Monthly Archives: February 2012

New York is a (Girl)Friendly Place

It’s no secret that New York gets a lot of shit for being a terrible place to meet men. It’s too harsh, too intense, too driven, too darned impersonal. They say it’s hard to find love in this city.

But while men can be unpredictable, flakey, or just downright absent, my GirlFriends are stable. My GirlFriends stick around through first dates and break-ups and everything in between. Because we have each other in our lives, we know we can love. We know we can be loved. My GirlFriends remind me that love lives everywhere, not just in romantic relationships.

My love letter to this city is really a love letter to my GirlFriends. They are love. And they’re living right here in NYC.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Love Life

6 Non-Romantic Advantages to Dating

There are tons of Romantic Advantages to Dating. That butterfly-in-the-belly feeling you get when he gazes into your eyes, a surreptitious hand on your leg, or the big lean in for the kiss. This post is not about those things.

Let’s consider the Non-Romantic Advantages of Dating. You get to:

1. Explore a new neighborhood. Life exists outside your 4 block radius.

2. Try a new cocktail. Your date is dying to show off his liquor knowledge.

3. Eat at a restaurant you’ve heard about but always thought was too pricey. A girl gets hungry.

4. Break in those new shoes you got at the Barney’s Warehouse Sale. Size, Schmize. They were 80% off.

5. Enjoy a luxurious taxi ride home. Admit it, you love watching the backseat 3-inch TV screen on repeat. I know I do.

6. Get interior decorating ideas. Hey, it’s just a nightcap. Who said anything about staying over?

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside Your City, Inside Your Love Life

A Case for NOT Kissing…

…on the First Date, that is.

Dear Mr. First Date,

You know I just met you, right? Our conversation has been really great so far, and the scallops appetizer was delicious. You were right, it seemed a little premature to end our date right after dessert. Since it was only 9:15pm. You were right in the middle of telling me about your sister in Colorado who completed a triathlon last fall. So we went for a drink nearby. Well played, Mr. First Date. That was a nice dark loungy bar where we could both relax in our booth, with cocktails in hand.

But still, I didn’t know you five hours ago. After one date, we’re still strangers. I’m interested in you, as a person, and I definitely think you’re handsome. But I always kinda thought a kiss should mean something. A kiss is not “just a kiss,” but a testament to attraction, passion, and connection.

You and me, we’re not there yet. An air-kiss on the cheek will do just fine. I’ll see you on our second date, and we’ll take it from there.

Sincerely,

Daniella

1 Comment

Filed under Inside Your Love Life

The Dating Project…Meet Megan!

Welcome Back to…

The Dating Project, the newest segment here at The Inside Voice! We’re talking to sexy, successful and smarty-pants women to find out what they really think and feel about dating. Because being single doesn’t mean you’re ALONE.

Let’s meet Megan!***

1. Age and Occupation? 29. Showroom Manager.

2. Are you currently in a relationship? No.

3. Place in Order of Importance: Work, Friends, Love, Other.

Humanity, Love, Friends, Work, Stuff.

What do you mean by “Humanity”? The world, everything that happens on Page 6, the Planet.

And “Stuff”? The good life, music, wine, Brooklyn, books.

And when I think of “love”, I also think of “friends”.

4. Can you spot any patterns in past relationships?

Oh yeah. I’ve been single for 2 years. Two years ago I wouldn’t be so clear on my patterns, but now I can see them.

Before a relationship forms, I get this idea that the guy doesn’t want to be in a relationship with me. So then the rest of the relationship comes from a place of insecurity and a lack of self-worth. Crazy, right?

Now I get it. And I don’t feel like it’s all my fault. I don’t feel out of control.

5. Rate yourself, on a scale 1-10:

Self Confidence-8.5

Self-Love-9

Attractiveness-8

6. What barriers keep you from meeting a guy you like?

I keep myself from meeting a guy I like. I’m the barrier. For a long time I had a hard time being vulnerable. And I wasn’t interested in what I was doing professionally. I was down on myself. I didn’t feel fulfilled, or like I could bring anything to the table.

