Definition of Loyalty: A strong feeling of support or allegiance. (Oxford Dictionary)
Definition of Dating: to make a date with; go out on dates with, to socialize with someone
I have been pondering the meaning and actions involved with the characteristic of loyalty. I have been told I am a loyal person. I have shared with others that one of their strengths is being a loyal person. I have become aware in my life and in the lives of other people that loyalty can be misused or abused. I wonder whether this is an innate trait in a person, or imbedded in a particular culture(s) or a trait more often possessed by a particular gender. I coach mostly women, and I have observed a trend that women, myself included, are loyal towards acquaintances, jobs, or friends before it is earned. Furthermore, they continue to behave loyally when it is no longer warranted or deserved.
I invite the people reading this blog who feel they are very loyal to reflect on how loyalty serves them. If loyalty is deserved and/or reciprocated, I don’t think there is a problem. But, I wonder if we loyalists take a step back, we may discover that not every person, or job, school or situation has earned this loyalty. In this blog, I am going to focus on loyalty and dating. Let’s see how my observations of loyalty resonates.
One example of misguided loyalty crops up with my clients in the dating realm. Clients are quick to feel loyal or disloyal while dating. I really want to find out if one gender tends to be more loyal in the dating world than the other, or am I seeing this pattern in women because I coach women? I have usually thought of loyalty as a strength, but not when women feel bad or disloyal when they are dating more than one person at a time. It can be a huge gift to ourselves to take time choosing who we want to date and why. My wish for my clients in the dating realm is to first and foremost develop a strong feeling of support or allegiance to themselves.
Dating can be daunting. Dating can feel like a second job. I would love for women and men to approach the dating world today similar to back in the day when dances were held and men and woman danced with a lot of people. It was fun, and there was was no rush to be exclusive, and there was no rush to feel “loyal”.Men and women did not say to the next dance partner, “I just danced with him/her, so I can’t dance with you.” I would love to have people see that the more people they date or dance with, the more likely they will discover their next suitable partner.
Another way I would like to encourage people to approach dating is not worrying about If the person is attracted to them, but to stay in the present moment and have fun. I would like people to notice if the person would compliment their life. The universe will conspire with you when you trust yourself and when you date from a place of self love and self discovery. Loyalty is necessary to a successful ongoing committed relationship, but it is not a quality necessary to date and have fun while looking for someone special in your life.