Part of the reason I created PMS was to answer every one of the dating and relationship questions I ever asked Google when I was at my lowest.

And because the common denominator of successful dating and romantic relationships is in-tact self esteem, the real root of my obsessive and very specific questions was always:

  • Finding a cure for feeling like I was never enough.
  • How to stop my obsession with winning and being chosen. I was always in some sort of passive competition to be chosen by a f*cktard. And when you’re in a position of someone having to choose you, you come to the relational table without any leverage. The requirement of being able to stay at that table is handing over your dignity to the person across from it.
  • How to stop being affected by every.single.blow of the emotional and relational breeze.
  • How to be confident enough to not only listen to but act on my instinct instead of remaining in the misery of prosecuting, negating, and avoiding it.
  • How to run out of f*cks to give when it came to my fears, insecurities, and just put an end to my unlucky-in-love “streak,” which had become a fancy word for “life.”
  • How to stop always being at everyone else’s emotional beck and call when no one was ever at mine.

Through the years, I’ve been asked so many dating, self esteem, and relationship questions from men and women that I’ve written about at length. I don’t ever write from any sort of psychological high horse. I’m human and I’m fallible. I still get painfully insecure, massively triggered, and I make mistakes every day.

The only difference between now and then is that I allow these things to be the experiences that they are instead of definitions to subscribe to. I no longer attract circumstances and people who cater to and affirm that subscription because I have unsubscribed.

I write to solidify what I’ve learned from the mistakes I’ve made so that I can help as many people as possible. I also write to remember my own advice.

Relationships fascinate me – always have; always will. And as much as I love to go in depth with singular questions and topics, I wanted to address 25 of the top dating, self-help, and relationship questions I’ve been asked through the years. I initially wanted to do 50, but I think it’s best to answer the second 25 in a future post.

I also made it a point to keep the answers as simple, quick, and accessible as the questions are real and relatable.

A long explanation isn’t always needed for something to click within and initiate a life-changing epiphany.

So here they are…

Your top 25 dating and relationship questions ANSWERED Continue Reading

Today is a very special day for me because I get to introduce to you my best friend, my greatest teacher, and the original white horse warrior – my Mom.

Mom, take it away…

Hi Everyone. Thank you for supporting PMS, Natasha, and for creating this incredible community that I am so honored to be writing for today. My background is in clinical and industrial psychology. I have over 35 years of experience in clinical and organizational settings but I am not here with any of that today.

Today, I’m coming to you not as a professional; not even as Natasha’s Mom. I am not here as a wife, an ex-girlfriend, an ex-wife, a student, teacher, friend, partner, mother, sister or daughter. I’m coming to you as the one thing that for so many years, I judged, criticized, sabotaged, and tried to conceal – myself. 

I am what I like to call a storyologist and a professional lemonade maker. If you bring me your lemons, I can help you turn your pain, challenges, relationsh*ts, and obstacles into indifferently flushing, boundary-adjusting wisdom, and results.

I love helping people understand their own stories, deactivate their triggers, and enhance the quality of their personal and professional lives.

Natasha has written posts on Why You Need To Stay On The White Horse and What To Do When You Fall Off. So, I thought what better subject for my first guest post than What To Do When You Don’t Want To Stay On Your White Horse?

I’m happy that this metaphor I created for Natasha and used with so many of my clients over the years is popular here on PMS.

The Museum Of Me: Where The White Horse Resides

Before I get into that, I’d like to tell you where my white horse resides. Even Natasha doesn’t know this story.

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Being that it’s St. Patrick’s Day today, I’ve been thinking a lot this week about luck. Especially when it comes to being lucky or unlucky in love.

I used to think that luck was like lightning fused with superstition. You never knew when it was going to hit but when it did, it always hit every undeserving person but you.

Luck was something that I had no control over. It was finding a penny on the ground, seeing a multiple rainbow, getting a warning instead of a speeding ticket, rolling the dice, getting THAT guy to commit, being bffs with THIS girl, throwing the salt over my shoulder after I spilled it, completely guessing my way through the ACT and getting a very high score, etc. (I’m horrible at standardized tests and basically failed the SAT, so I took the ACT which doesn’t penalize for guessing).

Of all the luck I have wished would strike me, there was nothing I ever wanted more than relational luck.

