Whether you’ve been single forever or it’s you’re a repeat offender, finding true love is a tough gig. Why is it so hard for most women? Maybe it’s because so many of us tend to stand in our own way of happiness by expecting the perfect person to drop from the sky—and shower us with unconditional love. Yeah, we know that’s not how it works, but a girl can dream, right?
No, not really. Because while we waste time dreaming, the good ones are getting away. Plus, we’re not engaged with doing everything we can to find what we want. So let’s get smart when it comes to finding true love. What can you do? Read on.
Top 10 Things You Need to Do to Find True Love
1. Be open to different kinds of people
We all have “types”, a certain way we envision our perfect partner. But fixating on a fantasy is a surefire way to become disappointed with reality. Without lowering your standards, think carefully about why you are set on certain character traits. Does your dream guy need to be an avid reader? Or does it not matter if he likes books so long as you can carry on thought-provoking conversations? You have to think about why you want things so that you don’t pigeonhole yourself and get stuck waiting for a 6’5 top chef with a Master’s degree and a thriving woodworking business that doesn’t exist.
2. Try to look past looks
If you’re choosing a partner based solely on looks, you’re likely to be disappointed when it comes to the rest of him. Appearance is important but personality is key. Keep this in mind: The face you stare at every day will change but the jokes he cracks won’t. Also, I hate to break it to you but you aren’t perfect either. When you’re serious about looking for long lasting love, you need to accept some flaws because in the end, you want your partner to accept yours.
3. Build up your confidence
Nobody likes a Negative Nelly and if you aren’t happy with yourself, then you won’t be able to be happy with someone else. Period. So now’s the time to start doing things that make you happy and feel good about yourself, whether it’s on the inside or the outside. Being confident in yourself will make you more approachable and easier to talk to—and you’ll feel better, too.
4. Put yourself out there
If you are sitting in a dark room feeling sorry for yourself, you won’t meet anyone. How about going out dancing, sitting in coffee shops, speed dating or making online profiles? Even Cinderella had to leave the house to meet her man and so do you. If you’re in a public place, try keeping your phone tucked away so that you can be present, making eye contact with people and starting conversations. There are a million different sites and events for meeting people these days so there’s no excuse not to find an option that feels right for you.
5. Don’t be afraid to approach
Once you get yourself out there, you can’t sit in a corner or wait for others to make the first move. If you do, you can’t expect to meet someone fabulous. Remind yourself that this is your life, and you can take control of it. How? Introduce yourself with a smile, a handshake or a hello. There’s no time like now.
6. Get with the times
Dating has changed a lot within the last decade. There aren’t as many rules anymore and the gender expectations have definitely decreased. Nobody waits three days to call because for the most part, nobody uses phones except to text. And outdated rules of etiquette about who pays for what have gotten murky. In today’s dating scene, the most important thing to remember is to go out and have fun and not let yourself get hung up on the details.
7. Have a better understanding of yourself
You can’t find a good fit for you if you don’t know yourself—who you are, what you like, what you want. Especially if you just got out of a relationship, you need to take the time to work on yourself and figure out what you want from a relationship. Plus, the better you know yourself, the more confident you’ll feel.
8. Let everyone know that you’re single
Don’t be shy to tell your friends and family that you’re looking for someone to date. You just never know who knows a person you might love. The people who know you best are valuable sources of information and if they come across a good lead for you, they’ll let you know. But if you don’t put the word out that you’re open to the possibility of meeting someone, then you block that avenue for connection.
9. Make sure you’re ready to date
If you’re fresh out of a relationship, you need to make sure you’ve packed up all your baggage before jumping into a new relationship. Timing is key. You could end up with an amazing person but you won’t appreciate him if you’re still hung up on the last guy.
10. Don’t let other people choose for you
Who you choose to be in a relationship with is ultimately your decision. It’s often very helpful to have your loved ones scout people for you and to weigh the pros and cons if you’re unsure. But in the end, remember, this is your happiness at stake. You do what feels right. Always.
Laura Bilotta is a dating coach, matchmaker, and host of the dating show Single in the City on the Rogers Network. She founded singleintheicity.ca, one of the largest event-based dating companies in the Toronto area. Her new book Single in the City was written out of her experience and heartfelt desire to successfully guide singles through the modern dating world.