Entering the dating world is daunting no matter how old you are, but can feel especially bleak after 40. Whether you’re bouncing back from a previous relationship or still looking for first love later in life, it’s so easy to simply give up. After all, women often complain that there’s just no “good men” to pick from, so they decide to just stop looking.
According to relationship expert Bobbi Palmer, that mindset is what’s holding so many women back from finding romance. Instead of allowing themselves to be open and, yes, potentially rejected, ladies will shield themselves and avoid dating entirely. Although we can all relate to how scary it is to put yourself out there, that only means you’ve already sealed your fate. As Bobbi puts it, “Your fear of rejection is exactly what is getting you rejected.”
That’s not to say Bobbi doesn’t also understand how difficult it can be to find confidence when it comes to meeting men. As someone who was successful and full of self-esteem when it came to things like her career and friendships, it took decades for Bobbi to realize she had been her own worst enemy in the love department — which is exactly why she’s so inspired to help other women avoid doing the same. “For 30 years — starting in junior high and ending in my 40s — my truth was that I wasn’t good enough,” she writes on her website. It wasn’t until she realized she was the only consistent part of all her sad stories that Bobbi finally took a good, honest look at her life and made a change.
Again, being honest with ourselves instead of laying the blame for our frustrations on an outside source is not easy. Accepting that we have our own faults isn’t about making us feel worse, though, it’s about focusing on what makes each of us amazing and worthy of love, and using that to give us the boost we need. For Bobbi, that meant she finally stopped wasting time dwelling on old stories and learned how to lead with what was fabulous about her. “Did I have to fake that I was a confident woman for awhile? Yes,” she admits, “but then I started believing it and showing it to the world.”
You might think it all sounds well and good on paper, but after falling in love and getting married at 47, Bobbi is proof all on her own that overcoming a self-fulfilling prophecy of loneliness is the first and perhaps most important step in adding more romance to your life — not a lack of “good men” to choose from. Bobbi also recommends managing realistic expectations while looking for a partner. We all have a mental point-system we use to rank potential significant others, but can often end up getting the math wrong while adding them up and calibrating what’s really important to us. For more dating tips and advice, you can find Bobbi’s no-nonsense insight and see success stories from couples she’s helped over on her website, Date Like a Grownup.