Beware The Toxic Partner

If you are like most people, you will choose your partner because you expect him or her to be fun to be with, reliable, and trustworthy. As well, you will want your want to feel a closeness with your partner, with the certainty that he or she really cares about you.

However, with the best of intentions, you may end up with a partner who rather than building you up, drains your energy. This type of person is, what I call, the Needy Toxic Person. With such a person, you might hope that if you meet your partner’s needs, and keep him or her happy, he or she will want to be with you in a long-term relationship. However, with such a person, you may end up getting used, as opposed to getting filled up and building the loving relationship you want to have.

The Needy Toxic Person has a bottomless number of needs. They have problems with their boss, their coworkers, their parents, their health, and are generally worked up about some aspect of their life most of the time. They get easily worked up, frustrated or irritated with aspects of their life, and they look for a comforting friend to listen to them and offer helpful advice.

Such a person will value you and want to partner up with you if you are kind and nurturing. If you are a good listener, they will begin to turn to you for comfort and support. This may be positive in terms of looking at a longer term relationship. However, the issue is, Is this relationship good for you in the long term?

The Needy Toxic Person is a user, and will exploit your for your kindness and support. But what tends to happen is that while such a person is good at taking, they don’t usually want to give back. And so what often happens, for example, is that you may be talking on the phone, listening to your partner, and offering helpful suggestions. But then, when it comes time for them to show an interest in you, and listen to you, they will say something like, “I’ve got to go now. But it was great talking to you!”

Ultimately, not very satisfying. There is usually the hope with such a partner that they will start valuing you, and in time, start giving back to you. However, outside of the fact that they will value your company because of the caring you offer, they will not be interested in your well-being. They will be interested in you to the extent that you meet their needs and make them happy. But should you start asking for equal time or expect your partner to provide support to you, such a partner may choose to move on, stating that the love is gone.

In the end, such a person will be a waste of your time. Although you will have fun in the beginning, such a person is not reliable, and will usually move on when you start speaking up or wanting more for yourself.

How can you avoid getting involved with a Needy Toxic Partner? You need to start valuing yourself. You are worthy of having a partner who is for you, who builds you up, who cares about how you feel and your happiness. You deserve a partner who wants a win/win relationship.

If you have a tendency to accept less than what you really want, you need to focus on building your own self-confidence. Your partner will treat you according to how you feel about yourself. This means, if you want your partner to truly value you, you need to work on valuing yourself.

How to do this? By learning to become proud to be you, and recognizing the wonderful person you are. If you want to improve the quality of your romantic relationships, and find a partner who cares about you, I recommend that you read my new book, Transform Your Life Now by Andrea J. Moses. You can learn more about this book on What you will discover by reading this book will change your ability to be strong and self-confident. From a place of self-pride, you will be able to create a loving relationship with a partner who truly cares about you.

Until Next Time,

Andrea J. Moses, M.S.W.
Relationship Coach

All That Glitters is NOT Gold…

Jennifer Smith is now 24 years old and has just moved out of her parent’s house. She’s tasting true independence for the first time and loving every minute of it. She goes to the gym regularly, takes yoga classes, reads often, and spends time with her growing circle of friends from work, college and ever day encounters.

More and more she is dating different types of men and while she isn’t looking for a relationship, is growing pickier about what she feels he needs to bring to the table.

The last guy Jennifer dated long term was Jake. This was her college sweetheart of 2 years. He was sweet, gentlemanly, affectionate, considerate, attentive and very present. It didn’t work out though because the excitement and passion fizzled and they both grew apart. Now she wants to try something different.

Because she’s independent, she expects her mate to be the same. A man “in between jobs” is no longer considered acceptable, as is a man who is not open minded like her or ambitious and confident about his career. Needless to say, living with his parents is out of the question.

She really likes her new boyfriend Paul. When he first picked her up at a Café local to her job, she fell for him right away. Not only was he handsome, he had a strong personality, was very outgoing and totally take charge. He didn’t take no for an answer when he chased her and went to the ends of the earth to finally win her over.

