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  • Translator: Nadine Hennig Reviewer: Gintare Vilkelyte

  • I want everybody to close their eyes.

  • I want you to imagine being in love.

  • Maybe you have been in love,

  • maybe you hope to be in love.

  • What was that like?

  • Your heart starts racing,

  • your stomach gets all weird.

  • You call up your best friend and say:

  • "Oh, my gosh, I think I just met the love of my life!"

  • In three weeks.

  • We figured that out so quick.

  • We make these very quick decisions.

  • All of our emotion comes rushing so quickly.

  • But then, what happens down the road?

  • We realize, "What were we thinking?"

  • 50% of marriages fail. Why?

  • Two of my very good friends called me within a week of each other

  • and told me that their marriage of over ten years had failed,

  • even though everyone else around them knew

  • that they weren't making a good decision at the time.

  • You know, my best friend -

  • Her mother and I knew over ten years ago

  • that the guy that she picked was kind of controlling;

  • he was dismissive towards women,

  • and he really wanted a woman that would stay home,

  • cook, clean, and have their child.

  • And my friend was not at all interested in that,

  • she was singing jazz in New York City.

  • She was very happy to have that life,

  • but that's not what he was interested in.

  • But somewhere along the way,

  • she fell in love with him,

  • and so she sacrificed for the family,

  • she sacrificed for what she thought was the right decision.

  • And ten years down the road,

  • she realized she didn't recognize herself,

  • and then she decided to leave.

  • A women asked me the other day -

  • she was complaining, at 40, saying

  • that there was no good men left.

  • And she said that the only men that are out there

  • are the Peter Pan guys.

  • The men who, as she described, don't want to grow up,

  • that they don't want to have kids, they don't want to get married,

  • they don't want to settle down.

  • And she spent all her time and energy trying to 'un-Peter-Pan' them.

  • And she asked me, what do I think, why does this come about,

  • why can't she find anybody, and why can't she fix this situation.

  • So I say to her: "How honest do you want me to be?"

  • And she said, "Oh, yes, very honest!

  • I'm really serious. I want to fix this problem. How do I do this?"

  • And I said: "Well, I think you're investing all your energy

  • in people that are really happy.

  • They're totally fine.

  • Why should they get married, have kids, and settle down?

  • They don't want to, you do."

  • So, the issue is your focus, the issue is your perspective.

  • How are we selecting partners?

  • And why are we trying to force them to change?

  • Or, why are we ignoring who they are,

  • or the red flags that are right in front of our face ?

  • I have women all the time, complaining - in their 30s, 40s, and 50s

  • that they can't find the man of their dreams

  • or woman of their dreams.

  • I have men complaining that they feel that they're being overlooked

  • because they are the good guy, the nice guy, the friend,

  • and what they find is

  • that people are dating the unavailable person,

  • the player, the pathological liar,

  • the person who's already married.

  • So, we make all these decisions in our relationships,

  • and we end up two, three years down the road,

  • ten years down the road, in despair.

  • We struggle to try to find the relationship that we want,

  • whether that leads to marriage or just to long term commitment.

  • Why do we repeat this cycle over and over and over again?

  • And the woman that asked me earlier

  • - that I had talked about, that asked my advice about why this happens -

  • says: "Oh, no! I don't date the Peter Pan guys.

  • I just see them out there.

  • Well, except the last two relationships, I did date the Peter Pan guy."

  • "Oh, OK, so, you do date them. So why do you choose them?"

  • She couldn't really explain it.

  • And then she just kept coming back

  • and saying: "No, no, I don't really date them."

  • "OK, except the last two."

  • So, she became really defensive in this conversation

  • and was denying the truth

  • that everyone else around her could see

  • - the people that loved her the most, her friends, her family.

  • So I asked myself:

  • on the path of love, what happens? What do we do?

  • It starts off beautiful, wonderful, perfect.

  • You're totally in love with this person in a very short period of time.

  • And then, we see a red flag, but we ignore it

  • because we say: "No, no. It must be us. We're crazy. We're too picky."

  • But the problem is that our friends and family see it too.

  • And they are concerned. They may or may not say anything.

  • And then, what is our response?

  • We attack them.

  • "Well, you will never be happy if I am happy."

  • "I finally found someone I love and you can't accept it."

  • "Well, you just don't know him. He is different when we are alone."

  • We tell ourselves this all the time.

  • Then there is a combination of red flags.

  • And we tell ourselves, "Well, all relationships take work,"

  • which is true, but we tell ourselves this in a misguided way,

  • so our friends and family express their concern.

  • And what do we do? We attack them. We're defensive.

  • And then we begin to isolate from them.

  • They try to intervene, and they say:

  • "Look, I am really concerned about this person that you're dating.

  • And I want you to think about that.

  • I want you to try and pick someone else or just end it."

  • And we may even admit to ourselves:

  • "Yeah, I probably should end it. I know this person isn't good for me."

  • But we don't.

  • So then, what happens is -

  • because family or friends, or anyone in our life, colleges, co-workers,

  • because they conflict with us, and they say,

  • "Look, there is a problem here,"

  • we feel embarrassed, we feel ashamed.

  • And so, what do we do? We separate from them.

  • So we don't go to the friends' house anymore

  • because they're always complaining.

