Love By Design Blog Week 2: Two reasons I’m continuing my commitment to blogging:

1. Life begins outside your comfort zone.

2. Pushing yourself to grow brings about new-found inner strength.

Do those two things resonate with you in areas of your life? Regardless if it’s self-love, love for girlfriends, or love of a companion… those two things start with you.

Bravo’s fresh new scripted series is hitting at the hearts of many of my friends, clients and girlfriends, and plenty of San Diego singles! I am excited to see where Bravo takes this show, Girlfriends Guide to Divorce. This week we get introduced to another candid, fierce ass-kicker. We all need a friend like that, don’t we? Enter divorce attorney, Delia, who believes there is no such thing as a good divorce, and divorce makes people crazy.

So far, I am totally relating to the crazy emotions and life lessons in Bravo’s new show – both personally and professionally. As a California based matchmaker and dating coach, I spend most of my day coaching and talking with people heavily tied to their emotions and desires. They’re often emotional about their desire to find a true, lasting relationship, or about their desire to get out of the wrong relationship, or even about the pain and anxiety that comes with change, whether they initiated the change or it was forced upon them. Do you feel me on this? You’re not alone! Any way you look at it, we ALL have intense emotions surface when unexpected, sometimes traumatic, change arises in our lives. Emotions serve us; yet they don’t have to (nor should they) control our lives.

Episode 2 of GG2D blatantly demonstrates how different personalities display their emotions during times of change and stress. And, since I’m a fan of learning from the behaviors of others, let’s dive into the lives of these characters and see what we can learn!

The year of “firsts”. Yep a whole year of them… here we go! Kudos to Abby (“Lisa Edelstein”)! Wow Abby, you handled a couple tricky “firsts” with grace. Seeing your husband take off his wedding ring first must have stung, yet you maintained composure…. and meeting the MUCH younger new girlfriend at a private party certainly builds character no one wants to build. Both situations came as a complete, and very painful, shock, especially when the much younger girlfriend divulged information YOU should have known first – that your husband signed a lease that day to move out. Yet you managed to keep your wits about you as you quietly rounded up your girlfriends and left the party respectfully.

I’m curious how most people would handle these types of situations? Did you ever have the post break-up experience of seeing your ex with a new significant other? I know I sure have! I remember all too vividly the painful memory of having dinner with my girlfriends, and seeing my ex arrive… WITH A DATE! My heart dropped, and I had a panicked moment of , “Oh shit, I hope he doesn’t see me!”. This was immediately followed by a declaration to my friends, “_X_ is here with a date. I have to leave this very second!” And out the door I went. My empathetic and supportive girlfriends paid the check and off we went. Staying in an uncomfortable situation, fuming, creating conflict and fueling your own inner turmoil are counterproductive. If you’re not ready to date, honor those feelings. Just because your ex has moved on and is dating, doesn’t mean that you need to deal with being in the same space. Honor your true feelings. Date when you are ready and not because you are lonely or seeking revenge. (Want more dating and relationship tips? Sign up for my newsletter here.)

From my professional experience, I meet many men in search of younger women. Whether it’s searching for their wife for the first time, or if it’s after a divorce and they are looking for a change or to feed their ego… it simply happens. There are plenty of younger women who are happy to date older men, and it’s not for any of us to judge. If a dating potential chooses to date someone younger over you, that is his or her prerogative. Bottom line – that is not your person! Try adopting a Love By Design motto: “NEXT!” Better yet, “What’s NEXT is BETTER!”

GIRLFRIEND, LET’S TALK: My criticism/coaching advice this week goes to Lyla (“Janeane Garofalo”) – do you have a Lyla type friend or are you a Lyla?: In my opinion, your anger, bitterness, and disdain for your ex are extremely detrimental. From closing credit cards with no notice, to having your ex arrested for a DUI, this horrific game of revenge, and “who can be worse to each other”, is hurting everyone: your ex, your kids, and even yourself.

“Divorce may mean saying goodbye to the life you once knew; yet it doesn’t have to turn you into a bitter person.” Love By Design

Instead, you’re being given a chance to own your mistakes, turn your life around, find the good in the situation, and ultimately come out stronger on the other side.

Suffering is optional.

Change is inevitable.

Moving on is sad.

Yet every challenge really opens a new door. And as you leave behind pieces of your old self and previous life, you get to search for your new identity…and that’s a very fresh and exciting position to be in!