Paul is an entrepreneur that fell into Real Estate and has his “fuck you” money so he doesn’t think twice about telling someone how he really feels, for better or for worse. She finds his brand of honesty refreshing compared with Jake, who would sooner tell a white lie than to hurt her feelings in the smallest way.

Further, she feels safe and protected with him when they’re out because he won’t stand down from a confrontation and manages to stay cool and relaxed during mishaps.

However, after dating for 3 months, she notices a very jealous side to him. And as they continue dating over the next 2 months, the relationship seems to stand still. She grows closer to him but he’s more preoccupied with his career than building their relationship. His jealousy is getting more intense and so do their fights. He grows distant, they snap at each other and neither party is willing to give up their pride. It’s starting to get the better of them.

She begins to wonder why they are still together but their passion is as strong as it was on Day 1.

A month later, Jennifer is dating Doug. He’s the opposite of Paul and like a breath of fresh air. He’s sweet, laid back, non-possessive and affectionate. He reminds her of her old college boyfriend Jake. And after dating for 2 months, the attraction fizzles… just like it did with Jake.

Do you see the pattern here yet? Maybe you’ve experienced this first hand?

Unfortunately, Jennifer doesn’t realize that she is bouncing back and forth from the Alpha male type to the “nice guy” because she’s simply avoiding the worst qualities of her last relationship.

While she is attracted to the Alpha male, the passion is eventually overcome by their inability to build a deeper, healthy relationship. And while she feels connection and intimacy with the nice guy, the relationship fails in the passion department… so Jennifer bounces back and forth, back and forth, over and over again… eventually believing “there is no such thing as a good guy”.

Because to her a good guy is a man that she is attracted to who can also be as emotionally available as the nice guy. The problem with this is that she can’t recognize what she truly wants is a man who is confident… not just superficial confidence, but the kind of deep confidence in a man that allows him to be open emotionally and still shout “NO!” if he feels his personal boundaries are being crossed (of course, this assumes he knows who he is and what his boundaries are!).

In short, she doesn’t know the difference between a cubic zirconium and a diamond!

So what is the difference, you ask?

This often takes the form of the classic “nice guy” versus “jerk” scenario. And the challenge is in recognizing not only the patterns of behavior, but the motivation behind it. Let’s take these two extremes and break them down together.

The man who acts like a jerk because “nice guys always finish last” is just as trapped as the guy who was a jerk and decides to be a nice guy. He’s merely trading one box for another. Either way you cut it, he is limited in a world that doesn’t allow him to be himself.

The nice guy is trying to please everybody so that he doesn’t get rejected. The jerk is rejecting people first and pushing people’s buttons to prove how much he doesn’t care because he does not want to get rejected himself. The jerk fears intimacy. Otherwise, if it truly didn’t matter to him, why would he bother to resist it so much in the first place? Human connection is not only natural, it is our default mode. We are pack animals that have survived precisely because we have learned to survive together.

Both the jerk and the nice guy are living in reaction to fear, yet both will adamantly state “I am just being myself!” I can assure you, they are not.

The woman who goes from one extreme of dating a nice guy to the other extreme of dating the modern jerk also begins to feel the frustration of not having the deeper connection along with the passion she really wants, because he is not being himself in the first place (and perhaps, neither is she).

True confidence in a man comes down to his being comfortable enough with himself, with who he is and mature enough to be vulnerable. The first half (being himself) is what allows him to set strong boundaries, while the second half (being open and vulnerable) allows him to develop intimacy and connection in his relationships. It’s like a glass of water. It may be fluid and clear, but it can’t be enjoyed without the boundaries of the glass that holds it in the cup.

The common ancestor in both these qualities is that it comes from a proactive way of being. It is non-reactionary. It doesn’t revolve around the fear of how others might react to him. He has the freedom to be both the nice guy when appropriate and the jerk when appropriate. But in both cases, he is acting from within HIMSELF because he has matured enough to be true to himself… and therefore allow others to touch his true core. And of course his core, his sense of self, beliefs and identity is already defined.

