Although it may be hard to understand why, not everyone actively dating wants a serious relationship, and that's okay. Everyone is allowed to look for what works for them.
But if you're someone who does want. serious relationship, it's hard to navigate modern dating with all the ghosting, mixed signals, and people wanting different things out of dating as you.
Your best bet is to focus on your lane and date in ways that help you find what you want. After all, wanting a serious relationship isn't "wrong" in any way.
But how you date that might need a little fixing!
State what you're looking for on a first date.
A surefire way to get into a situationship is by spending months growing a connection with someone who you find out "isn't into labels" or "doesn't want to move too fast."
How do you avoid that? By talking about what you're looking for from dating on a first date. I'll talk about deal breakers below, but whether someone has the same goal for dating as you is the ultimate potential dealbreaker.
After you let the person know what you're looking for, ask them what they're looking for if they don't offer it up themselves. Notice if they simply say "same" or avoid the question altogether.
Someone who is dating to find a long-term relationship won't be afraid to state that!
Understand the differences between pet peeves and dealbreakers.
Now let's talk about deal breakers and how they're so much different from a pet peeve.
One of the best ways to date is by letting your core values guide you, which I'll talk about below. When you know your values, someone who doesn't value the same is a dealbreaker for you.
For example, many of my clients are very family-oriented. We uncover that they don't need their partner to be close to their family, but they need them to value the idea of family, whether it's biological or chosen.
That's a dealbreaker.
A pet peeve is not liking how someone talks with food in their mouth or doesn't make as much money as you. It's not having the same taste in music or not liking the outfit they chose.
Dealbreakers are based on who a person is and how it affects the relationship. A pet peeve is more surface-level and doesn't indicate if someone would be a great partner for you.
Define your values and how they feel.
Your values are what define you as a person and the choices you make.
I value kindness, humility, open-mindedness, and curiosity. They dictate my choices but also the people I spend my time with.
Now what I mean by "how they feel" is imagining what it would be like to spend time with someone who values each of the things you do.
To be around someone who values humility, I'd feel like I'm not being judged. Around someone who values kindness, I'd feel cared for. An open-minded person wouldn't be defensive and would love to hear my opinions.
By understanding how someone who shares my values would make me feel, I can use those to determine if someone is a good match for me-- a much better method than only looking for "sparks" and intense sexual chemistry.
If you struggle with feeling insecure and overthinking when you date, check out my free dating anxiety journal prompts.
If you want to move towards feeling confident and secure when looking for love, grab your copy of my 30-day dating guide, "From Anxious to Secure."
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