"Why haven't I found 'the one'?"
This is a question that I hear in my office on a pretty consistent basis.
More from YourTango: 3 Steps to Dating Success
Singles who work with me sometimes wonder what they've been doing wrong. They're confused about why love hasn't found them yet, and how they can move forward to find love now. As a matchmaker, my first job is always to get to know my client. I encourage them to open up in order to learn more about themselves and who their best match would be. We work together to discover what hasn't worked for them in the past so that we can agree on a resolution for the future.
It's important to remember that a lot of people struggle when it comes to dating, and many of their struggles are similar. Daters may think they are alone in their struggles, but all singles face obstacles at one point or another.
Here are the top 10 dating obstacles that the singles I work with face:
1. Unrealistic Expectations
When a client shows up with a list of the 100+ extremely specific qualities (type of car someone drives, their shoe size, if they wear aftershave) that their date must have, I know we're going to have a problem. To be a successful dater, you have to be open! If you count out every person who does not measure up on paper, you are probably missing out on someone truly wonderful. Be open — you never know where or when you will meet your match.
2. Workaholic Lifestyle
If you barely have time to eat dinner alone, how do you expect to find time to go out on a date and enjoy yourself? When someone spends more time and energy on their work than on their personal life, of course they have trouble dating. Finding a balance is key.
3. History Of Unwise Partner Choices
One of the first conversations I have with a client is about their dating history. When each person they mention falls into a dangerous category like "bad boy" or "party girl", it's easy to see why they may have been having trouble finding a relationship that sticks.
4. Social Awkward/Shy Personality
Many people are not comfortable in social situations, which is okay. But the only way to become more comfortable is to dive right in. You only live once!
5. Limited Access To Potential Partners
When someone's group of friends are all married or coupled, or they have a job that requires they work from home, it poses an understandable dating challenge. This challenge also crops up among singles that live in small towns or rural areas.
6. History Of Choosing Unavailable Partners
Constantly choosing a partner who is emotionally or physically distant makes it hard for any relationship to last. Long distance dating is not for everyone.
7. Being Stuck On The Idea Of Marriage
Rather than going out and having fun and exploring a new date's uniqueness, this person tends to be hung up on the prospect of a potential marriage. When you spend your first date wondering if someone is marriage material, you miss your chance to get to know them. It can take time to learn if someone is really right for you.
8. Old Fashioned Dater/Out Of The Dating Loop
This issue comes up a lot for people who are newly divorced, separated or widowed. When you've been off the dating scene for a while, it's hard to find a way back in. What worked in the past may not work now, so a new dating strategy has to be devised.
9. Hung Up On Comparing New With The Old
It's natural to compare the new people you're dating to someone you've been with before, especially if you were with that person for a long time, and were happy. However, this comparison will only prevent you from getting to know another partner. No two people are exactly the same, and no two relationships will be, either. Often, someone new might have positive attributes you had not experienced before.
10. Overall negative outlook
If you think you'll never find someone, you'll make that your reality. If you open your mind, heart, and eyes, there are amazing possibilities all around you! Be open and walk around with a smile; you never know where or when you will meet your match.
Whether you're coaching clients that have dating struggles, or are trying to figure out why you haven't found Mr. or Mrs. Right yourself, you may recognize or connect to one or more of these obstacles. The good news is, they can all be overcome. Next week I'll let you in on how as a matchmaker I coach clients who identify with these obstacles to be more productive daters, and successful in finding love.
(This article was first published on Pattiknows.com!)
More from YourTango: 10 Ways a Matchmaker Adds Value to Your Search for Love
More Love Advice from YourTango: