I’ve been in a long-term relationship for almost six years now, but there was obviously a time when I was single (for over three years in college). I know what it feels like to be single, lonely, and to desperately want a relationship, even if you tell people you’re fine and you don’t need a significant other. I loved being single, but there were so many times that I just wanted to cry because I wanted to find a boyfriend really badly – and I’m not afraid to admit that, as pathetic as it sounds (it’s a normal human emotion). In the moment, I thought I was doing everything right in dating world, but looking back, I can clearly see that I wasn’t. I watch my single friends do these things too, and it’s frustrating – there are some things single people do that will never help them find a boyfriend, and it can be really hard to realize what those things are.
Of course, this can also apply if you’re a girl looking for a girlfriend…. it’s about finding a relationship in general. I firmly believe that there is no magic formula to dating. Even rules that we’ve said you should follow don’t work for everyone, and sometimes a bae falls into your lap from the most unexpected situations. But at the same time, there are some behaviors a lot of single people have that aren’t helping their case at all. I know it can be hard to self-examine and point out what you’re doing wrong, but if you want to find a bae, you might have to.
And hey, listen: there is truly nothing wrong with being single. But there is also nothing wrong with wanting to be in a relationship and admitting it! So, if you’re searching for a soulmate, read on. You might be doing these things that will definitely never help you find a boyfriend… and if so, you’ll want to stop.
Complaining About How Single You AreBeing single can be tough, and sometimes you just need to vent. That's fine! You're totally allowed to feel sad/bitter/angry and complain about it. But I know people who complain about it way too much. Like, it's at the level of, "I might need to block you from my Facebook Newsfeed." You might think that constantly complaining about being single is "quirky" and "funny" and "relatable," but it isn't. After a while, it gets old, and what it tells other people is that you don't know how to be happy without a significant other, and that's not attractive. If you're constantly tweeting or making statuses that are some variation of being about hating singledom, chill a little. It's going to push away a potential bae and make you look like you're not confident. You're a catch! Focus on how awesome you are instead of how single you are, and I bet you'll be happier.
Saying 'Guys Suck' All The TimeI won't be a hypocrite: there was definitely a time in my single life that I did this, as Facebook's On This Day feature likes to remind me. I made statuses whining about how "all guys suck" and I posted song lyrics that had the same message. Now, don't get me wrong - it can definitely be fun to have a guy bashing sesh with your girl friends sometimes, but... you're best leaving that to the privacy of your hangouts instead of social media. I mean, think about it: how would you react to a dude who constantly posted things about how all girls suck? You would probably roll your eyes and think he was pathetic or a little bit of a douche. It's the same when the genders are reversed! First of all, it's not fair to say every guy sucks. Second, it's not true. Third, it's never the thing that's going to make your crush go, "Hm, you know what? I should text her and show her dudes don't suck!" Try to tone it down, okay?
Making Fun Of All Couple Things, All The TImeI used to be friends with this girl who was single for a while, and liked to pretend she hated love and had a "black heart," which meant she constantly bashed anything about love and couples. She would roll her eyes at anything to do with being romantic, she would constantly make fun of relationship stuff, she would block people who posted about their bae on social media too much. It got old fast. This is a defense mechanism for many girls (and guys) - make fun of the thing you want to show people you're FINE without it. Except when you do it too much, it ends up doing the opposite. Yes, there are couple things that deserve to be made fun of, but sitting around going on and on about how love is stupid isn't going to help you find a significant other! A lot of girls seem to think that acting "chill" about relationships will help them find a boyfriend, but it won't. Saying you don't want to be in a relationship and making fun of love isn't going to make a guy think you want to date him! Don't you see how silly that even sounds? Source: Instagram
Holding The Actions Of Others Against Everyone ElseWhen a guy breaks your heart, it's easy to start to feel hurt and bitter, and to assume that every other future relationship will be like that - especially if it happens more than once. But doing this isn't fair to anyone else. Acting like every single guy out there is the same useless jerk is never going to help you date someone. It's going to push people away. It's like a dude who complains about being friend zoned, okay? It's about generalizing and it's not cool. Source: Instagram
Giving Too Many ChancesI believe in second chances - but I do not believe in fourth, fifth, or ninth chances. If you're talking to someone who keeps screwing up, keeps hurting you, and keeps treating you like garbage, move on. Holding onto this person and the hope for a relationship with them is only going to hurt you. A lot of girls do this with friends with benefits relationships - they act like they're fine with something casual, all the while holding out for something serious. Please don't let anyone treat you worse than you deserve. Source: iStock
Refusing To Budge On Your StandardsIt's important to have standards in life, but if there's one place you should be flexible, it's in the dating world. I have single friends who have standards that are unrealistic, and that I truly think hold them back. One girl I used to be friends with refused to date any guy shorter than her or younger than her. Why? Those kinds of standards are silly. Be open to saying yes more. You might meet someone! If you need more of a reason why, consider my situation. I'm dating a guy named Mark who is almost three years younger than me. Before I met him, I had a few "rules" for meeting a bae: I didn't want to date someone younger than me (I already had and it hadn't worked out), I didn't want to date someone from the town he was from (long story), I didn't want to date anyone with the same name as my dad or brother (my dad's name is Mark), and I didn't want to date someone who didn't like to read. My boyfriend is younger than me, he grew up in a place I didn't like, he has the same name as my dad, and he hates reading. But I love him. We're happy. We just moved in together! So, sometimes, letting go of your standards is worth it. Source: iStock
Going Back To Exes Or Dudes Who Didn't Work OutRemember when Selena Gomez kept getting back together with Justin Bieber, and you were just like, "Girl, why?" A lot of the time, single people get desperate for love and affection, and so they pursue the easiest thing they can - someone they've already been with. I'm not making fun, this is totally normal human behavior. But, it's not a good idea. Going back to an ex who wasn't right for you isn't going to help you find a happy relationship that's going somewhere. You're better off on your own.
Thinking Of Every Date As The Beginning Of Something SeriousOne of my best friends is a girl who really wants to find love. She is a diehard romantic, and it's cute. It's not so cute when she meets someone. The second she starts flirting with someone, she starts to imagine a future. A serious relationship. Marriage. Even kids. I'm not joking! Doing this kind of thing isn't going to help you. It puts you in a mindset you shouldn't be in in the beginning of a relationship, and honestly, it pushes a lot of people away. Wait a little while before you start thinking of a wedding song. Let things move slowly. Trust me. Source: iStock
Going After Someone Who is Already AttachedThis should be obvious, but so many people do it that I can clearly see it is not obvious. We can't always control who we crush on, so you're not a bad person for having a crush on someone who is already in a relationship. But please do not pursue them. It's not right! Also, it's not going to work (nine times out of ten). Source: iStock
Getting Too Serious Too FastThis isn't about imagining the future - it's about acting really serious with your new boo right away. It's about saying "I love you" too soon, spending all of your time together right away, and making plans for months in advance on your second date. Again, let things move slowly. Please! Source: iStock
Have you ever done these things? What do you do to find a relationship? Share in the comments!