Is it better to be romantic or realistic when it comes to dating? While it may feel good to be a hopeless romantic, it's always wiser to be realistic about your love life. That's why everyone should follow these four realistic dating rules:
1. Let them know right away if you're not interested.
From the time you're a child you're taught to not hurt people's feelings. You're taught to always be kind to people, to compliment people, to encourage people, etc. This expectation is engrained in our heads and as we get older, it carries over into our love lives. This is why so many people have a hard time turning someone down. It's understandable that you don't want to hurt someone's feelings, but you're going to hurt them worse in the long run if you don't just reject them right away. If someone propositions you and you're not interested, let them know. Don't lead them on. Don't host their advances. This just leads them to believe that you're interested when you know very well that you are not. Rejecting them in the first place is nothing compared to stringing them along for some time and then rejecting them.
2. Don't have unrealistic expectations.
When it comes to realistic dating rules, one of the biggest ones to follow is to not have unrealistic expectations. This is not saying that you should settle. We would never advise you to settle for less than what you deserve. With that said, you can't expect the world from someone. If you're setting the bar too high, you're going to be disappointed by everyone. You need to recognize when you're being unreasonable with potential partners. Wanting someone to make millions or cater to your every whim and wish is unreasonable. Wanting someone to abandon their friends and family for you is unreasonable. Having unrealistic expectations like these is only going to leave you lonely in the end.
3. Pay attention to red flags.
We cannot stress this one enough: Don't ignore red flags! Red flags are a blessing and they should always be taken into account. There's an old saying that goes, “When someone shows you who they are, believe them.” When you see something concerning about a new partner, accept that it is most likely part of who they are and how they'll be down the road. If you're in the early stages of a relationship and you're noticing major red flags, get out. Staying in a situation after you've seen the red flags is only going to lead to a disaster. You'll become more invested in this person and get emotionally attached, only for those red flags to become reality. Then you're left with a broken heart because you didn't get out when you had the chance.
4. Stop playing hard to get.
Someone, somewhere, sometime long ago, started telling women that playing hard to get would lead to a lasting relationship. They were wrong. For whatever reason, women have been led to believe that playing hard to get makes them appear more interesting, elusive, and overall desirable. It makes the other person believe that the woman is too busy to pay attention to them or that she's just not interested. In some cases, this makes the man work harder and chase the woman. In other cases, it makes the man actually believe that she is not interested and he moves on. For this reason, we suggest you abandon the idea of playing hard to get. We're all adults here. If you're interested in someone, you shouldn't play games. Let them know you're interested and see where it goes from there.