Is Bitterness Sabotaging Your Chances at Love?

by eHarmony Staff

Is Bitterness Sabotaging Your Chances at Love?

During the course of your savvy single life, there will be times when dating feels fun and fabulous, and other times when it seems frustrating and pointless. In both scenarios, it’s important to keep a positive attitude. That way, you’re better able to deal with any dating drama and/or disappointment that come your way.

However, if you find yourself bogged down by negative feelings about your dating future, these feelings may prevent you from finding the loving relationship you deserve. So how can you tell if you’re in a harmless dating slump or permanently bogged down by bitterness? The following are five surefire signs that bitterness may be sabotaging your chances at love. Read on to find out how to break free of any dating bitterness and reclaim your chances of future relationship success.

Sign #1: You Believe there are no “Good Ones” Left

Are you that guy or that girl who walks around telling anyone who’ll listen that there are no good single people left? Do you find yourself sifting through online profile after online profile, making snap judgments about what must be wrong with each potential partner, ruling out person after person before you can give one a chance? Are you still hung up on how much your last five dates were jerks, flakes, and/or completely wrong for you? If so, you’ve swallowed a very bitter pill. In order to purge yourself of your dating bitterness, you first have to let go of the past. Maybe somebody hurt you, disappointed you, or caused you emotional pain. Let it go. It’s in the past. In order to get to a beautiful and bright dating future, you’ve got to first believe that a) there ARE good ones left and b) YOU deserve to meet them. And in order to meet them, it’s time to let go of bitterness and once again embrace optimism.

Sign #2: You Routinely Look for flaws in Potential Dates

When you meet someone new, does your inner critic take over, keeping a running tally of all the reasons why this potential match couldn’t possibly be right for you? If so, bitterness may be sabotaging your chances at happiness. Before things get out of control, turn down the volume on your inner critic. Let yourself get to know the next person who emails you, calls you, or sets up an afternoon coffee date. If and when your inner critic takes over, pointing out all your potential match’s flaws, take a deep breath, once again turn down the volume, and pay attention to what your date has to say. You’re going to learn a lot more about who someone is from his or her own words and actions rather than from the super judgmental critic in your head.

Sign #3: You Deem Yourself Unworthy

Be honest. If someone shows even the slightest bit of interest in you, do you automatically write that person off as being a loser, a head case, and/or not worthy of you? If so, bitterness is definitely sabotaging your chances at dating and relationship success. Don’t worry. This one’s easy to remedy. The next time someone expresses an interest in getting to know you, LET HIM OR HER. In fact, let yourself get to know that person. Then and only then will you have enough information to decide if you’d like to continue seeing that person or if, in fact, he or she is not a good match for you. By giving yourself the opportunity to make an educated choice about whom you’d like to date, you greatly increase your chances of success. And if for some reason the person you’re interested in is not interested in seeing you again? Don’t wrap yourself up in a blanket of bitterness and/or take it out on the next person you meet. Instead, count your losses and move on, no bitterness needed.

Sign #4: You’re Skeptical of Others’ Relationship Success

If and when you hear of someone else’s romantic success, is your first response “Give it time. It’ll crumble”? Do you secretly root for the failure of the happily hooked-up people in your life? If so, then bitterness is ruining your relationship future. Until you break free of that cynicism, you’re going to experience nothing but dating drama, disasters, and disappointment. Why? Because you hold onto the belief that romantic failure is the only guarantee in life. And with an attitude like that, why even bother dating? The truth is, you deserve to find relationship success. But until you break free of your belief that it doesn’t exist for you, you won’t find it. Now, before you give up entirely and take up a monastic life, the good news is this: The only thing that needs change is your belief system. By breaking free of your bitterness and embracing the belief that true love is abundant and available to anyone and everyone who desires it, you’ll change the type of person who’s attracted to you, and ultimately guide yourself toward the real love deal. Love that!

Sign #5: You’d Rather be Right than Happy

Are you so married to your bitterness that at this point, you’d rather be proven right (i.e., that there are no good ones left, that relationship failure is the only guarantee in life, etc.) than achieve romantic success? If so, then like it or not, you’ve got a lot of work ahead of you. First, you’ve got to break free of your identity as a perpetually Bitter Girl or Guy. Next, you’ve got to embrace the idea that relationship success is possible for you. Once you’ve done that, you need to work on believing that you deserve a happy and loving relationship. Then it’s up to you to put yourself out there, be open minded, and date (a lot!). It may sound like a lot of work, but it’s so worth it!

If any of the above signs resonate with you, then you may be suffering from a bout of dating bitterness. Don’t worry. None of the cases are fatal. In fact, most are easily remedied with a little work and slight attitude adjustments. When in doubt, work on reframing your belief system from bitter to positive, practice patience, and above all else, never give up.

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