Some say love can be a losing game but it doesn’t have to be that way as long as you know what it takes to get the kind of love you want. In order to do that, you must avoid the pitfalls that can come with dating. This is not as difficult as it may sound. You control who has access to your heart, and since it is one of the most precious and vulnerable things you own, you should do whatever you can to protect it from those who are unworthy. So what should you do to get the love you deserve?
Be selective with whom you share your love, both physically and emotionally. Avoid investing so much of yourself so soon into a situation. I have a friend who was notorious for giving her all to men despite only dating them for a short period of time. It would only be weeks in and she would be totally committed. All in. No one deserves to experience all of you from the jump. Some will have to prove their worthiness and that comes with time. If you give too much of yourself early, then why should this person work any harder to make you happy? He’s already gotten everything from you.
Accept nothing less than what you want. I demand a man’s interest, time, effort, and respect. These are all prerequisites for my commitment and they should be yours as well. Nothing less will do. When you make it known to your prospective lover what it is you expect from him, approach it as you would approach walking on a tightrope. It’s all about balance. Be stern but nice. You don’t have to be a complete jerk about it nor should you bombard him with a list of requirements— these demands should be addressed organically during the beginning stages of your relationship—but you need to let it be known that you are very serious when it comes to matters of the heart, your heart.
Avoid emotionally investing in situations you knew were doomed from the start. We’ve all done it. Ignored the red flags. Disregarded the gut feelings. Sacrificed our needs for the betterment of the “situation.” You put in all that effort just to end up unhappy because you’re dating the liar you pretty much knew was a liar from the jump. Don’t set yourself up for heartache and disappointment.
If you’re in a situation in which you keep telling yourself you’re just in this thing for the “benefits”, stop it. The fact that you have to convince yourself of this just proves you’re incapable of engaging in such a thing. Once again, you’re setting yourself up and you’ll have no one to blame but yourself.
Realize that you can’t change a person. I don’t know why but women always seem to think we can change a man, whether it is getting him to be faithful to you, respect you, stop lying to you, commit to you, or maybe even marry you. You cannot force a man to do what he does not want to do. He may tell you what you want to hear to but his actions will always show you the truth, and you’ll be the only one shocked when things don’t exactly turn out the way you wanted.
Know when to fall back. If you’re not getting what you want out of the situation, then you must remove yourself from it right away. You’re only treated the way in which you allow. The second a man decides to lie, cheat, disrespect you, or do anything else to hurt you is the second he should be cut off. Don’t try to retaliate. Don’t go out of your way to be mean to him. If you need to let him know how much he hurt you, do that and then walk away.
Be comfortable with being single for long periods of time. Everything I mentioned above is made more difficult if you’re unable to be alone for a while. You may have a hard time doing this. You may be a serial dater who can’t fathom the thought of being single for more than a week or two, but if you just stopped to figure out what makes you feel loved, what doesn’t, and what it is you want from a partner, then not only will you be able to make better choices in love but you’ll be able to better communicate your wants and needs to whomever you date next.
In the end, you determine your own happiness. This applies to all aspects of your life, including your love life. Figuring out what you want is half to the battle. The other half is not settling for anything less than what you deserve.