly, they can actually trigger some insight into what type of person you are, what you’re really about, what you’re actually looking for, or the types of people you’re comfortable with, so it’s worth a shot if you’re really unsure. The tests can also provide you with more succinct ideas as to where you might find people to connect with. You may learn some things about yourself that you didn’t know or had forgotten about. If nothing else, taking some of these quizzes, if not entirely informative, can be mildly entertaining.

 

Once you’ve determined your dating goals, you can then begin to develop a plan to incorporate them into your day-to-day life. This can be a lot simpler than one might think. Start by asking yourself, where might the type of person I’m looking for be found? What steps must I take to meet that person?

Networking Can Be Every Bit as Fruitful on a Personal Level as Business
To develop more business, companies and entrepreneurs often seek to align with similarly situated businesses and people. This strategy can be a powerful tool in your social life as well. Networking on a business level often involves socializing, which is also a great way to meet new people. Some of the most rewarding and successful relationships have been developed through mutual interests, whether it’s work or play.

Many people mistakenly think they must do something unusual or off the beaten path to meet new people, or dedicate themselves to dating services. For example, try to start out with finding activities and groups that engage in the types of activities that you enjoy. If you’re open to trying new things, that’s fine, too, but remember to be careful about committing to things you’re really not that into. If this occurs, be honest about that and move on. Just as in career choices, if you do what you love, success can follow. If you stick with it long enough, eventually, a potential partner who shares your interests will emerge sooner or later.

Examples of some places to find new friends include religious groups, political affiliations, career fairs, conventional networking and social activities. In addition to traditional “dating” sites, there are many social networking avenues to try that vary in their activities and scope.

Some of the more trendy sites include: Friendster, a site that uses invited friends to make new friends, MySpace, a friend-networking and blogging site, popular with the music scene, Hi5 that emphasizes friend and school-class networking, MyPeopleConnection, an activities site, the well-known Reunion and Classmates.com sites, and SearchForEveryone, a master search engine for many social networking services.

It also helps to set a time frame to accomplish goals. The key again is to remember to break down your goals into manageable steps. If you’re running into dead-ends in terms of meeting new potential romance partners, it may be a good idea to shift your focus. Take a good look at your life and see if there are any other areas that could be improved, besides romance. For example, socially, are there any activities that you enjoy that you never seem to have time for? Look into joining groups that engage in those activities. Or find new things to try. Is your career on track? If not, try to develop ways to develop it, by joining career-specific groups or a career-focus entity. By looking at ways to enhance other areas of your life, you may find potential romances along the way.

Other roadblocks to romance can include personal issues that really should be addressed before seeking to find a soul mate, such as career and financial problems, or personal and/or other romantic relationships that do not align with your life goals. It’s important to ensure that those matters are addressed and handled before proceeding, since they can cause distractions that serve as social goal deterrents.

Another avenue to explore is using the customary dating sites more as “friend finders” than actual “dating” resources. Using the sites in this way takes the pressure off of being “romantic” immediately, but leaves the opportunity open. Sometimes, focusing on fun instead of the seriousness of a “relationship” can free things up so that a romance could more easily happen. Many of the most successful romances begin with a good, solid friendship. It’s a natural progression that shouldn’t be ignored.

Everyone’s soul mate is out there, and you just never know where you will meet that person. As long as you continue to occupy your time with the activities you enjoy, you’re bound to meet new friends and possibly develop a romance!



Susan S. Davis is a published book author and writer, currently doing research for a romantic screenplay she is writing. Her Dating From The Inside Out column is published every Tuesday.


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