Dating expert Louanne Ward poses the question “Will I be single forever?” on behalf of those looking for love. She also provides some helpful tips to help you find your soul partner. Here, Louanne writes for The Carousel.
Why that’s not the case: five habits to adopt and five to ditch in this new season of dating…
We’ve seen it all before…
From How I Met Your Mothers’ Ted and Robin making a pact to marry each other if they’re both single at 40, to Carrie and Mr. Big’s on-again, off-again fling, come relationship in Sex and the City, even fictional characters aren’t immune to pondering: “Will I be single forever?”
And coming out of COVID-19, you’d be forgiven for asking the same question.
With almost three million Australians actively using dating apps, it’s become our go-to link to love – and an increasingly lonely and competitive one at that. But for many single men and women, coming out of isolation means a new era of dating. A world of new possibilities, a chance to change old habits or maybe even ditch dating apps altogether.
So, what can you do to embrace this new season of life to find romance easier than ever?
Five new dating habits to step into…
- Flex your social confidence muscle
The gap between being a texting hero and having social confidence is widening. Leave the phone apps behind and talk to people in real-time, rather than waiting for the right time to approach someone or wondering if they’re single – just say something! There’s nothing more attractive than a person who knows what (or who) they want and is willing to go for it. Social confidence is a dating gamechanger.
- Stay in your dating lane
Forget filters, fantasies and self-exaggerated entitlements. Punching above your weight and searching for someone outside of your league isn’t where lasting, meaningful connections are found. Money can’t buy happiness, looks fade, and physical attraction is short-lived. Successful relationships blossom from compatibility, caring and shared values, not superficial ego-driven desires.
- Use the rule of one
The paradox of choice causes dating paralysis. Too much choice inhibits decision making and leaves you questioning your choices. You can’t avoid decisions so make the decision to use the rule of one.
1 app to make connections,
1 person at a time
Whether you’re dating on or offline, focusing on the ‘one’ rather than the many allows you to fully immerse yourself in the exciting first stages of dating.
- Create a new code of positive dating experiences
Coffee? Been there. Dinner? Done that. Yes, these are fool-proof first date options but it’s what you do not what you say that counts. Positive dating experiences form connections, action equals attraction, having fun releases endorphins and happy chemicals. Fun, laughter and playfulness is the new dating code. Opting for activity-based dates, exercising bike riding, hiking, a walk on the beach, picnic in the hills, live shows, concerts, a stroll around the zoo, wine tasting, boating, canoeing or trip to the markets. Whatever you decide, an activity will help you stay present, find common ground, enjoy each other’s company and take your mind off ‘the future’.
- Learn to cope with rejection
Your attitude towards rejection is your measure to how ready you are to date. If it’s painful, clear your past hurts. You can’t meet the ‘right one’ when you’re dating the ‘wrong one’ so the very essence of rejection is a helpful part of the dating process for the giver and receiver.
Five old dating traps to step out of…
- Rushing through the early stages
Embrace the slower pace: instead of rushing through the first date and straight to the bedroom, focus on getting to know the other person. Physical attraction and chemistry make you blind to the downsides. Slow down and see what’s beneath the surface
- Focusing on why it won’t work, instead of how it could
Don’t allow your past experiences or judgments to dictate the outcome Look at what you do like, instead of what you don’t like
- Asking transactional questions
Love is giving, not taking. Instead of trying to uncover what you can get out of the relationship and why you should date this person, consider what you have to contribute.
- Falling into the 68ers mindset
What do you really bring to the table in every area of life? Be realistic, you deserve love and to have a partner who will appreciate you but being a 6, holding out for a perfect 8 isn’t staying in your lane nor will it help you attract the perfect partner.
- Faking it
Learn to love yourself as you are. Avoid the temptation to self-exaggerate, hide the truth, add extreme filters or misrepresent yourself.
A new season calls for throwing out the old and embracing the new. Why not try turning your dating habits upside down and creating new positive habits. Whether it’s finding out-of-the-box date ideas, making the effort to give someone a second chance or ditching dating apps altogether? Because unlike the fictional couples, there’s no need to create impossible benchmarks for love or fear being “single forever” when there are so many possibilities and new experiences to be had.