“Are you still single?” We have asked that question ourselves or they have asked it to us. But what is the true answer?
People respond to it in different ways, but the most common response has to do with blaming superficial pressures. However, the way we refer to our appointments is what the real answer to this concern might have.
“Most people play a relevant role in why they are still single,” Melanie Schilling, a relationship expert, told HuffPost. “It is common for one to blame external factors, for example: ‘it is very cold, better start to leave after winter’, or ‘the harvest of men is poor’, but deep down everything has to do with self-sabotage”.
Self-sabotage behaviors are usually based on fear and, while people can adapt to them as a measure of self-protection, they will be an obstacle to the success of your appointments rather than a success factor. That can derive from fear of rejection, feeling vulnerable, or fear of being hurt again, as well as losing your independence or happiness.
“Often people who have been hurt in the past (and of course, who has not been hurt) tend to self-protection, but there is a difference between a healthy skepticism and going against your own happiness,” says Schilling.
“In the center of resistance to dating someone, many beliefs are inserted: about oneself, about couples or about relationships”.
Three types of negative beliefs about dating
Schilling says that beliefs about negative dating fall into three categories and can have an impact on how we approach the times we date someone.
1. Beliefs about yourself. “I do not deserve to be happy, I’m useless in relationships, I just irrigate, I’m better alone.”
2. Beliefs about men and women. “Everyone cheats, they’re going to break my heart, after all, they always leave.”
3. Beliefs about relationships. “What happens if someone else comes in? A relationship will take away my independence; I do not have time for that relationship.”
Believing in one or all of these things can have an impact on the way you feel “being ready” for appointments and can be a self-sabotage for the success of your courtships.
Schilling prepared a “Scale to be ready” that can help you assess where you are in terms of appointments and, therefore, what you can do to improve the success of your relationships.
The first three zones on the scale exemplify behaviors that can lead you to a “failed appointment,” while the top three are approaches that can culminate in a “successful appointment.”
“Self-sabotage undermines and blocks our opportunities for social interaction or our potential to date someone,” says Schilling. “In essence, it’s like telling the world that you’re not interested in a relationship, whether you’re doing it consciously or unconsciously.”
The next step to climb in this scale is the category ‘Resistance’, in which, “although you are open to a relationship, avoid these opportunities or classify yourself as ‘not available’ to leave.”
The third level towards a ‘successful appointment’ is the ‘Ambivalent’ approach, in which you have “one foot in and one out in your willingness to go out,” says Schilling. “You are sending mixed messages to potential appointments.”
So, how can we recognize that we could be sabotaging our romantic lives and thereby get ahead?
Schilling suggests that starting a dating cycle with someone starting with one can lead to positive relationships in the future.
“Self-pity and self-awareness are the first steps to attract and develop a positive relationship,” says Schilling.