Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tapping out

A guy I know, who I’ll call “Dan,” because that’s his name, sent me a message a couple months ago: “In your online dating series, you should do one about when we met, and I looked at you and tapped out ‘cause you were too cute.”
Online dating series? Really? I like the idea. ‘Cept I’ve been out of that scene for quite a while.
Anyway. Here’s what happened: Two years ago, Dan and I connected through Match.com. After a few e-mail exchanges and a phone conversation or two, we met at Scottsdale Fashion Square and had a bite to eat at Kona Grill. Midway through the meal, Dan said something like, “I’m going to make this easy on you. I don’t have a shot with you, do I? You’re out of my league.”
What does one say to that? How do I respond?
If I said, “That’s not true,” I would be lying. I didn’t feel chemistry, but it had nothing to do with any “league” nonsense.
You either have chemistry with someone, or you don’t. I met a couple dozen men through that Web site, and had mild chemistry with only a few and major instant chemistry with only one.
And, thank goodness, we don’t have chemistry with everyone we meet. Could you imagine? We’d be like … Tiger Woods.
Meeting Dan was a great lesson in vision.
My son and I regularly have this conversation. He says, “I can’t,” and I say, “Well, of course you can’t. If you say you can’t, then you won’t.” If you envision yourself succeeding, you have a greater chance.
Tonight I had dinner with an acquaintance visiting from Ohio – who I hope moves from acquaintance to friend – and we talked about envisioning ourselves doing what we want to do.
I used swimming as an example. For 42 years, I thought of myself as a non-swimmer. Well, let’s make that 30-ish years, because I’m pretty sure infancy through toddlerhood all I thought about was drooling and pooping (I got the word in again, Mary).
When I first got into the pool, I flailed around and broke several fingernails as I clung to the side of the pool gasping for air. “I’m never going to get this,” I told myself.
Had I adopted that as my mantra, I would have surely drowned. I definitely would not have completed two sprint triathlons.
I now practice envisioning myself gliding through the water with ease, gently rolling up to take a breath and pulling myself through with strong arms. It’s working.
This is not to say that things with Dan would have worked. It’s not to say that we will get everything we want. But think of opportunities missed because we “tapped out” early.

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