Why Timing Really Is Everything When It Comes To The Pursuit Of Love

by Lauren Skirvin

I have the reason why 75 percent of your potential love interests did not work out: timing.

It seems so simple because it is. It’s not a new or groundbreaking conclusion, but something about which people need to be reminded regularly and have pounded into their brains. Our egos can certainly get the best of us, and sometimes, we don't want to stop chasing people who aren’t accessible.

If you thought the chemistry was there and the attraction was at full tilt, you probably didn’t make that up. If it doesn’t manifest into anything more and you are super confused by that, it’s probably because the timing was just bad.

That guy who you had an amazing first date with who never called you again? Probably bad timing. That girl who seemed so interested at first but then ended things suddenly? Probably bad timing.

It has little to do with you. He liked you, he really did, he just wasn’t ready. She liked you and tried to make it work, but she just couldn’t. He was emotionally unavailable. Her heart was with someone else.

The trick is to stop setting yourself up for this kind of disappointment right off the bat. I like to call it “searching for green lights.”

If you feel a lot of hesitation from a person, his or her light is set to yellow. If someone tells you no, even if it’s not necessarily a hard no, his or her light is red. If you want the best opportunity possible for a potential relationship, only proceed if the light is bright green.

This is why dating websites are so successful. The majority of people on paid-for dating sites all have green lights on. It gets rid of all of the guess work in that area, and since you know that most of these people are looking for a relationship, you can feel free and open to look for those who are good matches for you.

If you want to do it in real life, you must pay attention to the signs. It reminds me of a line from “Mad Men,” when Don Draper says, “People tell you who they are, but we don’t listen. Because we want them to be who we want them to be.”

Most people ignore the signals and continue anyway and are then disappointed when they are... disappointed. I'm telling you, it will save you from countless heartbreaks if you just abide by this.

Red light qualities include, mentioning an ex too early on/being fresh out of a relationship, coming on too strong and developing feelings for you very quickly, being too "busy" to see you, having walls up/unable to be vulnerable, and/or in a relationship with someone else/still in love with someone else.

I had a friend who went on an amazing date with an amazing guy and was so excited about the potential that was there. But a couple days later, he told her that he was recently broken up with and just wasn’t ready to start something new.

My friend refused to accept it and kept texting, calling, pursuing and feeling bummed when he wasn’t being available. I wanted to shake her and tell her, “His light is RED! That means STOP!” But I guess some people have to learn those lessons the hard way.

It’s hard to find people with whom you have a connection and an attraction; it can take years sometimes. So when you find someone special, you feel like you want to do whatever it takes to make it work.

But, if the timing isn’t right, it’s just not going to happen. It’s the most crushing thing to accept. Someone who is self-aware and respectful will let you know straight up. Others will just keep dragging along until you give up or finally take the hint.

I’m sure it has happened to you before, too. When you meet someone who is so amazing, but you know you aren’t where you need to be in order to have a healthy relationship, it’s really hard.

Sometimes, two people have a green light on and it still doesn’t go any further. In those cases, they just weren’t that into you. You can usually figure out the difference.

The cool thing is, though, a red light or a yellow light doesn’t mean stop or yield forever. If you really like someone and are willing to wait it out, it can happen sometime in the future. And, if it’s meant to be, it will.