If You Need To Take A Break From Dating, You'll Notice These 4 Things About Yourself
I get it: Dating is exhausting. Whether you just got out of a long-term relationship or you're tired of swiping left and right, it's normal to feel like you need to take a break from dating. Maybe you're no longer motivated to continue dating, or you're just tired of the routine. Either way, dating may have been something that once brought you joy, and that now doesn't, which means that in true Marie Kondo fashion, it may be time to throw it out. (For a little bit.)
If dating has been stressing you out more often than not lately, you may want to consider taking a break — just until you feel ready to get back out there. "It is totally OK to take a pause from dating," Shula Melamed, MA, MPH, and well-being coach, tells Elite Daily. "A lot of people feel pressure to always be out there constantly and that if they snooze even for a second, they will lose. The truth is you need to build in self-care when pursuing relationships just as you need to build it in other areas of your life. It is beneficial for you to bring your best, most energized and cared for self to the table — if you need to take a break to do this, so be it."
If you're not sure if you need to take a break, well, "the mind is really good at convincing you of things that aren't real, but inside, you know the truth," Whitney Miller, relationship coach, tells Elite Daily. "Is dating fun? Is it inspiring growth or clarity?" If the answer is no to either of those questions, and you've noticed the below four things about yourself lately, it may be time to press pause on dating.
1. You're cynical about dating.
Swiping through every one of your dating apps probably used to make you so happy and excited at the chance that you may meet your next Prince or Princess Charming, but now, "when you are swiping through apps, you just feel frustration or take a mildly sadistic delight in swiping left or just start judging each profile with disdain," Melamed says.
2. You're uninterested in being set up with anyone.
If lately, you've felt inclined to turn down being set up by friends, it might be because you're tired of being set up in general. "If the suggestion of a set up with even the most eligible sounding of prospects makes you feel more drained than energized, it could be time to take a moment for yourself," Melamed explains.
You may not understand why you don't want to go on a date with this seemingly eligible bachelor or bachelorette, but you know for sure that you don't. Maybe you're "exhausted about dating, from not replying to messages to even not wanting to show up on dates," Thomas Edwards, founder of The Professional Wingman, tells Elite Daily. "Perhaps, you just haven’t had any enjoyable or memorable experiences in a long time." Whatever the reason, you find yourself with zero motivation to get back out there.
3. You're using dating to distract yourself from your last relationship.
People recover from a breakups in different ways. Some people choose to lock themselves in their room and deal with it on their own with chocolate, wine, and all of their favorite rom-coms. Others prefer to get out there and distract themselves from the pain they may be feeling. However, the latter may be hindering your healing process. "You are on a serious rebound and dating too quickly without grieving the loss of your last relationship, [and it] is getting in the way of letting go of your last love," Dr. Gary Brown, a prominent Los-Angeles based dating and couples therapist, tells Elite Daily. So, it may be in your best long-term interest to take a step back.
4. Dating is taking an emotional toll on you.
Putting yourself out there and dating can be a beautiful thing, but it can also be emotionally exhausting. Maybe you start crushing hard on someone, and they don't reciprocate. Or "you’ve been trying too hard to make things happen and [have] no results to show for your efforts," Edwards says. Or you've noticed that the people you've dated have "been particularly damaging to your self-esteem," Dr. Brown says.
If you find yourself doubting your self-worth because a couple of people you kind of, sort of, not really dated haven't wanted to keep seeing you, it may be time to take a break from dating. No one is worth making you think less of yourself, especially not someone who couldn't see everything you bring to the table. That's on them, not you. It's their loss, not yours. Remember: You are a goddess, and anyone would be lucky to have you.
So, what now?
If you've begun noticing any of these things about yourself, it may be your mind and heart's way of telling you you should take a step back from dating for a bit. "Be honest with yourself about the reasons you need this break," Dr. Brown advises. But do be gentle. "Doing so can be a true sign of self-love and taking a break can help you start to reset your life," he says. If you can't exactly pinpoint why dating just hasn't been working out for you right now, Dr. Brown has a few suggestions.
"Start writing a journal and be relentlessly authentic about why you think that dating has not been working out for you," he says. "Ask people close to you that you trust what their perspectives are. Ask them to also be truthful with you and not to tell you what they think you want to hear, but what they really think."
How long a dating break lasts can vary from person to person. Some people may need to take a a month, while others may need a few. "The break needs to last as long as it takes until it feels fun again," Miller says. "If you take a break, focus on yourself. Do things that you want to do." Start allocating more time for you and being your best self — the rest will follow.
"Take yourself on a solo date, go shopping, or reconnect with a passion of yours," Edwards recommends. "Treating yourself reminds you that self-love is the most important love to have in the pursuit of a long-term romantic connection."