When Something Feels Off, It Is

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unhappy woman on date

I was on a date with a guy named Bill recently. Bill was nice. Bill was successful. Bill picked me up from my house and paid for dinner. Bill complimented me on my dress. Bill spontaneously pulled over to show me a shooting star. Bill even kissed me. 

But I didn't like Bill.

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"I can't put my finger on it," I later confided in my friend, "but there's just something about him I don't like."

She fired off with the usual round of questions to see if a guy is worth my time. 

"Does he make you laugh? Was he nice to the waiter? Did he do anything spontaneously? Did you have fun? Did he wear sandals with his jeans?"

"Yes, yes, yes, yes, and no," I threw myself into my pillow distraught. All my "second date material" boxes were checked off, so why was I dreading seeing him again? 

Because my gut told me it wasn't right — and there didn't have to be a real, logical reason to explain that.

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Gut feelings are more on point than not. I can't tell you how many times I've been in the above situation and continued seeing the guy despite my gut telling me not to.

When I finally listened months later, I realized something very unnerving: I had known from the beginning we would never work out.

Listening to my gut would have saved me time, saved him time, and opened both of us up to meet someone who we actually did like. But out of fear of loneliness and thinking, that there were really no better options, I talked myself into a relationship I didn't even want. 

Flash forward to now — to Bill — and I'm a little older and a little smarter. Emphasis on the "little." I know there's no reason for me to keep seeing him, and that forcing myself to feel a certain way won't do anybody any good. So I let our lack of chemistry take over and the relationship fizzled on its own.​

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Your first instinct is almost always the right instinct. Trust your gut. If you feel bored, uncomfortable, weirded out, or scared for no reason, stop seeing the guy. Your gut can save you not only from a dull relationship but also from a total weirdo. 

And if you're worried about not giving people a chance, look at it this way: what's meant to be will find a way. 

Even more important than that: it's better to be safe than sorry.