Beware these dating traps! Insti(Gay)tor tells all and gives you 6 tips on how to avoid them.
“Why does dating have to be so hard?” That is the question that most of my clients always seem to ask during our initial consultation process. Nobody really teaches us how to date. Most of us learn by years of trial and error, some of us learn by observing and others are still in the process of trying to figure out what works for them. They say hind sight is 20/20 but even then, sometimes we find ourselves getting caught up in some of these infamous dating traps that keep us on our search for finding “The One.”
This past week, I surveyed a few of my clients and followers in an effort to keep up with some of the challenges they have been experiencing. Here were the top 6 mistakes that singles make and my tips on how to overcome them.
1. Dating without a purpose
This is something that applies strictly to those who are really on a search to get booed up. If you are dating with the intent of finding a partner, then you should make sure that your actions compliment your wants and needs.
This means if your date tells you that they are looking for something causal but you know that are looking for something more serious, you may not want to get too caught up into that relationship. I am not saying that you can’t be friends or that something won’t develop in the future. I am saying that you shouldn’t put too much stock into it until that declaration has been made.
This also means that you should shy away from entertaining sex buddies and don’t go looking for love on hook-up websites. 9 times out of 10, you will find yourself disappointed with the results. 4 Ways To Sabotage Your Online Dating Action [EXPERT]
2. Not putting yourself out there
You have to be social. This is probably the most important factor when it comes to dating. You can’t just sit around waiting and hoping that love will find you because it won’t. You have to get out and meet the natives. Have fun, strike up conversations, exchange numbers, live the kind of life that excites you.
When you are having fun and surrounding yourself with new and positive people, you will find that there are people out there who are looking for the same things you are looking for in love and in life. Single? Why Men May Ignore You [EXPERT]
3. Living in the Past
OK… so you may not have had good experiences in love and dating in the past and that’s ok. Most of us have had experiences where things didn’t exactly go as we would have liked them to, but you can’t let that trap you into staying single.
Whatever it is that has you on the defense or afraid to pursue dating, you have to let it go. That goes double if your past relationships were actually quite exceptional. None of your dates will want to hear how your ex was the best you ever had because it sets up an idea that your date will constant be compared and competing against someone who should not be relevant. Live in the now and leave the past where it belongs. 5 Conversations You Should Not Have On The First Date [EXPERT]
4. Sex Without Investment
When it comes to sex, I stick by the saying “fools rush in”. I always advise giving it a month, 3 weeks at minimum before you give away the goods.
I mean sure, you can give it up on the first date, but I really want you to be honest and ask yourself how well that has worked out for you in the past? If you are one of the lucky ones, it may have worked and you may have been able to score something long-term. Not everyone can be so lucky and most times, you will just end up getting played out of your “P.” (Insert the “P” word that speaks to you)
If you are looking for something long-term, allow some time for both you and your date to invest in the relationship before jumping in the sack. This way, there is some sort of connection other than sex that will keep you entertained with each other.
5. Not Playing The Field
Dating is a numbers game. The more people you meet and connect with, the better your options will be. I always suggest dating 3-5 people at one time because this will give you the exposure you need to really see who’s out there and figure out where you land on the compatibility scale.
This is also a huge bonus because once you make a decision to get “exclusive” with a date, you will be more confident in your decision because you will have had the opportunity to play the field.
6. Friends, Family and Facebook
This is where I tell my girls and my gays to follow the straight man’s lead. Stop introducing your friends to your date so early in the process. When a straight man dates, he rarely mentions his dates to his friends until it becomes somewhat serious.
He doesn’t post on Facebook about his dates and most times, he won’t even connect with her on social media until he feels like it. There is a reason for this: He doesn’t want or need anyone else interfering in his love-life. Dating is hard enough but when you add opinions of external participants, it can get even more complicated.
Most of your friends mean well but sometimes, we can tell them too many details and they end up either sharing too much of your business or getting too involved in your relationship. You should make it a point to value and respect you and your date’s privacy and keep some things to yourself. If things become serious, then you start thinking about introducing them to friends and family.
Besides being a YourTango Dating Expert, J. Cameron Gantt is the Head Dating Coach at Insti(Gay)tor, a Chicago-based GLBT matchmaking agency. Download his FREE E-Guide “3 Secrets To Attract More Dates” or contact him directly for a FREE 60 minute consultation.