This is a guest post for The Dating Truth by: Candace Wong
Is it you or is it men?
Dating can be frustrating. It’s getting harder and harder to meet the “right guy”. I bet you feel like you’re out of men to date. Sure, you’ve dated plenty of men but the relationships have gone nowhere.
You wish you could understand what’s going through their minds.
You’ve tried dating other men you are not that interested in, thinking your standards are too high, but you’d rather spend life alone then settle. Sound familiar? Is it possible to never experience frustration with dating again?
We all go through this frustration with dating no matter how experienced we are at it.
The big difference between single women that feel they are out of dating options versus single women who feel there are endless options, looking at the same pool of single men, comes down to their mindset. It comes down to the differences in mindset that hold a set of beliefs.
We don’t get frustrated because of the events. We get frustrated because of our beliefs about them. In the field of psychotherapy Albert Ellis created a concept called REBT based on ancient philosophy. REBT stands for rational emotive behavior therapy and it could be the solution to solving ALL of your dating problems.
How can you use REBT to change your beliefs and eliminate frustration with dating? Simple. Applying this concept to everyday dating is easy and involves only four steps.
Develop the awareness be present and to observe the situation or state of events that is happening.
He did not pick up the check for dinner but instead offered to pay half.
Identify your beliefs and your irrational thoughts about the situation. Pay attention to obligations, expectations, the shoulds you have in your mind, the demands you put on yourself, and commands you expect for a given situation.
He asked me out on the date. Men should pay on first dates and until we offer to pay they should assume the responsibility of the tab. He must be a cheapskate.
Be aware of the consequences. How do you feel after being aware of your obligations and expectations for yourself and the world?
Probably angry, frustrated, or tired.
Dispute your beliefs. Do these beliefs make sense to you? Question them and explore where they came from. We live in a world where women make almost as much as men yet why do we still expect men to pay for every date?
Men are probably just unsure where they stand since there are women who are offended if they pay and offended if they don’t pay.
The application of REBT can also applied in dating coaching.
What happens if I suggest that you test out dating ambitious, high achieving men?
I preface my advice by saying that this is only a suggestion that may or may not work out for you but encourage you to test out the idea and expand your dating options.
So you give it a shot.
You date a couple of successful men, from various backgrounds, that are very successful in terms of their careers but the relationships don’t not work out. Except you’re not frustrated.
But what if I left out my preface and told you that these types of men are the absolute best fit for you and your personality? That this is your type?
You go out, give it a shot, but no relationship comes out of it no matter how hard you try to make it work.
The advice failed at finding you a match and now you are angry that it didn’t work out.
Both situations are identical except for your expectations for the outcome. Nothing changed but your belief on whether you were trying to mold yourself to fit that type of men or not based on the suggestion.
When we hear other women who compromised on their choice of men you think that shouldn’t be you because you’re different.
You’re waiting for someone AMAZING man to come along. Since you have waited this long for love you feel you shouldn’t have to compromise on anything on your checklist.(You’re still single and available but don’t know why because you’re a great catch.)
Your frustration stems from unmet expectations and the idea that compromising is something that should not happen to you. Remember that the beliefs you have are the source of your frustration.
Pay attention to words that are used in your expectations such as should, must, have to and ought to. It’s okay to wish for things to happen, and to have preferences, but expecting perfection is the root cause of your frustration.
There are a pool of great men out there it’s your expectations that:
- Dating should happen one way
- He should know what he wants
- By now he should declare you as his girlfriend…that is making you frustrated.
The next time you feel frustration, or anger, bubbling up. Or things are not turning out the way you imagined, in your love life, look for an irrational thought.
“If a guy doesn’t pay on the first date it means he’s not into you or he’s a cheapskate.”
Is that necessarily true?
“He’s a man and they are supposed to make decisions. He’s supposed to be a leader.”
Really? All the time?
Look for the command, or demand, that things are supposed to happen one way and you’ll pinpoint your source of anxiety or frustration.
Ask yourself what was your expected outcome of this situation?
Will these four steps, based on the REBT philosophy, help your frustration and anxieties around dating disappear overnight? No, it will not. But it will slowly help you to be aware of what is aggravating you about dating and ensure you persevere in dating when you feel challenged by it.
This is difference between people who find love that lead to happy relationships and those who do not find love and remain single.
About Candace Wong
She has a mission to help smart, educated women find love. She helps women be confident in dating to create genuine, long lasting relationships with Mr. Right who will make them feel spectacular inside and out instead of feeling like they have to settle. You can find her at www.createahappylovelife.com.