Sometimes dating is pure joy and yes, basking in the thrill of meeting a potential Mr. Right can be exciting and energizing. But other times, dating is a chore. It’s discouraging. After meeting so many people, shouldn’t you should have clicked with someone by now? How come your relationships don’t last (or worse, even get started?)
According to Josie Brown and Martin Brown, authors of The Complete Idiot’s Guide To Finding Mr. Right and co-editorial directors for the internationally syndicated column John Gray’s Mars Venus Advice, you might be sabotaging your chances of finding love without knowing it. In their book, Brown and Brown outline seven ways you could be getting in the way of your own happiness. If you recognize yourself in the list below, consider doing a little soul-searching so you can get out of your dating rut and back on the path to finding The One.
You’re too good for him. If you were raised to be mommy and daddy’s little princess, you can end up thinking that no one’s good enough for you. Instead of assuming he isn’t worth your time, look at people as friends before assessing their relationship potential. If he passes the friend test (he listens to you, is respectful of others and is pleasant to be around), you’ll already have gotten past you dismissing him because he’s not attractive enough or doesn’t make enough money.
You don’t actively look for guys to date. Brown and Brown think that a lack of self-confidence or shyness is keeping you from meeting men. To get past this you need to change your attitude. “If you believe you deserve a happy relationship you’ll make it a goal, one that takes precedence over any other activity that keeps you ‘too busy’ to look for love,” they write.
You’re holding onto anger about a past relationship. Men are not all the same; being burned in the past doesn’t mean it will happen again in the future. You need to learn trust again because without trust you can’t have a successful relationship. It might require therapy but it’s worth it. After all, this is the rest of your life we’re talking about.
You always assume there’s someone better out there. Why are you never satisfied with the relationships you’ve had? “Perhaps, deep down inside, you’re afraid that you don’t deserve your success,” write Brown and Brown. Instead, focus on what’s good about your life right now, including any men you might be dating.
You seek intimacy without emotion. Physical intimacy without any emotional connection makes it hard to realize that someone is right for you. If you’ve been indulging in one night stands or have a “friend with benefits,” Brown and Brown suggest that you “reconnect with your emotional center” so “you’ll be in the right emotional state to recognize Mr. Right when you see him.”
You’re too needy. Your partner shouldn’t need to prove his love. “Having him jump through hoops doesn’t give you the proof you’re looking for,” they write. In fact, it’ll probably drive him away. Instead, “give him a chance to woo you. And if there’s some chemistry, don’t be so quick to find fault.”
You love the money, not the man. You can’t have a successful relationship with a bank account. Plus, “if he treats you just like another possession, you may find yourself replaced by someone” else. So what should you look for in a man? According to Brown and Brown, “his ability to love, trust, commit, respect and live his life desiring you.”
The bottom line is that it’s easy to find a reason to break up with someone and if you’re stuck in a negative mindset, you’ll do just that. According to Brown and Brown, “dating should be fun. It should be a personal growth experience. And most of all, it should teach you to discern which traits in a man make you happy.”
Amen to that.