No Man Jan!

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manWell, 2020 is well underway. The shiny crystal ball in Times Square has dropped and the littered floor of confetti has been swept clean. While many are dreading the back to work grind, some have already inundated social media with their positive affirmations. You do not have to scroll long to come across people of all ages and backgrounds swearing off sugar and carbs or dedicating themselves to a hefty gym regiment.

I get a kick out of everyone’s positive vibe personally. I hear coaching colleagues lament the shallowness of these posts but I figure we are in such a dark world if you want to post what you are hoping or even wishing to happen in the coming months… more power to you!

At a recent holiday party, I struck up a conversation with a friend who has read my book “The Modern Princess: The 21st Century Guide To Fairytale Relationships©” and wanted to share a thought she had about dating in the New Year. The first thing she said was:

This ‘No Man Jan’ is going to be super hard…That’s what she said!

We sat down for a few minutes and she began telling me some of her dating horror stories from the previous months. From guys ghosting to begging for nudes or sending unsolicited d**K pics to the ones who go out and expect an invite to the bedroom on the first date. My face must have shown my shock when she interrupted, “You ain’t heard anything yet!”

My friend (let’s call her Michelle) has been using dating apps like Match, Elite Singles, Zoosk, Bumble and Hinge. She feels that they all have their pros and cons for the most part. She made a drastic decision based on a dating experience with a guy in early December that prompted her to delete all of the dating apps from her phone and go on a sort of “dating detox” for January.

She is calling her experiment “No Man Jan.”It is a play on the popular No Movember where guys put off shaving for the entire month. She feels that a period to step away from the busyness and fast pace of online dating will afford her the chance to refresh her mind, body, and spirit. Michelle has been on a path of transformation with her emotional and physical state and it shows. All she has to do is walk into a room and within seconds you can discern her confidence has skyrocketed.

What I have always appreciated about Michelle was her willingness to be candid and brutally transparent. She owns her crap! If she blows it and makes a mess of a relationship, she’s the first to admit it. Her disappointment lies in the expectation that the guys she meets online share her moral standard. To date, very few have.

Light bulbs went off as we spoke huddled in the corner of the party. I asked if I could record some of for referencing later. We dug deep and it quickly became apparent this would need to be a series of articles so women around the world could be equipped and see the benefits of a “No Man Jan.” Here is where the conversation started:

Early: Obviously safety is a big deal these days while dating online. What precautions have you put in place to stay safe?

Michelle: Guys seem to use a lot of fake profile pictures and such so I am always on alert and skeptical. If you are attentive you can usually sniff them out. I have a Google Voice number installed so they never have my true contact info until they have been vetted. There is an awareness of human traffickers so I have a process if/when we get to the point of meeting in person. Always during the day in an area I am most comfortable. Of course, my friends are looped into the process for my protection.

Early: Of all the apps, what is your favorite and the one you despise the most?

Michelle: Recently my top two have been Bumble and Hinge. With Bumble, a discussion can only start if you both are a match. The woman has to initiate. Most guys I chat with say they really like it because it takes some of the pressure to break the ice off them. I never have to be bothered with a guy I wouldn’t usually talk to in person. The app advertises itself as “designed to be deleted” for convenience. As for my least fave, Tinder is right up there! If you are looking to really connect with a person, this isn’t it! Most on Tinder are looking to hook up and that is nowhere near the space I am living.

Early: Why is this process of “No Man Jan” so important to you now?

Michelle: Because in the past whenever I had major goals or just things I wanted to manifest and tried dating during that time, something seemed to lack. Usually, my goals would get pushed to the back of my priorities and the guy giving the attention would take precedence. I know it’s my choice of course. But this year I wanted to pause for a second, clear my head and go after some things hardcore because I know how powerful I am when I am focused.

Early: What are two big “take-a-ways” you’d love for women to get from what you are doing?

Michelle: First, just to take a chance on themselves. We define ourselves, not who we are dating. Often women allow our dating status to define who we are. Like some sort of badge. It’s not! I am ME. I will no longer allow my life to be put on hold until someone shows up. I am living well and really enjoying this journey.

Second, I look forward to getting the momentum of increased productivity. For me, I hit the gym early, I set my schedule for the day in the morning. So why not use January as the “morning” for my year. I have more gym goals, places I want to travel and milestones I want to hit in my career in 2020. SO just like I do at the onset of a day, I am zoning out and getting laser-focused on me!

What about you? What are your 2020 resolutions? Maybe you see them as predictions. Perhaps you like to call them affirmations. If you think you can’t do it, you’ll likely prove yourself right. While about 40 percent of Americans set resolutions around January 1, about 40 to 44 percent of them will be successful at six months. According to a recent study conducted, the Top Four resolutions are to lose weight, get organized, spend less and quit smoking. Matters of the heart fall in ninth place. Sadly, only about eight percent will keep their promise the entire year.

If you are currently on the dating scene, where does this leave you? Are you ready to try something radical? Could a shakeup in your processes be the answer you’ve been missing? Follow along with Michelle and me as I chronicle her journey throughout “No Man Jan.”

Opinion by Early Jackson
(Edited by Cherese Jackson)

Image Credits:

Top Image Courtesy of New Direction Coaching Associates – Used With Permission
Featured Image Courtesy of Wyatt Fisher’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License

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