Everyone tells you that you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find your prince (or princess). Even though you know going into any new relationship that there is the possibility of rejection, it still stings when it happens. And with breadcrumbing, ghosting and other dating behaviors that make a rejection a lot less clear, it is sometimes hard to cope.
Some days, you may just want to take down your profile and hibernate. The challenge for many is how to move past the disappointment and get back out there when things haven’t worked out. These seven tips will help you dust yourself off and recover because, as we know from kissing frogs, meeting your soulmate is a numbers game.
1. Don’t Ask Why
When the other person ends your connection, it is common to want to focus on why you were rejected. You’re not alone if your response is to dissect everything you did and try to understand where it fell off the tracks. Sometimes, there is no great explanation other than the simple fact that it wasn’t the right match. But either way, spending time looking for answers of what happened keeps you stuck in the past instead of moving forward.
2. Resist Confrontation
If the contact has ended in an abrupt way, you may be tempted to confront the other person and hold them accountable for their behavior. You might think this is going to help you to move on, but these interactions never go well because you are asking the same person who acted in a hurtful way to be empathic and take responsibility for their behavior. When the person doesn’t respond to your outreach or apologize the way you’d hoped, it only makes the experience more painful.
3. Step Back From Social Media
You might think tracking your ex on social media will help give you closure. But this is just a misguided rationalization that keeps you focused on someone who is not available. You can put too much energy and time into combing through the person’s social media looking for signs of romantic interest. It’s healthier for you to give up your search, close the door and move on.
4. Don’t Blame Yourself
You might be self-critical and think the ending of this relationship was your fault. You replay events in your mind and think about what you could have done differently. Although you may have made mistakes along the way and can learn from them, the other person’s change of heart was not due to one thing that you did, nor what you could have done differently. Understand that if someone feels connected to you and is emotionally mature, they don’t reject you for one thing. They talk to you about issues or problems that come up. Don’t get caught in a shame spiral thinking that you somehow caused this. Instead, be kind to yourself and realize it just wasn’t the right time or the right fit.
5. Be Realistic About Your Ex
Be careful not to replay the tapes of all the great times that you had together, or tell yourself stories of how this person was everything that you wanted in a partner. The fact that they moved on showed you that they were not right for you. Don’t waste your energy pining for the one who got away.
6. Learn About Your Needs
Every dating experience or relationship helps you understand how you function in a relationship and what you need in a partner. You may discover that you need a partner who is very available for you or one who gives you a lot of freedom. Maybe you do best with someone expressive and communicative rather than someone who keeps their feelings to themselves. Understanding what you should be looking for in a partner helps you better assess if someone is right for you rather than just thinking about if you are right for them.
7. Be A Zen Dater
Every dating experience is an opportunity to grow. Adopt the mindset that you are going to date with no attachment to the outcome. Don’t date to find a partner or get married or with a timeline in mind. Date to learn about yourself and others with no expectations of when or how anything is going to work out. That way, you are open to life’s experiences and all the growth that comes along with it.
Dating is not for the faint of heart. It requires a lot of emotional energy to hold yourself steady, to remain open and optimistic, and to keep plugging away at it despite discouraging experiences. But like other tough journeys, when you reach the end and find your soulmate, it all will have been worth it.
You may also be interested in 4 Steps For Getting Back In The Dating Game