Single During the Holidays


5 Things that Are One-Derful about Singleness During the Holidays

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

During the holidays, it’s tempting to focus on feeling left out. 

Sometimes I feel like things would be easier and more fun if I had a husband and a family.  But, when you add people into your life, you have to include their wishes for the holidays. 

When you’re single, you can just eat a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving if you want to. 

If you have kids, you have more pressure to create traditions for them. 

And, if you have a husband, you may have to host his family and try to make his mom’s famous stuffing (which she will then criticize you for). 

And just because you have a husband doesn’t mean he’s going to merrily help you decorate.  He may hang one string of lights and declare he’s finished decorating, leaving you to trim the tree while he and the boys hit the golf course.

Here are some of the One-Derful perks of...

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The One-Derful Life Holiday Survival Guide - Part 2


The Single Girl’s Guide to Surviving the Holidays

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


I’m not a big fan of the holidays for a lot of reasons. 

For many years I felt the holidays were for couples and families with children and that singles like me were sort of like the Misfit Toys. 

If you have ever felt alone, lonely, let down, forgotten, or disappointed in your singleness during the holidays, this is for you.

Because this is a time of gift giving, I had this wish in my heart that God would look favorably upon me and give me my perfect soul mate.  I tithed, I served, I read my Bible every morning.  I prayed for others, I went to Bible study and prayer meeting.  I celebrated with friends who got engaged and married, and I kept believing it would be my turn eventually.

Here’s the truth: there is no magic formula to unlock God’s timing or His plan for your life.  Being single isn’t punishment for not doing enough for God....

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The One-Derful Life Holiday Survival Guide Part 1


5 Ways to Feel More Merry

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

Once again, it’s that “most wonderful time of the year.” Unless you typically dread the holidays.  I’m not a Scrooge, but I normally don’t enjoy the holiday season; in fact, my favorite day is December 26 because on that day I have survived another month of more holly and less jolly.

This year, I want to employ some of the tips I’ve learned over the past few Christmas seasons in order to tip the scales more toward “jolly.”  If you also struggle with the ups and downs of the end of the year, read on:

First, manage your expectations.  The media encourages us to try to recapture that “magical” feeling we had during the holidays when we were children; and, luckily, they will sell us lots of products to help us feel that way! 

However, children don’t have the same experience of the holidays that adults do.  They don’t...

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The Difference Between Giving and Manipulating


How to Tell if You're a Giver or a Manipulator

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

Well, it’s almost Thanksgiving again!  We hear a lot in November about being grateful – and that’s important.  But, the second part of the word is “giving.”

As singles, we bemoan the fact that we “have so much to give,” only nobody to give to. 

However, I find many times that we aren’t so interested in giving freely – we are more interested in giving to get. 

The relationship is less of an offering plate and more like an emotional vending machine.  I give A, B, and C, and I get back X, Y, and Z.  

I give my time, energy, and attention, and I get back love, security, and hope for a future.  But, when we’re giving to get, we’re not really giving…we’re manipulating.  Ouch.

If you’ve ever found yourself recounting all you’ve done for someone, you are...

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How to Deal With Shady Guys


Things Aren’t Always Cooler in the Shade

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

One of my girlfriends recently had an experience that we can all benefit from.

One of her neighbors was being very flirty with her.  He was bringing the compliments and the sweet words, and eventually asked her to dinner.  She found him very attractive and she liked his personality.  Except for one thing:  he’s married.

The only way she suspected this was because when he was moving in a few months ago, a woman was helping him.

He is in town on a work assignment that will last months.

When he asked her out, she asked if he is married.  “Separated,” he answered.

OK - stop here.

One thing you need to know about shady guys is that they will play semantics and split hairs, all while justifying that they aren’t lying to you (omitting key information is fine, though).  

In this case, I’m sure he meant “separated,” as in: we’re living in...

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What Does “Love Yourself” Mean?


Self-Respect Makes You Sexy!

