2016 was a big year for me. I volunteered with elephants in Thailand, had the nose job I’d wanted since I was 15, changed jobs, changed flats, and reconnected with old friends.
However, the one thing that eluded me was men. Don’t get me wrong, there were men. But no-one that I really connected with. Dating success is still something that I have yet to experience. However, they say that you learn more from failure than you do from success. So here are the main pearls of wisdom I picked up last year, in the hope that it will help you on your own journey to romantic happiness.
1. Don’t be intimidated by attractive guys
Throughout my school years, I was ignored/ rejected by many a good looking guy, so over time I’d trained myself to fancy… average looking guys in the hope that they’d return my affections.
Until on my trip to Thailand last year, I met a guy who ticked every box. Tall, older, masculine, sociable, northern… oh and he was also really good looking. When we first met, someone made a joke about us getting together, and my first thought was haha, as if. But he turned out to also be really nice, attracted to me, and suggested meeting up when we got back home.
And it got me thinking… why shouldn’t an attractive guy be interested in me? I’m no troll myself, and either way attractive guys don’t always go for the obvious choice, so it’s always worth a shot. At the end of the day, people want who they want.
2. “Nice guys” aren’t always nice
At a dating event I went to a couple of years ago, the host started talking about how women go between the Boring Nice Guy and the Exciting Dick. Every woman in the audience started nodding in agreement. However, I don’t think that’s true anymore.
Men these days have been sold this dream where they can sleep around and only settle down when they start needing a zimmer frame, not realising that this is only an option if you’re attractive. I’ve met guys this year who the pick-up community would class as “betas”. Pleasant enough, but lacking that bit of game and masculine assertiveness that would make a guy attractive. They have then gone on to tell me they’re “not looking for a relationship”, or try and “bench” me.
So make sure to keep on guard no matter the man, and if the end result is the same, you might as well give it a go with the hot arrogant guy. In fact, sometimes attractive guys can actually be a better option as they don’t have an axe to grind.
3. Settle for nothing less than enthusiasm
When people say “don’t settle”, that’s easy advice to follow… from your side. After all, we’re all busy, so if you’re not enthusiastic there’s just no point. Lack of enthusiasm on their side however, is much harder not to settle for, particularly when there’s enthusiasm on yours- and this holds true in both romantic and platonic relationships.
I moved to London properly this year. Knowing very few people, I’ve been in the process of “branching out”. I’ve reached out to old friends in the area, and had them make excuses and eventually stop responding to texts. I’ve met new people, hung out once or twice, then had them flake or disappear on me. I used to keep messaging, try and pin them down to a date, thinking that maybe they’re just busy- but if someone wants to see you, they’ll see you. Those same people managed to see the friends they thought were cooler every weekend, and I’ve met some lovely new people who are generally available and willing to do stuff.
The same is true with guys. I find if a guy is interested, they’ll usually set up a date the following week, unless they genuinely are going out of town. But some guys will send a few lackluster messages, before messaging a few weeks later asking if I’d be “up for another drink”. Translation: “I don’t like you that much, but you’re attractive enough to bang, so let’s meet up again in a location where I can try and get you drunk”. I’m not interested.
What did you learn about love in 2016? Let me know in the comments!