Sometimes dating seems like an endless arduous journey. It goes on and on, the roads are usually bumpy and so many obstacles along the way trip you up and hurt you. It almost seems like your “happily ever after” is actually your “happily never after”. So how do you keep yourself from being discouraged? How do you keep your sanity when you’re going on bad date after bad date, failed relationship after failed relationship and the great love that wasn’t. Well, you can, it’s all about making the choice. How so? Well, here is how I helped one reader see things a little more positively.
Dear Single Dating Diva,
I used to be so hopeful when it came to love. I dreamed of the white picket fence, the husband, the kids, the dog and my happily ever after. Year after year passed and date after date and relationship after relationship and I’m sitting here in my 30’s all alone. I can’t help but feel extremely discouraged by all of this. I don’t know what’s wrong with me because all the people around me found their happiness but not me. I think I’m a normal, attractive girl, so what’s wrong? Why can’t I find him? I’m getting to the point of just giving up. It’s not worth it anymore. Where do I meet him? How do I end this vicious cycle? How do I get MY happily ever after?
Happily Never After
Dear Happily Never After,
Thanks for your question, you aren’t alone in your frustration. It’s so very hard to really really want something and see other people with it and even though you’re happy for them you are sad for you. I totally get it. I’ve been there, I know. It’s disheartening. It makes you sad. I’ll even hazard a guess that you just sit there and cry sometimes from the sheer frustration of it all! But, before you throw in the towel let’s chat a bit about how you got here and your dating approach. It’s easy to get all caught up in what you don’t have that you forget to discern how you got there and why. You need to know yourself and be able to think about all the dates and relationships you’ve had and what went well and what went wrong. Remember, you’ve rejected people too. It’s all about choices, it’s about self awareness and it’s about patience. Good relationships take time. I know some people find their “happily ever after” almost instantaneously but most don’t. Just like the Supremes sang “you can’t hurry love, you’ll just have to wait, love don’t come easy, it’s a game of give and take.” So, how do you reach your goal and acquire a +1? Here are some tips to keep in mind …
How to go from Happily Never After to Happily Ever After
1. Attitude Adjustment: You need to stop thinking about it. Yes, you heard me. Stop it. Enough with the dating pity party! Stop feeling sorry for yourself. Be proud that you are single because it’s better to be single than in the wrong relationship. I will let you in on a little secret, but shh don’t tell ANYONE … some of those people in relationship wish they were you! They rushed into the wrong relationship because they didn’t want to be alone and now ended up unhappy. It’s better to wait for the right person, take your time and not regret anything. Trust me, I know from experience. Just enjoy your life whatever your relationship status is! Have fun!!
2. Be Your Best You: You always have to put your best foot forward. Looking and thinking your best makes you feel good and that is reflected in your interactions. People naturally gravitate to others who are positive and confident. They want to be around you. They want your secret! So do men when they meet women. They don’t want a woman who feels sorry for herself. Actually, no one wants to hang out with someone who brings them down. Don’t let your single status define you. Single is what you are NOT who you are, there is a difference. You also want to deal with whatever baggage you have. Don’t judge current relationships or people you date by your experience with others. Each person is a new person and treat the experience as entirely new.
3. Look For Love in ALL The RIGHT Places: Love is all around you. Surrounding yourself with good people will attract other good people. Just do your thing and the right people will gravitate towards you. Whenever anyone asks me where they can meet a mate I tell them the best place is by doing things they’re already doing. There are a lot of other singles who are in the same boat as you doing the things you do, you just need to tap into the right communities. Join clubs, meetups or take classes in something you are interested in. This will allow you to meet others with similar interests. You are also more comfortable when you are “in your element”. Online dating is not always the best way, but will give you some options that you might not have considered otherwise.
4: Have Good Social Skills: Adequate social skills are paramount to successful dating! I can’t stress that enough!! So many of the clients I’ve had and dates I’ve met have had one thing in common, they couldn’t carry on an interesting conversation and had terrible social skills. You need to know how to interact with others. One important part of that is listening. Listening and dating should go hand in hand. This means knowing how to actively listen which includes paraphrasing and being interested in what the other person is saying. We sometimes think we are good at interaction but really we’re sending the opposite body language. Are you slouching? Are you easily distracted? Are you playing with your phone? Don’t miss the opportunity to show someone you like them and you’re interested with eye contact, by sitting up and leaning towards them and SMILING. Be someone people want to be around. Just something to keep in mind when you go on your next date! Even when you interact with anyone, trust me be self-aware and it might just do the trick.