But that changed in the past 6 months. Now I do feel like I have something to contribute. I’ve been doing yoga, and work that I care about, and I’ve gone through a tremendously fulfilling personal transition. I feel closer to my family than I ever have. I feel welcomed, loved, received with open arms. I’ve changed the way I believe in the world. I’ve changed the way I look at people. Now I believe in love.

7. What does your dating life look like now?

I took a major break from dating. I was on pause, there hadn’t been much. But recently, it feels like there are prospects.

Where are you meeting people? Or where do you imagine you’ll meet people?

Through friends. Now I’m finally talking about wanting to meet someone. I’m telling friends, and they’re keeping it on their radar. Also, I made it my New Years Resolution to begin a relationship by the end of 2012.

Wow, that’s fantastic! If you made that New Year’s Resolution, it’s as good as done. I can’t wait to meet him!

8. What attributes are most attractive to you in a partner?

Humor, intelligence, open-mindedness, loving, kind, creative, compassionate, inspiring, cute, not too serious. Someone who can cook, well-read, hardworking, guys with sisters.

9. a) What does your perfect love life look like?

In a city, moving around, being social, equal parts out-and-about at home-time. It’s hard, not easy. Like in yoga, there’s strength and grace. It’s natural, and it’s also hard work. Keeping your own identity, open communication. Oh, and it will be FUN.

b) In a word (or words), what does that scenario feel like?

Like “in the body”, what does it feel like? It feels like nervous butterflies in the tummy and racing heart. But also secure, deep and warm. It feels like a big smile.

10. Last question, do you believe in “The One”?

No, but I believe you create The One. You show up, and then The One shows up in that context. You choose The One and then make it work.

Thanks Megan!

Inside Voice Wrap Up: Megan is a very special case. She’s starting over, fresh and renewed. She took a break from dating to get other big aspects of her life in order. She succeeded–she’s created a meaningful career path for herself, and a deeper connection to her family. She has more love in her life, coming from the outside in, and more importantly, from the inside out. When Megan starts dating seriously, I think she’ll enjoy it a LOT more than she did a few years ago. This time around, she’ll find the “strength and grace” to stay curious and playful while retaining her freedom and self-identity.

Megan sets goals. Megan sticks to her goals. If she set her mind to starting a relationship by the end of 2012, she will indeed make that happen. I’m looking forward to meeting the lucky guy!

***Some names have been changed, some haven’t. Each woman has the option to use her own name or choose her fantasy pseudonym. I’m not telling which ones are which. Hear these women’s voices. Listen to their stories. They’re just like you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your City, Inside Your Family, Inside Your Love Life

6 Ways to Describe Single Women

Single Women can be described in over 600 ways. Or Six.

I spend much of my time with Single Women. They inspire me, and they challenge me. Hell, some of my best friends are Single Women. And as you probably know, I used to be a Single Woman myself. Over the years, I’ve found that Single Women are…

1. Happy. Single women serve their own needs first. And a girl needs to be happy. If happiness lives in a box of Jacques Torres chocolate truffles and a restorative yoga class on Friday night, so be it. Who’s going to argue otherwise?

2. Connected. Single women have strong, solid relationships. They communicate clearly and often, with dear friends and chosen family. Single women have friendships that only deepen with time and trials and tribulations. Friendships can outlive boyfriend after boyfriend.

3. Feminine. Single Women tend to know other Single Women. And when you put a few Single Women in one space, you get a full-blown Goddess Gathering. That is, you get a group of women who are not afraid to be as “feminine” as they naturally are. Women communicate and share. Women tackle sticky topics like work, sex, babies, mothers, fathers, pain, fears, and true happiness. Women emote. Single Women emote a lot.

4. Hot. Single women are hot. Single Women are in your yoga class, rocking out in spinning class, and treating themselves to sushi dinners. Single women dine out on small plates and a glass (or 3) of wine. Most Single Women eat out a lot. And eating out, contrary to popular belief, is not fattening. However, it is expensive. Hence, the small plates, and the skinny jeans.

