Thursday, February 21, 2008

Turning your fantasy self to reality

Fantasy is a terrific indicator of the difference between what we have and what we want. In our fantasies, we can do and be anything, and understanding what we really want allows a perspective on who we are and how we should proceed. Don’t misunderstand me: Fantasies aren’t exclusively or even primarily about sex. They’re just about what you want without hearing your mom or your Sunday school teacher or your big brother saying no. Fantasies are just feelings given form, and they are safe if understood.

In this exercise, you write down the words that best describe your fantasy self and see how those words compare to who you are and what you’re feeling at this moment. Figure out what matches up and what doesn’t, and then think about what you can do to bring your fantasy self more in line with the real you. Answering the following questions in your dating notebook is the place to start. Then you have to decide whether you want to do the work, practice different behaviors, learn new skills, be more honest.

Change isn’t easy, but it can be very worthwhile to lighten up, become more informed, become more assertive, tune more into others, be more (or less) aware of yourself, and so on.

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