My Love Life According to Maslow

“How’s a girl like you still single? You’re so dope!” 

“I bet plenty of men are after you huh?” 

“You could probably have any man you wanted to couldn’t you?” 

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*rolls eyes* If I had to sit and recount or recall all of the times I’ve had conversations with men that revolve around those questions, I’d have to brew us some tea because we’d be here all night.

But anyway, I’ve found myself so disinterested in men and dating lately. The thought of going out on dates is exhausting and when I do agree to one, I immediately regret it and want to cancel on him. I find myself bored and put off by them and I’m sure they’re not boring at all, it’s just that I’ve already shut my mind off before anything has even begun.

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On the flipside, I’ve sat on my couch and watched The Holiday, three days in a row…well four if you count today and have swooned and made my self sick with giddy over the budding love between Jude Law’s and Cameron Diaz’s character (seriously why am I watching this everyday).

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I mean DEEP down somewhere in that heart of mines I’d like to be with someone genuine. I really would. I’d love to enjoy that infatuation phase that comes with new love. I’d love to build with someone. I’d love a romantic relationship where we’re also partners in everything, even in our careers. But, I don’t have the mental capacity for it right now. I really can’t wrap my brain around.

After some soul searching and talking to friends and even coming across a few inspirational articles, I figured out why I was having this problem. So when men ask me if I’m looking for a relationship right now, or if I want something serious, or even if I want to date, my answer is “No, I don’t want to.” So to better explain this reasoning, I put on my fake psychologist hat and let my nerd flag fly. So pay attention, there’s levels to this ish…

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So there was this Russian Jewish guy named Abraham Maslow right, who one day decided he was going to do some research on human motivation. He wanted to know what human needed in order to achieve our fullest potential. So he came up with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

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The chart begins at the bottom where our physiological needs such as food, water, rest and health are at the forefront. Once we achieve those basic things, we then move on to finding security and safety in our lives and so on until we reach that level of self-actualization…our fullest potential.

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I must say that sir Maslow was definitely on to something with his analysis and theories, but of course being me, my order is a tad bit different. So when I tell people that I’m not ready for a relationship here’s why:

Deja’s Hierarchy of Needs

Dej's Hierarchy of Needs

Some people believe that you don’t have to have it all together in order to have a successful and healthy relationship and while in some cases that may be true, I believe that my freedom has allowed me to unapologetically achieve some things I probably couldn’t in a relationship. Life is a never ending journey, so if I waited until I had it all the way together before I settled down I probably never will, so that’s not what my hierarchy is about…it’s about having something established for myself. It’s about leaving my own footprints in the sand. It’s about establishing Deja’s legacy. Granted, I will build with the man I get into a committed relationship with, but I’ll also have my own foundation to stand on my own two feet as well. So when people ask me how come I’m single or why don’t I want a relationship right now…it’s because my efforts and focus is elsewhere at the moment.

 

Getting Back to Love

My career life thus far has been on fleek (I hate that word btw). I am doing more writing than ever. Sharing my story with others and gaining so much inspiration from the connections that I meet, but my love life is basically non-existent. For reasons. I’ve come to understand that I have a lot to lose with everything I’ve built for myself. I’m cautious about my space. I’m protective of my space and who I let into it.

I hear all the time from men, they like my energy, they want what I have to rub off on them, or they want to share my world with me and while that may all be well and good, I haven’t found anyone I feel that way about mutually. So…I just don’t…date. I keep it casual and at arms length. When people ask me why I’m single with a tinge of disbelief in their voice as if I have no right to be, I simply say BECAUSE I WANT TO BE. That’s the way it’s always been and while there are times when I desire companionship and to be with someone it leaves as quickly as it came.

I woke up this morning feeling different though. It had nothing to do with the ultimatum I had received this morning after only ONE week of getting to know someone (it did a bit) or the fact that I am hung up on a guy who’s so aesthetically pleasing and would be a great match (just a bit), but it had everything to do with the fact that I can’t seem to let go of being single. I’ve come to love myself, my freedom and the life that I am building for myself at the moment so I automatically get defensive when a guy shows interest in me.

Perhaps I just haven’t found the right fit yet to make me feel otherwise, so how do I get back to love?

Someone said loving yourself will attract the right attention to you. In loving myself I’ve created a monster that won’t allow anybody else to love me. I’ve tried to remain opened, played the field and tested the waters, but it seems nothing makes me want to knock down my guard just yet.

I get that good things take time, patience, dedication and nurturing. I’ve never heard of anything transpiring overnight and lasting a lifetime that was healthy. I’ve learned that sometimes the things we ask God for doesn’t always present itself in the package we want, but that doesn’t mean we don’t still need it. These are things I consider in every aspect of my life. The way I see it…I have a lot to lose by being hasty and making rash decisions…so I need to make sure my foundation is solid enough to stand on it’s own, but what does that mean for me and love?

How do I get back to love?

Netflix & Chill: The Digital Wingman (a short doc)

As some of you know, I offer a lot of commentary on dating and relationships particularly with Madame Noire as a women’s lifestyle writer. I pick up on trends, follow trends and try to predict new trends in the sex/dating/relationship culture. I published an article earlier last summer about Netflix & Chill and it’s relationship with the dating culture of this generation. I guess, thank the marketing Gods for good SEO skills because my article was picked up by a crew of UK filmmakers who were working on a short documentary about dating trends in the digital age. So we set up a Skype meeting, cameras and I offered my input on what I thought about the “trend.”

This morning, I received an email of the final product and I was completely amused by a lot of the other commentators. Check it out below.