Spring Cleaning for your Love Life

Spring has officially sprung, and with the change in seasons should come a change in how you approach dating if you’re not getting the results you want. All the dating doldrums you may have experiences over the winter can be put out of your mind if you do a little spring cleaning for your love life. Spring is as good a time as any to make a fresh start in your dating life, and here’s how to do it:

Out with the old…

Let’s start by “cleaning” any leftover romantic messes that might be holding you back from finding love.

If you haven’t been able to get over an ex, now would be a good time to look at your approach to getting over them, and see if it’s actually helping you. One of the last times I was hung up on someone after a break-up, I thought that the best approach to getting over them would be a combination of excessive drinking and excessive dating. Funny enough, it didn’t work, but it did teach me a valuable lesson: Not everyone gets over break ups the same way. Some people need someone new to get under to finally get over their ex, but many don’t. Some people need to date constantly, and some don’t. And some people need time to introspectively reflect, while others don’t. Getting over someone isn’t the same for everyone, so if you’re trying one method and it isn’t working, try something else. And keep trying. If Jenny Slate can get over breaking up with Captain America, you can get over that fuck boy you were dating.

If you’re being held back by someone who is part of your love, but isn’t giving you what you’re looking for, now might be a good time to end things. Look, I know it can be hard to give up on someone who seems like they’d be a good fit for you, or is good in bed, or just really good looking (we’ve all been there, myself included). But if you’ve been asking “What are we?” for 6 straight months, it’s time to move on. People will string you along when it benefits them to do so. If you’ve been dating someone,  and they’re getting everything they want from you without having to give you what you want, why would they ever want things to change?

Finally, you have to look at how you’re trying to get dates, and make some changes. If you spend countless hours complaining about a specific dating app you’re using, it’s time to stop using it. Let me repeat myself. If you are using a dating app, one that you absolutely hate, one that doesn’t bring you an iota of joy, STOP. USING. IT. If you’re using a matchmaking service, or going to meet-ups, or dating events, and none of these things are working for you, it’s time to change your approach. Those are just some examples though. It’s good to know what doesn’t works for you in dating, and your approach to dating. I learned early on that picking up women in clubs was a terrible strategy *for me* mostly because I can’t hear anything in clubs, and I also hate clubs. If you like picking up people in clubs, are good at it, and it leads to successful dates…go for it! If you keep taking that approach and it’s making you miserable, stop. It’s that easy.

…and in with the new

Focus on NEW. New approach to dating. New outlook on dating. Meeting and dating New people.

Your new approach to dating could be as simple as doing the opposite of what you’ve always done, or just broadening your horizons. I’m sure dates at wine bars are lovely, but if that’s all you’ve ever done and you’ve yet to meet someone you fancy, try different dates. Better yet, avoid going to the same date venues in general. While it feels nice to be a regular, it can also contribute to you feeling like you’re stuck in a date loop.

It might be hard, but a new outlook on dating can help recharge your desire to date. That’s why I’m a big fan of not only taking a break from dating apps, and using that break to change how you use dating apps. I’m a big fan of taking breaks from dating as a whole as well. I would recommend doing both of those things when you’re in a dating rut, and using your break to look at how you date in a critical way. Look at what causes you dissatisfaction, and make any changes you can. I decided a few years back that I would never go on coffee dates as first dates because I knew that I didn’t like them and, sure enough, I started enjoying dates a little better. Now’s a great time to figure out your pet peeves about dating, especially when it comes to the process of getting to know someone, where you go on dates, etc., and come up with new ways to look at dating. Maybe you don’t even want to date in a traditional way! Now’s a great time to try something new. Just remember that any changes you make to your outlook don’t have to be permanent. If you think that coffee dates aren’t for you anymore, and later realize that’s just not true, you can always change your dating outlook again. Learn, grow, change. The goal should be to do things that work and make you happy, and identify where you might be stagnating, and make changes if you need to.

Finally, I would highly encourage you to take a new approach to your online dating profiles if you’re dating online. That means refreshing your profile content. That includes your pictures, your profile summary, and hell, even your conversation openers. I’ve no doubt that your profile is a masterpiece, but maybe take a look at it and see what you can do to make some changes. Take a look at your pictures…are they up to date? Were they all taken within the last 12 months? These are just some of the things you can do to make dating feel brand new on dating apps. PLUS: Many dating sites highlight users who make recent changes to their profile (i.e. SuperCuteCutie uploaded a new picture!) while I’ve heard that changes to your profile on swiping apps will often make your profile appear more frequently in your user base. If nothing else, at least your profile won’t look like it hasn’t been updated in a while, which makes a profile look inactive.

If you’re happy with your dating life, by all means keep doing what you’re doing. If you’re like so many other people who are not happy with their love lives, do a little bit of spring cleaning.

Good Luck Out There.

Demetrius Figueroa

Demetrius is a sex, dating, and relationship writer based in Brooklyn.

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