1. “Men are assholes. Women are crazy.”
Just because you were hurt in your past does not mean that “all men are assholes” or that “all women are crazy.” Bringing that sort of simplified thinking into a new dating experience means that you run the risk of making those beliefs true. If you expect men to be assholes or women to be crazy, then that’s exactly what you’ll find — you’ll attract it into your life. Treat every potential date as they are their own person, instead of burying them in the beliefs you have about their gender as a whole. That one person you meet off Tinder isn’t a representative of their gender and they deserve the opportunity to show you who they are without you assuming you already know.
2. “Great love is not something you can just hope for.”
We live in jaded, bitter times and it’s easy to get swept up in that way of thinking. There’s a middle ground between being head-in-the-clouds Nicholas Sparks levels of romantic and being too jaded to be able to recognize a potential for great love when it comes along. We’ve seen divorce and we’re bombarded by broken relationships in all the media we consume, but there’s no big love without first the belief that it’s possible. However, if you’re fixated on the disappointment of love, you will see the disappointment around you. Once you open your heart to the hope of great love, then you’ll start seeing that around you more often.
3. “Dating sucks.”
It has become cool to decry dating, to make self-deprecating jokes about love lives and how many bad dates you’ve had to endure. And, while I’m sure you’ve had to endure some less-than-ideal situations, harping on them and expecting them is only attracting more of them. I used to write for a website and all I did was complain about dating. After a few months, it was having a toxic effect on my love life, as I was expecting each date to go poorly and actually, in many ways, wanted it to go poorly, so that I had more to write about (and more to complain about). I quit that writing job as a result of this toxic effect and my love life opened up in a way I hadn’t experienced. Once I stopped the story about dating and opened that up to be something else entirely (and even a positive experience), I found myself enjoying dating.
4. “I want someone to live up to my dream checklist.”
We, as humans, do not know what we want, nor what will make us happy. Most times we create those lists about our dream person it’s based off an amalgamation of what we think we want and what society has told us to want. The man I ended up marrying had almost none of the attributes I would have put on a list, but I didn’t even have a list to compare him to, which made me get to know him, rather than checking off boxes to see if he measures up to this dream idea of a person I don’t even know exists. You can have the opportunity to be surprised, to let someone into your life that fills you up in ways you couldn’t have expected, and you both can learn from each other, rather than just try to measure up to some list in the back of a journal.
5. “It’s not right if it doesn’t pan out the way I expect it to.”
While a romcom has its time and place and is entertaining on its own, it doesn’t represent the true nature of relationships. If your expectations are built based on someone’s fantasy put onto a screen, then you might be missing out on someone that’s right in front of you. Sure, love is magical and can lift you to places you never expected, but it also demands you be vulnerable and open, which you can’t be unless you believe in relationships that are rooted in truth — not some fairy tale.
6. “Timing (and serendipity) are irrelevant.”
Relationships require openness and a desire to learn and grow with each other. Sometimes, the truth is that you may not be ready for that at any given moment in time. You could need time alone to grow. You could be too susceptible to lose yourself inside a relationship, rather than keep your independence. You really don’t know the divine timing of these things and sometimes it’s not about what you’re not doing, who you’re not meeting, or what you’re lacking, but that it is as simple as the timing not being right just yet. Use your time alone to establish a strong foundation for yourself. When I had fallen in love, if I wasn’t strong enough alone, I would have been swallowed by it. I remember being thankful for the timing of it all, for being spared the kind of lose-yourself-within-it love, because by the time I did find love, I was okay with being alone, which allowed me to open up more since my security in myself was not threatened at every time we reached a vulnerable point together.
7. “I have to be better, smaller, more of everything to earn love.”
You are exactly as you need to be. If changing something physically allows you to love yourself more, then do that. But love does not demand that you lose weight, change how you look or do anything of that sort in order for you to earn the relationship you desire. However, if you believe that you are not worthy of love as you are, then you will continue to make that true, as that is a belief that you hold onto. (Tip: a great affirmation to say when you are feeling unworthy of love is to repeat many times throughout the day this simple sentence: “I am loved.”)
8. “Not having someone says something about me.”
Being single says nothing about who you are except that you are single right now. It isn’t a moral failing or a decry against your personality or attractiveness. I used to believe this wholeheartedly, that there was something wrong with me and that was why I was single. The only thing that resulted in this was that I continued to be single, because this is what I wanted to believe was true. Once I shook myself from that belief, my love life opened up to many different experiences that were evidence to the power of my manifestation. When I believed I was inadequate because of being single, all I saw was my inadequacy. When I let that belief go, all I saw was how the belief was dictating my romantic life.
9. “I don’t deserve love.”
The only reason you wouldn’t deserve love is if you believe it to be true. Period.