Dear Harlan,

I can’t seem to move past this girl I recently split up with. I’m someone who puts all my effort into a relationship, and she treated me like an option. I know she isn’t the right girl for me, but for some reason I focus on the potential she has to be a good girlfriend, rather than focusing on how she treated me in reality. Why can I not move on from her? I want to, but I can’t seem to get past it.

Stuck in The Past

Dear Stuck in The Past,

You can’t get beyond the past because you don’t have much of a future. When you put everything into a girlfriend, you have nothing left if she breaks up with you; there’s too much at stake. She’s responsible for too much of your happiness. You might want to follow her lead and create a life with more options. This means having things you love to do on your own outside of the relationship. It means having balance. Try taking a break from this woman and all women for a little while. Work on putting everything you have into yourself, so you always have options. I have a strong feeling that once you find balance and more options, having a girlfriend will be a different experience.

Hi Harlan,

I just want to update you on how you’ve changed my life. After following your “Getting Naked” approach and writing to you, I realized the truth of dating and relationships. But I still was too terrified to act on it. This past semester, I studied abroad, and I was able to put what I learned into action. I talked to hundreds of girls in hundreds of rooms — on airplanes, in airports, in restaurants, on walking tours, in classrooms, in dorm rooms — and I met dozens of wonderful, smart and funny girls who seemed to appreciate me for the reasons I wanted them to appreciate me. I still haven’t kissed a girl, but I finally feel like I know how to, and I have you to thank. If I come back and talk to more girls in more rooms, one is bound to be special and find me special as well. But it won’t happen unless I man up and enter those rooms and talk to those strangers. Thanks, Harlan. I owe you.

Almost Kissing

Dear Almost Kissing,

I love it — I’m smiling from ear to ear. It’s all about saying what you think and doing what you feel. You’ve seen it unfold — the more rooms you’re inside, the more women you’ll meet. The more women you meet, the more women you will talk to. The more women you talk to, the more women you will get to know. The more women you get to know, the more comfortable you will become saying what you think and doing what you feel. It’s like a muscle. The Getting Naked mind-set makes the world bigger and brighter. The next step is to ask the women you find interesting and attractive on a date. And call it a “date.” Because a woman who is on a date knows she might get kissed by the man who asked her on that date.

Women want to kiss a man who can do three things: Make her laugh, listen to her and love her. Keep me posted.

Write Harlan at [email protected] or visit online: www.helpmeharlan.com.

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