5 Ways To Get Out Of Your Dating Rut, As Told By 10 Different Women

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!

I’m not talking about wild animals (although I wish I were). I’m talking about the man pool I was limited to before I entered a dating rut.

Ah... the "dating rut." Is it just me, or does being in a dating rut inspire the wildest behaviors?

Our dating past may not be our dating present, but the past affects the way we view the present. It’s only natural to become bitter, hopeless, afraid or simply worn out. People advise me to let romantic bygones be bygones. But it’s not that simple.

I’ve been in a dating rut for what seems like forever. I’ve spent my rut refusing exes, recycling past loves and turning guy friends into boyfriends.

All of this has given me remarkably little success in the dating world. I suppose it just means that I just haven’t met the right person yet.

People generally use the dating rut as an opportunity to explore other options. And why shouldn’t they? Life doesn’t have to end when dating does.

That’s the thing about the dating rut: I don’t really try to get out of it -- I kind of just go with it. I look up at the stars, sigh and say, “Dating rut, oh, dating rut, you suck, but I’ve got to ride you out to get to the good stuff.”

But that's just me. Here are ten women with advice on how to deal with dating ruts.

1. To secure a boyfriend, don’t look for one.

“Whenever I'm in a dating rut, I call up my actor (read: waiter) 'friend' and have him come give me the dick. This dude is painfully slow but very, very nice. Also, he's the only guy I've ever met who has magnums and NEEDS them. His D is ENORMOUS. Anyway, I have him come over from the depths of Brooklyn (or wherever the f*ck he lives, because I don't care) and have all the sex with me.

Somehow the boys pour in if you're getting laid. It's like they can see the glow of a woman who is both getting some and is desired. They're like, I'LL HAVE WHAT HE IS HAVING. Works every time.”

- Annie, 24

2. Turn back the clock.

“I like to revel in nostalgia. Yes, I'm currently dating my ex-turned-not-ex (that's an unfortunate byproduct of this approach), but when I'm feeling down, I like to skip to a year ago on FB and look at all the love I was getting and remember, yes Simba, all that can be mine again. Also, the worst case scenario is that my ex is going bald and I just feel good about my life decisions. It's winning all around.”

- Isabelle, 26

“I usually find myself reaching out to more than a few exes ('ex' is a loose term here and usually means an old hookup or even just a random guy who would ask me on dates all the time) who I wasn't originally super into for one reason or another. I start idealizing these guys in my head and genuinely convince myself that maybe if I give them a real shot, things will be different. Getting attention from a bunch of guys is also a nice little confidence boost.

...This is, until I inevitably remember there's a REASON I rejected these nimrods in the first place and that I may be getting a lot of attention from guys, but they also happen to be a bunch of nimrods, so it really doesn't matter.”

- Charlotte, 23

3. When all else fails, bang your ex.

“I usually resort to dipping back into the usual pool of townie and exes.”

- Vanessa, 25

“Keep f*cking your ex over and over until you self-destruct.”

- Allie, 27

4. Date yourself... the rest will fall into place.

“Well, right now, I'm making the active decision to not date. However, whenever I want to get out of that, I try to become more perceptive of the men who already surround me. Maybe if I look at a guy I'd previously 'friend-zoned' in a different light, I could see him as a potential for something more.

And if that doesn't help, Tinder is always good for an ego boost, just to remind you that you've still got it.”

- Kim, 22

“I've always felt like dating was a rollercoaster. Sometimes you were really stoked about it and you wanted to date everyone you met, and then when that high wore off, you'd be disgusted just by the idea of going on a date or texting someone new. When that happens, it's best to just lay off. Get yourself off of dating apps. Don't go looking for a hookup in the bar. Just do you for a while. Your urge to date will come back soon enough.”

-Lauren, 24

“Get on Tinder for some self-validation, and then buy an expensive vibrator.”

- Jill, 22

“Sometimes what you miss most in a relationship is someone caring about your day. Instead of distracting myself by hooking up with other people, I kind of found 'texting buddies.' This might make me a tease in some guys's eyes, but I'd rather fill that void without feeling shameful for giving my body to guys who don't deserve it yet.

I'd also use the motivation to want to 'show him what he lost' by going to the gym more. This in turn made me feel more sexy and confident to get back into the dating world.”

- Yvonne, 27

5. Don't feel bad; there's always someone out there who has it worse.

“When I feel bad about being in a dating rut (which I have been in for the past five years), I like to remind myself of China's problems:

‘By 2020, sociologists expect an "extra” 35 million Chinese men — males for whom there are simply no available female partners. That’s slightly more than the population of Canada.’

As depressing as those statistics may be, it's just proof that there might not be someone out there for everyone. The best thing you can do is focus on growing yourself and becoming happy on your own (which will also make you more attractive to potential partners) -- and be happy that you have better odds than the guys over in China.”

-Kylie, 27