We often choose our partners based off an initial “spark”, or strong inclination we have toward that person. While in some cases we feel it the moment we engage with them, whether it be our first glance or our first exchange, in other cases it may take a bit of fostering and nurturing to properly develop a connection with someone and have that blossom into a relationship that’s truly special.
What’s your type? It’s a simple and common question, but also one that I would like to challenge should even be asked in the first place. When you read that, you probably started running through a list of preconceived standards that have been either consciously or subconsciously cultivated over the course of your life.
While there’s of course nothing wrong with having preferences or standards, we’re often unwilling to recognize that we’ve been limiting ourselves and our prospective partners based on ideals that we may not ultimately be as attached to as we had previously thought. This oftentime leads us into a pattern of dating the same kinds of people time and time again and being left wondering why we seem to be repeating the same mistakes over and over. Thankfully for you, this week the team at Luurve go over 3 ways for you to step outside of your dating comfort zone and expand your options.
Shatter Your Standards
Okay, of course it’s a little more complicated than that. Standards and preferences are perfectly fine in general, we’re not saying shatter them to endorse just hitting on any stranger you come across in a total act of desperation. While it’s good to have preferences to avoid taking on relationships with people we’re completely incompatible with, with a bit of introspection we may quickly find that we’ve been too strict with applying them and may be significantly limiting our potential pool of prospective partners in doing so.
When we say “shatter your standards”: we don’t mean lower your expectations, we mean expand your horizons. Being too strict in applying your standards has more likely than not left you in this pattern you’ve been repeating throughout most of your dating life, at what point do you take stock of the situation and action against it to open new opportunity for yourself? Of course we recognize there are some hard lines for some of you out there, such as political views or religious affiliation, but outside of these less malleable characteristics there’s plenty of room to grow and open yourself up to new experiences and people.
This is more multifaceted advice than anything. Maybe your dating approach is stagnant, consider integrating some more traditional IRL methods for meeting a partner such as blind or speed dating, singles events and mixers are great opportunities to meet someone as well. Even consider reaching out to friends or professional matchmaking services to help give you an extra hand, sometimes an outside perspective is a great way to get that needed push to get out there.
Maybe your “type” is too narrow and applied too strictly, whether it’s religious-based, cultural, spiritual, or physical. Having such strict standards as to who could be a potential partner is extremely limiting and restricting. Consider expanding your horizons to give new opportunities to different kinds of people, besides, when drawing from such a limited pool of dating experience, how do you truly know what you do and don’t enjoy in a partner and relationship?
Outside Your Comfort Zone
This expounds on our previous piece of advice in a little greater detail. Typically date blondes? Try dating a brunette. Stuck on blue eyes? Give brown eyes a go. Typically go on bar dates? Why not a coffee shop? Tend to exclusively date people who live in rural areas? Why not date a “city-slicker”?
We often regress to well-established patterns of behavior as a defense mechanism when we feel outside of our element. It more often than not boils down to a control issue where we don’t want to feel as though we don’t have a complete handle on the situation. While there’s nothing wrong with this at face value, we more often than not end up limiting ourselves when we stubbornly cling to pre-established boundaries simply so we can feel more comfortable in a moment.
Again, while there’s nothing wrong with having standards or preferences, they can more often than not wind up being a major hindrance to our personal growth and severely limit the potential pool of prospective partners we can have. It’s important to remember that love and romantic relationships aren’t always born out of an initial passionate firestorm of infatuation, sometimes it may be people we hadn’t initially even considered as possible romantic partners that end up being the most important people in our lives. Are you an open minded dater or do you tend to stick to a specific type of partner? Do you have any methods you use to help step outside of your dating comfort zone? Do you have any questions or anything you would like for us to expand upon? Feel free to let us know down in the comments below!
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