Four bad habits stopping you from meeting ‘the one’ (and how to kick them)

Ready to start dating? Or can’t work out why can’t meet the right person? Here are four bad habits that could be stopping you from meeting ‘the one’ (and how to kick them).

For some of us, the phrase “it’s not you, it’s me” is all too familiar. Whether we’ve been on the receiving end of it ourselves, or have broken the bad news to someone else, it’s hard not being able to put your finger on where the relationship is going wrong.

Somewhere down the line, something will just click and it will all fall in place. In the meantime, while you’re waiting for your own Prince (or Princess) Charming to come and sweep you off your feet, it’s worth considering any strategies you can implement to help encourage them into your life.

With this in mind, here are four bad ‘habits’ you we recommend kicking out of your life to help maybe let someone you really (REALLY) like in. 

1) Poor manners

The days of the default restaurant date are over. Instead, you can find yourself getting to know a new person over everything from crazy golf or rock climbing, to a cooking class or museum trip.

But, while this may have helped eradicate the first signs of poor table manners, it opens the doors to plenty of other instances where manners and politeness really matter.

As a result, you need to make sure you have good manners beyond just the dinner table. As a quick conversational guide, try make sure you don’t:

  • Arrive late.
  • Talk about old relationships.
  • Dominate the conversation.
  • Forget to ask questions.
  • Talk about marriage and children.
  • Spend too much time on your phone.

And not just in face to face encounters, either. It doesn’t matter if you’ve met on an online platform or through a friend of a friend, the chances are, you’ll exchange several messages before meeting in person.

So make sure you reply appropriately to any messages. Not only will fluid conversation via text or social media help you relax into the date, but it will keep conversation comfortable and flowing if you choose to message one another after your date. 

2) Pretending to be someone you’re not 

When you first meet someone, particularly after a few bad experiences, it’s easy to want to transform yourself into a shiny, polished version of yourself.

But, while this technique might feel like the easy option come date hour, it’s likely to hinder you and your partner a few more dates down the line.

Often brought on by low self-esteem and the fear of disappointing the other person, the little white lies you tell on your first date often seen inconsequential and can help you create an ideal image of yourself in the moment.

However, if you really want to get to know the person you’re dating, these are the things that have the potential to stop you from getting to know one another on a deeper, more intimate level.

And it’s not just the white lies that can hurt you down the line. Deliberate omissions can also kill a relationship with potential. Or just be embarrassing when the truth emerges.

For example, when you finally get introduced to your animal-loving new partner’s menagerie, and they discover that you didn’t tell them you were allergic to cats.

Or they discover that you have a child six weeks after dating, after giving no clue in the hours you spent together, and hundreds of messages you exchanged, that you were a parent.

No relationship should be built on dishonesty, so be yourself. And if that isn’t good enough for your date, then you can rest assured that they’re not the right person for you. 

3) Building up unrealistic expectations

Similarly, make sure you don’t create an unrealistic impression of someone by the way they look, the job they have or even what they were like the first time you met them.

We’ve all read the fairytales, and watched films like The Notebook, and we can honestly say that at the end of the day real life is better. So give your other half the chance to show you parts of themselves you haven’t previously seen.

This all happens in small steps. And can often be masked by communicating and comparing yourselves through social media as false impressions are made of one another and real life can appear distorted.

To avoid this, make time for each another away from your phone screens. And concentrate on keeping it real by developing your relationship in person and growing to love your partner for who they are – regardless of whether they resemble Ryan Gosling or not. 

4) Undateable personal habits

It can be difficult getting to know someone and beginning to fall for them, then discovering that they have a habit you can’t bear to live with.

In one survey, three-quarters of people aged 18 to 24 said they would not kiss someone who had just smoked. So if you’re a smoker, and genuinely want to find love, it might be time to give it up in search of someone to share your life with. (If the idea of going cold turkey fills you with fear, you could always give vaping a go.)

Other personal habits that make the ‘undateable’ list include:

  • Body odour.
  • Bad breath.
  • Yellow teeth.
  • Dirty fingernails.
  • Bad fake tan.
  • Dandruff.

Most of these are (hopefully!) obvious. But there may be other, less obvious habits that could unknowingly put your dream date off.

So if you’re getting ready to embrace the dating scene, it’s worth just checking with a trusted friend or family member that you don’t have any personal habits that anyone could possibly object to.

But, if you do this, please do be prepared to possibly not like an answer. And to take any honest opinions offered in the spirit that they’re given – and use them, if needed, to be a better version of yourself. Basically, don’t shoot the messenger!

Ready to find ‘the one’?

Just like other aspects of our lives, when it comes to dating we can unintentionally develop bad habits or expectations that have the potential to set us back in our love lives.

So, if you’re ready to find the one (or even just someone to enjoy a few pleasant dates with) look for opportunities to eradicate any off-putting or limiting habits, and go forth into the dating scene as the very best version of yourself.

Photo by Huy Phan