When Life Loses Its Wonder

The other day I caught the train to Melbourne and opposite me sat an old man.

He caught my eye because he looked so beat, mouth downturned, eyebrows frowned, his eyes staring at nothing while reflecting what I felt was a seething anger.

I looked at him with more interest and realized that he couldn’t be as old as he appeared and I’m sure he wasn’t. I believe it’s how he felt that made him look older.

His face had an unshaved stubble but not the fashionable kind. It was more the “I can’t be bothered shaving” kind. His hair was also messed up, and it matched the growth coming out of his ears and nose. Everything about him, including the way he was dressed, screamed “I give up” and I felt sad.

He wasn’t a bad looking guy, and I’m sure he would shine up a treat if he felt inclined to do so… but he wasn’t.

I didn’t see a wedding ring on his finger, so I guessed he was single. How long had he been like that? Why was he like that?

Life can get us down when things aren’t going our way. When the fearlessness of youth is replaced by the fearfulness of age, it’s easy to give up, and when we give up, life loses its wonder.

So many mature-age divorced men fall in that category. Like released prisoners, they flounder in an unfamiliar world that is nothing like the one they’ve just left.

They long for the security of what they knew even though it may not have been ideal. Many are disenchanted, angry, lonely and bitter because they were left. Others are wracked by sadness, guilt, and remorse because they left. Whatever their story is, it’s what prevents them from moving on, and the longer they stay that way, the older they get. Not just physically but spiritually.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. One of our six core needs is Growth and people will always be open to growth if the opportunity presents itself. Unfortunately for many it doesn’t. They don’t know, what they don’t know.

So, here’s ten tips so that you know.

TIP #1

Determine exactly what you want and don’t want out of being single so that you can act on it.

Sort out just what you want. Many of us just drift on after moving out. They don’t know how to make things happen in the social sense and somehow think that everything will fall into place. It may, but you could be waiting a long time.

TIP #2.

Take a good look at yourself

Stand in front of the mirror and ask yourself.

Do I look good? Am I dressed attractively? Do I sound interesting? Rectify what you’re not happy with.

TIP #3.

Get in shape

Most of us got used to married life, got out of shape. Get fit. Start exercising.

TIP #4.

Envisage your ideal partner.

Most people’s subsequent partner is a very similar version of their first. In other words, they go back to what they are familiar with.

Get to know what you want as your ideal partner.

TIP #5.

Get out and socialize

You won’t find many opportunities for a date sitting at home watching the box or sitting at the bar with your mates or having coffee with the girls.

Go out! Go to places where people gather. Get used to talking to people.

TIP #6.

Learn the rules of dating

Most people blow themselves out of the water on their first date. There are dos and don’ts that you need to know if you want a second and third date.

TIP #7

Join an internet dating site.

Welcome to the 21st Century! Be glad you don’t have to trawl through sleazy classified ads or sit at a bar in a nightclub. You have to be registered on online dating sites, and you have to know how to use them.

TIP # 8

Learn to be assertive.

Those who don’t know how to ask for a date sit back and hope that they are going to be asked. Know how to ask for a date and how to make it happen.

TIP #9.

Manage your dating.

A date is part of the preliminaries. It’s a time to get to know about each other. Much like an interview. You don’t want to invest big on the first encounter only to find that they’re not someone you want to see again. Don’t overinvest on first dates.

TIP #10

Don’t be cheap and be gracious

Once you manage to get a date don’t blow it by ‘sharing the cost.’

If you asked her out, pick up the bill. If she asked you out, still pick up the bill.