We just get too caught up in our own damned heads.
I was chatting with a friend yesterday. Let's call him Stan. Stan related to me that he's got a lot of friends, that a good number are even girls, but he's worried. If he asks them out, and things don't go so well, then he just might lose a friend.
The truth is that could happen. But you know what else is true. People pop into and out of our lives. Sometimes they are there for a moment, sometimes a season. Sometimes they hang around most of our lives. The problem is we can't know with any one what the case will be.
On the other hand, I can guarantee Stan that by being careful, he's likely to continue to get what he's already gotten, which is a whole lot of nothing, for a lot longer than he needs to.
The thing is, Stan is a great friend, good guy, really sweet. The only way he is going to screw up a friendship as he explores a relationship is if he dissembles (“lies”). It's the fastest way to screw up any relationship.
It's like when she says “I love you,” and you, trying to avoid an unpleasant moment say “I love you back,” when what's really going on in your head is “That's just not where I'm at yet.” You set up expectations you don't know you can live into, and then you get frustrated because you don't know how to get out of a lie. Then you get weird, and it goes downhill from there.
That's just stupid.
Stan also claims he's picky. But I call BS on that. It's just another way to avoid being responsible. When, magically, Ms. Right, falls in his lap, all will be okay. He won't have offended anyone else, and life will be hunky-dory.
But that's not how life and relationships work. Sometimes the person who could be Ms. right looks a lot more like Ms. Wrong. If Stan doesn't put himself out there he'll never find out.
So here's the thing. It's time to start asking people out, and it could start with just grabbing a cup of coffee together. It's also time to get really good at being really straight with women. All you are doing is getting to know her better.
And as long as you are straight with her and let her know where you stand, she is unlikely to get all bitter and stop being your friend. And if she does, you've got to wonder if she's really the kind of friend you wanted anyway.
And along the way, Stan will probably take a lot of those “friends” and turn them into good friends, and maybe he'll find the one who would be his girlfriend.
The bottom line is that for fear of offending some unknown person, Stan is paying with his own happiness and satisfaction, and that's just too steep a price to pay.
And the invitation to you is to look whether and where you are paying that price. The thing is unless you ask, it's already a no. But if you do ask, you've at least got a chance to turn some of those nos into yeses. And once you've done that, you can start actually seeing if the people who are already in your world might be the kind of people you'd like to make a life with.
So just do it. And if you want some support, stop by the facebook group, and let me know how many people you are going to ask out this week so we can hold you to it.