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September 2, 2013

Break Your Bad Dating Habits


Do you find yourself looking into your mirror asking, “Why can’t I meet a nice guy/girl?” Do you constantly find yourself is the same bad romantic situations over and over again? Are you considering leaving the dating pool for good after several false starts? Well buddy, I’ve got some bad news. It’s you that’s doing it wrong. The first step in a disastrous relationship is attraction to the wrong person. And yet, we seem to do it all the time! So why is dating a constant video played on loop? It’s because although you’re dating with the best intentions, you are subconsciously attracting the exact people that you don’t want.

Try this: Write down a 10 point list of traits that you want in a partner, ranked from most important to least. Put whatever you want on there, as long as it’s something you definitively want. Then look at your list and compare it to your last few exes. Noticing a wide discrepancy? This is because although you know you want a certain type of partner, your brain is pushing your towards someone else. This is because of a variety of reasons:

  1. Your brain has become comfortable with familiar chaos of what you’ve done before. Yeah this type of girl makes you miserable, but at least you’re not going to have any real surprises about that misery.
  2. You have some mixed-up assumptions in your head about what you want. Like, if you want a nice guy, but you’re dating a “Nice Guy”. Or you want a down-to-earth girl, but tend to choose the most attractive woman in the room, just to prove you can, (Even if you can, is it worth it?)
  3. You’re not ready for a relationship. It’s possible that your brain is signaling that there is more work to be done on yourself before you seek out a partner. Take a good long look at what you need to give yourself before asking someone to give to you.


So, if you have any of these issues, fix them! You have a list of qualities that are important to you. That list can change over time, but it still acts as a good launching point for your search. Here are some considerations:


  • Always turn the mirror back on you: That’s probably the hardest step to take. Humans are such reactionary creatures, we don’t think about why we’re feeling a certain way, we just feel it and act. It’s important for you to examine yourself, your emotions, and your instincts to see where you’re coming from.
  • Stick to your list: And also, stick to the order of your list. If you have a caring person at #1, but attractive on #4, don’t pick the hot but insensitive person.
  • Go slow. Date slowly to sniff out whether this is another incarnation of your negative type. Going slow means that you can walk away before getting attached.
  • Try going to different places to meet people. Break up your old haunts, and get out experiencing a variety of places and people.
  • Try a physical manifestation of your change in thoughts. Like, rearrange the furniture in your house, or try a new kind of food. Try and do something like this every day. I know it seems silly, but acting out a commitment to change will actually help your mind begin to change.

Truly breaking your bad dating habits is hard. You have to clearly examine yourself, why the habit began in the first place, and definitively change it. Often this means going outside your comfort zone, sometimes telling that “immediate spark” that it’s lied before, trying to date people that you hadn’t previously considered before. But the truth is that what you’ve been doing hasn’t worked, so you have nothing to lose by trying something new.



About the Author

Lauren Volpe
Lauren Volpe is a recent graduate of Texas State University with a BA in English Literature with a Minor in Anthropology. She is now a freelance writer. She is passionate about writing and studying human interactions. She enjoys giving relationship advice built on her personal history, and the experiences of her friends and family. She currently resides in San Marcos, Texas.

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