Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

Do You Have a Goal?

A couple of weeks ago I was at a daytime BBQ at a friend’s place (one of my favorite things about summer, rooftop BBQs) when one of the other guests started to get herself together to leave early.  She had a and wanted to go home to change.

As she was saying her goodbyes, she and I talked a bit about what she was going to wear that night.  She’d put a lot of thought into it. A lot.  A LOT.

More thought than I’ve ever put into getting dressed for a date. And so I said something to that effect, like ‘wow, I never give it that much thought’.

And she replied, “Do you have a goal?”

To which I replied, “Huh?”

And she explained that she wanted to get married and have a kid/kids.  That was her goal. She was focused on it and making that happen. And so planning what to wear was just part of working towards her goal. She’s in her early 30s.

My reaction was twofold – first, to reply honestly that, “No, I don’t have a goal. I was never all that committed to wanting a family and marriage isn’t really something I’m sure about.  Never was. I date.  And like having a partner.  But that’s about it.”

And then, I just had to acknowledge how awesome she is.  She wasn’t coming off the least bit desperate (at least not to me, and I know guys who know her and I think they’d all say the same). She knows what she wants and is taking responsibility for going after it. I have  to respect that.

I’d describe myself as very goal-oriented, when it comes to work and most areas of my life. I focus on something, figure out what it takes to get it and then do what it takes.  But when it comes to relationships… I haven’t ever done that.  I’m just out here, meeting new guys all the time and hoping that one of them feels right. Kinda like shopping in a giant flea market, with no idea what I might like to buy.  Maybe I’ll come home empty-handed, or maybe I’ll wind up with a priceless treasure?  Either way, I don’t see the downside.


13 to “Do You Have a Goal?”

  1. Katie says:

    I totally agree your just playing the field (not in a bad tone). My goal is similar to her. I can’t wait to find that right man. Maybe because I am an only child and I am tired of being lonely.

    Have a nice day.

    • Simone Grant says:

      Hmm. About that phrase, “playing the field”. It would seem to imply that I have no interest in a serious relationship. Which isn’t true. I have interest. Significant interest.

      I’m also perfectly happy to not be in a relationship. I’m not sure what that makes me.

  2. SoloAt30 says:

    I do have the goal of finding a love with whom i can grow old and be content. However, I never thought of clothes as such a crucial step toward that goal. That said, I did allow my then newlywed gal pal to help rework my wardrobe last year to find what most flatters me…and I did find my confidence boost. And that boost is definitely a big step toward achieving a number of my goals.

    • Simone Grant says:

      I’m guessing that each person needs to go their own route. Some women will read every new “Find a Husband” book. Others will spend a fortune on makeovers and clothes. And still others will shell out big $$$ on matchmakers.

      Whatever works for you.

  3. Terry says:

    My professional life has always been goal oriented – and it has worked for me.

    I tried that with my personal life – and ended up forcing some relationships that should have never been forced. Fitting someone into my personal just didn’t work for me- and there are more than a few stories there.

    • Simone Grant says:

      I’m like you on this. I’ve tried to force some things I shouldn’t have (because I had that short-term goal to “make it work”). And now I’m trying to NOT be goal oriented. Which is a goal, I guess…

    • Jule says:

      I agree that forcing relationships doesn’t work. If you have to force things, it probably isn’t meant to be. I sometimes think that’s nature’s way of letting us know something isn’t right, even when we don’t want to see it. If you’re working that hard, you have to ask yourself, “Is this really worth it?” It’s unfortunate that you were unable to “fit someone into” your life. Maybe you will be one of those people who stumbles on the right person by accident, when you weren’t even looking.

  4. Leah says:

    I like being goal oriented, and strategic. I think really it’s because I hate to lose, or disappoint myself. A lot of relationships is up to fate/God/circumstance, and cannot be controlled. So I don’t force a plan for myself in terms of getting married/engaged or anything. But I do set short term goals, like this summer I plan on going on at least 2 dates. That’s a tangible, and reasonable goal for me, and if the end of the summer comes along and it still hasn’t happened, I’m just going to drag some random cute guy off the street and ask him out! I also have a goal that I want to be a better communicator in the next relationship than in previous ones, and that every relationship I have I will learn to communicate better. As things progress, I may start to set different or higher goals, but for right now, I just want to push myself to do a little better than before :) I feel like as long as there’s progress, I’m happy, it doesn’t matter when I get there.

    • Simone Grant says:

      I think setting short term targets for things you want to achieve (like 2 dates) is really smart and a great way to set yourself up for success, FWIW.

  5. D says:

    I think dating goals are a bad idea, esp when you are older. Most marriages are not particularly happy, and adding kids to the mix doesn’t improve things. At one time I was driven by fear — who will take care of me when I’m 80? — but then I realized that’s a really fucked up way of viewing life. I’ll deal with life when I’m 80 when I turn 80.

    • Simone Grant says:

      Current data shows that adding kids to unhappy marriages just makes them unhappier – yep. However, it’s hard for most people to NOT want what the majority of people have. People are funny like that.

  6. Toni says:

    I am aimless in both professional and personal life. I am not going to grow old with anyone, in fact I will be defying the odds if I make it to 42 so I seize every chance I can get.