Are you your own worst enemy? Read on to find out if you may be doing things that are hindering your chances at finding a great partner.
It’s easy to feel wistful about the relationship you long for but don’t have. But before you spend much time and effort pondering the mysterious absence of your perfect partner, stop and ask yourself if it really is a mystery.
You may say you long to be in a healthy relationship. You may even be doing many of the right things to make it happen. But you may also be doing things to hinder your chances of success.
Here are some actions and attitudes that could be sabotaging your efforts to find the love of your life:
1. Adopting a “what’s the use” mind-set. Plenty of singles go through the dating motions but think down deep, “This is hopeless. I’m never going to find the right person for me.” A futile outlook is hard to hide. Even if you intend otherwise, it’s going to impact your interactions with potential partners. A pessimistic perspective will not only influence how much you’re willing to invest in communication with potential partners, it will also affect the quality of that communication.
2. Staying in the wrong relationship while waiting for the right one to come along. Lots of people make the mistake of thinking that biding time with the wrong person is a harmless alternative to being alone until Mr. or Ms. Right shows up. This couldn’t be further from the truth. People who stick with a mediocre relationship because it’s “better than being alone” can easily find themselves married to that less-than-ideal person. In addition, people who hang on to bad relationships are not 100 percent available—socially or emotionally—to meet or bond with someone who is a better match.
3. Turning to comfort food (or drink) to manage your disappointment. Substance misuse or abuse—whether of food, alcohol, or drugs—is a form of giving up. It also can send a message to potential lovers that says, “Stay away! I’ve got some issues to work through before I can be a good partner to anybody.”
4. Spending time with friends who are disillusioned with love and dating. If you’re not in a romantic relationship, you probably have lots of time to hang out with friends. Nothing wrong with that, unless they’re the type who are cynical about love and enjoy broadcasting their grievances. You know the type — they bash the opposite sex, grumble about dating, and blame everyone else for their lack of romance. Beware: Try as you might to resist, it will easy to adopt their negative attitudes.
5. Isolating yourself. Whether you’re isolating yourself by avoiding connections made online, or by saying “no thanks” to social events and interactions, you’re preventing your chances of meeting new friends and possibly even a life partner. In this way, the Lottery slogan applies to dating: “You can’t win if you don’t play.”
6. Appearing desperate. The opposite of isolating yourself is being so available that you come across as desperate and hard up. Emotionally healthy people—definitely the kind of potential partners you want to attract—will steer clear of individuals who appear overeager and ready to latch on to the first willing victim.
You know what you want, so make sure your actions support your desires. By evaluating your behavior, you may be able to recognize—and change—things you’re doing to thwart the healthy relationship you long to find.