7 Tips to Find Love Like an Entrepreneur

Dating advice literature has a bad reputation, and reasonably so — we live in a world where The Rules: Time-Tested Secrets for Capturing the Heart of Mr. Right is a best-seller. The Rules authors pride themselves on offering “a concrete set of do’s and don’ts,” as opposed to “other books and philosophies that preach ‘do whatever you want’ and ‘anything goes.’”

Typing those words just made me quiver with rage. The idea that smart, career-minded women should devote themselves to a series of rules that manipulate (clearly insecure) potential mates into maintaining interest makes me sad, and honestly, has turned me off the whole genre. But Neely Steinberg’s Skin in the Game: Unleashing Your Inner Entrepreneur to Find Love, now available on e-book, is one of the few women-oriented books covering dating and relationships that doesn’t offend me. Steinberg’s premise is essentially this: Treat your love life as you would a start-up. You, as an entrepreneur, are responsible for investing in your dream love life. You imagine it. You create it. You own it. Steinberg doesn’t offer rules, or do’s and don’ts — rather, she provides strategies for being more mindful of who you are and want you want, as well as lots of emphasis on self-love, a concept typically absent from the genre.

What’s helpful about this book is that it routinely encourages self-reflection. This is huge. Steinberg demands you to sit with your thoughts, no matter how uncomfortable, and reflect on your unhealthy (and healthy) patterns and habits. So whatever your ultimate love agenda may be, even if you don’t have one, the book’s exercises are highly valuable.

“Being entrepreneurial in your dating life is all about experimenting, flexibility, being open to new ideas, resilience, creating your own opportunities, and self-knowledge, among other things,” Steinberg tells Bustle. “It takes time, effort, commitment, and investment.”

If your agenda is to take control of your love life like an entrepreneur, here are the book’s top takeaways.

1. SHUT IT DOWN

You want to be pro-active about your love life, right? OK, first step: shut down the part of you that says, “I can’t do this,” or, “I’m going to die alone, why bother?” This type of thinking will sabotage any venture, whether it’s a start-up or a potential romance. “That voice has the power to become a self-fulfilling prophecy,” Steinberg writes. “Which is why you need to silence it starting today.”

2. KNOW WHAT YOU WANT

To achieve anything, you MUST have the desire. Figure out exactly what you’re looking for in your love life — this demands serious self-reflection. Take notes. Talk to your friends. Ask questions. You owe it to yourself to own your desires and to act on them. No settling allowed.

3. RECRUIT ADVISORS

Steinberg recommends rounding up a “board of advisors,” which can include friends (and professionals, like a therapist or dating coach), to guide you on your dating venture. “Why should someone seeking, arguably, the most important thing in the world — love — be alone on this journey?” If you’re uncomfortable asking people to be a part of your personal dating-advice posse, as I certainly would be, make sure to recruit even just one friend who can support you and who tolerates listening to your trials and tribulations. Remember: it’s almost impossible to be objective about our own selves. This is why it’s crucial to have a human sounding board that isn’t you.

4. ACT YOUR WAY INTO THINKING

Start acting. Physically going on dates (and meeting assholes aplenty) is what’s going to help you develop a clearer sense of what you want — and what you definitely don’t want. You’re going to fail a lot, but that’s OK — failing builds knowledge. Steinberg quotes entrepreneur Sam Hogg’s article in the October 2013 of Entrepreneur: “Too many people spend far too long thinking and planning when they should be doing. I say, just start…If you spend too long analyzing how difficult it’s going to be to launch your business, you will likely learn that, yep, it’s too hard to even start.”

5. (BUT DON’T STOP THINKING)

Self-Awareness is key, here, and that requires regular reflection. Make sure you’re able to answer the following two questions with serious thought: Who am I? What do I know? Having clear answers to these seemingly obvious questions will help you stop wasting time and energy on men or women who don’t matter. “You’ll have less tolerance for men who aren’t consistently treating you in ways that match up with values that are important to you,” Steinberg writes. Pay attention to your love life! And date like the smart woman that you are.

