Dating Over 40: What if I Don’t Love Myself?

Dear Dating Coach,

I am trying to battle the gremlin you spoke about – the nasty voice in my head that tells me I’m too overweight to be attractive to men and starting to look old.  When I was younger and having relationship issues, it never felt this severe.  It’s  only about 20 lbs. of extra weight, caused by stress eating  and hormonal changes that keep me from losing the weight.  My question is, even if I get control of the  gremlin, will it change anything?

This all feels like a big block and I would like to get past it.  I want to feel sexy again and more confident.  I want to send out confident signals but right now this is clearly in the way.  Can I attract someone even if I feel unattractive?  I know that’s an absurd question,  I just don’t know how to get past this. Thanks for your help Ronnie   — Gremlin Girl

Hi Gremlin Girl,

Sometimes as you start to do this work, the gremlin or inner voice gets louder. Say “So what!” and go for it anyway. Nothing changes without practice and determination.

Here is a list of options you might try to work through this and get past these feelings that hold you back.   Many of my over 40 dating coaching clients or those dating after divorce have used these suggestions with great success. Try more than one to see what is effective for you.

1. Bach Flower Remedies
You could try a Bach Flower remedy found at most health food stores. I recommend Holly which is for self-love. These are homeopathic remedies in small dropper bottles and are not expensive – usually about $10.  You can put the drops in your mouth or into water that you drink.

2. Infuse Water Energy
Another idea comes from the book – The Hidden Messages in Water. The author did some interesting experiments with water where he infuses the water with positive feelings, freezes the water and discovered beautifully formed ice crystals. But when he put negative energy into the water and followed the same steps, the crystals were dark and malformed.

To put this idea to work for you,  put clear tape on your water glass and write the word love on it. Then hold the glass with both hands before drinking and imagine putting your own loving energy into the glass –then drink it. This should have the same impact on your body and consciousness.  The human body is over 90% water.

3. Love and Accept What You Can About Yourself
Self-acceptance and love are crucial for success in life, never mind dating. You don’t have to be perfect to accept yourself. I myself am overweight.  But I still love myself for all the things I try to accomplish, my street smarts, my empathy for clients, etc.  Love yourself where you can. Acknowledge what is good about you – I’m sure there are plenty of good qualities you embody.

4. Leverage Love Energy Around You
Next – think about the people who do love and appreciate you – then leverage that energy.  You are lovable and loved, even if it isn’t currently romantic love. Feel that love and own it. It’s all yours so why not bask in that for a while to promote good feelings? You deserve it!

5. Distract Yourself with Activity
Sounds like you may spend a  lot of time in your head. Too much thinking could make anyone feel uncomfortable. Shake things up by pouring yourself into something that takes up all your attention. For example, try a creative hobby. When you are painting, playing music, or even knitting – these activities require concentration and that is time you aren’t thinking about yourself! You could also exercise, do yoga or play a sport. Anything that distracts you from thinking these same repetitive thoughts will help.

6. Don’t Keep Telling the Story
OK, I understand that you don’t feel attractive and you have a story about why that is and reasons for these feelings. None the less, this is a story and not a pretty one. When you notice you are complaining about your looks,  being overweight or feeling undesirable, STOP. That’s right, stop in your tracks. Stop in mid-sentence. Then, silly as this seems, say to yourself (aloud if you can risk it) “Cancel Correct.”

Many experts claim this prevents the negative energy from continuing to flow out into the Universe. At the very least, you’ll stop putting energy into telling the story or complaining about what makes you miserable. Complaining doesn’t help and keeps you bound to the negative story.  Stop yourself as often as you notice that you are saying or even thinking these things.

7.  Spend More Time with Happy Thoughts
Lastly, what we focus on often manifests. The more you focus on your struggle with your weight and how you are aging, the more you won’t like these things and the more time you spend feeling poorly. On the other hand, the more you choose to focus on happy thoughts and parts of yourself that you do love, the more time you spend in happy, loving energy.

I hope this helps. Keep going girl. Don’t allow that inner voice to win. You can rebuild self-esteem, it just takes some effort, determination and consistency.  I know you can turn this around so don’t hold back!

Wishing you love,


Single for too long, Ronnie wanted to find love. So, she made a few tweaks and then dated 30 men in 15 months to meet her adorable husband Paul. Discovering the keys to midlife dating, she founded It’s Never Too Late for Love to help other smart, successful women find love too! Her mission is to share her proven dating advice  and keen insights about men with women everywhere who are serious about finding love with the right man. Ronnie Ann Ryan, MBA, CCC is a Certified Coach who has helped 1,000’s of midlife women with her Love & Dating Coach services. She’s been featured on BBC’s 5 Live Radio, NBC, ABC, and Fox News, NPR, eHarmony,,, Connecticut Magazine among others around the world. An established author, you can find her 6 books on Amazon.

2 thoughts on “Dating Over 40: What if I Don’t Love Myself?”

  1. You cannot change anything by behaving and thinking the same
    Einstein was a very smart man, he said this in his own words
    start by flirting in an area outside of where you live …if you get rejected, big deal, he doesn’t know you. think of it as making new friends by going to meetup groups even ones that involve women only (guess who usually come over to meet you – a group of available – sometimes not – men)

    do something new each day even google it if you have to


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