You have heard it all before. You’ll find the one when you’re not looking, don’t look so hard, the right man is just around the corner, love finds you when you least expect it. As much as you’ve tried to put yourself in that mindset, you wonder if you’re half as lovable as your aunts make you to believe. Putting yourself in that mindset is not easy. Try closing your eyes, taking deep breaths, and counting to ten… Did the urge to find love go away? No, you didn’t think so. Who could with the pressure from the Instagram/Facebook era? You wonder if you’ll ever be part of #relationshipgoals. Instead of accepting that you’ll meet the right person sometime in the future, you log into Tinder and begin swiping left and right, and wait for that to implode because it always does. And what about your poor friends, how many times have you told them you’re done? For about a day and a half it works out. Love who? You embrace the idea you’ll be alone forever, but you still have to think about your long-term companionship, will you be a cat-lady, dog-lady, or bird lady?
Let’s face it, you’re also sick of living on the edge. It stops being fun, and it’ll no longer interests you to amuse your married friends, who are living through you, with your hook up stories. As someone who has enjoyed living on the edge, perhaps your last heartbreak made you scream enough is enough. You’ve finally given it some thought as to why you should stop looking.
1. Let’s be honest. Do you really want a relationship?
You know being in a relationship and being in love is wonderful. Few things compare to having the support of your other half and someone to share everything with. On the other hand, relationships are hard work and compromise. You know it’s not only about the infinite cuddles and hand-holding. There are always two sides to the perfect Instagram photo, which sometimes takes twenty takes and four filters. It’s hard not to let the lack of them in your profile bring you down. If you can’t actively see yourself participating in the other person’s life, meeting friends, family members, becoming an active listener, not thinking so much about yourself, etc. Then perhaps you should re-consider how seriously you’re willing to commit because it’s not as simple as pretending you like football for the first few weeks. If you don’t see yourself able to fulfill a commitment in the near future, perhaps your heart and mind are telling you to slow down on the search. There’s no need to jump into anything and place expectations on someone who might never live up to them.
2. You are sick of playing the game.
Often enough, after a less than average date, you end up at the local bar drinking pity shots of fireball with the bartender while you both decide what went wrong. When after you fail to provide Joe the bartender with a suitable explanation besides “I didn’t feel a spark,” you conclude the game is the problem and not the player, or perhaps a little bit the player. How many first-dates must a person endure? Picking a perfect outfit that is not only flattering, but says you’re not trying too hard. Worrying about long pauses in the conversation and hoping there’s nothing on your teeth. The after-text, are you supposed to text him or should he text you? Should you ask him to hang out? If he doesn’t text back are you allowed to say something the next day or should you wait? And does it make you a crazy person if you’re thinking about all of those scenarios? These things can drive a person insane, and while you always try to be yourself, you don’t think many people have quite figured out the formula for how to do this successfully.
3. Your heart is still broken.
Your heart was shattered and everything you knew to be true stopped making sense, so for a brief moment you want to prove yourself how little your ex meant to you. What a better way than to date again, but is it? Once you start comparing your date to the guy who broke your heart, you quickly realized you’re not ready. Not only are you hurting yourself, but you might be letting the poor lad get his hopes up. There’s no need for more broken people, so you stop and put life in perspective. You finally admit the extent of your heartbreak and how time is the only cure, and perhaps a cheap bottle of Merlot, but mostly time. Once you get the simple but needed ego boost, you can look for other ways to give your heart comfort. And you remember love comes in many other ways other than romantic.
4. Your goals have not been met.
Career and personal achievement is very important to you. If you’re not where you want to be in life, you’re more than ready for the next career move. Whether you’re going back to school, getting a new job or learning a new skill, there’s nothing wrong with avoiding romantic distractions until you get there. Sure, it could be nice to have your special someone to cheer you on and encourage you, but you must always be your fuel. Nothing wrong with trading Tinder for LinkedIn. You realize all the projects and accomplishments you want to have under your belt in the near future, how valuable you time is, and also how little you have. Between working and attempting to maintain a balanced well-rounded life, it might seem like there’s very little time to accomplish anything else. On occasion you need to shift priorities in order to achieve your goals.
5. Your life is freaking awesome.
Yes, your life is freaking awesome and you have no intention of changing it. You finally moved out of your parent’s house or have finished decorating the apartment of your dreams. You’re experiencing the combination of freedom and responsibility and lovin’ it. You buy the concert tickets to the Friday night late show. You decide on a moment’s notice to meet up with friends and see where the night takes you. You dress up for yourself and love how fabulous your style gets as you mature. No one tells you anything when you wear to a music festival the outfit you’re slightly too old for. You book the solo vacation of your dreams and the only rules are your rules. And in those moments when you’re eating a macaroons in Paris, bumming cigarettes from handsome strangers in Barcelona, having the best three-hour romance of your life in Dublin, or singing karaoke in Tokyo, you wonder what you did to deserve such a freaking awesome life.