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The Most Dangerous Person in Dating…

 

Ever dated someone who seems really into you . . . only for you to find yourself in a dead-end situationship where you just want to scream, “What are we?!” every time you’re together?

Turns out there is a solution for this (and you don’t need to be a mind reader). In today’s video, I’ll show you some simple ways you can find out what your future would look like with someone—even early on in dating.

Be sure to watch to learn how you can tell the difference between someone who will continue to string you along and someone who’s good relationship material.


How do we stop wasting our time in dating? When real love is what we want to find, what is the trap that so many of us fall into that has us wasting our time and never finding the thing we’re really looking for? That is what we are going to talk about in today’s video.

Before we jump into this video, I have to tell you, because it is important and timely, on the 19th of March, I am holding a live event called the Love Life Reset. For anybody who has had a really hard time in dating, you feel like it hasn’t gone the way you want, or perhaps you’ve come out of a long-term relationship and you find yourself dating in a new season of your life but not knowing how to get back out there and how to do it in a way that actually feels good, this event is for you. If you want to reset your results, start again in a fresh way, and start actually finding the relationship you deserve, this event is for you. It’s completely free. It’s happening on the 19th of March. It’s live. It’s virtual. You can do it from anywhere in the world. All you need to do to sign up for this event is go to lovelifetraining.com. You can register for free in 20 seconds and join us on March the 19th. I’ll send you an email with all of the details.

When we’re looking for love, one of the things we want to avoid are the kinds of people who waste our time. And very often, we look for the overt signs that someone is bad news, that they’re gonna disrespect us, that they’re gonna behave badly. Sometimes we look for the liars, the people who string us along on false stories of what is to be, of what my friend Dr. Ramani calls “future-faking,” the idea of where the relationship could go even though it will never end up there because that person is just lying to you about their intentions.

But in my experience in life, we don’t come across liars everywhere we go. There are liars out there, but there’s a lot more of another kind of person. That is the avoider. And the avoider isn’t someone who overtly lies to you about what they’re looking for, or what their intentions are with you. The avoider is someone who simply avoids the conversation. They don’t want to go there with you, so they don’t. They know that it’s going to probably spoil the party if they talk about the fact that they just want to hook up. They know if they tell you what their views are on a relationship or on monogamy or just the fact that they don’t feel strongly enough to have a relationship, then the fun will stop. The romance will end. It won’t go any further. So they simply don’t talk about these things. And they’re not lying. They’re just avoiding the subject.

Now, avoiders are some of the most dangerous people of all, because when they avoid the subject, they are banking on one thing, and it’s something they can rely on a scary amount of the time. They are banking on our unwillingness to have the difficult conversation ourselves. They are banking on the fact that we are enjoying their company so much, that we are enjoying the romance so much, that we feel so good when we “get” them, when we’re in their company, that we’re never going to bring up the difficult subject of what it is, where it’s going, and what this person’s intentions are. In other words, in order for this person to be able to survive in this dynamic and not be tossed to the side, they need another avoider. And that avoider too often is us.

Now, before you say, “Matthew, I am definitely not an avoider. I want a relationship. I want to find somebody,” let me explain what I mean. Sometimes we want something so badly that we’ll do anything not to jeopardize the possibility of it happening, even if it means avoiding the very conversation that would reveal that it’s never going to happen. They’re avoiding the conversation because they never want the status quo to change. You’re avoiding the conversation because you’re terrified of learning that the status quo is never going to change.

See, when we like someone, when we’re spending time with someone and we’re enjoying their company, when we’re enjoying the romance of where it’s going or where it could go, we dare not ask a question like: “What are your intentions? Where’s this going in your mind? Are you ready for an exclusive relationship?”

Because we’re so afraid of the answer we might get. We’re afraid of spoiling the party. And in doing so, we become the co-conspirator in the theft of our own time. Because too often, six months or a year down the road, for some people, years and years down the road, we find out that their intentions and our intentions have never been aligned at any point. We just never knew about it because we—like them, but for different reasons—were avoiding the conversation.

So our desire to find somebody and to be in a relationship in some ways becomes our greatest vulnerability. It becomes the reason we don’t speak up, the reason we don’t vouch for ourselves, the reason we don’t say what we really need. Because, deep down, we have a fear that if we do speak our needs, if we do say that we want more, then that person is going to go away.

And this, of course, doesn’t just happen to people who have been alone for some time. It can happen to people who have had their heart broken or are coming out of a marriage who find themselves in a position of vulnerability where they’re heartbroken and lonely and maybe looking for company, looking for someone to be a soft place to land. And when they find someone that feels good, it’s all too easy to avoid conversations about where it might be going or the way this person thinks about relationships or a relationship with you or the future.

So we have to do the brave thing.

