Dating is not supposed to be as tiresome as it sometimes feels. It may feel like the easiest option is simply curling up into bed alone and watching rom-com movies all day. Let’s be honest; everyone has been there before. But the time has come for you to get out of bed. If you’re ready to learn how to date, don’t focus on “finding the one,” instead, let’s get out there and start dating.
Whatever or whoever made you feel like dating was too much of an effort was wrong. You can make dating whatever you want it to be. Whether you’re looking for long-term love or just a fun fling, these ten pieces of dating advice can help your love life NOW!
Love Yourself Before You Let Someone In
The first step: Before you can find love, you must love yourself. Finding love within is crucial to finding love with someone else. Once you appreciate and care for yourself, you’ll be able to find those qualities in someone else.
Self-confidence can be difficult. It’s a struggle that affects people at every age, but confidence attracts confidence. You deserve someone who can sustain a stable dating career with you. Expecting someone to make you love yourself is not realistic. Someone else can’t do the work for you; that all comes from within. Your sense of self-worth should never be about another person because what one finds attractive, the next, doesn’t always. Be who you are. Don’t change yourself for someone else. And, if they don’t appreciate you, well… on to the next.
Dating Without Expectations
Drop the checklist because expectations lead to disappointment. Stop comparing your current date to a previous date, everyone is different, and that is the beauty of life. It’s not wrong to have standards, but to demand something of someone automatically kills the budding relationship. Dr. Dan Wile, the developer of Collaborative Couple Therapy, stated that “When choosing a long-term partner… you will inevitably be choosing a particular set of unsolvable problems.” The same goes for dating. You can’t expect people to change for you as someone can’t expect you to change for them. Every person you meet is a life lesson, so enjoy it in the moment and see where it goes… without expectations.
Honesty and Vulnerability in Dating
Communication is necessary. There are so many online dating tips out there telling women, “Say this, but don’t say that,” or “Do this, but don’t do that.” It’s tiring. Part of growing up is realizing it’s essential to express yourself openly. If you want to call, call. If you want to text, text. Being mysterious is out of style.
Telling someone what you want and feeling confident enough to be the first person to say what you’re thinking is attractive. A person who is secure and comfortable with being vulnerable is communicating, “Look, I am into you, this is who I am, accept me or don’t.” If they don’t, well, screw that. Someone will.
Giving the Benefit of the Doubt
Look, it’s the first date, don’t be so harsh. First impressions aren’t always reliable. You may not be on your A-game on the first date, and they may not be either. Being too quick to judge will only make you end up alone. It takes time to really know a person and what they’re like in different circumstances. First dates are more awkward than not, so be aware of that. Go in with an open mind and give them a second chance if they mess up slightly. They’re just as nervous as you!
Don’t “Ick” Yourself Out
The “ick” is common amongst women. This is the feeling of disgust you may develop during the early stages of dating someone new. You must be conscious that you’re not dating the “ick” you’re dating them. Give yourself time to get to know the person before calling it quits too early. Don’t ignore the “ick,” but don’t be too picky. Again, communicate your feelings, and the “ick” may just go away.
Notice the Red Flags
You may not be looking for anything serious, but don’t accidentally end up in a relationship with someone who is no good for you because you let it get too far. It’s a common rookie mistake. Are you only having fun when you both are drinking? Are you slightly bored by them when alcohol isn’t involved? This could be a sign that the relationship won’t last. Another red flag… are they even listening to you, or are they too busy with their phone or TV?
If communication, verbal or nonverbal, is off, or if they’re trying to control your habits early on in the relationship, then it’s time to move on. There are a billion and one red flags, so be aware of what you’re dealing with. Avoid anything that’s going to be taxing to you in the future.
Explore Out of Your Social Circle
Your dating history could be your problem. If you’re always dating the same kind of person and it never ends up well, then it’s definitely time to step out of your comfort zone.
What is dating without a bit of adventure? Stop going to the same places and expand your network by trying that new place in your town/city, or sign up for activities and community groups you normally wouldn’t. You’ll be surprised by the outcome. And while these new habits may not result in finding the love of your life, you’ll still enjoy yourself by trying something new, pick up a new hobby or two, and maybe forge new friendships that might just lead you in the right direction.
Important dating advice for women is not to do anything you don’t want to do just to keep a person interested. Casually dating people can mean a lot of different things. Many women constantly confuse sex with a guy’s interest in them. Be aware of what they’re looking for before catching feelings. Dr. Nikki Goldstein, sex and relationship expert, says that although women want sex too, women think men want sex “for something more.” Don’t assume anything. Just know what you want and don’t settle for less.
Move Past Your Past
Getting back into the dating scene can take time after a tough breakup. But not letting your past sabotage your future is one of the most important dating tips. Self-sabotage is rooted in fear, so be aware and process what happened before getting back into the field. Projecting causes issues. Using your past and comparing it to your current date will not work out. Your past history doesn’t define you; only the present moment does.
Handle Rejection Like a BOSS
It’s okay if you get rejected; we all have. Don’t confuse rejection with love. People tend to want what they can’t have. This is not the case here. You don’t want that person either. If it were meant to be, it would have worked on both sides. You’re going to have to kiss a bunch of frogs before finding your prince/ess. When one goes wrong, don’t give up just yet. Who knows, the person of your dreams could be right around the corner.
Dating will be whatever you make it. Have fun with it and get to know yourself better through the process. Find what works best for you, and when you find the one – embrace it!