Tracy McMillans book could just as easily be called Why Youre Not Married Again, Why You Cant Find a Partner Post-Divorce or Why Youre Still By Yourself Regardless Of Previous Relationship History. Essentially its a guide to why you still havent found the one (the one that stayed). And with so many of us single these days regardless of age, its going to find a huge audience. The book started life as an article on the Huffington Post last year, its still the most-read article ever published on the site. Meanwhile shes been married three times.
Clearly she knows how to marry. Though apparently not how to stay married. So is the book about how to have, not to hold? And wont that put people off? Repeatedly marrying sounds a bit exhausting after all.
Ive learned a lot from my mistakes, says Tracy when I meet to ask her. And this book is sharing my life advice - my personal experience - from the mistakes Ive made. We all make mistakes, thats not a problem. The only problem is when we dont see why we are making them. Im just someone who says "heres where your blind spots may be".
Too many dating books pander to women, Tracy believes. They spout nonsense tell you the reason youre not married yet is because youre too fabulous. Shes a refreshing blast of common sense in the middle of a pile of twaddle. She believes she is the first person who has come along and said maybe you should take a look at yourself. And that marrying is not about getting married, its not about the dress or the guy. Its a spiritual path where you learn to confront who you are and your journey through life.
The spiritual aspect of her book is surprising. Its not normally found in self-help dating guides. So youll find thoughts on forgiveness, on the nature of the universe and Zen Buddhism, on choice and choosing to believe the positive, on self love and visualisation. But its not heavy or freaky. The whole book is tempered with humour, with common sense and with simple goodness. And some great quotes. Here are just a few of my favourites:
Youve heard a million times that you need to be a scintillating, interesting, fascinating person if you want to attract the perfect life partner. Im suggesting you want to be a scintillating, interesting, fascinating person so you dont bore yourself to death by making men way too important in your life.
I know a great way to take the focus off your feelings: quit paying so much attention to them. On days when my feelings are acting up, I treat them like they are unruly customers in the returns line at Ikea Yes maam, I say to them, I see you and hear you. Now please have a seat and Ill be with you as soon as I can. (I put the emphasis on soon so my feelings know I really do care about them, Im just not prepared to stop everything and let them cut in on my whole f**king day).
The bottom line is that you can only love a man as well as you love yourself.
Why Youre Not Married Yet by Tracy McMillan is published by Hardie Grant Books, £8.99. Click here to buy or enter our competition to win a copy weve got three to give away. Just send your name and address in an email titled Why Youre Not Married Yet to firstname.lastname@example.org to enter.
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