Likewise, a man who chooses to treat people nicely because that’s how he chooses to live his life is coming from a place of strength. He is strong enough to not care about what others think and derives pleasure from his personal belief in doing good. However, if he can’t stand up for himself and what he wants when it counts, when something is important to him, he is still trapped in his way of being. He loses the freedom of not being nice because of his fear.

And a man who isn’t strong enough to be vulnerable and open, or admit when he’s wrong, is nothing more than a scared little boy. Being vulnerable demonstrates a significant level of emotional maturity and inner strength. It shows a healthy self acceptance and self love.

Without this, no love or acceptance is available for her.

Yes, today’s woman wants a man who is truly confident. Superficial strength will always show it’s weaknesses and insecurities over time and she recognizes that no matter how attractive he may seem at first, he does not yet have inner strength and no healthy long term relationship is possible.

Women of course are not completely innocent when it comes to keeping their guard up! But it takes a much more subtle – and deadly form –with them, which we can cover another time.

Fast forward a few months. More and more, as Jennifer becomes aware of this pattern, as she keeps dating, she begins to recognize what true confidence is and begins to grow attracted to a new type of man. She is now successfully able to separate the zirconium from the diamonds.

The lesson?

In The Tao of Leadership, John Heider writes about lessons from Lao Tzu:

“Striving to be beautiful, makes a person ugly.
And trying too hard to be kind is a form of selfishness.
The braggart probably feels small and insecure.
He who would be first, ends up last.

True simplicity is not easy” But I’ll go John one further with this…look for extremes, in both your dates and yourself.

Because with true fluidity, comes true balance.

Now go find YOUR true north…

Until Next Time,

Marco A

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4 Ways to Find Love Now

You’ve read the numerous statistics, right? The ones about single women outnumbering men, married women, and all stray cats and dogs on the planet. (just kidding on the stray dogs and cats line) If you let the media (or you family) throw your intentions to find a life partner under the bus, you will be miserable. That, I can guarantee.

What most statisticians fail to realize is that there are some women out there who are happy being single. HAPPY. HAPPY. Over the moon happy to be single. Why not write up some snazzy stats on them?

However, there are still many who want a guy. (Sorry guys–this one’s for the ladies) And not just any ol’ guy either. They want a nice, kind, tall, gentle yet strong, career driven, honest, caring, successful, spiritual, fit, emotionally opened man. There is nothing wrong with wanting this.
There are lots of variations on this list, and I truly believe we can have it. But, before we can have it…we need to do a bit of a reality check.

Here is my 4 bestest tips on how to find love now.

1. Stop Complaining

No one likes a complainer, especially men. If every other sentence coming out of your mouth is something negative, check yourself, sweetheart. You can catch more flies with honey…and more men too. So, try to be a bit more positive about life. Smile and have an attitude of gratefulness to be exactly where you are now.

2. Examine Your Perfect Man Checklist

All women have a list. All men have a list. Whether it’s written down or logged into our cranium doesn’t matter. The fact is, we have a list of what we think we want in a potential partner. However, much of it is superficial. We base our list on salary, clothing, social status, and how many of your girlfriends envy you because you have this HOT catch.

NEWSFLASH: if you can’t name 10 character traits (words that describe a person’s personality) you desire, then you need to examine your list, honey. It could be way too superficial.

3. Check The Mirror

We all want this idealized image of Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Dwayne Johnson (my fave!), or some other hot looking male celebrity. Not to say that you aren’t capable of getting some hottie potattie, but, you need to make sure you match their swagger. And not just in confidence, in looks as well. Yes, I said it. If you’re rolling around with teeth that leave impressions in your cheek, hair that hasn’t seen a stylist in years, and body hair that mimics a poodle, you don’t have a shot to score a celebrity.

But what about a nice guy average guy? If he’s into female humanistic poodles, you may find your match. However, those men are probably FEW and FAR between.

