If you're fed up with dating, worried there are no good men left, or starting to think there's something wrong with you, then this article is for you.
Have you given dating all you've got and still ended up disappointed, heartbroken, or feeling used? Then you've probably been doing it wrong. Don't worry, it's not your fault. You may be a victim of bad parenting, societal pressure, or you've simply been fed consistent lies under the guise of "empowerment" by dishonest magazines.
I'm reminding you that if you seek the truth, no matter how unpopular it is, you'll find real beauty. The kind that really matters. So open your mind. What you're about to read might sound completely backward, even borderline crazy. If it does, remember this: Doing the same thing, the same way, over and over, and expecting a different result...well THAT'S crazy. So try something different and do yourself a favor. Let's lifehack your love life.
What's the Point of Dating?
The point of dating is to find out if a guy is "Relationship Material." What's relationship material? Someone you could hypothetically fall in love with and eventually marry. But there's no point in getting attached if you ultimately find out that his views, values, or desires are fundamentally and stubbornly different from your own. Not only is this scenario utterly avoidable in the beginning, but it's a sure-fire recipe for the worst kind of break-up. The kind that's emotionally, physically, and spiritually painful.
Relationship material is someone you could hypothetically fall in love with and eventually marry.
The reality is that most relationships end that way. "Well, good thing I keep it emotionally casual and physically fun!" you say. But that's not necessarily any better. In fact, it's probably worse. Because the truth is, hook-up culture is making us miserable. Don't worry. We have a solution. But first, let's review the problem:
The Modern Steps to Failed Dating:
You meet. Sparks fly! He's hot. He thinks you are, too. The chemistry starts to build. So does the sexual tension. So you hook up. Hello, endorphins! And hello bonding chemicals (sorry, it's nature - don't shoot the messenger).
Once you start, it's hard to stop. And as the days go by you become more and more emotionally attached. Wanting an insurance policy for all the time and energy you've invested, you decide to "Get Serious" by getting to actually know each other. And what better way to get serious than to talk about a future together? In doing this, you inevitably get to the big questions - the deal breakers.
Shockingly, you find out that the two of you believe opposing things (religiously, politically, etc.). Then the fights begin if they haven't already. You soon realize this isn't going to work out. But who are we kidding? It's not THAT simple. You keep giving in to your physical desires because you're chemically and emotionally bonded at this point and your body doesn't want to pull away. Every time you sleep together that chemical bond gets stronger.
Every time you sleep together that chemical bond gets stronger.
Meanwhile, your heart is working overtime to convince your rational brain that there's still hope. So you make a last ditch effort to save the relationship by telling yourself that big lie: that the points of contention, the ideological differences that are pulling you apart, don't really matter. Eventually, it all ends with a nasty, painful break-up.
Now let's follow a different scenario.
The Smart Steps to Successful Dating:
Step 1: Initial attraction. For some women, this is physical. For others, it's a characteristic. (For guys, it's almost always physical. It's how they're wired).
Step 2: Discover his ideologies. Right from the get-go, find out what his religious and political views are. Religious beliefs (or lack thereof) shape your entire moral outlook on the world and are a key factor in how you raise any future kids. Political alignment has become more critical than ever, due to the ever-growing divide between left and right.
Step 3: Move on or go on a date. Right from the start, you've handled the "Deal Breakers." If his answers were disappointing, there's no harm done. On to the next one! But if his answers were what you were hoping for, great!
Step 4: Get to know his personality. Regardless of how "good he looks on paper" (or in person!), how he thinks, speaks, and acts will dictate how he treats you and how he makes you feel. If you're going to spend a lot of time with him (and potentially the rest of your life), you better love being around him! A fun activity you can do together is to take the Myers-Briggs personality test. While it's not 100% accurate, it will give you a good indication of his default traits and quirks, and provide some insight into your compatibility.
Step 5: Discover his interests. Do you like the same things? From hobbies to personal and professional goals, these are the things that make life exciting and unique. It's hard to have a future together if the two of you have vastly different blueprints of what you want your lives to be. Of course, people change over time. And your goodness, intelligence, and beauty can inspire that change. But once people reach their adult lives, they become mostly set in their ways. Don't commit to a relationship hoping that "someday, he'll change."
You're attracted to him. Your ideologies align. You've gone on some dates, and you really like his personality. You've discovered his interests, and you want the same fundamental things. You seem like a perfect match! Now you can move toward a relationship knowing you've done your due diligence. Have fun, don't rush, and never do anything out of pressure. If he really cares about you (and if he's smart!), he'll realize you're worth the wait.
Remember, you only have one heart. Respect it enough to protect it. In the end, you'll be glad you did.