Ever heard someone you know or yourself say something like “I’m just not going to date anyone, I’m just going to focus on myself.”
Taking a break from dating can be an excellent thing. Often when I was internet dating, I would see tons of guys in a very short time. It was almost like I was interviewing a bunch of candidates for a job (and just as unromantic, I must add).
Eventually it got tiresome and I got pretty jaded. It was like I was yelling “next” after each one. Not cute, open minded or sexy. Just “NEXT!”
Other times I got hooked on the attention and was unable to focus on anything else. We only have so many hours in the day after all, and dating was consuming most of mine.
Here’s 5 times when you should consider taking a break from dating to refocus on yourself.
1. If you’re going from one person to the next without much reflection.
It can be really tempting to set up A LOT of dates and then enjoy the excitement of going on one after another. It can feel like you’re a super desired, gorgeous dating beast. Not that you AREN’T a super-desired, gorgeous dating beast, just that it’s important to allow enough time in between each dating experience to see if the person is actually right for you. “Dating for dating’s sake” can lead to a lot of failed experiences finding love.
2. If you’re taking rejection too hard.
Sometimes taking rejection badly can be a sign that you haven’t gotten over something in the past or that you’re getting your hopes up too soon with men. Often this happens when there has been a big long deadly desert since the last time you met someone who you hit it off with. If you’re having trouble getting past rejection, here’s how to do it better. In the meantime however, refocus things on yourself.
3. When you’re consistently attracting the wrong people.
Do you feel like you’re experiencing the same date over and over? This is a good sign that you’re attracting something specific and they’re a lesson for you.
Usually when you’re in the middle of it, the reason is hard to figure out. Taking a break allows for more clarity and to change your mental imagery and refocus your energy on attracting different people into your life.
4. When you’re shutting people down too quickly.
If you’re doing a lot of dating different people, it can be tempting to cut them off too quickly. Rather than letting things evolve and see if feelings develop, it can be like you’re standing there with a gong instead. “Nope, too short,” GONG. “Nope, bad dress sense,” GONG. “Nope…nope…nope,” GONG.
Don’t let this be you. Sure, if the date is absolutely horrible, it makes sense that you’d be interested in cutting it short. But grass is greener syndrome lives in speed-date territory. Take a break if you sense that this might be you.
5. When you’re getting over a failed relationship.
As much as it sucks to have no distraction from having your heart ripped out, I don’t advocate dating anyone for a while after a relationship ends. People do dumb stuff. They behave oddly. They can start acting like everyone they come across is their new boyfriend. They jump in and out of new relationships. It’s bad news. Step… back… from the men.
One Big, Hairy Caveat
Don’t let “taking a break” turn into an entire decade. Don’t let it become the reason why you didn’t meet anyone for the last 3 years. Strategically taking a break for a month or two and finding out what makes you tick is great, but often, people turn a break from dating in to a stance where they hide from dating in fear. The more they avoid getting out there, the worse it gets.
A big sign this is you is when you’re reading dating advice and then making comments like “I’m so happy single, I’ve found I never need to meet anyone ever again.” Okay, nice, I’m genuinely glad you’re happy, but if you were really that thrilled with being single, why are you reading all about relationships? When you take a break from dating, push back from all information about dating as well. Find something else to focus on entirely.
I hope this helped you out with when to step away from dating. Tell me what you think in the comments section below.
Ever had a guy totally pull away and lose interest in a relationship that you thought was going well? To find out why this happens, download your free copy of her latest book Why Men Lose Interest, and How to Be “The One” Who Really Gets Him now.
Elizabeth’s work has been has been featured on YourTango, DigitalRomance, Fox News Magazine and tons more. She is author of ‘How to Get a Boyfriend: Your Foolproof Guide to Attracting Your Dream Relationship’ and ‘Make Your Man Stay Forever: Your Foolproof Guide to Lasting Love’ both available on Amazon right now. She is also owner of WhyMenLeave.net.
After 10 interesting years of navigating the dating world, she has settled down with her feisty husband and unruly dog.