The New Latina Guide to a Fabulous 2011 Year! is a collection of insights and tips from a group of talented Latinas (and one Latino) on how to live life to the fullest. Today, we feature Lisa Velazquez’ piece, on love empowerment. To download the free New Latina Guide, click here.
So it’s the beginning of 2011 and you’re still single. Have you been dating someone where things are just not progressing the way you’d hoped? Are you only getting involved with men on a sexual level? Did you just get out of a relationship? Do you only seem to be interested in men that are unavailable? Or maybe you’re the one that is emotionally unavailable for love due to resentment?
Regardless of your situation, if you’re looking for real love, then you must clean up and make space in your life to receive this gift. Here are some tips to get you started on your path to attract the love you deserve.
1. Take Your Love Inventory
Make a list of your past love scenarios and take time to reflect about what choices have led to your current relationship status. Think about what you valued and what was not for you. This exercise is about embracing our power to make choices and taking responsibility for these decisions. Only then, can we stop settling for less than we deserve and move towards what we actually want and need in our love lives.
2. Get Rid of Your Relationship Clutter
Now that you know what you want and need, it’s time to get rid of the things that no longer serve a higher purpose in your love life. Just like old clothes that you don’t wear that are either damaged, don’t fit or are just out of style. Just throw them away or give some away to Goodwill. Use this philosophy when dealing with love.
In order to do this you have to let go to all your exes, because going back and forth with the old leaves no room to receive anything new. Let go of any resentment and guilt you feel by forgiving them (spiritually) and yourself in order to heal.
Also, if you have been dating a guy for more than 3 months and there is still no commitment, then this is your cue to exit and start dating someone else rather than “putting all your eggs in that basket”. At this point, he has shown you he is not the right fit.
3. Get Rid of Your Sexual Clutter
Casual sex will keep your love life at a standstill. You may be wondering, “what about my sexual needs?” “I am a consenting adult and I enjoy the sex as much as him.” Please understand that I think it’s great that you’re embracing your sexuality. But by doing this you are sending the universe the message that you’re not looking for love.
If you’ve been stuck on a “friend with benefits”, I am sorry to tell you that unless these benefits have you covered for medical, dental or vision, there are no real benefits in this for you”.
If he is an ex or a random old flame, the same rule applies. Ask yourself, do I want hot sex right now or real love for the long term? Do I want a man in my life that only wants to be my friend, while I give him all the “sexual” benefits as if I am his girlfriend? Please understand that he’s just keeping you around as the girl for fun until he finds the one, (and he knows that it is not you).
4. Love by Location
When you’re looking for love, you must stop hanging out at the places where you found lust. Start going to cultural, artistic, charity events. Also, finding love can be as simple as going to the grocery store or coffee shop, so dress to impress and smile. The key is to be open love.
5. Love by Association
Do you remember when you were a kid and your parent or guardian didn’t want you hanging out with the “bad crowd”, because they were afraid they would influence your choices? Well this is the same scenario. Like attracts like and misery loves company. Do yourself a favor and leave your friend looking for lust and your “man hater” friend at home, because their energy may adversely affect you.
Find a (co-ed) group of happy people (some in love or looking for love) to socialize with. Hey, you never know they may even be able to introduce you to someone special. Join a socially active singles’ group or even take up a new (co-ed) hobby, sport or even professional development course. The key is to connect with people that are staying active and enjoying life, because this is the direction you’re seeking for love.
6. You can unfriend someone, but you can never unsex them
Once you finally start dating someone new, its best to take things slow. Let’s be honest, sex is a game changer. Once you do it there’s no turning back. If you have sex too soon it will destroy the mystery for the guy and you’ll miss out on the romance. Save sex of any kind for after 90 days. Just think of the waiting period as a detox. This will help you kick your old habits (i.e. sex without monogamy and a committed relationship).
It’s simply a form of postponement not a new vow of virginity. You need to see if the man you are dating is worthy of enjoying the pleasure of being intimate with you. Maybe after the 90 days you may decide that you don’t want to have sex with him. Maybe you met someone else that’s more compatible with you. Learn to be selective about who you let into your life and your body.
7. Masturbation: The safest sex of all
Ok, Lisa. Please tell me how in the world I can survive 90 days without sex.
If you need some sexual healing prior to the 90 day waiting period (or after) then I highly suggest that you engage in the safest sex of all, (for your heart and body). Masturbation will give you the opportunity to indulge in sexuality where you solely focus on pleasuring yourself. Whether you choose manual stimulation or to incorporate a sex toys, (i.e. vibrator), it’s all about you!
Think of this as part of the sexual de-clutter. This can help reduce your stress levels, raise your orgasmic potential, (or just give you tons of orgasms) and keep you more relaxed on dates. Your sex partner can be whoever and do whatever you desire. Remember, in your (mental) sexual fantasies you make all the rules.
8. Ladies, do you know your sexual responsibility?
Just because he’s clean cut doesn’t mean he’s clean. And just because he has to wear the condom, does not make it only his responsibility. Ladies, please take control of your sexual health and buy your own condoms. Be sure to check the expiration dates and learn the proper way to use them (HINT: read the instructions on the box and feel free to practice on a cucumber at home).
Today, we have to protect ourselves from contracting infections that can and lead to infertility (i.e. Chlamydia and Gonorrhea, etc.) or that can be fatal (i.e. HIV/AIDS).
Also, you need to continue to de-clutter your sexual life by getting tested for STD’s twice in 6 months before engaging in any sexual activity with anyone. Please use a latex condom every time you have sex. Explain to your new partner that this is important for the both of you and tell him you want to get tested together. Remember, even though you may be in a committed relationship with him, he did have a sex life before he was with you.
Ladies, we need to remember the most important obligation, the one that sets the standard; the one to love ourselves first.
Lisa Velázquez offers women straight practical advice with compassion like a trusted girlfriend over lattes and mimosas. Lisa is passionate about empowering women through personal development in order to guide them from heartbreak to self-love. Lisa was the featured guest on Power Women Radio, for the 2009 Valentine Day’s show Love in the Current Economy. She is the resident expert for the Your Intimate Q&A advice column for IdentityMagazine.net and the Founding Editor of The Wonder Womyn Guide. Lisa currently provides coaching/education via telephone consultations, workshops and her online advice columns. Lisa holds a M.A. in Clinical Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University, and is a Certified Sex Therapist, Sexuality Educator and Facilitator for Preventing Adolescent Pregnancy.
Photos 1-4: Volvidejapon;