5. Stylish. Single Women have great wardrobes. They know where to shop, and how to shop. They know how to show off their best features. Single Women are peacocks, after all.

6. Rockstars. Single Women are Rockstars, at least according to Great Aunt Roz in Fort Lauderdale. If you’re a Single Woman, the relatives think you’re fabulous, or famous, or both. So what if they don’t quite understand what you do for a living, or how you spend your time and money? They can see that Single Women do things a little differently from most of the nice girls in your high school graduating class. Single Women have parties to attend, and people to see. Single Women are the family Rockstars!

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your Closet, Inside Your Family, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Love Life, Inside Your Lunch Pail

Valentine’s Day, Will You Be My Valentine?

I’ve got a new Valentine this year. And it’s Valentines Day.

I used to treat Valentine’s Day like New Year’s Eve–I’d bury my head under the pillows and wait for the whole thing to pass. Flowers die, chocolate truffles are fattening, and expensive dinners are, well, out of my budget. I’d stay in my pajamas, reading Glamour Magazine till the clock struck midnight on February 15th. Valentine’s Day and me, we weren’t even acquaintances, let alone friends.

Today, Valentine’s Day and I are getting to know each other better. We’re only on our second date, but things seem to be moving along swell. I’m feeling hopeful. My Nice Boyfriend is a romantic, he likes flowers. I’ve decided chocolate covered strawberries are healthy. And sitting at the bar at a fancy restaurant is actually kind of cozy and cheap-ish. Maybe Valentine’s Day isn’t so bad, after all.

Valentine’s Day, will you be my Valentine?

1 Comment

Filed under Inside Your Love Life

Top 10 Dating Tips: From Me. To Me.

Hello my loves! I’m still so ridiculously thrilled to present the Top 1o Dating Tips: From Me. To Me.! Already, I’ve learned SO much about what women wish they’d known 10 years ago.

Here’s the Deal: I have the honor of interviewing the bestest women on the planet for The Dating Project. And at the very end of these interviews, when the pen is down, the book is closed, the interview is ov-ah, I’ve been slipping in one more teensy-weensy little question:

“What Advice Would You Give Your 10-Year-Younger Self?”

Here’s what our women said:

1. The worst thing that’s gonna happen is you’ll get hurt. And you’ll live.

2. You’ll love again.

3. It’s worth it, go for it!

4. When things get intense, let the moment pass. Don’t give in to the knee-jerk reaction, you’ll say something you don’t really mean.

5. Don’t forget about your friends. Don’t get so wrapped up in the relationship that your friends “forget” to invite you to things.

6. It’s OK to let your boyfriend see how batshit crazy you are. Better sooner than later.

7. Enjoy this time. You’ll have everything you want very soon. So for now, have fun where you are.

8. Trust your gut.

9. Even if it’s not convenient to break up, do it anyway.

10. Men are SO much more insecure than you realize.

1 Comment

Filed under Inside Your Love Life

Nice View!

So there I was, looking through some old posts, when I came across this romantic piece of crazytown.
Way back in September, I thought I’d never, ever in a million years experience a change of scenery.  I looked out my window, accepting that view as the only one I’d ever know. Sigh.

Well, that’s just silly. Cause baby, I moved! And I couldn’t be happier. But you have to admit, the views in my old apartment were pretty cool, right?

BEFORE

AFTER

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside Your City

The Dating Project…Meet Rita!

Welcome Back to…

The Dating Project, the newest segment here at The Inside Voice! We’re talking to sexy, successful and smarty-pants women to find out what they really think and feel about dating. Because being single doesn’t mean you’re ALONE.

Let’s meet Rita!***

1. Age and Occupation? 23. Yoga Studio Manager, Continuous Student.

2. Are you currently in a relationship? Yes.

Ooooh, tell me more!

We started dating last June, and it was casual until September. Then I ended it because it got too serious. He continued to pursue me and I gave in. I wasn’t ready for a relationship until I was, I guess. We got back together in early November. It’s been good ever since.

