It has been a while since I have written any dating advice. I had not really been paying any attention to it until the other day when one of my female friends asked me what happen to the “Weekend Off Topic” that I use to do. Who knew anyone was paying attention. We had a very long discussion about dating after you are secure and established. It takes time to be happy with who you are. It is even harder to be happy with where you are in your life. Then add in a relationship. That is the breakdown of our intense conversation. So to you Miss DC Socialite…Dating at 30 or over.

I think at your 20’s you don’t yet know who you are. You may be mature and have an idea but you can not really who know you are. It’s not possible because you have not lived life enough. You are just getting out of school or just starting a career. It takes experiences. Meeting men in your 20’s is not the same as in your 30’s. Your priorities should have by this time evolved. If you still have the same perspective on dating you did when you were in your 20’s, you still have some maturing to do. At this stage in the game family should be your main focus.

By now you should have that dream job you put so much work into. Your school loans are under control. You have a car you love or if a city dweller Zipcar & Metro are your best friends. Basically your life is in order. You are happy with who you are and where you are. Dating is no longer something that is a must for you. It’s a want. Now with most wants sometimes common sense is thrown out the window. The definition of dating really means: A courtship consisting of social activities done by two persons with the aim of each assessing the others suitability as a partner in an intimate relationship or as a spouse.

Now when you get to a particular age, we will say 30 for the sake of argument; you start to drift away from that definition. Somehow suitability is mistaken for an over compromise and disregard of good judgement. Here are some steps and rules to help you in your search with emphasis placed on the digital world.

[I] Settling

Older women settle for less than they deserve a whole lot because they feel their biological clock is ticking. So they date someone they really don’t want instead of being single. In this day and age you don’t have to do that. There many well-respected dating sites out there that do much of the leg work for you. It literally does all the work. eHarmony, OK Cupid, Match and even Facebook used the right way can do a good job filtering out the rift raft. So give it a try before settling for anything.

[II] Looking for Mr. Forever with Mr. Right now

This mistake happens from the jump. You are dating to look in hopes of finding a groom eventually. Date to get to know someone. Stop trying to marry on day one. Try to build a friendship first and maybe a relationship can form out of that. When you try to force something what ends up is you force the complete reverse. Dating as an interview for a husband is a quick way to make sure you stay single.

[III] Expand your pool

The only thing constant about life is change. Therefore you should try to be open to it. I know at this age you differently know what you want but that is no reason not to sample. Everyone has a list of must haves in a person. While that list is important because you have spent years refining it and it helps you not compromise. Holding steadfast to that list and not exploring outside your type can lead to your type being single. Use good judgement instead of being closed-minded.

[IV] Determine if it’s ok that you make more

If your flash answer was no. Please stop reading, go back to number 3. Expand your pool. You are in your 30’s. We have established you have your house of cards in order. Keep in mind that not everyone keeps their cards stacked the same way. Let’s take it a step further; you don’t necessarily need a man to take care of you. Neyo wrote the song “She got her own” for you. At this stage in your life you have homes, cars and travel off your own income. Big deal, you can’t have a family with contentment. Now that does not mean settling for a bum. If you meet someone who is happy and making enough yet still has ambitions don’t write them off.

[V] Stop being a punk

That is the only way to call it. You have a date and it was wonderful. Fairytale, storybook, Hollywood and an endless love type date. There were a few more dates of equal caliber. You feel like your ready to jump the broom. Hold on there buckaroo. Use your patience to talk things out. I have been told I get smitten very quickly. A good friend of mine explained the difference between smitten and sprung. Sprung is all lust but when you are smitten you lack reason and good judgment. You are running on 100% emotion. After that high runs out usually a month later. Women in their 30’s end things if they have not progressed past simply dating. Quickly throwing in the towel does only one thing; ensure you remain single. Evaluate the person you are with. Have open and honest discussions about what your end game is with each other. Note: that does not mean wedding bells but you can allude to a more official role in each others lives.

[VI] Dating on a clock

What I mean by that is giving yourself time frames to make life events happen. When there are other people involved that almost never works out. So skip the timeline and just live life. You will be surprised how well that works out when you can take your time to enjoy rather than worry.

[VII] Make time to date

You are CIO, CEO, CPA, Director or a manager. You already have a relationship with your career. You love that relationship so much that at times you may forget there are other types of relationships out there. At 30 our lives are busy. We are doing 100’s of things for our careers. We are buzzing around town honoring our social obligations and maybe even have a mini me at home too. Unfortunately that leaves little time for dates. The thing is if you do not make the time. You will not just happen to have it.

[VIII] 1 at a time

Date more than one person. This does not mean that you got out and be a free spirit. What it means is get to know more than one person until you feel only one person deserves you time. Be picky not snobby and not shallow.

[IX] Communication is key

Even in the mature 3rd decade of your life. It can still be hard to find the words to express yourself. Yeah, it’s easy in the office. You can hold down a meeting with out breaking a sweat but personal one on one may not be your cup of tea. Well you need to go British and start loving that tea. Talk, talk and talk some more.

[X] Don’t do the same old same old

You are not going be one of those lame all people who just do dinner and movie are you? Good because you should not. You should think outside of the box and do something creative. Or at least have him do something creative. Put the ball in their court and see what they come up with. The last thing you want is to get in a rut while just starting out.

{XI] Take care of you

Now the most important thing to remember is you come first. Don’t worry so much about dating that you forget to take care of yourself.

By Rubens Saintel

Proud father, #Haitian, photographer, consultant, writer & entrepreneur. I love video games, movies, plays, technology (surprise), beta testing apps and all things sci-fi. | |