It was the dreaded annual consultation appointment with my Beverly Hills doctor. Little did I know the consultation would take a most unexpected trajectory. It would mark a turning point in my thinking and dating life.
Sitting in his office, peering through the heavy round frame of his Mr. Magoo glasses, my doctor a renowned specialist in his 70’s asked “How are you?”
“Terrible. I got divorced.”
“Relax. You will start a new chapter of your life now.”
“I’m 53. Who will want to be with me that I want to be with?”
With a patient gaze my doctor shared unforgettable wisdom.
“You will need to change the way you think. The men you will be dating are different now than they were in their 20’s and 30’s. They do not want rejection anymore. Your approach must be different if you are to succeed. You must take initiative, be friendly and charming with men your age. When they feel safe, there’s no risk of rejection, then they will make their move.”
“But I never approached men in my entire life! Men pursued me. What do I do?”
“Practice being friendly and take initiative to start a conversation. Smile at strangers. Don’t be so serious!”
My doctor continued. “When dating, learn to compartmentalize.”
“What does that mean?”
“When you were younger you were looking for one man with all the qualities you want. Change your thinking. For example, if you have an 80 year old billionaire, just let him take you to nice restaurants and shopping. Don’t dump him because he is old. If you meet a nice guy, then let him help you around the house to fix things. If you meet a sporty type, get him to be your workout partner etc. You get the idea? Whatever you do, don’t dismiss anyone because he is not the whole package. Eventually you will meet the person who has the qualities you want.”
“Have you said this to other patients?” I asked incredulously.
“As a matter of fact yes. Once I had a 48 year old patient who was dating a rich, old guy she planned to dump. So I advised her against it and told her the same advice. Eventually, she met a company CEO in his 50’s she married.”
In business, what my doctor was describing is essentially a concept called creating “momentum”. As I studied my wise doctor’s egg shaped head digesting this conversation that took me by surprise, I acknowledged secretly for once his consultation fee was worthwhile! Staring out the office window at the palm trees, I wondered how I would put my doctor’s advice into action…