There are thousands of articles on the internet brimming with dating advice, though most often we turn to those in our lives for help. Consider the pros and cons of these in-real-life sources for dating and relationship advice to understand the best way they can help.
Pro: They understand the plight of dating and it’s many frustrations and will console you during what can feel like an emotional roller coaster. Single friends will bring you chocolate or wine when you learn the guy you had so much hope for turns out to be a jerk. They are also wonderful people with full lives and make yours even better through their friendship.
Con: If they don’t have any more knowledge or experience with dating than you do then their advice may only be support and not help. It’s still valuable, but maybe not be the best guidance.
Opportunity: You can gain perspective from other singles, wisdom from books or coaches, and expand your understanding of dating dynamics and how to navigate them.
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Pro: Unlike you, they aren’t impacted by the emotional side of dating and can help you be reasonable with your choices and actually stick to your deal breakers. Meaning, they won’t fall for the dreamy guy who smells awesome and melts you with his smile, and instead could offer you sound advice about how he treats you or observations about his character (or lack of it.)
Con: It’s been so long since your married friends last dated that they forgot how frustrating it can be and how much it helps to talk to a friend about it. You might wear out their patience with your dating tales. The flip side is that they may be projecting their own relationship issues onto your relationship decisions as they attempt to ‘live through you’. Careful.
Opportunity: Married friends can be great sources for set ups though many of them don’t realize that so you have to help them think through who they know.
Your Instincts are the Best Source for Dating Advice
Pro: Learning to trust your own decisions is so empowering you’ll suddenly be able to embrace that dating is a process and more easily deal with rejection. When you allow yourself the room to make mistakes, choose to have fun with the experience, keep the faith that you’ll find Mr. Right for You, then dating becomes a lot less stressful.
Con: If you won’t listen to your instincts or know that you can trust them, you are most easily influenced by those who jump to conclusions or generally run their life using snap judgments. They have no idea what is really happening in your dating life and because you are so intimidated by the process or the idea of getting hurt, you decide others must know better than you do. Wrong. In this situation, people who make a lot of assumptions or quick judgments only know how your relationship appears “on paper,” or whatever meaning they have assigned to the two facts they know without regard for the hundreds that they don’t. Be sure to learn how to trust your own judgment and recognize the difference between helpful ‘friends,’ and your own instincts.
Solution: Take stock of the decisions you’ve made in your love life, good and bad, and own every single one of them. Recognize the times you were clueless, and the times that little voice in your head kept nudging you that something was up and you ignored it. See – you do have instincts! Each time, you made the choice you could make. Celebrate it or let it go, but either way, recognize that you can make good decisions and trust yourself to do so.