Failed relationships are simply a fact of dating. They come with the territory, but wouldn’t it be great to go into the next relationship without all the baggage of past failed relationships and with the positive outlook of “this is the one.” I’m not necessarily suggesting that the next relationship will end in marriage, but what if that next relationship was leaps and bounds better than the last? What if we can learn from the past and take an introspective look at ourselves, the men we choose and create our own “yellow brick road” to the castle. To the wizard. To hope.

I am a successful, educated woman, who just happens to have really bad taste in the men I choose to date. With that being said and the New Year mere weeks away, I decided to try something new; to create a list of must haves from the pathetic to the really important qualities that I am looking for in my next relationship.

In my professional and personal life, I successfully use lists all the time. They keep me organized and on target, as well as accountable for my actions, so why not implement the same strategy in my dating routine. I made a list of how I was going to go about the process and it looked something like this:

  1. Believe in the process.
  2. Have faith that I can turn my dating desires into reality.
  3. Visualize what I wanted and visualize the end result.
  4. Create a vision board of what is important to me: spiritually, emotionally, personally, financially, socially, physically, etc…
  5. Write down my list of goals and make sure to look at them daily.
  6. Identify why these goals are important to me and jot down the reason for setting these goals.
  7. Write down what I’m going to do to make it happen.
  8. Come up with a plan of attack.
  9. No time like the present – why waste any more time – Start now.
  10. Commit – Stick with the process.
  11. Find a friend to help me stay accountable.
  12. Review, rewrite and adjust after a set time period.

So much for getting any real work done today. I was committed to starting my Dating Must Have goals. And mine went something like this:

I would love to find a guy who can be a good friend and mentor to my children. Someone who can provide me with sound advice so that I am not always the sole decision maker – – someone who loves dogs and sports, both as a spectator and participant. Someone who enjoys going to the symphony and rock concerts as much as they do charity events and shopping. This man should be someone who likes local travel and road trips, and would make me feel comfortable traveling long distance. Someone who enjoys fine dining to dive bars to cooking at home. A partner in crime who has the time to spend together but who is also independent and has hobbies of their own. I would love a guy who could bring more laughter into my life and who wants a long-term committed relationship. I am okay if they have kids. I want to be with someone who can understand that my life has experienced unforeseen tragedy and can be sensitive to this, who does not feel they are competing with a past love or financial strength. If I met that person today, I would like to be married in five years. My ideal relationship right now would be a best friend that I also find attractive.

To meet this person I have, with the help of my three close girlfriends, identified places to go, activities to participate in and shared my paragraph above.

What does your list look like? I wonder if there is something that is important to you, that is also important to me that I have failed to list.

Stay tuned.


Dating After 50: Do Failed Relationships Mean I’m A Failure? was last modified: by

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