Valentine – Learn New Dating Rules
When it comes to finding love, there are certain truths that seem so irrefutable that any single person would be a fool to not follow them. However, dating has changed. Hello, “Internet.” There’s a better way to date and find a sustainable love match. Is he your Valentine?
Maybe you’re a firm believer that you can tell within seconds if you’re attracted to someone. Or, maybe you adhere to the idea that a first kiss says it all: If you feel fireworks, your date’s a keeper; if it bombs, cut your losses. While these romantic maxims have their fans, experts insist that these laws no longer hold true in today’s dating world. The rules single people follow need a little revamping. To that end, I’ve researched and found some up-to-date tactics for finding someone that may be a match for you.
Old Rule: You can tell if you’re truly attracted to someone in three seconds
New Rule: You can’t tell if you’re truly attracted to someone until you’ve had three dates
“Love at first sight” is a familiar romantic notion. Experts recommend cultivating a bit more patience, sticking to a three-date minimum to know for sure whether you’re a match (or not). The reason: People are a bundle of nerves on date #1, begin to unwind on date #2, but only by date # 3 can people truly relax and maybe build some rapport.
A compatible relationship is an exploration of each partner’s values. In order to learn just that it takes time, discussion, observation, interpersonal interaction, and not an initial impression based on superficial cues. So don’t write someone off-or fall head over heels until you have done your due diligence.
Old Rule: Your mate must meet the criteria on your “must list.”
New Rule: A “must list” looks great on paper, but paper won’t keep you warm at night.
You can check off the attributes you want, appearance, background, education, career, and salary, but unless you’re building your lover in a lab, you are missing out.
You should have standards and not settle for a two-pack-a-day smoker who doesn’t want children when you’re allergic to smoke and eager to start a family. Besides a man that is 6’2″, blonde, and makes six figures doesn’t mean he will make you happy. Do yourself a favor and treat your list as just one factor in deciding who’s right for you. Relying on physical or material attributes like someone’s height, salary, or hair color doesn’t allow for chemistry, which is more intangible and valuable.
Old rule: Your date’s Spotify list mirrors yours – so this must be love
New Rule: You want a person, not a Spotify playlist
Sometimes you meet someone and have so much in common, you know it must be love: Each of you saw Billy Joel (one of my favorites) a dozen times and know the words of Bruno Mars (another good one) inside out. But don’t confuse mirror-image taste with chemistry. It is better if your interests don’t match up exactly. Not only does that leave room for you to expand your boundaries, it introduces you to something new that your partner digs. Some of the best relationships are those where both parties have completely independent hobbies and allow for his, her and our time. So, take it as a good sign if you spend the occasional time apart. You can be doing dips in your ballroom dancing class and your date is doing the wave at an NBA game.
Old Rule: Opposites attract
New Rule: Opposites distract
Sustaining a partnership with your polar opposite may ultimately prove unfulfilling. If you don’t like to do the same things, your life may be quite dull together. In real life, attraction can ebb and flow. And if you don’t want the same things for the future, what kind of future do you have. Ideally it should be someone who complements your personality.
When I was younger, I never wanted to date a doctor. I wanted someone there with me on holidays and mealtime. I didn’t want him being called away on emergencies during the middle of Christmas. It’s about a lifestyle that works with your lifestyle. If you are an extravert and your potential partner is an introvert, your enjoyment as a couple will dissipate rapidly. Because, you won’t be interested in doing the same things in your free time.
Old Rule: Your first kiss should be a toe-curling experience
New Rule: Your first kiss is inconsequential
In Fairytales, an amazing first kiss leads to happily ever after-no wonder we place such importance on that primary first kiss. There are ample reasons why a first kiss from a potentially great partner can go awry (nervousness or a less-than-ideal situation). There can be many explanations why a first kiss from a Mr./Ms. Wrong can feel so right (you’ve exceeded the two-drink minimum and you find him physically attractive).
However a relationship will crumble without a good lifestyle and good attributes like shared values. So rather than write someone off following a less-than-mind-blowing kiss, move in slowly for smooch number two, either at that moment or on a subsequent date. Trust me, you owe it to yourself.
Old rule: When It’s true love, you think about this person constantly
New rule: When it’s true love, thinking about this person makes you feel good
Hmm, has Willie Nelson’s “You’re Always on My Mind” become the theme song for how you feel about your sweetie? Constantly thinking about another person isn’t love, it’s infatuation. Infatuation has no correlation with being a good match. It’s a better gauge to assess the quality of your thoughts rather than the quantity. You want comfortable feelings about your date, which indicates a relationship built on stability, trust, and admiration. This kind of a relationship will more likely wear well over time. If your relationship keeps you up all night as you analyze this person’s emails for hidden messages that reveal his or her true feelings, you may be with someone who doesn’t really want to be yours.
Warning; Is he still your valentine?
A word of warning to those in a relationship that isn’t meeting your needs and instead pushing your buttons. Those that say, “never find this again and thus” you stay. Or, “I’m 50 years old and I better take what I can get.”
I know it’s hard to be alone. However, our anxiety can’t be the reason to stay. Desperation is unsustainable. You realize you need to make a change, but you’re scared of what that change will mean. I sympathize.
As long as you stay in a relationship that isn’t meeting your needs, you’re in a relationship that isn’t meeting you needs. It makes you miserable and it also closes you off to other, potentially more satisfying romantic relationships.
There’s a poem by Adrienne Rich called “Splittings”. The last two lines of the poem are: “I choose to love this time for once/with all my intelligence.” I suggest you devote yourself to these two lines.
The question shouldn’t be whether you should stay or go. The question is, How would your life be transformed if you chose to love this time with all your intelligence? You will be looking for love in all the right places and you will want him to be your valentine.