Perhaps even more important for Boomers — what is it that makes dating such a jumbled mess of painful mistakes?

Certainly not a lack of trying. That\’s far from the truth.

And it\’s not because you\’re desperate. If that was true you would have married long ago . . . even if it was your first or fourth, you would have settled for the safety of marriage.

Instead you continue to search for that person who fits what you\’re looking for, who makes sense emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, and sexually.

So how do you find him? How do you find her?

The truth is that successful dating—dating you can trust, dating that will bring you what you want—comes down to one thing.

Yes, just one thing. Connection.

From the time you meet a new person, you either experience a meaningful connection—or not. The connection might be small. It might be a thunderbolt. But there is some sense of connection—or not.

Underlying most disappointment with dating lies a particular blind spot. That “or not” gets ignored, buried under the preference for fantasy connection which takes the form of:

“He\’s just my type.”
“I\’ve always dreamt of a girl just like her.”
“I can\’t wait to tell my girlfriends all about him.”
“She\’s perfect, my parents will love her.”
“Sex has never been this good.”
And then, there\’s always . . . “She\’s so beautiful.” and “He\’s so rich.”

What chance is there to genuinely connect when the man or woman or both are caught up in the trance of their own expectations, the dreamworld they\’ve created around who the “right” one is supposed to be? What chance is there to see, hear, or feel who the other person is? Really is.

So What Is Connection?

Very often you can feel a connection when you first meet someone. You laugh at the same silly things. You share the same taste in music. And you both grew up in the same city.

That\’s the first stage of connection and it can be easy and automatic. Because it\’s all about being alike. And that\’s usually enough to want to go forward.

But is it enough to create a deep, lasting connection, one that continually opens you to new depths of discovery, growth, and lasting enjoyment?

Not usually.

Because, while you may share many things in common, the richest, deepest, most rewarding connection comes through understanding, respecting, and being emotionally moved by the differences between the two of you.

That\’s why, in dating, the sooner you can move beyond social pleasantries the better. Because when you meet someone and they genuinely want to get to know you—and you reveal your unique background, fears and joys, struggles and success—and they let you see, through an emotionally open and honest response, how you\’ve impacted them—then, for that moment, you experience the basis for developing a relationship built on the willingness to connect.

Growing Your Connection

What makes dating such a risky and painful practice, is that too often, because the traditional game-playing rules of dating tell you otherwise, your impulse may be to hold back what you\’re feeling for the other person. You think you need to play hard to get. And you certainly don\’t want to wear your heart on your sleeve.

But that old stuff\’s the enemy of connection. And it\’s a foolish way to treat your own feelings as well as the feelings of someone you actually care for.

Here\’s the truth. For you to make the most of dating, you\’ll want to avoid game-playing by being honest and emotionally available, curious and revealing, right from the beginning. Because that\’s the only way you can discover whether the other person is emotionally available for the kind of connection you desire. If they are, and you have an interest, then you can take the emotional exploration deeper.

When you do, you\’ll quickly discover whether the two of you both want to grow your connection, or whether one of you begins to hold back. That\’s why going for the genuine connection is the best test you can use to determine whether or not you want to continue seeing someone—and what\’s possible in the long run.

You either grow your connection, date after date, as your hearts meet and join in continual discovery through your differences, and that\’s a success.

Or you realize and respect that it\’s not happening. And in that case you go on your way, unwilling to waste your time if a deep connection isn\’t possible. And that\’s a success.

So be a smart dater, and let connection . . . or not . . . guide your future!

Satisfaction Magazine called Judith & Jim the “Doctors of Dating” and if you\’re ready to move ahead and truly make the very most of dating, claiming your rightful life and attracting real love, be sure to enjoy the true lifelong benefits of Judith & Jim\’s program “Smart Dating for Success Every Time – Guaranteed

Married psychology team and best-selling authors, Drs. Judith Sherven and James Sniechowski have redefined the future of weddings. From now on brides AND grooms will be co-partners every step along the way. Be sure to read an excerpt from their new book - "The Smart Couple's Guide to the Wedding of Your Dreams." Just go to