Part 4. Navigating Christian Dating Culture: The 10 Blindspots of Faith-Filled Single Ladies

This is Part 4 of the Navigating Christian Dating Culture series. Read last week's post here.

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I'm picking on the girls this week.

Recently I've stood in church foyers, lounge rooms of birthday parties and dipped bread into baba ghanoush, where I had conversations that touched on all 10 blind spots. 

I'm not even kidding.

1.) Thinking "contentment" is the only NECESSARY ingredient.

WHY? It's not.

Contentment = strong identity, an intimacy tank fulfilled. It could also imply a great network of friends. Contentment puts you in a better place to date someone as you’re not as needy, you have intimate relationships around you, helping you operate out of a place of wholeness, not loneliness. However contentment alone is not enough to meet and get to know the man of your dreams...

2.) Expecting a man to waltz into church and pursue you.

It takes two-ooh-ooh baby-y.

It takes two-ooh-ooh baby-y.

WHY? It's passive and perpetuates a scarcity mindset.

“I just want to meet a guy from church," you say. I get it, I do too! However it means you are waiting to be chosen, instead of choosing him for yourself. Out of the 1% of guys brave enough to approach, you will be picking out of a very narrow pool, where the odds of physical attraction will be extremely low. Even if you prefer limited choices, there's still a little bit of proactivity required on your part ladies. You can't expect him to do all the work [insert tango cliches here].

3.) Refusing to make the first move.

WHY? "Because I don't want to pursue him," you say.

Starting the conversation does not equal you pursuing him! Ladies, stop being so dramatic. I dare you to go up to a randomly selected gent and compliment his jeans. If the guy thinks you want to marry him after that one compliment, there is something wrong with his mindset, not yours [insert baffled emoji here].

4.) Separating the Friend Zone and Potential Suitor categories.

WHY? Life is unpredictable.

Your male friends will evolve and change. My three best male friends have stuck by me these last 5 to 10 years, and they are significantly different specimens now in 2016, compared to 2006. I would throw romantic consideration their way, so if you're one of these male friends, you have my number ;). Without jest, check out last week's post: In Defence of the Friend Zone. Also, the danger of slotting Mr Guy into Potential Suitor category within 20 minutes of meeting him will populate unwarranted partner-dancing in Fantasy Land, blinding you to the violent waving of red flags which befall you!

Friend Zone everybody but don't lock the door while they sit on various plush chairs in the Friend Zone. Y'know what I mean?

Friend Zone everybody but don't lock the door while they sit on various plush chairs in the Friend Zone. Y'know what I mean?

5.) Not cultivating platonic male friendships.

WHY? Every woman needs Healthy Male Attention (HMA).

Best HMA is from your Dad, brothers and cousins. The great news is, even if we don’t have a biological Dad and biological brothers we can develop these relationships with guys at church or in other circles if we adopt a holistic social mindset. Currently I have about 3-6 really good HMA friends who I know I could call in a pickle to fix a flat tyre or listen to me rant about WMP.

6.) Competing with other women.

WHY? Because you’re a beautiful, socially confident woman capable of strong connection.

Why would you need to compete with another woman for a man’s heart? Think of your best friend. Did you have to compete with other girls in order to be her best friend? No! Our connections with other human souls is unique. If you are a whole, socially confident lady who feels a genuine connection, he will probably feel this connection too. If he doesn't feel it and goes for another chicky, it's his loss or your misjudgment. Either way, it's not worth worrying about - plenty of oysters at the Fish Market and you can rely on your social skills to proactively make new guy friends.

7.) Fear of church-outsiders.

WHY? It's bigoted.

I was part of an Asian Christian Church for 5 years, and salsa dancing nights would finish with the push button digits of many a dance partner. Girls would fearfully frisbee church invites, instead of letting themselves be present in the conversation and enjoy the moment for what it was. All this to say...

Don't be afraid of meeting new people! Acquaint your mind with different perspectives. Interactions don't need to progress if you don't want them to. Exercise your social muscles with some playful banter (yes, I do mean flirting). Heavy social environments warrant this, and an innocent dance lesson is free of the church-scrutiny. The assumption I make here is that you love Jesus with all your heart and stand on strong convictions about who God is. I love being intellectually challenged about my faith, and welcome conversations which demand that I "give a reason for the hope that we have" (1 Peter 3:15).

And you don't need to give out your number. 

And you don't need to give out your number. 

You can politely decline and say, "sorry, I don't give out my number that often. It's nothing personal. I've had so much fun with you, take care!" More on nice-ways-to-let-guys-down in another post.

8.) Not rocking your God-given assets.

WHY? Working on your inside character does not cancel out everything else!

Yes you need a strong core identity. But you forget you are clothed in skin, and enhancing your physical assets is the introductory part of this package. Men are highly visual. They will search amongst the attractive girls for an intelligent one, rather than all the intelligent girls for one they can grow attracted to. 

Think of it like going to a job interview. When you walk into the building of a company, you will make judgments based on the decor, and how the receptionist treats you before you ask any direct questions about the company after that interview!

So learn a few make up tips, straighten that posture and wear clothes that flatter your figure and shape! If you're still not convinced, let me know why in the comments.

9.) Ditching your girlfriends.

WHY? Your quality of life is determined by your closest human relationships.

Even if you had a man, why would you want to be isolated from community? Choose girls that build you up, encourage you and celebrate your wins. Some will be available every weekend and some available once a year. It’s up to us to build a wide supportive network of intimate relationships, surrounding ourselves with people whom energise, empower and connect deeply with our inner selves. It's this holistic approach to our social lives that fatten our identity capital. Plus, who else can we watch Suits with just to drool over Harvey Specter? 

NEVER ditch your girlfriends. 

NEVER ditch your girlfriends. 

10.) Saying "I don't want to waste time".

WHY? Because getting to know somebody takes time.

I don't care if you're pushing 30, are tired of men, biological-clock ticking or what have you. Slow and steady wins the race. 

Very important: The first date is not the platform to ask direct questions regarding the future! You're just starting out your journey, so eat your prawn gyoza and relax! If you were writing a book, the first date is like the first chapter. 

I was on a first date with a guy who, after 10 minutes of lighthearted chatting asked about my relationship history and intentions for the future. I cracked a joke about his intensity and headed for the door. (Ok, I didn't really do that, but I sure as heck wanted to).

Relax, have fun; laugh together. Actions speak louder than words. Allow the moment to fully breathe, it has much to offer you without your duress. You want a man of character, who does what he says he'll do. Throughout planning dates, watching him in different settings, and how he treats other people as well as you. Over a period of time, the serious conversations will naturally arise. 

Being too focused on the outcome will blind us from seeing the reality, and we can't assess someone's character if we are rushing the pace. So enjoy the moments you have together, for any love worth fighting for is slow to awaken itself. 

Let me help you find the love of your life. 

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