We all know what a blind date is. That’s where you go out on a date with someone you’ve never met and only know what a friend or family member has told you about them. It can be exciting and scary. The experience is fraught with both potential and risk. But, are you blindly dating? Even if you’ve been out on a few dates with someone you may still be blindly dating them.
Why are you settling?
Blindly dating is when you date with little to no filter to help guide you. You go out with anyone and everyone, even the toxic ones waving red flags, because you haven’t spent the time to really figure out what you want. You ignore your gut and go out with the shiniest prettiest baubles and bad boys/girls. Once the dust clears you wonder why once again your relationship is less than stellar. Maybe your goal for dating is to simply not to be alone and so you are willing settle for less. We are not here to be mediocre and have lackluster relationships. Your car buying abilities may actually help you find love and not settle.
I know exactly what I want… in my new car
Let’s pretend that you need to buy a new car. What would be the first thing you’d do? First you’d consider what you need the car for: getting to work, buying groceries, going on road trips, getting yourself and your family from here to there, etc. You would probably do some research online to get an idea of the kinds of cars that are available and note the mileage and the features that they come with. Does it have an mp3 player? Is it environmentally conscious? Is it safe? Does it come with airbags? Can it go off-road? You’ll may even ask friends and family for recommendations on what they think. You might recall how some past cars worked for you, or didn’t ,and use that knowledge to help you pick a new car that will meet your current needs.
What you wouldn’t do is walk onto a car lot, close your eyes, spin yourself around and buy the first car you bump into, like an automobile version of pin the tail on the donkey. Because a car is such a big investment you would give some serious thought to what you want and need from it. I suspect most people give more thought to the purchase of a new car then they do in the type of people they date. Why would you spend more time figuring out what you want in a car then you do in figuring out what you want in a relationship?
Take the steering wheel!
Take charge of your love life. Why not apply some of your car buying tactics to help you stop blindly dating? Give real consideration to what you’re looking for in a relationship. Continuing that car analogy, consider some of these questions when venturing into a new relationship:
How’s the mileage?
- Are you looking for a short or long term relationship?
- Do you want to get married someday?
- Have they been married before? Are they still in contact with their ex?
- Does it matter if they are older or younger than you?
What features are you looking for?
- Do you want someone who loves to be in public and thrives on going out to dinner and concerts or are you more of a home body?
- Do you want to have kids/pets? Are you OK with them having kids/pets?
- Do you like to hike trails and scale mountains or do you prefer to be more of an armchair traveler?
- Do you like to have long intense conversations or do you prefer to keep it brief? What do you prefer in your partner?
- Are there any features that are must-have deal breakers?
Is it safe?
- Do you see some red flags in their behavior?
- Do they trash talk their ex?
- Do they speak longingly of their ex?
- Do they seem overly possessive?
- Do they imbibe just a bit too much?
- Do they have extreme high’s and lows or seem to wade deeply into drama?
- What about your past partners worked for you? What didn’t?
- What’s a feature you have never had in your relationships that you would like to have in the future?
- What is a pattern in your past relationships that you don’t want in future ones?
There are many factors that we consider critical to car buying, but for some reason we gloss over when we date. But you can see they aren’t all that different. I’m not advocating having a strict unmovable list of absolutes when looking for a partner. In fact for the greatest success in dating and you should start out with some well established guide posts and apply them with an open mind.
Help magic along
You can’t get what you want in life if you don’t know what you want. You can’t expect people to materialize in your life and hope that the perfect features, behaviors and scenarios will magically appear without a little work on your part. Go on blind dates, but don’t blindly date. You can’t get to your desired destination without have some map of how to get there and what the destination will like. Without that, you’re going to settle for a whole lot less than you deserve and be very disappointed. Life is too short and too precious to settle.
Cija Black is a love expert, author, blogger, online educator and host of the “Love Bombs” podcast. For more information about Cija, the books, class or podcast, visit modernloveguide.com.