  • Then the family gets angry,

  • then they separate from you; they stop trying.

  • And eventually, we realize too

  • that we were wrong and they were right.

  • And we hate it. It drives us nuts.

  • Then we despair,

  • and say, "Are we ever going to find anybody?"

  • And we could have saved so much time and energy and despair

  • if we would just listen to the people that are around us

  • and not to be so defensive.

  • Why do we repeat this cycle? Why do we repeat this?

  • Because we do it all the time.

  • Our brain -

  • I think that the same part of our brain that controls addiction

  • controls our feelings of love

  • because our feelings of love,

  • that intense connection that we feel with someone,

  • which is totally irrational

  • - we don't really know them,

  • we don't really have all those things in common

  • but we want to believe that we do -

  • it's just like being addicted to drugs or alcohol.

  • It's an addiction, it is.

  • And for whatever reason, we're not wise enough to figure it out.

  • We're not wise enough

  • because our emotion and our perception, our feelings of this love

  • controls our brain, our mind,

  • our prefrontal cortex which is at the front of your brain.

  • The prefrontal cortex is the part of the brain

  • that's rational, it makes rational decisions.

  • It tells the other parts of the brain, "Knock it off."

  • When you want to punch somebody and then you realize:

  • "Nope, that's my boss, I can't do that," (Laughter)

  • that's the prefrontal cortex telling you, "Knock it off."

  • But we don't allow the prefrontal cortex

  • to control our heart and our feelings of love,

  • so that's how we get in these situations.

  • It could genetics, it could be role models,

  • maybe we don't know anyone that has a happy marriage

  • or happy relationship, things like that.

  • Some people have this idea that we are drawn to danger.

  • Why do we date the person

  • who we know is historically unfaithful and a liar?

  • They tell us about their last partner, and they cheated on them,

  • but somehow we still think that:

  • "Oh, they are going to be different with us."

  • Meanwhile, the good person is there,

  • the good guy who is honest, faithful, trustworthy, loves you,

  • but we ignore them.

  • I have an example; don't laugh.

  • It's the bachelorette.

  • Has anyone paid attention to [The] Bachelor [show] recently?

  • Audience) Yes. AR: OK, one person, thank you.

  • Des, who is the bachelorette,

  • is down to three guys

  • two of which are madly in love with her.

  • Madly in love with her.

  • They tell her, they're affectionate, they write poems, they sing songs,

  • all this wonderful stuff.

  • Who does she fall in love with?

  • The guy that doesn't love her.

  • And he tells her, he breaks her heart,

  • - I don't know what's going to happen, there is only one show left -

  • but I think this is symbolic of life.

  • We do this all the time, we see our friends making these decisions.

  • Love rules our mind.

  • It seems like we are addicted to drugs,

  • we're obsessed, we're compulsive with this idea of love; we can't sleep.

  • Either we can't eat, or when we do eat it that cheeseburger, it tastes so delicious

  • because now we're in love, everything is amplified.

  • This is my favorite quote here.

  • - It reminds me of the lady who wants to "un-Peter-Pan" the guys she dates -

  • "Never try to teach a pig to sing.

  • It annoys the pig, and it wastes your time."

  • I am not saying that men are pigs

  • - and if they were pigs,

  • women are just as much pigs as they are -

  • but why are constantly trying to change people?

  • We go into this relationship, and pigs can't sing,

  • and yet, we keep trying to get them to sing, and it's just -

  • you know, it's annoying, and it wastes your time.

  • Meanwhile,

  • you're in that relationship for two years, and you've wasted all that time

  • when really, there are so many opportunities out there for you.

  • So, how do we fix this?

  • Short list, but hard.

  • We have to open our heart to a real self-assessment.

  • The woman who asked for advice sat in a circle of all of her friends

  • - we were just hanging out in the backyard having a barbeque -

  • and she refused to listen to every single one of them,

  • who all said the same thing.

  • We have to open up our heart to a self-assessment.

  • What is going on with us?

  • What are we doing to contribute to these relationships?

  • What are we afraid of? Do we think we are not worth it?

  • Do we think we have to settle for this person?

  • You have to get healthier,

  • and on the path to being healthier we have to get to know ourselves.

  • I can't tell you how many people say -

  • Well, they go out on a date and they go:

  • "Oh, I hope that they'll like me."

  • I say: "What?! I hope you like them!

  • Who cares if they like you?"

  • You need to assess this person to figure out

  • if they're a good fit for you.

  • If our entire focus in dating is "I hope that they like me,"

  • no wonder we make bad decisions.

  • And then you have the person who always says:

  • "Well, let me just put it out there.

  • I'm just going to tell you everything that I'm looking for.

  • I want this kind of person who does this, and who is interested in this."

  • Well, the unscrupulous person

  • who just kind of wants to land you in bed

  • is going to tell you all of that stuff that you've just told them.

  • So, instead of putting everything out there and letting them

  • become who you want, temporarily,

  • to get what they want,

  • you need to take a step back

  • and figure out what are the most important things for you.

  • Think of three questions.

  • If you really want to get married and have kids, and you're 35,

  • well, that should be one of the first questions you ask:

  • Are you interested in getting married?

  • I'm not saying to me, I'm not saying tomorrow,

  • but is this