What does the brave thing look like? How do we resist the urge to become the avoider ourselves who doesn’t want to have the difficult conversation? Firstly, we have to be vulnerable enough to be the energy we want from somebody else.

Imagine you’re dating someone and they are taking quite a long time to text you after a date. You wait for a couple of days and you don’t really hear very much. And then around day three or day four, suddenly, you hear from them again. Now, this is painful because for you, maybe you had a great date, you assumed that they did too, they showed every sign of having a great date with you, but in the interim, you just felt hurt, you just felt disappointed that this person that you had a great time with is now not being as proactive as you would like them to be, and as proactive as you would like to be.

But here’s a very common response to that: We feel this person taking days to text us, so we say (to ourselves), “Okay, two can play that game. I’m now gonna wait until they text me. And when they do text me, I’m going to be super casual about it. I’m going to not text them back immediately. I’m going to pretend like everything is okay, like I haven’t just spent the last three days feeling anxious and frustrated that they haven’t messaged me at all. I’m going to be the same energy as them. I’m going to be cool.”

The problem with being cool in that situation is it doesn’t model the energy you want to have with someone. So, in doing that, all we do is enable inconsistent communication from somebody else. It takes bravery and vulnerability to model the energy that we would like to see from someone. And that would mean having a great date and then a few hours later or in the next hour after the date, texting someone and saying, “I had a great time with you.”

I was out with a friend recently and he told me he’d finished a date and he had planned a date where he went out with his friends afterward. He’d said to her, “Hey, do you want to go for a drink? I’m going out with my friends afterward, but we could grab a drink first.” And they went and did that.

When he got home two hours later from seeing his friends after the date, he called her and said, “Is this weird? Is it weird that I’m calling you already? I just wanted to say hi.” And she said, “No, it’s not weird. I love it.” And they ended up having a conversation that night.

He didn’t decide to play it cool. He decided to model the energy he wanted to see from her, which was a sense of vulnerability, a sense of connection, of not playing any kind of a game, but just saying, “I wanted to see how the rest of your night was.” That set the tone going forward.

And by the way, if she was someone who didn’t want to mirror that energy or in some way wanted to play some game, that would have likely been a turnoff to him. That would have been a red flag for him. So he was modeling the energy he wanted to see.

And we have to ask ourselves in our dating lives: “How often am I modeling the energy I want to see? And if I’m not modeling that, why am I not modeling that?” And the answer is likely to be: “Because I don’t want to be that vulnerable. Because I feel like if I am that vulnerable, I could get rejected.” And that’s part of the problem: We’re more worried about being rejected than we are about setting the dynamic we want our potential relationship to have.

So one way to not be an avoider ourselves is to bravely and vulnerably model the energy we want to see from somebody else.

The other way that we avoid being an avoider is to be brave enough and have high enough standards that we’re willing to ask scary questions. And a scary question is a question that might give us an answer we don’t want.

If we’re having a good time, if we like someone, if we’re enjoying it every time we spend time together, but gradually week after week, we never have the conversation about exclusivity or saying “no” to other people or how that person is feeling about the time you’re spending together . . . if we never ask that question, it’s because we’re afraid of the answer; and consequently, week by week, we entrench ourselves in this kind of state of ambiguity where we have no idea what it is that we’re giving this much time and energy to.

We just know that at times it feels good, but we don’t ask the question because we’re afraid of the answer. We just want to continue down this road where it feels good some of the time. But if we’re honest with ourselves, it also hurts a lot of the time because we don’t know what it is. It gives us a sense of insecurity, and for some people even an enormous amount of anxiety.

So we have to suspect ourselves: If there’s an answer we want, but we’re not asking the question, we have to suspect ourselves and say, “Oh, maybe I’ve gone into the avoider state.”

And I get this all the time where people ask me these questions: “Matthew, I’ve been seeing this guy for this amount of time and, you know, I just want to know . . . what are we?” And I’ll say to them, “Well, have you asked him? Have you had that conversation with him?”

Because the truth is, I should be the second person she’s coming to with this conversation. He should be the first, but too often I’m the first because she’s afraid of having the conversation with the real person she needs to have it with.

That is the essence of being an avoider. And make no mistake, people who are avoiders in life, the people you’re dating who avoid, they are looking for a dance partner. Because the truth of their lack of intention can’t survive the light of day.

And by the way, these same avoiders, when six months later, a year later, you explode because you’re unhappy, because you finally need an answer, and you get upset or heartbroken or hurt, will accuse you of never having said anything all along. They will say to you, “I had no idea. I didn’t know that you were feeling this way. I never knew you’d be this hurt. I thought you understood the situation. I thought you knew what this was.”

