Ah, the unrequited crush.

It sucks. It stunk when you were seven years old, and it stunk when you were in the eighth grade. And guess what? It only stinks more the older you get.

So, I met a cute guy on a Saturday night in New York City. When he sat down to talk to me, the instant spark was undeniable. It was unexpected. It was chemistry.

We talked for two hours while the world around us disappeared.

We had the follow-up emails the next day, an exchange of phone numbers with the smooth shift to texting.

We had a good two days of back and forth. It was okay when he said this was a really bad week for him, but next week should be better for us to get together. “And if not,” he poo-pooed, “then definitely after I returned from an upcoming trip.”

His texts were full of exclamation points! A smiley face even! I mean come on, what guy sends you a smiley face if he doesn’t like you?

But then, I didn’t hear from him again. The weekdays slipped into the weekend. The next week came and went. I studied those text messages. Did I misread this? How could I? I’ve had years of practice and I’d learned better, hadn’t I?

So what to do next?

Actions

1. Call for reinforcements. Girlfriends are still girlfriends and there’s a reason we’ve commiserated with them since childhood days. So I called my friend Nancy and explained it to her. Just talking it out, saying it out loud, made it less significant. Made it almost funny. Almost.
2. Stop constantly checking my phone. Get out and about. Go to the gym, meet friends for dinner, and get back to work. Send those response emails, set up those meetings, get the manicure.
3. Learn from past mistakes. I could email. I could text. I could get the ball rolling again. But I don’t want to. I’ve done that before and twice I wound up with long term serious relationships that ended in total despair. I want to hold myself to a higher standard.

Lessons

1. Take the high road. Too often we settle and compromise. Deserve better than that. Be wooed.
2. Focus on what’s next and look away from the rear view mirror of life.
3. Get over it. Rihanna says it best: Don’t let the bastards bring you down.

I need to do something about my love life. Back in June 2012 my long-term relationship went kaput out of nowhere. Combined with leaving my long-term job, my world was rattled. I’ve spent the past several months rebuilding my world as well as starting a new business, but I need to admit that the heart as it relates to romance is not an easy fix. Raise your hands if you agree.

But I’m lucky to have people call me on it—to make me get active and try some different things to shake things up. Earlier this week I had the chance to catch up with Karen, one of my closest friends from college. We didn’t cover nearly enough considering she’d been in Vietnam for almost a month working on her noodle business and juggling that with two small children. But we did talk about relationships, and she had some great advice for me. She suggested seeking a professional matchmaker. The way she explained it, online dating is a very active, anonymous process…while just waiting for something to happen organically is very passive. Working with a pro-MM (matchmaker) is a good grey area—something in the middle which might be something I can get comfortable with. She knows me well. Oddly enough, my mom called just after that and had the same suggestion! Somewhere around 5 years ago I realized that my mom was right about almost everything, and I needed to start listening to her a lot more often than I had been.

I also recently had dinner with an oddball group of women, and one of them told me about a website called The Right Stuff.  ”You should get on it!” one of the women trilled. I looked it up and it looked more legit to me than Match or eHarmony, so I’ll throw that in the mix as well.

I need help with matters of the heart, so I am raising my hand and asking for it.

ACTIONS
1. Track down professional matchmakers that seem solid.  I found two in NYC and my sister sent me a list of some others I need to check out. They are all free for women, but you need to get “accepted.” I know, the pressure of getting pre-screened, but I would rather that and then have someone working on my behalf than trawling through ambiguous Match winks and pokes or whatever.

2. Call for reinforcements. I need some serious pictures for this effort. They want a head shot, a full body one and an “active” shot. Somehow all my pictures are active so I need help with the others and flipping around my iPhone just isn’t going to cut it. So I’m rallying my NYCBFF to help me this weekend when I will be at her beach house. I told her I wanted the “photo shoot” to be fun and have a bigger calling than just the pro-MMs and Right Stuff. She answered the call with total enthusiasm and already has time slots figured out for when we’re doing this. My NYCBFF loves executing a project, so I’m glad I put this one in her hands.

3. Randomize it. For me, this means going to all the parties and stuff I get invited to that I may normally skip for one reason or another. Maybe I don’t know the people well enough or maybe I do know them well, but don’t relish the thought of spending time with them, or maybe I’m just tired, but I need to put aside those feelings and get out there.

LESSONS
1. Be open-minded. When trying to expand your world you can’t create your own boundaries.

2. Reach out to your friends for support.  Don’t be shy.  If you can’t be honest with the people who love you, then you may as well give up now.

3. Balance includes everything.  Again, it’s so important to step back and see how all aspects of life and ennui are balancing.  Just because you aren’t thinking about your heart matters, doesn’t mean you don’t have serious matters of the heart.

This post was originally published on Got Ennui?

To celebrate the conclusion of our first season of “A “Little Too Close”, we’d like to share a few behind the scenes moments with you! The investigation surrounding my love life, however, continues…so stay tuned for more to come soon!

Xoxo
Ellen

When I began my investigative work into why I’m still single, I figured who better to talk to than my newly married guy friend, Will Greenberg? Plus, he’s very funny. And cute. And smart. I’m actually pretty confused as to why we never dated, but alas, happy to have his input as a friend. Watch as I sit him down and ask him some hard questions about married life, love, and Justin Long.

Who’s the only person who will tell you honestly if you look fat in those jeans? Cuddle up and watch “The Bachelor” every week with you? Kindly tell you to get off the bar and stop dancing? That’s right, a BFF. In this week’s episode of “A Little Too Close”, I ask the person who knows me the best some tough questions. Watch to find out if we’re still friends by the end of it…