Interesting! We’ll go deeper into your current relationship in a little bit. But for now…

3. Place in Order of Importance: Work, Friends, Love, Other.

Other, Friends, Love, Work.

What’s “Other” for you? Everyday happiness. Yoga. Good food. Self-Work–that’s definitely my number 1.

4. Can you spot any patterns in past relationships?

My friends call me a “Manizer.” I don’t make the men a priority. I tend to not take the dating relationship seriously. And I’m finding that that behavior can hurt people. I need to be up front about my expectations, right from the start. I usually don’t want to be in a serious relationship, and men often expect that I do.

Also, I have communication issues. I’m such a girl’s girl, I’m used to just talking and relating to women. Men have the capacity to listen and be there for you, but it’s not automatic for them. Men often interject, try to help, or solve a problem. They don’t know when I just want to vent. And I never think to ask for that, specifically.

5. Rate yourself, on a scale 1-10:

Self Confidence-It depends on the arena. Person to person, I’m a 9. In front of the camera, I’m a 1. It’s easy for me to just talk to people, one on one. But, my boyfriend is a photographer. And I realize how NOT confident I am when I get my picture taken. I used to be a model when I came to New York. I developed some unhealthy habits and ideas. I went through this period of not letting myself enjoy food. Yoga totally changed things for me, and I’m in a good place now with my body. I can enjoy the experience of being me, without all the restrictions. But still, that residual stuff with the camera is there. The camera makes me feel like I’m under examination.

Self-Love-10

Attractiveness-8. I’m not necessarily at my peak. I’m waiting for my 30’s.

6. What barriers keep you from meeting a guy you like?

If their lifestyle doesn’t compliment mine, I don’t give them a chance.

7. What does your dating life look like now?

Now I’m in a relationship. I have to stop questioning it, and accept that I’m here in this relationship. We do lots of activities. We have movie night, cooking night, going-out-with-friends night. We both love theater, plays and dance. And he’ll just go out and get a couple of tickets to music concerts. It’s nice. I’d been developing resistance to New York City lately, and this relationship makes me enjoy New York much more.

8. What attributes are most attractive to you in a partner?

Sense of humor. Open mind. Genuinely nice–It’s a deal breaker if a guy is rude to waiters, or anyone else for that matter. Creative. Cute.

9. a) What does your perfect love life look like?

Pretty domestic. I’m such a homebody. We have an intertwined spiritual practice. We may not go to all the same yoga classes, but it’s part of our daily lives. We have quiet meditative time around the house. We’ll both create. Maybe he’ll paint, and I’ll sit and sew something, and we’ll come over and look at each other’s work every now and then.

b) In a word (or words), what does that scenario feel like?

Like one of those internal smiles that can’t go away. It feels like something I’d never want to leave.

10. Last question, do you believe in “The One”?

No. But I believe you can create The One. You choose The One. If you make him your One, he’s The One. But if it doesn’t work out with that One, you can make another One.

Thanks Rita!

Inside Voice Wrap Up: Rita knows herself well. (She knows herself far better than I knew myself at 23. Just sayin’.)  Rita is interested in self exploration. She’s a perfect example what it looks like to use dating as a medium for self growth. She’s finding her place in the world. Without defining herself by her career–because really, at this point she hasn’t truly committed to one–Rita is free to define herself any way she chooses. She is soulful, artistic, and enjoys flirting with men in every which way. She also keeps things light. She has a knee-jerk flight response when relationships get too serious. With her current boyfriend, Rita can enjoy the freedom of being single, yet enjoy the companionship of a partner when she wants it. This is perfect for Rita. Because Rita is, at heart, a single woman. She’s figuring out to make herself as happy as possible. And when she does, a partner will only add to that joy. But until then, Rita is rocking out on her dating path of self-love and self discovery.

***Some names have been changed, some haven’t. Each woman has the option to use her own name or choose her fantasy pseudonym. I’m not telling which ones are which. Hear these women’s voices. Listen to their stories. They’re just like you!

Leave a comment

Filed under Inside the Yoga Studio, Inside Your Career, Inside Your City, Inside Your Friendships, Inside Your Love Life