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How to Break Unhealthy Dating Patterns

In today’s new video, I not only show you how to identify someone who’s wrong for you, but I also share how to take that leap to start fresh and set your love life on the right path. (And make sure you stay until the end to hear my special announcement so you can take action in your love life this week!)

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Are you sick and tired of the way that your love life is going? Do you feel like you keep saying yes to the wrong people? Do you feel like you’re tired of going on dates where you don’t actually get what you want or you don’t actually feel what you want to feel, but you’re stuck in this comfortable loop that seems to be never-ending? One of the hardest things I watch is people get stuck in their love lives because they keep saying yes to the wrong things and the wrong thing doesn’t just have to be someone who’s treating you badly. It can be someone you’re not that excited about, someone that every time you go on a date with, you come home feeling like, I kind of just regret how I spent that time because I found out the exact same thing I found out the last time I saw this person, which is that I’m not that interested.

We get stuck in these comfortable loops in our love life that never really allow us to progress and find the thing we are really looking for, but it’s attractive because it’s within reach and it’s comfortable. If you’re sick and tired of this cycle and it’s not making you happy, this video is going to give you three steps to beginning fresh in your love life on the right path. And by the way, stay till the end of the video because I’m going to give you a very specific way you can do this this week. Let’s get into the video.

Step number one, ask yourself, “How did I feel the last two times I left this person’s company?” Have you ever had someone in your life whether they’re a romantic interest or a friend, where on paper you had a friendship or you had a romance. On paper, it should have been good, but every time you met up with that person, you left feeling depleted. You left feeling insecure or drained or judged or just worse about yourself, and maybe you couldn’t even put your finger on why, but there was something about this person’s energy that didn’t fill you up, it took from you.

The truth is that sometimes we feel these things and we don’t even tap into that. We don’t tune into ourselves and realize that this is how this person makes us feel, and so we sort of unconsciously get into a pattern of saying yes. The next time they ask us to hang out, we go, yeah, sure, because on paper it seems good, but we haven’t checked in with ourselves and asked, how do I feel every time I see this person? This is the test I want you to do. Ask yourself, how did I feel the last two times I left this person’s company? And if you don’t know, fine, see them one more time.

But after that, and during the time you’re with them, really consciously think about how do I feel in this person’s presence? How do I feel when I leave? And if the answer is I don’t feel good, I feel anxious, I feel it’s taken something from me, I feel worse off, they only ever leave me worse than they found me, then it’s time to start saying no to that person so that you can say yes to the unknown.

Step number two, resolve to play the long game in love, not the short game. I want you to recognize that our unwillingness to say no to what is within reach is a reflection of, in large part, of our fear of being alone. We are scared that if we say no to this, it’s almost like, what else would I do? There’s nothing else going on right now. It’s almost easier, isn’t it, if three people are asking you if you want to do something tonight, and two of them are dates that you don’t really enjoy being around and one of them is someone you’re really excited with, you can say yes to the one you’re really excited with. But if one person asks us to do something this week, even if it’s not right for us, we’re in danger of saying yes because nothing seems worse. But nothing isn’t worse.

I want you to think in your love life from now on, in terms of the long game. That I am playing a long game here of finding something that is right for me. Finding something truly fulfilling, building something that is stable and sturdy and can endure the test of time. Saying yes to things that take up our time, our energy, our focus is delaying us being able to find that. Being single isn’t the time waster. Dating the wrong people, knowing that they’re the wrong people, that’s the time waster. That’s the short game, right? The comfort game is a short game. I’m just going to go for this person because they’re there. Oh, I’m just going to say yes to them this Friday because there’s no one else in my life right now, so I may as well say yes until someone else comes along. That’s the short game. But the short game is slower. The long game is faster.

And by the way, when we say, oh, I’m just going to do this until, even though it’s not making me feel good, even though I don’t really like these people that much, even though this person doesn’t want the same thing as me, I’m just going to do it until someone better comes along. That is the fallacy. There is no until, while you are still doing this thing. The next person can’t find you when you are wrapped up in something else.

And think about it for a moment, think of it logically. That Friday night that you’re going to go and see that person, if you don’t go and see that person this Friday, that’s a Friday that’s open. Now that’s either a Friday that’s open for your own personal growth, which might be something you do at home. You might just do something that makes you feel good or something that makes you feel grounded and centered and conscious of your moves in life and what you do. Or you might go out and meet someone else, or you might hang out with a friend and strengthen a relationship that leads you to more events and rooms and places where you could meet other people. But nothing can come from that Friday where you spend it with someone who’s not right for you.

Not only that, but by spending that Friday with that person, you’ve sort of satiated yourself just a little bit. You’ve like, you’ve taken that hunger away. I’ve now got some connection this week so I don’t feel driven to go find it somewhere else. Instead of saying to ourselves, I’m just going to entertain this person until the right person comes along, we have to say, the right person doesn’t come along until I’m willing to give this up. The right person is a reward for letting go of the wrong person.

Step number three, when you do let go of what is current and comfortable, expect internal tension. It’s scary to say no to something when it doesn’t feel like there’s a safety net, right? In a sense, the people, the friends that we already have or the lover that’s in front of us, the person that doesn’t want the same thing as us, but they’re asking us out tonight, that is the safety net.

And when you take away the safety net, we feel like I’m completely vulnerable. There is nothing else right now. There’s a leap of faith required to even think that something else will be on the way, while I say no to the only thing I have. But that risk, that’s the risk that we have to be willing to take. Something better will come. Friends will come who are more aligned with who I am today. A relationship will come that is the actual relationship that I am looking for. If I do the work on myself, if I stay open to something new and I apply the right strategy to actually moving forward on a different kind of path than the one I’ve been on, that something better will come for me.