I was very unlucky in love.

Because I believed that luck was such a rare commodity, I did 2 things:

  1. I got desperate for it.
  2. I complicated it.

Complication is your enemy. It makes you question yourself and everything you do. You become this insecure, frantic mouse in a maze that was already rigged from the get-go, to be absent of an exit.

Complication is also an emotional defense mechanism that kicks in whenever the fear of having to act takes over. Think about it – if everything is complicated and chaotic, you automatically have a valid license to not take any action despite whatever red and pink flags are right in front of you.

As far as desperation goes – when you think and act from a place of desperation, you just get more unlucky.

In my life today, I feel very lucky. This doesn’t mean that I don’t have my own problems, insecurities, heartbreak, and triggers. I just no longer feel out of control or at the mercy of having the luck lightening strike me. I feel like I’m my own lightening manufacturer – in my relationships, business, and life. And there is is no greater feeling than knowing you are your own shot caller.

People ask me how I get so lucky. That question used to elicit a lot of shame/guilt, but now I’m so in tune with and dialed into the work that goes into creating my own luck, I no longer feel ashamed or weird about it when asked.

It’s really simple.

So in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, I’m going to keep it simple and lay out how to turn your unlucky in love streak around in 7 steps. These steps do not just apply to being unlucky in love – you can apply them to your friendships, business, and familial relationships too

Here’s my lucky 7 for how to turn “unlucky in love” around now…

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shop the look

I always thought that sayings like “birds of a feather flock together” and “you are who you hang out with,” were so lame. I had all different kinds of friends that I wasn’t anything like. I also dated guys who were nothing like the overgrown frat bros they hung out with. It didn’t make any sense to me.

Fast forward a few years and what I thought were really meaningful, forever friendships turned out to be friendsh*ts. I was also not a very good friend to some people who were genuinely great friends to me. I had to learn how to be a better friend to the people who were better friends to me.

Until you feel good about who you are and have boundaries that reflect that feeling, you will never be attracted to what’s good for you, no matter how much you claim to want, deserve, and seek it. You will only be attracted to what activates you – your triggers.

And your triggers are not your truth.

As I got older, matured, learned, and evolved, I’d like to say that my friendships did as well because they eventually did… but not at first. For a long time, I didn’t have anyone which was hard. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again – as you evolve, everyone will have an allergic reaction – good or bad – to that evolution. Even your own family. The more you evolve, the lonelier it gets in many ways. We grow up basing our worth on not only how liked we are, but on how often we are chosen, and how many people we can extract the attention, validation, interest, and affection of.

It’s really hard to redirect those neural pathways through having the back of the one person you have ignored and allowed friendsh*ts to doormat over and over again – yourself.

One of my favorites, Jim Rohn, famously said “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” I don’t know if Jim meant it in this way, but the real turning point for me was realizing that the group of 5 included myself. You are who you hang out with the most.

It doesn’t matter how amazing of an organic green smoothie you have with the best, most fresh ingredients – if there is the tiniest piece of bird sh*t in it, it’s going to ruin the whole smoothie.

Right?

What if I gave you the world’s healthiest smoothie with ingredients guaranteed to make your skin glow but it had the tiniest piece of poop in it – no bigger than the smallest crumb. Would you still want to drink it? I know I wouldn’t. SAME with you and your friends.

It really is true – You are who you hang out with.

Through the years, I have become much more private, gotten an emotional life of my own, and have realized that I don’t really have “friendships” anymore. I have a lot of what I call acquaintance-ships + a few people who are the family that I have chosen for myself.

My circle is still microscopically small.

Today I have friends of all ages and stages. My best girlfriend is in her 40’s. I have friends who are younger than me, my own age, a close guy friend in his 50’s and another girlfriend in her 60’s. My best friend died last year at 92 (I talk more about that here).

The more I let go of the Sex and The City, Pinterest-friendly, enviable-on-social-media image of what my group of friends should look like, the more I have been able to manifest relationships that have enriched my life to such an extent, I truly don’t know where I would be without them.

Bottom Line: You are who you hang out with.

Before I get into why the friends of whoever you are in a relationship with deal-breakingly MATTER, here are a few things that I have observed about myself and the friendships in my life while writing this post so far…

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