To enhance your success, evaluate your outer appearance and become the best you, you can possibly be. The best you is all it takes to attract the man of your dreams. Seriously. But you’ve gotta be attractive (i.e., your BEST YOU) in order to attract.

4. Go Out

You’ve gotta put yourself out there where there are loads and loads of prospective men. I’m actually shocked by how many women FAIL to do this. There ONE place that creates more long term relationships than any other method and yet, so many women are not doing it. It’s surprising!
What is this method? I explain it all here.

My mantra with dating is: Go where the men are. If they’re at golf courses, you need to be there. Take up some new hobbies and be where the men are greater than the women. And once there, don’t just stand there…actually speak to them! Be approachable!

After all, what have you got to lose except your singleness??

Until Next Time,

Shay Banks

Summertime is the Season for Fitness, So What Now?

The number one season for fitness just has to be the summer. It’s when people start getting in shape even if it’s not on purpose. That’s because there are more opportunities to walk, run and play. Where we’d drive or take public transit in the other seasons, the summer has us getting there by food or by bike. Beyond that, it’s the season where we grab hold of fitness opportunities such as group runs, marathons, and more.

The summer is no more though, and people everywhere are starting to let their fitness plans fizzle. This is a big deal for both singles and people in long term relationships, because both groups of people tend to suffer from the same downfall. The warmth goes away, the wet creeps in, and we end up boarding ourselves up inside and forget to stay in shape.

It’s primetime for gyms, of course. All those who started fitness plans in the good weather want to have some way to carry on when the weather turns. They run to the gym… wait, no they drive. They drive to the gym and sign on for memberships, planning to continue their fitness regiments in a whole other venue.

We all know that sticking with a gym regiment is difficult and near impossible for most people. The drive and motivation dry up fast. The membership goes to waste and the fitness levels of singles and marrieds drops dramatically.

This is usually how it goes, until the spring. That’s when images of beach bodies and swimsuits enter our minds and we rush off to the gym again. Even that though doesn’t last too long. When the summer comes we are who we are. Then our fitness time starts again, and we feel healthy, and then it’s back to fall.

It would be interesting to see what everyone thinks of this. Is it true for you that summertime is the best time for fitness, the time when you are more likely to be caught working out and staying in shape? Add a comment below and tell us your thoughts, explain what you reasons are and how much exercise you do year round.

Until Next Time,

Meet Market Adventures Dating Expert

You Aren’t Committed From Hello

I have a friend who has a lot of trouble ending a relationship. This is true for a lot of people, except there aren’t a lot of people who consider a relationship to exist until well into the dating experience. Say, a month or two? Let me tell you a story. It’s actually about five stories, but each one is the same so I’ll just tell it once.

She’s one of the Ottawa Singles crowd and has been back in that boat for about a year. Before that she was dating someone for several years, ie: a long term relationship. That ended mutually and they both moved on. Enough said. That part of the story only happened once.

The part that happened again and again was with the guys she dated during her new found singledom. She goes out with a guy, they hit it off alright and maybe the date ends in a kiss. They go out again a week or so later, and maybe things go a little farther. Maybe they don’t. That’s her business, right? Anyway, soon after that, before a third date crops up, she comes to terms with the fact that she doesn’t actually like this guy.

She wavers over writing him a letter explaining her feelings, giving him a phone call to break things off, or meeting in person which would be the “right thing to do.” This dilemma really bothers her because she feels as if she owes this guy a lot more than a simple wave goodbye.

I know there are many other singles who suffer from this same problem, of assuming the other person is taking a relationship far more seriously than you, before it’s even a relationship. This misbelieve leaves people stressed and it makes dating an awful experience. The fact is, after a few dates, you’re dating. That’s it. Dating comes with no obligation. Not a regular phone call and not an open invitation to a Friday night dinner.

Tell us if you are someone like this, or whether you know someone like this. What kinds of problems has it caused in the past, and do you think it’s a curable frame of mind? Just add a comment below to let us know what you think.

Until Next Time,

Meet Market Adventures Dating Expert