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.


One of the pieces of advice that has always confused me is when someone says, “You just need to love yourself.”

What does that mean?

For me, self-love is a tough concept to grasp.  But, it seems to be a recurring theme so I wanted to understand it!

I started to see that one way to define self love is “self respect.”  If you love something, you value it.  If you value it, you take care of it.

If you love yourself, you take care of yourself: physically, mentally, emotionally.

When you love yourself, you don’t put yourself in harm’s way.  You don’t place the other person’s wellbeing ahead of your own (unless they are your child). 

You don’t do things that devalue yourself (like being hungover at work or dating married men).  You don’t let other people devalue you or disrespect you. 

What’s interesting is that men find women...

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Be Your Own Hero


Victim or Hero: Which Role Are You Playing?

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

As women, we frequently like the fairy tales where the princess is rescued by Prince Charming.  While it’s fashionable to bash these damsel-in-distress stories, there is some biological basis to them.  As women, we want community and connection, and we want a man to provide for us.

In many ways, our culture supports us in identifying ourselves as victims.  While it’s out-of-vogue to use the word “victim,” it’s very much “in” to talk about your past trauma, your current drama, and how you were messed up by your dad or mama.

But, who are you rooting for in an action movie?  The hero or the victim?  The hero, of course!  

“Wonder Woman” was a blockbuster hit in 2017.  Nobody’s waiting for “‘Why Me?’ Woman” to come out!

If you have suffered a major trauma, then it’s time to deal with...

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Thoughts From a Former Doormat


Yes, There is Such a Thing as Being Too Nice

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

I thought I was being nice.  Accommodating. Flexible.

Turns out, I was being a doormat.

Most people wouldn’t think of me as a “doormat” type of girl.  I’m confident, I’m sassy, and I have informed opinions.

I also don’t want people to be mad at me, and therefore I tend to prioritize the happiness of others over my own.

I didn’t want to be perceived as “difficult” or “high maintenance,” lest a man not want to be bothered with my needs or desires.

I was dating someone once who was an avid deer hunter.  It was deer season, and we had a dinner date scheduled for 6:30pm.  He texted that he needed to move it to 7 - he was going hunting.  Then, 7:30 - he was still in the deer stand.  Finally, at 8:30, he arrived to pick me up.

I like to eat dinner early.  I’ve never been a fan...

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Why You Need to Disappear


How to Increase Your Value

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

In economics, the principle of scarcity tells us that hard-to-get products are perceived by the market to have a higher value.  In other words, we tend to want what we can’t have, and we’re willing to pay more to get it.

Goods that are in ample supply - like potato chips - are priced relatively low.  They’re seen as commodities and are therefore worth less to us.

Scarcity is why Starbucks only offers that Pumpkin Spice Latte in the autumn.  It drives demand.  We know we can’t get it any other time.  If we could, it wouldn’t be exciting.  You may like the Caramel Macchiato, but it’s not special.

As women, we think men will appreciate us more if we are readily available and “there for them.”

However, men are hunters.  They enjoy the thrill of the chase.

I live in the deep South, where many men are deer hunters.  They will sit in a deer stand...

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How to Be Interesting


What Are You Passionate About?

By Mary R. Dittman, M.B.A.

Most people can name very few Supreme Court justices, yet they can name all of the Kardashians (and their exes).

I believe we’re living in an “entertainment” culture - we want to be stimulated and we’re constantly looking for the latest info, trending topics, and hot gossip.

 I’ve heard my friends say they fear men will find them “boring,” but I say that what makes you interesting is having interests!

While a man may not share your passion for knitting or your joy over your vintage Tupperware collection, most men aren’t worried about the object of your passion - they are intrigued by the fact that you’re passionate about SOMETHING!

When I say, “passionate,” don’t mean sexually (although who doesn’t love that?).  I mean that state when you’re in the zone, your face lights up, and you are excited about something.  Maybe...

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