Focusing on ourselves is never a bad thing. In fact, the major take away from most dating advice articles is to put an emphasis on improving yourself. However, sometimes we can get so focused on perfecting this ideal version of ourselves that we get into a mindset that negatively suggests we aren’t ready to date or we aren’t ready for commitment. Sometimes, that’s more self-flagellation than anything. We list an alphabet of reasons we’re not where we need to be in life emotionally, financially, physically, or educationally and in doing so we completely reject what is right in front of us.
What if the self-awareness that you’re not where you’d like to be is the primary thing that makes you stand out? What if the idea you’re holding onto emotional baggage is the type of emotional maturity people will be appreciative of?
Hear me out on this.
In a dating pool of people that don’t have their shit together at all and don’t even fucking care, amidst all of the problems that make us feel like a burden, our self-awareness to our problems and desire to resolve them is a breath of genuine fresh air.
Listen, I’m not encouraging you to drag other people through the muck and the mud with you as work through some really deep-rooted issues before going on the search the “the one”. But I do think in a lot of cases, we get so hard on ourselves on why we aren’t available for love that we push it away when in reality we are so loveable because we aren’t in denial about our flaws. So this thing that makes us feel unavailable is suddenly the thing that makes us most available – assuming we can communicate it effectively as we work on it.
We say to ourselves, I’m not quite ready to settle down yet because:
- I’m too focused on my career to make time for someone.
- People would think poorly of me moving on so fast.
- I’m in therapy and don’t want to burden someone else with my issues.
- I can hardly afford my car payment, let alone a fancy date night.
- My car really isn’t nice enough to take girls around in.
- My children need me right now and I don’t have time for someone else.
- I’m not dealing with any more crazy exes.
- I can’t handle being hurt again.
Excuses, excuses, excuses…
These could be genuine reasons to put a hold on emotional attachments, or they could be exaggerations that play into our fears of commitment that cause us to turn our back on finding love entirely.
I know these are the type of excuses people make causing them to avoid commitments because these are exactly the type of excuses I used to make for myself when I found someone amazing step into my life but feared being hurt again. Then I struggled on why I couldn’t just say “yes, I should see if this is the one”. I’d get so caught up in making myself be the best possible version I could be in an effort to attract the best possible catches that I’d end up the end completely ignoring high-quality girls that liked me for who I was at the moment and not some shallow version of what I was attempting to become.
- The right girl will appreciate you are career-focused – and you’ll find ways to make time for her and she will understand when you can’t.
- The right girl isn’t expecting you to marry her right away, you’re just dating and putting yourself out there is a healthy part of healing.
- The right girl will support your mental well being and encourage you.
- The right girl won’t need a fancy dinner, she’ll just want to spend time with you.
- The right girl isn’t going to give a shit about your car.
- The right girl will love your children as her own and not view them as a burden.
- The right girl will show you all the reasons for losing your exes was a win.
- The right girl won’t hurt you and putting yourself out there to meet her is the only way to find her.
Consider this for a second.
Are the best parents great because they read a bunch of parenting books and read up on mommy blogs or are they amazing parents because they’re the type of parents that want to learn how to be better parents before bringing a child into their life?
Now apply that same question to dating.
Are the most date-able people those who have taken a bunch of steps to improve themselves or are they the most date-able because they’re just inherently the type of person that wants to improve who they are before bringing a partner into their life?
Your problem may not be that you’re not ready to date, your problem could be your self-flagellation. You might be being too hard on yourself and arguably taking the dating scene way too seriously by turning it into a binary lifestyle where you’re either actively not dating because you’re not where you’d like to be in life and reject the idea of being hurt again or actively choosing to date because you’ve decided to stop resetting the bar of what you’re capable of for just a little bit and are actively on the the hunt for “the one” instead of just casually dating.
And speaking of self-flagellation.
You have to stop comparing yourself to guys posting up curated photos with their girlfriends on wild vacations, driving exotic cars, with massive muscles after spending the day all tailored up in the office. It’s giving you a false sense of what you need to be before you can have a “girl like that”.
Don’t get it twisted that you’re only valuable when you’ve checked off the items on your list of goals. You’re valuable because you have a fucking list of goals in the first place!
Sometimes your value has more to do with how ambitious you are than what you have accomplished from your ambitions.
Sure, it is attractive if you have a well-paying job. It is attractive if you’ve traveled the world. And it is attractive if you’re a bodybuilder.
But you know what else is attractive?
Pursuit. Ambition. Dreams. Goals.
Those who are pursuing advancement on career ladders, those who have pinned a map of places they want to go, and those who are in the gym every week progressing on their goals are all attractive.
The pursuit is just as sexy as the results if you present it as such.
Stop finding all these reasons for yourself on why you’re not ready. The very fact that you care so much about whether or not you’re ready to be in a relationship is probably the exact mindset that makes you so valuable to the dating scene and seems to be sorely missing from it.
You giving a damn about your value is your most valuable trait in dating.
So maybe the problem isn’t that you’re just not ready to date but rather that at some point you just have to pull the trigger on putting yourself out there and realize we are all just a work in progress. The girls who love us as a work in progress are the ones we should commit to anyways – not the one that’s only going to take notice once we have a 10 pack of abs or flash around in a Lamborghini.
Otherwise, you can just perpetually talk yourself into either being lonely and never putting yourself out there or being non-committal for the rest of your life – ‘fuckboi’ haircut and all.
That doesn’t mean we should settle!
So much of the dating scene is filled with people who have a shit ton of stuff they need to figure out in life, many of which could do well with some serious therapy and medication, but many of them are not stopping themselves from getting out there with zero care about fixing their flaws.
Meanwhile, some of us who give a shit about what they’re accomplishing in life, people who give a shit about whether they’re in a good place for someone else, the people who are actively working on bettering themselves are sometimes just sitting on the sideline waiting for their stars to align.
Your stars will never align if you’re always just resetting your gaze to a new part of the night sky.– Oooooh, that was pretty deep.
Figuring out when you’re ready to date is kind of like kicking your heels about buying a new boat. You look at your budget and wait around another year in hopes of affording a slightly nicer boat, only to kick your heels another year with the objective of affording an even nicer boat. At some point, you just have to stop kicking heels and buy the damn boat.
You’re doing better than you think you are, so at some point, you’ve just go to put yourself out there.
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