"Why isn't she with you?" "She left." "Why?" "There were so many reasons." "There were not so many reasons. There was only one. You made yourself too available."
-From JOURNEY TO IXTLAN: THE LESSONS OF DON JUAN by Carlos Castaneda.
The characters in the above scenario are men, but women often make themselves too available in relationships, as well. The consequences are usually disastrous.
Hey, we tell ourselves, I like the guy. He might be the one! Can't let him slip through my fingers! So, we stay home and wedge the last bit of peanut butter from the jar for dinner. Can't run out for real food and risk missing his call!
When he does call, we move heaven and earth to hang out with him. So what if we had plans to go out with friends on Friday night? Cancel! So what if we had a dentist appointment when he called at the last minute about having football tickets. Cancel! Hey, these things aren't important, right?
When you cancel prior agreements to be with a guy, you're pretty much canceling your life. Deep down, you don't feel good about it (your friends and dentist don't feel good about it, either). You're also telling the guy that you can't live without him.
And that lowers your stock.
Let's turn the tables: Would you really want some a guy who cancels plans with his friends to be with you? Who calls you three times a day? Who treats you like you're his one and only shot at happiness?
No, you wouldn't. Regardless of his education, salary, sense of humor, and great looks, you'd stop respecting him. Any attraction you once felt for him would die a quick and sudden death.
You'd dump him and look for a guy who has a life.
Now, don't misunderstand me. I don't advocate playing games. If a man calls you, you answer the phone. If he leaves a message, you call him back. But if he calls you at 7:30PM on Friday to go to a football game on Saturday, I'd think twice about it.
In other words, don't let yourself be taken for granted.
My mother told me of a rule she had when she was dating: She'd never say yes to a date for a weekend unless the guy asked her before Thursday. She explained that a man would figure she didn't have much going on if she didn't have plans by then. When she told me this, I thought it sounded contrived and stupid. But, as in most things, it turns out she was right.
Remember this: Everybody, man or woman, likes to win a prize. Being available, but not too-available, makes you a prize.
As time goes on and your relationship with a guy becomes serious, it's important to keep up your hobbies, continue to see your friends, and do all the things that make you who you are --things that don't necessarily include him.
It makes you attractive. What's more, you'll like yourself more for it. Women who like themselves are especially desirable, sexy, and fun to be around.
Be that woman.
Short note about the author
Terry Hernon MacDonald is the author of "How to Attract and Marry the Man of Your Dreams." Sign up for her free dating tips at http://www.marrysmart.com.