Please, Just Stop It: How To Conquer Behavior That’s Making You Unnecessarily Bitter About Love
As irritatingly new agey as it may sound, you completely control how you perceive the events in your life. If you exercise the control you have to digest a situation any way you want, then the truth is, nothing ever happens to you. You either let things happen, or you don’t. And a great example is that you either let yourself become bitter about love, or you don’t. No matter how many deliriously happy couples there are around you, or how often your mom reminds you your “clock is ticking,” when it comes to being bitter about love, there is nobody you can blame except yourself. Here are 14 behaviors to quit today if you’re ready to stop throwing your plate at the couple kissing on TV.
Remembering your mistakes
Of course you’ve done stupid things in love. You’ve ignored the signs that a guy was cheating on you, or signs that indicated that he was never going to commit, or was extremely selfish or even gay. But who hasn’t?! True intelligence can only come after moments of true stupidity. So stop focusing on those moments when you were blind, and focus on how, in the future, you’ll recognize when you’re stumbling into those same situations, and how you’ll avoid making the same mistake. If you keep reminiscing about your moments of fault, you’ll feel helpless in the face of new relationships.
“If I’d just done this ONE thing…”
If you’d just held off on that one text, or if you’d just not surprised him with dinner that night, or not gotten upset about that one thing you’d still be happily with that last guy—right? WRONG! It’s never just one thing that makes or breaks a relationship. The fact that your relationship happened to have ended after you did one little thing was only a symptom of much deeper issues. A truly strong and healthy relationship cannot be broken by one action. So stop kicking yourself for sending that umpteenth cutesy text! That’s not what broke your relationship.
Lamenting your choice in men
We’re not born knowing how to spot a good guy. Would be nice though, right? You had to knock out the bad ones in order to learn how to recognize the good ones. Stop telling yourself that your dating history is proof you have bad taste in men. The only reason today you recognize your choices in men were poor is because you learned the hard way. Feel lucky you saw the problems and didn’t stay with the wrong guy! Plenty of women do…
Continuing to choose the wrong men!
The previous point is null if you are in fact not learning from your mistakes and refuse to recognize that you’re dating the same wrong guy over and over again. Breaking your pattern can be scary. Even if that pattern is not working, it’s familiar and so it is comfortable. But the longer you stay in that pattern the angrier you’ll become about your prospects in love. If it looks like a douche, walks like a douche…you know the rest.
Sticking with the wrong guy
That guy that is clearly leading you on, that guy that is clearly confused about what he wants, that guy that hasn’t graduated you past booty call…yeah, that guy. Why are you still seeing that guy? When you keep such a negative situation in your life for such a long time, it enforces in your mind that all men are bad. And then you think, “Well, what’s the point of leaving this guy? All the rest will be the same!” And you rob yourself of the chance to realize that you’re wrong about that.
Letting one guy ruin your night
I’ll admit it; the singles scene is a nightmare. There are guys that will lay everything from sleazy and cheesy lines on you to offensive, ego-crushing comments. There are guys that will ignore you if you’re anything less than a super model. There are guys that will charm the pants off you, right before they make out with another girl across the bar. But calling it quits because of one jerk—or even five—is cowardly. Being single isn’t easy for anyone. The difference between the women that finally find love and those that don’t is that the former learn to grow tough skin, and not begrudge every guy because of one jerk.
Trying too hard
You’re on five dating sites, you have your entire group of friends on the task of setting you up, you go to speed dating every week; you dedicate all your energy to finding love. Of course you’re going to become bitter if things don’t pan out right away! Even if, in theory, you’d meet a guy quicker by committing your life 24/7 to finding him, odds are you’ll get burnt out before you do.
Going back to exes
This will 9 times out of 10 make you feel even more hopeless about love because not only are you yet again disappointed by a guy—which you will be, because he is your ex and that is what he does—but you’ll kick yourself for ignoring all the lessons you’ve learned about yourself, about relationships, and about that particular guy.
Do those things ever play out the way you want? Does it ever just so happen that the guy that never calls you had actually lost your number and is happy to see you track down his address on Google and show up at his work? Does it ever happen your boyfriend who was pulling away was excited when you booked him a surprise week long cruise for just the two of you? In that moment of despair when you want to do something drastic, think back to the other times you made those “grand gestures” and save yourself another huge disappointment. You don’t need that.
Giving too much, too soon
I’m not telling you to hold back on giving because it scares a guy off: forget the guys that get scared off by a giving woman. They are immature and not ready to accept love. The reason you’re holding off on making him dinner/offering to help paint his place/bringing him lunch as a surprise at work is because if things don’t work out, you’ll feel even more bitter that you did all of that for someone that wouldn’t do the same in return for you. Hold off on being super giving until you see how invested a man is in you. When you know he deserves your attention and efforts, give without reserve!
Focusing on your singleness
During holidays, on your birthday, on trips etc. stop thinking about how much better every moment would be with a partner. You rob yourself of the happiness of those moments by doing that, and you need that happiness to get by! A vacation with your girlfriends, or a holiday party, can either be a fun experience that fuels you for more dating, or it can be an event that sucks the life out of you because you fail to focus on why it’s good, man or no man.
Going on that second date when you know you shouldn’t
When you know there is no chemistry there, or that he doesn’t want the same things as you, stop going on that second date! There are some things that just don’t change and lack of chemistry or shared goals for a relationship are some of those things. Since you can always be spared of a useless date, spare yourself of a second date in that situation.
Getting distracted from your own goals
If you neglect your own personal life while in relationships—slack off in your classes or at work, neglect your friendships, stop going to your social club—you’ll feel even more resentful of your relationship when it ends, and you have nothing left to make you happy. Keep up your personal life—it’s the only reason you survive being single.
Trying to be somebody you’re not
If you keep changing for men, pretending to be interested in things that you’re not, or to be somebody you’re not, you’ll feel deeply frustrated when relationships end. You’ll feel that you just don’t get the “formula” to impressing a man, when really there is no formula. All you’re doing by being fake in the name of love is wasting time. No relationship can last when you’re not being yourself.