You kept dating in the hopes that it would get better. Perhaps you just didn’t want to give up before finding the right match.
So, you persisted, though the chances of meaningful connection seemed to fluctuate wildly. Until, finally, the thought of another restaurant, movie, and round of less than stimulating small talk just made you feel cranky. And frustrated. And downright hopeless.
The truth? You’re not alone. Dating burnout is common, especially in the world of superficial, swipe right introductions and the minefields of digital dating.
While there are many reasons you want to date, the aggravations and hassles can add up if connections are too few and far between. When that happens, dating stops being fun. In fact, it starts to feel like a chore.
That leads to dating burnout and discouragement.
It’s No Wonder People Get Burned Out
Dating burnout is very normal. After all, there are so many annoying things that happen when dating. Just a few examples include:
- Reaching out on dating apps but not getting responses
- Planning a date only to be stood up
- Going on an amazing date then never hearing from the person again
- Dating once or twice then getting ghosted
- Going on dates with people who just aren’t that interesting
- Swiping, swiping, swiping and finding no one new or exciting
This all happens before you have even established any sort of relationship. And part of the problem is that you forget that you don’t know them and they don’t know you and it becomes very easy to take it all personally. No wonder people get burned out.
Why Dating Burnout Happens
One major cause of dating burnout is your intention. Specifically, if you are looking for a life partner, then you are more prone to dating burnout as the disappointments add up. On the other hand, if you are simply looking for someone to have fun with, then you are less likely to get burned out and the experience of dating itself will be more fun.
And don’t forget that dating is a very vulnerable experience. You are putting yourself out there in the hopes that someone will be interested in getting to know you. Therefore, repeated dating disappointments can start to feel personal. This can eat away at your self-esteem, which naturally makes it difficult to stay excited about dating. It can be difficult to keep in mind that finding a partner involves a lot of luck.
On the other side, you’re putting a lot of effort into finding someone that interests you. This can be frustrating when you feel no connection, no attraction or no spark over and over again. It can begin to feel hopeless and becoming a celibate monk can start to sound appealing.
Signs of Dating Burnout
Of course, it’s not uncommon to have a long-term relationship in mind when you start dating. Ultimately, most of us humans want to be partnered up. And after you’ve hit up all your friends to fix you up or perused potential partners at work, dating apps tend to be the next best / easiest way to go. However, if you find that you can’t focus on the here and now and remain present on dates, you might be afflicted with dating burnout.
Here are some other signs:
- You face every date with dread.
- It feels like you have the same conversation again and again.
- You never feel excited about sharing your passions with dating partners.
- Just the thought of going on another app makes you feel hopeless.
- You find yourself mindlessly swiping left, killing time, your thoughts elsewhere.
- You feel disgusted with the idea of going on another date.
- Every photo on tinder looks like every other photo on tinder.
- You stopped believing you will ever find someone.
- In general, you feel overwhelmed.
Take a Break from Dating
If you notice these signs in yourself, the best way to deal with them is to take a break from dating. Dating in order to find a relationship can be a full-time job. Take a vacation from trying to find a relationship and use the time to find a relationship with yourself. This may mean taking a break from dating altogether.
How to Take a Break
Here are the first steps:
- Delete all dating apps from your devices.
- Cancel all dating-related networking events.
- Mark a date on the calendar to revisit the idea of dating.
- Turn down all dating opportunities until that date.
Focus on Yourself
The obsession with finding a partner can make you forget all of the other good things in your life. You may want to step back and focus on the things that are meaningful and enjoyable to you instead. Schedule time with friends and family. Do solo activities that you have always loved. Try new things. Practice self-care.
If you still find that dating burnout hasn’t dissipated after a time, consider counseling. You might need to work through some underlying issues or unresolved emotions from past relationships. Perhaps mental roadblocks concerning your own self-image are getting in your way.