Have you ever pondered why an amazing girl like yourself still can't seem to fall in love, despite knowing you want to be with someone? If that's a "yes," then you might want to keep reading. It turns out that, according to a dating consultant, there are completely normal reasons you haven't fallen in love yet, even though you want a relationship.
This is something I can really relate to. For the past few months, I've been getting a little stressed out as I approach my quarter-life crisis. I'm 23, I have a solid career and I'd like to think I'm pretty decent-looking. But guess what? I still don't have a boyfriend. I don't get it: I love romance; I'm pleasant and friendly; I love the idea of falling in love. I've been on at least eight dates in the past couple of months, and I've enjoyed each guy's company. I've even been on a few second and third dates.
Everything sounds great, right? There's just one small problem.
I'm just not falling for any of them. Some of my friends think I'm just too picky and need to get over myself. They might be right. These guys have so much going for them: They're attractive, they've got good jobs and they've treated me well. I'm just not feeling a real connection.
It's made me wonder why I can't just fall for someone, and inspired me to look deeper into the reasons why people find themselves in this situation. Here are a few reasons chemistry might just not click for you right away.
1. Your expectations aren't realistic.
Outsized expectations are a common problem, dating consultant George Kong tells Elite Daily. "The problem is, people with unrealistic expectations don’t know they’re being unrealistic," he explains. "Their friend met a 5’10” athletic Scandinavian artist at the dog park, why can’t they? Never mind the fact that they don’t have a dog."
If you suspect you might have fallen into this trap, Kong suggests taking an honest look at your lifestyle. "Ask yourself if you've ever met the person that checks all the boxes," he says. "How often are you in situations where you can meet this person? If you’ve never met this person or if the meetings are rare, you’re expectations are probably unrealistic for the life you’re currently living."
If you're searching for Prince Charming rather than the person next door, Kong notes this might be a defense mechanism to protect yourself from the perceived pain of rejection. In other words, you think you won't get hurt if you never let yourself fall for somebody.
2. Dating feels like too much pressure.
Whether you prefer to meet people IRL or on apps, the process of setting up a date and actually surviving an hour or two of conversation with a stranger over lattes or beers might feel pretty intimidating. Kong compares the stress you might feel before a date to a job interview. "Imagine if you just graduated and only expecting to work for one employer for the rest of your life," he says. "Your job-interview anxieties would be through the roof!"
Luckily, he has a suggestion: To the extent that you can, try to shift your mindset. He explains, "Dating is a process. The only expectations you should have going in are: (1) You're going to meet someone new and (2) It will either be a good conversation or a good story to share with your friends."
3. Finding love is a matter of luck and timing.
Even on dating apps, there's no real algorithm for finding love. You don't just fall in love with someone based on compatibility, or on how sexy, smart and sweet the person is. It's about chemistry, timing, and all the weird, wonderful coincidences life throws your way.
Love can sneak up on you when you least expect it, and often, with the person you least expect it with. That's what makes it such a delightful surprise.
Unfortunately, there's no simple trick or quick life hack to falling in love. It happens in its own time, on its own schedule, and there's no one "normal" timeline for it to happen. If you haven't fallen in love yet, you aren't alone. If anything, I bet there's another person out there who's perfect for you — and currently going through the exact same thing.
Additional reporting by Hannah Orenstein.
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