Going out on a first date is easy. You can go out on 20 first dates and pretend, “OK, I’m putting myself out there,” and never fully commit to opening yourself up. First date, smirst date. It’s the third and fourth and fifth dates that are most impressive; it takes moxy to show you’re brave enough to find true love. You have to take a risk to put yourself out there, knowing that you may very well get rejected by someone. Otherwise, don’t complain that you’re the serial dater who never gets a meaningful relationship but goes out on a bunch of first dates until you’re 50 and you’ve never been married. There’s nothing that brave about a first date. Talk to me after the third. That’s when things start getting interesting.
Commitment-phobes and control freaks, hear me now. You MUST come to peace with showing a little vulnerability at some point or you WILL NOT find true love. Sorry, folks, there’s no way around it, even if you think you are clever enough to pull it off. Believe me, I’ve tried. I know how uncomfortably terrifying it is to open yourself up to someone and not be in control of whether that person might hurt you. It’s a chance all of us have to take, but my message is clear: we can still accomplish this, without handing over our full hearts and risking our self-esteem to someone we just met. You’ve got to have a strong enough self-esteem before you start dating. From there, it’s all about setting the pace, trusting yourself, and enjoying the possibilities that are in front of you. Then you are in control. So stop trying to control everything else. You can’t, and in the end, who the hell wants to? Is that any fun?