There are many stages of singledom. There’s the stage where you’re having fun and taking advantage of your freedom, spending your extra time on friends and hobbies. There’s the stage where you’re hiding in your room watching movies, eating Oreos by the dozen, or whatever it is you do to recover from heartbreak. There’s also a stage where you find yourself simply bored. Maybe you’re just looking for something fun and casual, or maybe you’re looking for the next major player in your life story. Either way, looking and not finding can be frustrating. And if you feel like you’re waiting for something to happen and it’s simply not happening, you might consider stepping in and making it happen.
I hear too many people complaining about supposed bad luck — “Why can’t I meet anyone interesting?” or “When am I going to find a lasting relationship?” Essentially, these people are waiting naïvely for their soulmates to fall in their laps. I think the problem is shyness and lack of confidence — no one wants to make the first move. But this is entirely the wrong attitude. If you’re looking for Mr. or Mrs. Right — or even just someone to see a movie with — you need to start recognizing opportunities. They’re pretty common, actually. And with today’s technologies, it’s easier than ever to reach out to people without really going out on a limb. You can chat someone up on Facebook and usually gauge by their reaction whether or not they’re interested, without risking much future awkwardness. So what’s your excuse?
Rejection is, admittedly, a valid concern — but there’s no reason it should cripple you. Most of the time, it’s not nearly as humiliating as you might expect. And obviously you can’t win if you don’t play. Caution (some might call it self-preservation) has its merits, but when it comes to the dating game, being overly cautious is one of the biggest mistakes you can make. No, don’t go asking out every attractive person you run into. Don’t appear desperate, whether you are or not. But if you suffer overt shyness or you dismiss most prospects as out of your league, consider an attitude adjustment. Self-confidence can be a powerful tool; not only is it empowering, it’s also very appealing to others. Of course you don’t want to be cocky, but there’s no reason to minimize your own positive qualities. And while you can’t expect to be successful every time, you shouldn’t be discouraged by rejection.
So if you’re ready to put yourself out there, to meet some new people and maybe create the proverbial spark, don’t be shy about it. Don’t be afraid to take some risks; after all, that’s part of the fun. Why not strike up a conversation with that cute kid in biochem? Worst case scenario, he or she isn’t interested. And even if that’s the case, you might still end up making a new friend. Or learning something that’ll turn up on the next test.