Sometimes we all need a little perspective when it comes to dating. It’s easy to get discouraged – some dates go horribly wrong (and make good stories for our friends or blogs) while others are just mediocre and nothing special. You sign up for another online dating site, hoping to find someone who stirs a little passion in you.
While we can’t control other people, who we meet, or the timing, we can control one thing: ourselves.
Many daters spend precious time and energy complaining about the dating scene and the lack of “good” options. Instead, I suggest taking a step back. It’s time to get real about your approach. Chances are, you’ve developed a few bad habits along the way that you aren’t even aware of. The key to changing your dating life (and your options) is to change your patterns and stop doing the same things over and over. For example:
Don’t judge. You may be sitting across from a man who keeps blowing his nose, which you find offensive or annoying. Or maybe you only date finance guys and he’s a plumber, so you assume he’ll be boring. The more judgments and assumptions you make on dates, the worse time you’ll have. Not everyone is going to be right for you, but it’s a good idea to get to know someone before just writing them off based on an initial impulse. Plus, you’ll enjoy the date more.
Take your time. Many daters like to keep moving from one person to the next, some even cramming two or three dates in a night. While this may seem efficient, it’s difficult to get to know anyone when you treat your dates as though they’re on an assembly line. Instead of the fifteen-minute coffee date, try going for a walk together. Spend some quality time before moving on. (And don’t overbook.)
Manage your expectations. Maybe you tend to fall hard and fast. You start fantasizing about your relationship after the first date and wait for his calls. But then he disappears, and you wonder what happened. Maybe he met someone else, or maybe he wasn’t that interested. It doesn’t matter. Instead of hanging your hopes on one person and then getting crushed, keep your dating life going. Continue to date others until you become exclusive.
Rein it in. While it’s nice to fall in love, understand that even if you feel a connection relationships aren’t built in a day, or a week. They take time and effort. You can have an amazing date but make sure there is some substance past the initial chemistry – then you know it’s a relationship that can last.