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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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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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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Require Him to Do This

 

Quit Settling for Basic Treatment

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

 

Netflix and chill.

Hanging out.

Just kicking it.

These are the low-value situations women are finding themselves in.  Sadly, they rarely lead to the care and commitment most women over 40 desire.

Certainly, if you are NOT interested in marriage, these scenarios are perfect!  But, if you long for long-term commitment in the form of marriage, these paths are dead ends.

I teach at a university, and many of my girls have accepted “Netflix and chill” or “hanging out” as the way to build a relationship.  This teaches the guys that they don’t have to put forth any effort to get a girl.

In this demographic climate, there are many more single, professional women over 40 than there are single, professional men over 40.  This leaves single women feeling like they need to go along with a man’s low-effort plan in order to “get a husband.”  But, when you let...

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Stop Giving So Much!

 

Learn to Receive!

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

One of the mistakes I’ve made in past dating relationships has been giving too much. 

Marianne Williamson says, quoting A Course in Miracles, “Only what you are not giving can be lacking in any situation.”

I took that to mean that if I wanted a man to compliment me, I should compliment him.  If I wanted a man to be generous with me, I should be generous with him.  If I wanted a man to feel cared for, I should do things for him to make his life easier.

This was a complete misunderstanding of what Ms. Williamson was saying.

While it’s true that women are nurturers, in a male-female relationship, it’s the man who gives.  Think about sex: the man “gives,” and the woman “receives.”

The same is true outside the bedroom.

When women initiate the giving, or give more than the man gives, that is masculine behavior. 

Dr. Pat Allen says you can’t have 2 feminine...

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How to Be Confident

 

How to Be the Confident, Sexy Woman Men Say They Want

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

For years, men have reported that confidence is one of the traits that makes a woman “sexy.”  A woman may be beautiful, but if she’s insecure and needy, that will diminish her sexiness in a man’s eyes.

We all want to be more confident.  From my college students to the groups of professionals I speak to, one of the most requested topics I speak on is confidence.  It seems we all want to feel more confident!

What is confidence?  The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “confident” as, “Full of conviction; certain; having or showing assurance and self-reliance.”  

I like this definition because it’s based on self-reliance, not on external circumstances or the opinions of others.

As single women, it can be difficult to feel confident - especially when you’re over 40.  If you’re like me, and you’ve never...

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YOU’RE the Prize!

 

So Start Acting Like It!

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

 

I recently heard Steve Harvey tell a woman, “Quit acting like he’s the prize!  YOU’RE the prize!”

She was trying to figure out how to get this man to want her, and Steve said, “Ladies - y’all need to quit acting like men are the prize.  YOU are the prize!”

That really hit me.

In this demographic, there are more single, professional women than single, professional men. 

Women all over the country complain about the dearth of good men. In this setting, it’s easy for women to get into the mindset that we need to “find a good man.”  We say our girlfriend is “lucky she found such a great guy.” 

We’re willing to negotiate and settle for less than we truly want because we’re afraid something better may never come along.

We put up with men who are disrespectful; men who won’t commit; men who don’t call when they...

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Time to Get it Together (Get Your S2G)

 

NOW Is the Time!

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

 

Many of us single ladies want to find our Boaz.  Our Prince Charming.  Our Mr. Right.

But, are YOU a Good Thing?  Are you His Fairy Princess? Are you Ms. Right?

We all think we are that Good Thing, but you’re NOT if you are a mess, honey!

I’ve gone on dates with men who turned out to be between jobs, recently unemployed, in debt, recently separated, and a host of other dramas.  I wanted to say, “Get Your S2G (get your s**t together!) and THEN look for a woman!”

While men don’t evaluate women on the same grounds that women use to evaluate men, men do want someone who has her S2G.

You don’t need to earn his level of income.  You don’t necessarily need to own your own home.  You don’t need to be perfect.

But you do need to be a Good Thing.  Yes, men love to fix things, but a healthy man is looking for a partner, not a project. 

Here are some areas...

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