6. LOVE YOURSELF. A LOT.

Steinberg encourages readers to create an elevator pitch for their “personal brands.” She asks you to take a moment to articulate all of your awesome qualities. So: Know your strengths. Love your strengths. Do not wait for someone else to decide you are worthy of love. First and foremost, YOU must believe in your “brand.” The entrepreneur terminology might make you cringe, but the underlying principle is spot on: recognize your worth, and demand that others recognize it, too.

7. FAIL SMARTER

Entrepreneurs take big risks, as do daters. Failure happens. The question, then, is: How do I fail smarter? Identify the risks you’re comfortable taking, and then identify possible losses. To embrace failure, you have to understand it. “If you can learn to turn the concept of failure on its head, to de-educate yourself from what you’ve been taught about failure, you can learn how to pivot and adapt in the face of wrong turns and setbacks” Steinberg writes. “If you learn how to intelligently de-risk your risks so that you can take smarter, healther, more informed, more productive risks, you will put yourself in an excellent position to achieve your vision in away that doesn’t make you feel drained, demoralized, and damaged.”

Continue Reading

50 Things We Wish Men Knew

1. We hate it when they lie (even if it is to avoid an argument)

2. ‘Fine’ is not an appropriate answer when we ask them how we are looking

3. We love it when they hug us from behind and whisper in our ear

4. We love it when they ask for our advise

5. We love watching porn too!

6. If we’re really into them, We get turned on simply seeing that we have a message/email from them.

7. We’re more forgiving of them than we really should be

8. Bad personal hygiene is a total turn off.

9. They do something bad, we seem cool with it, we’re not.

10. If we’re not getting under the sheets with them, we’re a) feeling conscious about our body, b) not feeling ‘connected’ to them or c) really really mad at them.

11. We love it when men plan the occasional fancy-schmancy dress-up date.

12. Our lady bits love much caressing and mouth-work.

13. We’re impressed when men take the lead.

14. We’re in heaven when they hold our hand

15. They’re sexy when they are — shaving, fixing things, driving and holding a baby.

16. We expect them to be honest with us… at all times.

17. We like to hear how they feel about us (and often).

18. We like surprises.

19. Discussion of ex girlfriends should be avoided at all times.

20. We like it when they tell us whats on their mind.

21. We love it when they’re sweaty

22. We love being greeted with kisses.

23. Even nice girls like hushed dirty talk in public.

24. Its cheating as soon as they’re doing something with another woman that they don’t want us to see, hear, read or know.

25. We’d rather have them break up with us than cheat.

26. We remember everything about our relationship

27. When we have a problem all we really want is for them to listen…

28. Their pants should not be tighter than ours

29. We love it when they be a gentleman and court us… when they pick us on on a date, open doors for us, pull our chair out, pour our wine first, pay on the first date, hold our hand on a staircase when we’re wearing high heels etc.

30. We are emotional sometimes, we cant help it… but it will pass.

31. We love oral too.

32. Their friends say a lot about who they are… If his friends act like dogs we’re going to think he is one of them

33. They shouldn’t ever tell us we’re ‘crazy’ or ‘over emotional’, and if they do, they better be prepared to see how ‘crazy’ we can really get

34. Gifts don’t always have to be fancy… just a little card or a rose on a special occasion will make us more than happy

35. We like being complimented… especially by our man

36. Emotion is not a sign of weakness… they can express it around us…

37. Communication is very important in a relationship… we like it when they talk to us, whether they’re upset or happy.

38. Little things mean a lot to us. And little gestures of love are much appreciated.

39. We may forgive but we don’t forget.

40. We love to cuddle. More so after sex.

41. Confidence is very attractive but they shouldn’t be overly cocky

42. We like it when they’re protective of us (but they shouldn’t overdo it)

43. We secretly like it when they take control.

44. Sexy lingerie is often itchy and uncomfortable… when we come out wearing it, we’re really trying to please them.

45. If they promise something, we expect them to keep it. And it hurts us if they don’t.

46. It bothers us if they check out other women… no matter how cool we act.

47. A passionate kiss is always welcome. The neck is a good spot.

48. If they do something terrible, we’ll get mad, we might yell, but if we really love them, we’ll stick around.

49. We want their actions to match their words.

50. Spending time with them is important to us… no matter what we do together.

Continue Reading