What makes someone “dateable”? Are there specific qualities that define our successful clients?
It’s not a perfect body, a charming personality, financial wealth and a massive group of best friends. This truly is a great time of the year to prioritize dating, but before you put on your “dating shoes,” consider a few key factors that qualify whether or not you’re dating or relationship material.
First, how well do you know yourself? There is nothing more disappointing from our perspective than knowing someone genuinely has a lot to offer a partner, but doesn’t know so. A common misconception in the gay community is that we all think we are fabulous, with little to no flaws. Many of us have had rocky relationships in the past, not only with partners but potentially with family members or friends as well.
Remember, there is nothing wrong with turning to a professional to discuss your past and how to best navigate your future. It’s important to reflect on life experience and understand past relationships, of all kinds. Knowing where you were at fault and understanding how to deal with issues in the future will only make you more real, more sincere and more dateable.
On the flip side, do you stand in the mirror and think, “I would totally date me — what’s wrong with D.C.?!” If you’ve done this before, it may be a good indication of why you are still single. Stand up, look yourself in the eye and be honest with what you have to offer a potential partner. Many times we help clients better understand why they are single – it’s a part of the job that we love.
That said, unfortunately sometimes people have an inflated view of themselves and think they are only well suited with an individual considered a “perfect 10.” Calling your best friend to get their opinion is not the best way to solve this, though we wish it were that easy. Get an outside perspective — a therapist, a dating coach, a matchmaker — let them help you understand why you are single. Don’t be hard on yourself, be realistic. The truth might hurt, but hey, how bad do you want that relationship anyway?
Another step toward achieving high “dateability” is admitting your faults and quirks. Failure to admit what qualities, good and bad, make you “you” will only hold you back. Attempting to quickly fix all your “flaws” isn’t the right answer either. Accepting who you are is key. If you are a total introvert with a quirky laugh, accept it. If you are an extrovert who stands on tables to tell a joke to a crowd everywhere you go, own it. In other words, when you are dating with intent, you have to know yourself well to help you decide who is a good fit for you. The more honest you can be with your personality, the easier it will be to find someone who complements and accepts the real you.
Accepting “the real you” is a process and part of it involves putting the past to bed. Everyone makes mistakes and has bad unfortunate breakups. The faster you can understand why your past relationships didn’t work (don’t blame it on your ex! Relationships are 50/50), the faster you become a more dateable you. Reflect on the past, acknowledge it, and move forward.
Lastly, having a positive self-image is crucial. Sure, hearing that you are not as great of dating material as you think you are can be a harsh process. But going from being completely single and dateless to being in a lasting, fulfilling relationship takes major change. Dating as a mature adult is challenging. If you want to see change in your life, you’re going to have to make strides to do so.
Change doesn’t materialize on its own. If you’ve got a lot to offer a future partner and are still single, either your expectations need to be slightly adjusted, or you need to realize that what you are doing isn’t working for you. We always tell clients and write in this column to “be proactive. This is key in making sure you are the best you that you can be. We can only control ourselves and not others, so be honest, make the necessary changes, and optimize your dating potential by bettering yourself and your expectations first.
Want specific, confidential advice? Email us at info@MixologyDC.com or follow us on Twitter for tips, @MixologyDC @MixologyLA. Happy dating!