They will say those things to you because that’s part of them holding on to the idea that they have been a good person throughout all of this time, while they have been avoiding what they know under the surface is your anxiety, your hurt, your desire for it to be more. But they’ve never had to go there because you never went there.

And there’s a power in that, to taking back control in your love life.

That’s what I want for you, in general, in your love life. I know when we’ve had a hard go of it, when it feels like we’ve been single a long time or nothing’s worked or we’ve just come out of a long-term marriage or relationship where we never expected we’d be single again at this point in our lives, it can make us feel vulnerable. It can make us feel scared or broken or like it’s never going to happen for us.

I promise you the past does not have to equal the future in this area, and there are ways that you can take control back in finding the love you have always wanted. And I’d love to help you do that. Like I said, I’m running this event on March 19. It’s called the Love Life Reset, and we are going to be joined virtually by thousands of people from all over the world who are not ready to give up on finding love. And if that’s you, then come join us. It’s a free event. You can register by going to lovelifetraining.com.

And I’m excited. I can’t wait. I can’t wait to see you there and to help you get back out there in ways that protect you and feel gentle but enjoyable, and start getting you the results you’ve been looking for. Come over to lovelifetraining.com, register now, and I’ll see you on March 19 for the Love Life Reset.

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8 Replies to “The Most Dangerous Person in Dating…”

  • Here’s something I’d love for you to talk about: How can we handle the “Yeah, right….whatever, baby. You just haven’t experienced ME yet!” disbelief in our stated standards when we are brave and are clear about them from the start?

    On our very first coffee date I took a deep breath and told him how high my bar was…what I wanted in a relationship…which was a partner as 100% in as I would be. Know what he told me later? “Oh, I thought you were just checking me…slowing me down a little.” Um, NO…I was telling him the truth. But he thought he still had a chance of a temporary total commitment.

  • This was exactly what I needed to hear today. I had a guy who ghosted me last weekend and he called me today and left me a voicemail.

    We have not even gone out on a date and he is already playing with my emotions. I need to be clear with him on what I want and expect from him.

  • I am in a relationship for 19 months with a person who in the beginning used to give me hints of starting a future and moving together but at that time he used to say I am not on job so it is difficult for him to move together. We had a serious misunderstanding in August last year and he made up his mind that I am not good for him. I asked for a chance to prove that I love him but whatever I do, for him I do not love him, I am not honest. Though he is the one I found on multiple dating apps though he says he does not use them. As I am in my late thirties, I had a serious talk about having a family. In December he said that he has dreams regarding his career and he cannot start a family and he is willing to let me go if it is important to me. I found a job but nothing changed. I started to give him hints and last month we quarreled and he called me toxic because I am forcing him to do something which he does not want to do. Again he said he does not find me the perfect woman he is looking for who will be honest and caring and loving. People advise me that I leave him but it is very difficult for me to leave, despite the fact I am heart-broken because I want to be with him but he does not. He is not the avoider but here I am the avoider as i know what is happening but I still hope that one day he would decide to be with me. I have stopped saying anything that makes him think that I am toxic.

    1. You are toxic and keeping yourself in a toxic relationship… for what? He clearly doesn’t love you so it’s not love. For like? That’s what you’re after? His like won’t grow to love. Walk away with some dignity and find a man not a boy you need to mother in between sexual encounters.

  • Wow! This is exactly the sort of relationship I was in for about 2 years and I didn’t realise that I was avoiding the conversation until right near the end. Exactly as you said, he started to say, oh I had no idea you felt like that (he did, as I had mentioned it). Soon after we split he got engaged to someone else.

    Then I nearly ended up in that situation again, but thankfully, I’ve been watching your videos and learning to trust my instincts so I called him on it, and we are now not together, but I at least avoided two years of wasted time and heartache over someone who was not ever going to be what I needed.

    Single at the moment and working on me!

  • When is it okay to have this kind of conversation? Do you think you can dive right in on date 1 and explain you would like to give things a real go, or should you wait for date 3 or 4? I’m talking to a guy and have a first date in the diary for this weekend I like him the most out of anyone I have dated previously and we have only texted and FT so far but he has made me feel a way no one else has the last 15 months or so since I’ve been dating so I’m feeling very anxious about out first date and worried his not going to feel the same way.

  • To Lisa
    Slow down and try to calm down. Wait until after your first actual date before you try to figure things out.

  • By WhatsApp I told my boyfriend that I didn’t want a Fuck Buddy, so he knew that on our first date, and mentioned it. It was the best date ever, and we have so much in common. Only 5 dates in 4 months due to his new job commitments. It’s hard to pin him down, and he doesn’t like needy ladies, I will only ask him what his intentions now are in a face to face conversation. I have to do it because I’m hurting too much. I’m 75 he’s 59, trust me ladies the heart never changes.

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