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How to Meet People: Unpack Your Bags

When I was married, the majority of my friends and acquaintenances were married. We all seemed to have the same interests. When I entered the single life through divorce, it was as if I had been dropped into a vat filled with couples.

They were all around. Two by two. Two by two. If they weren’t Mr. & Mrs., they were he and I or she and me – whatever the case, they were part of a pair! I still had friends but they were married or involved, and now it seemed as though we had almost nothing in common!

Then I took a really good look around. What I saw were a lot of single people! They weren’t walking around wearing “Hi! I’m A Single Guy!” t-shirts or “Hey there, I’m Available” buttons. But they were single, just like me, and in most cases, available and looking.

I qualify “available” as not being involved in committed relationship, and “looking” as wanting to meet someone for friendship, social occasions and possibly more.

The more I looked, the more singles I found. Some of the singles I met bemoaned the fact that there were no singles around. I had to disagree with them. “What about him,” I’d ask. “What about her?”

The first thing you do when you become single is to get out of your house. That doesn’t mean that every day and every night of the week you must be out but you must spend some time out. The goal of getting out is not specifically to find a mate. It should be to have a good time and meet new friends. People who enjoy life attract other people.

Being newly single probably means you’re feeling depressed at times. That’s okay. A lot of people are depressed various times in their lives. If you’re having a tremendously difficult time coping with the loss of your partner, consider counseling of some type.

Hospice also has an excellent bereavement program – you are expected to grieve when you lose a loved one even if they haven’t died! Sometimes it takes the support of experts and others who are going through the same emotions to work you through the darkest spots. If you feel bad, seek help.

The reason you need to get over the depression and related emotions involved with breakup, divorce, or death of a loved one is that carrying those feelings blocks your ability to move on with your life and to prepare yourself to meet new interesting people.

When you do meet someone who interests you, you don’t want to run them off by inundating them with your pain from a past love that has failed. Failed relationships will load you up with plenty of baggage. You’ll need to unpack some of those bags before you can successfully start a new relationship.

© Pat Gaudette