We almost have to have the mindset of someone who is in a new country and says, I am just beginning fresh. How do I want my life to be? What kinds of people do I want to spend time around? What kind of energy do I want? What values do I want? How do I want to feel in the company of the people I spend time with? And these are really important things to ask ourselves. It’s about creating a standard of what we want for our lives so that when we go in, we can assess things by that standard instead of go in just going, well, let’s just see what happens. And then anyone can tell you what to accept because we have no framework for what we’re actually looking for. We’re just looking to clinging on to the nearest life raft.

Now, you may be listening to this thinking, this all sounds great, but in reality, I don’t feel like the world is offering that much. I don’t feel like there is that much choice. I don’t feel like I have abundance. This scarcity that leads me to saying yes to the things I say yes to, that’s not going away, and it makes me feel like I have to take what I can get. I think that’s a cop out for anyone who is out there thinking that right now.

And I say this with love. I think that that is an excuse that you make for yourself because the alternative just feels so unknown and so scary. But let me remind you, the world is a very big place. We have only ever met a tiny fraction of the people there are to meet in this world. And there’s always going to be someone new you meet in your life who reminds you, I’m not just talking in our love lives, there may be someone new you meet, a contact, a friend, an acquaintance who you just meet and you realize they’re such a stunning human being that it all of a sudden just wakes up your mind to just how many awesome people there are in the world.

Whenever I’m dealing with people who are clinging on to old groups of people that no longer serve them, or an old partner that doesn’t make them happy, but keeps coming in and out of their life, I always remind people that there are so many new stories that you could be creating. More than you could ever create in a lifetime. Your problem is not a lack of potential new stories. Your problem is there’s just so many and not enough life. There is a new path for you that is available if you are willing to step out. To step out of your current pattern and do something new.

Now, on the 15th of February, I have a 90-minute live event that I am running for people all over the world virtually. It’s called Dating With Results and it’s completely free. But together we’re going to assemble all sorts of people from all different walks of life, all ages, all backgrounds, and set them on a new path in their love life.

If you have lost a little hope, if you are feeling burnt out by the process of dating, if you want to find love more than anything else, but the process of it is one you feel like you can no longer engage in because it just keeps leading you back to the same place, this event is going to show you what it actually means to do what I’m talking about in this video. To say, you know what? I’m drawing a line under all of this that hasn’t worked for me. I’m drawing a line under these situations that I keep going back to that keep wasting my time and keep being confirmed in their inability to make me happy. I’m drawing a line under all of that. I am ready for something new. I’m ready to actually be on a path that goes somewhere in my love life. I promise you these 90 minutes will be 90 of the most important minutes you spend this entire year.

The link to go and register is DatingWithResults.com. It’s a free event. I just ask that you show up so that we can spend this time together, and I can take what I’ve learned over 15 years of doing this and compress as much of it as possible into 90 minutes of something that is going to change your life by setting you on a new path. I look forward to seeing you there, and thank you for watching this video.

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5 Replies to “How to Break Unhealthy Dating Patterns”

  • Thank you, Matthew! Thank you for always helping me out of a funk to be motivated to try something new; keep the hope alive. I REALLY want to figure this out—to find an amazing partner and lasting,
    committed love. Really really badly. It just feels oh so hard all the time. But, the variations of your messaging in your videos and newsletters remind me that I am not alone and I don’t have to stay stuck— I just have to put energy into being motivated and believing; and stepping outside myself to try new things. Thanks for speaking to my needs!!

  • Hi Matthew.
    Next year I will be 70, having had my birthday in January already and I’m feeling after 25 years of a marriage I thought was going to be a good fit turns out not and this was my third time lucky I hoped. In what you have been talking about I feel that I have wasted so much time trying to make it work. Probably because I had children for him, as I already had two from my English husband, (that’s another story) I didn’t want to leave for the children’s sake. So I kept trying even seeing a psychologist to talk things out many times and my husband putting out there it was my mental state nothing to do with him. There too much under the bridge to say in a letter but getting to this age now on my own I moved area so as not to bump into him or remind me of the places we’ve lived and been to. I go to see my middle ( his eldest daughter) and grandchildren, they live on the same property but he goes every morning to see the the grandchildren and calls in the afternoon too so I see him or hide as can’t be bothered with him not being able to have a conversation with me only a slight wave of the wrist as a hello. Feeling uncomfortable there at Christmas I stayed at the other daughters house not far from there to save my feelings. I hate doing this I so want spend time with the boys and my daughter. Sorry I’m all over the place here writing this I can’t see myself meeting anybody I’m too guarded and don’t trust anymore I think. I’ve joined new groups to volunteer and help meet new people, the arts, painting singing all thing’s I’ve wanted to do now have the chance without criticism from the other. It’s been 41/2 years alone, just one fling early on I new it wasn’t going anywhere but him being so much younger did make me feel better for a short time then I moved away which was good way to stop this too. I miss the hugs and kisses. And no one since. I don’t know if you can make head nor tail of this sad lady who only ever wanted to be important to someone enough to fight for the relationship. Living in hope for a friend not to live with but to spend some time and feel loved, special even. Too many years to write here which leads to now.
    Thank you for your words of wisdom from someone so young I wish I had some of this. Oh I did meet him at a Relationship course, thought it might show me where I was going wrong in picking partners lol
    Warm Regards Sheila E Bentley

  • How to know when to start dating after a breakup. When do you know it’s time….without cycling in rebounds of sorts.

  • PERfectly timed message, I needed that confirmation… thank you for keeping me out of the wrong loop! See you at Wed event.

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