Hello, my loves. We’re going to talk about all things dating life today, because we are coming into Swipe Right season over here at Unf*ck your Relationships.
If you don’t know what the fuck that means, listen up: Swipe Right is my program about dating life. We talk about setting standards, non-negotiable boundaries, online dating mindset, and everything else that you could possibly need to know about dating.
I feel that programs too often focus entirely on the external work or entirely on the internal work, but Swipe Right melds them both together, which I love.
The reason I mention Swipe Right is because now that we’re getting close to the start of that program, we’re going to be talking more about doing the work around dating.
If you’re listening to podcasts about dating, joining programs, reading the books…all of that is beautiful. It’s fucking great. But if you’re not doing the internal work, if you’re just learning the external steps without taking a good hard look at yourself, then I don’t know what the fuck to tell you, because you’re going to keep attracting the same shit in your dating life.
For today, I’m going to go over a handful of things to avoid in your dating life. There are a TON, but these are the ones that I see broken the most often.
The first thing you need to avoid in your dating life is texting them all the time.
I get it. It’s exciting. You’ve just started talking to someone, you’re flirting, you’re having fun, the chemicals in your brain are going off…it’s all totally intoxicating. But let me tell you, by texting them all the time, you are setting yourself up for massive future projecting in your dating life later. (We’ll cover that in a bit.)
Basically, you’re creating a full sense of reality by being in constant communication with someone that you’ve only had one or two dates with…or worse, someone you’ve never fucking met.
Nothing says desperate like being available 24/7. Genuinely. Now, this is not about playing games to be busier than you are; it’s about actually being busy.
That doesn’t mean that you need to be out on the town or catching up with a friend all the time, but like…it’s okay to be busy tanning in the sun. Be busy FaceTiming with a girlfriend. Be busy blow-drying your hair. You don’t need to stop in the middle of everything you’re doing to respond to someone who has not earned their place in your life yet.
This is not about making false plans, it’s about actually valuing your time. So you can send a couple of messages here and there, but why are you talking all day?
I am telling you, this is why you’re getting yourself into the anxious-avoidant situation in your dating life, because a man who’s secure does not want to text with you all day. Do you know why? Because he has a life—not just a dating life, but a life. He’s out there living this very full life, and you are the cherry on top.
By texting him all the time, you’re showing him from day one that you’re willing to drop everything in your life to be available for him, and that is not sexy.
The only people that are going to think that’s sexy are people who fall more avoidant, because an avoidant is attracted to an anxious—and an anxious is attracted to an avoidant—unconsciously.
Next up on “don’ts” for your dating life: you have to stop saying yes to last-minute plans or half-assed, vague plans. You know the type: “Let’s maybe hang out this weekend,” or “We should hang out sometime.”
Depending on the behavior that we allow in our lives, we are teaching people how to treat us. So by being available for these last-minute plans, your dating life energy is saying, “I’m available for less than the bare minimum. Don’t worry about setting up a date with me. I don’t need it. I’ll say yes to a 10:00 PM meeting.”
Or maybe he says, “Let’s hang out this weekend,” but no actual plans were made, so you end up sitting around all weekend, waiting for him to make some concrete plan.
Girl, if there are no concrete plans, you do not have plans. You go and live your life. How you show up in the beginning is setting the stage for how the rest of the relationship will go, if there even is a relationship moving forward.
Earlier I mentioned future projecting, and I want to go back to that for a moment.
A lot of us, myself included, have this little Disney princess in our heads that believes we’re going to have our meet-cute, it’s going to be so adorable, we’re going to fall in love and we’re going to get married and we’re going to have babies—blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.
This was something that I really had to wrestle with when I was dating, because I didn’t want to reject that part of me—it’s very sweet—but I don’t want that part of me to be in the driver’s seat.
If that’s you too, you need to bring your fucking head back into the game. You need to bring your logic back into the mix. And remember, if you’ve been on one or two dates, or maybe you haven’t even met him yet, you literally don’t know this person.
Can we actually just hear that? You actually don’t know this person. He’s a stranger.
What this shows me is that you are stuck in a projection, which is something I call projectional love. This is the point where you need to slow down on fantasizing about the future. It’s sweet, but when we’re lost in fantasizing, we’re not seeing reality.
This is where we start to miss things. We’re not seeing the person as they really are; instead, we’re seeing their potential. We’re seeing what could be instead of what is, and that’s not how you want to approach dating. You need a clear head.
Lastly, you need to stop ignoring red flags. I don’t care how much you like this person, a red flag is a red flag.
This is why being crystal fucking clear on what your red flags are is so crucial, because if you don’t know them, then you’re just going to ignore them left, right, and center.
I know it. I’ve seen it. If you are not dating with clarity and intentionality, you’re basically throwing spaghetti at the wall, and you are at pretty high risk of repeating the same pattern over and over and over again because you haven’t done the self-inquiry as to what those deal-breaking red flags are.
The way that people show up in the beginning of a connection is usually them putting their best foot forward. So let’s stop thinking that things are going to change later on in the relationship, yeah?
Let’s take communication, for example. If communication is a lot less than you desire, stop thinking it’s going to get better, because you’re setting yourself up for another unhealthy dynamic. You’re showing them that your boundaries are nonexistent. You’re willing to waver on your boundaries.
Let’s stop ignoring things in our dating life. If you’ve complained about the same fucking thing for the last six relationships, it’s probably pretty important to you. So at the first sign of someone exhibiting that, you need to get the fuck out, because you don’t want to do that again; but instead, I see people trying to convince themselves it’ll be different all the time.
It’s not different. Let’s be honest with ourselves; it’s exactly the same. That’s why you’re attracted to it, because it feels familiar.
To end this pattern in your dating life, you’re required to set boundaries and stick to them, which is what most people don’t want to do. It’s all well and good that you read a book on fucking boundaries, but if you’re not going to actually set them and stick to them, what’s the point?
I say all this about dating life because I was this person. I know what not to do because I was the person who did it for so many fucking years, and while I’m not dating anymore, by the time I got to the end of that part of my life, I wasn’t doing any of those things anymore. I made a decision that it would no longer be my reality, and then I acted in accordance with that. If you’re sick and tired of playing out the same patterns in your dating life, you need to do the same.
Join Swipe Right, a 6-week program for women who want to date with intentionality so they can meet the man of their dreams: https://michellepanning.com/swipe-right
Ready to do the work? You can find all courses, masterclasses, and more right here: https://michellepanning.com/all-offers
I get it, girl. I’ve been there too. For years, I was going through the same experiences with men over and over again that left me feeling confused, anxious and pissed off.
I silenced myself in dating and relationships because I was terrified of being judged, rejected and abandoned. It all changed when I went through a break-up and thought “enough is enough. I cannot continue to repeat the same relationships with different men! Something HAS to change!”