Relationships are never easy….When you are in your 20's, you feel like you have your whole life ahead of you. You date, you have a good time, if you're like me, have a good laugh more often then not, but feel you have time on your side. You have probably dated a bit, and think you know what you may want in a mate. You MIGHT not be interested in seriously settling down yet, BUT by your late 20s it's not the FARTHEST from your mind. In your 30's, you may start thinking about settling down, or at least being a little more selective about WHO you date, but you have come this far, you're not just going to 'settle.' If you ever pictured yourself with a family and having kids, this may also be on your mind, but this is the 21st century. I know I would have never settled if I was still single in my mid 30's, only for the sake of having kids. But, if it's something you REALLY want, by your late 30's it may be on your mind more so then not. By your 40's, things change a bit since a lot of your friends may now be hitched, have birthed a couple kids, and that same support system you used to have in your 20's/30s, might not be there as it once was. Whatever the case may be, there are NUMEROUS reasons WHY you may still be single, whether by choice or not. I spent the better half of my 20's in NYC. You would THINK living in a city with millions of single men and women it would be SO EASY to find someone you really mesh with. Someone you can actually see settling down with. But, as many women and men may tell you, that's not necessarily the case. I graduated college, immediately moved up to NYC and had my fair share of dating. Then several years later, I met up with my NOW husband. We then dated a few years before settling down. He had JUST moved to New Jersey, so hadn't even been living here that long before we started dating. Coincidentally, my husband and I actually went to the same high school together. This in a way, made it a little easier, since we somewhat 'knew' each other in a way, even if we never really spoke to each other in the past. We were 4 years apart, but it took over 10 years of moving from here and there to meet up again, start dating for the first time, and then as they say, the rest is history. So, if you ever wonder WHY you are still single, do you think the issue may be WHERE you live?
WHO you're LOOKING for?
Or, could the problem be YOU?Sex educator and relationship therapist, Dr. Laura Berman (frequently seen on the Dr. Oz show, or the Oprah Winfrey Network), published an article in September about the top 10 reasons men and women are still single. Below, you will find Dr. Berman's Top 10 reasons why you are STILL single.
- You play hard to get. Don’t play hard to get! BE hard to get. In other words, don’t pretend to have a busy social calendar with plenty of activities. Instead, get involved in things with you are passionate about and actually stay busy and interesting.
- You have a type. It’s okay to always go for blondes or to have a thing for tall men. We all have our specific attractions and we have little control over our natural chemistry. However, don’t be so rigid in your type that you won’t even consider the cute brunette who works in your office building or the sexy but shorter guy you meet at a party. Height and hair color don’t make a perfect relationship, but humor, passion, and connection definitely do.
- You won’t ask for help. Being single can sometimes feel lonely and frustrating. Everyone else seems to be happily married and they are always offering unwanted advice. However, the next time someone nags you about being single, turn the page on them by saying something like, “I actually love being single and meeting new people. But, hey, if you ever meet a cute guy you think I might like, you know my number!” It lets the person know that you are in control but also that you aren’t afraid to put yourself out there. And, who knows, they might have someone great to introduce you to!
- You have a routine. Routines can be comforting and safe, but they can also be incredibly limiting. When your life is a routine, you never leave your comfort zone and break out of your own little bubble. If you want to meet someone new or simply spark some excitement and novelty back in your life, switch up your routine and break out of your rut.
- You are holding on to your last breakup. Breaking up is hard to do, and sometimes it can be very hard to let go of the bitterness and the pain from your last relationship. However, carrying that resentment and fear along with you will only serve to make it harder for you to meet someone new. Your negative energy will be felt a mile away, and most people aren’t interested in dating someone who is clearly not over their ex.
- You don’t spend any time looking for love. Looking for love is an activity like anything else. If you don’t put the time into it, you aren’t going to get anything out of it. If your routine is home-office-gym-bed, you aren’t giving yourself much opportunity to find love, and you aren’t focusing any energy or passion into your search. Remember, love isn’t just going to come up behind you and conk you on the head while you are on the treadmill!
- You shut down after a boring first date. If you don’t feel immediately feel a connection with someone, it’s tempting to simply shut down and never call that person again. After all, there were no sparks, right? While chemistry is important, it’s also important to realize that first dates can often be a bit awkward and stilted. Go on one more date and give them one more chance to wow you before you call it quits. What do you have to lose?
- You don’t enjoy dating. If you don’t like going on dates, it’s going to be almost immediately obvious to your new match. You might seem anxious, ill-at-ease, or simply uncomfortable. If that sounds familiar, it might be time to do some soul-searching. Find out what you hate about dating (whether it’s nerves or whether it’s distrust due to bad experiences) and then look into ways to help troubleshoot those issues. At the end of the day, your dates are only going to be as fun and exciting as you make them!
- You don’t ask your date the right questions. When you meet someone new, it’s customary to ask the usual questions: What do you do? Where do you live? What are your hobbies? However, try asking some unexpected but revealing questions like Are you close with your brothers and sisters? What’s the most daring thing you ever did? What is the most memorable vacation you ever had?
- You aren’t happy being single. Being single can sometimes feel very lonely and frustrating, especially if you are someone who longs to be in a relationship. Yet if you are desperate to get coupled up, that energy will be very obvious (and very off-putting) when you go on dates. People gravitate towards partners who appear confident, happy, and relaxed, and it will be hard to give off those vibes if your only goal is meet Mr. Right right now. Take your foot off the gas pedal and revel in the extra time and energy you have to spend on yourself. He is out there, just let him come to you when the time is right.
I can honestly say, in my dating years I was guilty of about 60% of these. At the time though, not once did I think they were hindering my ability to "FIND" that special someone. I definitely had a 'type' at one point, but don't think that ever stopped me from giving others a chance. I wasn't a constant dater either. I went on dates, but honestly, I was kind of hoping something or someone would just fall in my lap! Doesn't everyone?? I didn't put pressure on myself at all to find that person I want to spend the rest of my life with, and never was in a constant search for them as well. Men and women can pick up on this, and it can seem like desperation, even if you are trying your HARDEST for it not to be. I used to see this all the time, and called it, "A Quiet Intensity."
Listen, all we want in life is to be happy, right? Whether you are in your 20's and just starting out, or in your 50's/60's divorced and back in the dating scene, or maybe never have been married in the first place, I feel like sometimes it's meeting the right person AT THE RIGHT TIME. We all change over the years. The person I was in college was a different person I was in my late 20's. The person I was in my late 20's is a completely different person then I am today at 38. We live and we learn. My 20's/30's have been my growing years for me. I can only imagine I'm going to keep learning and discovering new things about myself as well, as the years go on. I do feel that when I was single, I was okay being alone because I was alone for the right reasons. I would rather be alone for the right ones, then be in a relationship for the wrong ones. Use it as a time of self discovery. I do find from my own experience, and from those of friends, when you are NOT looking for it, is usually the time it comes your way. But through it all, remember…...
"Being single doesn't mean lonely. Just like being in a relationship doesn't always mean happy."
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