5. Manage Dating Expectations: I recently wrote an article called Managing Dating Expectations. In it I wrote about how we are our worst enemies when we are dating because we put too much pressure on ourselves and those we date. Instead of just going with the flow and enjoying someone’s company and move in the same direction naturally, we are pushy and want to define things too quickly. Although it’s important to be walking in the same direction and to state your expectations and intentions clearly, you need to stop stressing about it. Start by making sure you’re on the same page to begin with and then just chill. When you focus too much on the outcome and “where’s this going” you miss out on all the fun parts of getting to know each other and also miss red flags because of your one track mind. You also start sounding like a broken record which isn’t good for anyone. Dating should be a fun, enjoyable, process where you not only get to know someone else but you get to know yourself too. Remember, things always fall into place where they are supposed to so stop thinking about it. Just be.
Just because you haven’t found your happily ever after doesn’t mean you won’t. Just be patient and enjoy the process. It will come when it’s the right time for you. The only thing you can do is be true to you and live your life. Be happy. Don’t sweat it. Enjoy your life. Living your BEST single life will make you happier which in turn will project a better image of yourself and putting out positive energy will attract positive things. Plain. Simple.
READERS: What advice would you give this reader? Did you go from happily never after to happily ever after? We would love to hear about it in the comments section below!
Your Sister in Dating Bliss,
Single Dating Diva
Copyright Single Dating Diva
I read your post with a great interest. I am very sociable…I mean, I like meeting my friends and spend time with them, but most of the time when there are too many unfamiliar faces I withdraw quickly. I just feel too intimidated.
I go to the gym very often and there are a lot of hot guys there, but most of the time I just put my headphones on and don’t care about anybody else around. On one hand I want to meet someone, on the other I just can’t be bothered with the chit chat.
Many dating advice say that you should join a club and do what makes you happy. What if the things that I enjoy doing, I enjoy doing alone? I love coming back home from the gym and watching a movie after I shower, I like reading a book in my bed. I also like photography and like going around the city taking photos – and let me be clear I like doing them ALONE. Doing them with another person would kill the enjoyment.
My social skills are good. People like me and most of the time I like them, but I am also a bit of a loner. I think it is hard for a person like me to meet new people.
Thanks for your comment. Different things work for different people and not all dating suggestion work for everyone. You need to find what works for you and stick to it. We all love our alone time, but, are you sending off signals to potential mates that you would rather be left alone? Sometimes our body language says more than our words. Just some food for thought …
I too enjoy solitary activities, so I can relate. I’m just shy of a year out of my last long term relationship, so I’m not sweating it. I guess we just need to have faith that when and if it’s supposed to happen, it’ll happen. That’s hard for someone like me who likes to be more proactive in my life, but I’m finding this is the one area where I have to let go of the reins and just be.
Thanks for sharing! It’s also been a challenge for me but once I learned to let go of my need to control and plan then I became much happier.
It’s hard to see everyone around you getting what they want (or at least that’s how you view it as an outsider) and you wonder when it’s going to be your turn. Sometimes to find what you want you have to step outside your comfort zone. If you see a hot guy, say hi! If you are out with friends and someone catches your eye across the room, flirt from across the room and entice him over to you. There are ways for even an introvert to invite the right person into their lives. And yes…STOP LOOKING! Love will find you when you least expect it. In the mean time, enjoy being single, enjoy not having to take someone else’s point of view or feelings into consideration when you make plans and decisions. Enjoy being with yourself, but don’t enjoy it so much that you don’t have room for a relationship when one comes along.
Love this! I give the same advice all the time. #1 thing is to stop feeling sorry for yourself and being a victim! Get out there and live life, and love it while you’re at it! Good things come from it!
Great words of advice Diva! I always say until a person is completely content to stay single (because dangit, they’ve made their lives just so awesome – and they have tons of friends they are comfortable hanging with – coupled and single)… then they will never find the right person. You have to spend time grooming yourSELF and making YOU the person you want to be. That’s the best way to be able to notice a person who is right for you. 🙂 I love that you told this person to stop thinking about it right from the start. It is so true! Try thinking about the awesome life you’re going to create for yourself and what a TREAT it will be for the right person to join you in!!! 🙂
I love where you said that it’s better to be single than in the wrong relationship! That would be the truly happily Never after.
I’ve gone from happily never after to happily ever after. At the end of the day it came down to being who I was and exploring being the best me (your #2 advice there). I was happy and enjoying so many aspects of my life. Then my wife along and we were married 6 months later. Still married 11 years later. How’s that for your point(s) proven!
Number 1 is so important. Many people rush into it and are absolutely miserable because of it. Divorce is hard on your nerves and a time and money waster. Never make that mistake. Stay single until you are sure and then wait a bit before you marry them. Just to see how the person will turn out.
Enjoy life because it goes so quickly and before you know it you are 40 and still sad and all you have as memories are sad years. Enjoy life because in the end all you end up doing is hurting yourself and too much self-pity drives people away.
The social skills part is important. I know the writer is a woman, but especially for a man it is critical because basically, men have it tougher in those trenches than women. But, women should learn it too because they give off different vibes than they may realize. And the more you know about body language and all that, the more you are likely to be correct about reading someone else.
“Men have it tougher in those trenches than women”?
Comments are closed.