You don't deserve better, you deserve to be better

The idea that “You deserve better” is applied a lot in dating and relationship advice.

It’s used to explain away breakups: “Don’t worry about him or her, you deserve better anyway.” or  “It’s not you, it’s me, you deserve better.”

It’s even used to explain away failures: “You’re awesome, and if someone doesn’t see that, you deserve better.”

This advice suggests ignoring all of your failures. Forget about the things that aren’t going right, and put them out of mind and move on.

Sounds like a great way to continually make the same mistakes.

Believing you always “deserve better” is a defense mechanism. It keeps you from confronting failure, and learning from your mistakes.

Let’s be honest: you did something wrong in practically every setback you’ve experienced.

Now, you may actually deserve better, but when you do something wrong, you should learn from it, not ignore it.

Failure is an opportunity to learn and grow. It’s a chance to ask, why did this happen? It may be tough to figure out yourself, so ask people that were there. Listen to the feedback and confront reality. It’s only failure if you don’t learn something.

I’ve learned from misery more than a few times. I’ve lost jobs, opportunities, and women. Every time I wanted to think I deserved better, but what would that have accomplished?

What would I have learned?

Use failure to create a plan to improve and make a commitment to work on being better each day. Don’t allow yourself to become a victim of your surroundings. Things don’t happen to you, they are partially caused by you. You don’t deserve better. You deserve to be better for no one other than yourself.

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The key to never settling in your relationships

Think about this statement for a moment: You could have avoided almost all of your relationship problems.

The belief in modern dating is that relationships should happen naturally. Two people meet, and if they are “right” for each other, like magic, everything will fall into place. You make sure not to come on too strong, let things just happen, and avoid talking about or placing any expectations on the relationship. How has this worked out? Successful relationships, at any level, require more communication then the magic “naturally” implies, because the only product of letting a relationship happen “naturally” is ambiguity, disappointment, and heartbreak.

Defining your expectations is the only way they can be met.

You don’t tell your partner directly what you expect from each other because you fear rejection. Instead, you spend countless hours analyzing your interactions and texts, comparing them to your expectations. When you see a conflict between what you expect from your partner and what actually happens, it creates stress, frustration, and insecurity. Without communication, however, the only person that actually knows about this gap, is you.

The only person gaining from you not discussing your expectations is a person who doesn’t want to meet your expectations.

It’s true that if you tell your partner what you expect and they aren’t on the same page, you may end up being turned down, but in that case, rejection is a gift. Screening out partners that don’t want the same type of relationship will save you time, energy, and most importantly, heartache. Why try to be with someone who doesn’t have the same end game?

Once you discuss your expectations, it becomes your partners’ choice to try to meet them—or not. If you and your partner have discussed your expectations and you still feel that they aren’t being met, you must continue to communicate your needs to your partner, or know that it is time to get out. If your partner is having his or her expectations met—getting what he or she wants from you—he or she will not have any reason to end the relationship. Whether or not you see effort and change, and are willing to be patient as the change occurs, should be your deciding factor to end the relationship.

If your expectations are not being met, you are the only person with the motivation to end the relationship.

The majority of dating advice suggests letting things happen “naturally.” Feelings do take time to develop, and that at the start of a relationship feelings are usually not equal. Feelings, however, are very different from expectations. Two people can have very different feelings for each other, yet have the same expectations for the type of relationship they want, and how they should behave in that relationship. Eventually, those feelings can grow, and possibly result in a successful relationship. On the other hand, two people can have the same feelings for each other, with very different expectations for the type of relationship. Regardless of how feelings develop, without the same expectations for the relationship, the result is a very dissatisfying and stressful relationship.

Feelings are not reliable and are independent of expectations.

Have you ever pulled away from a bad relationship, only to be drawn back together through sex, intimacy, a good day together, or even those three little words? No matter how amazing and how strongly you feel during these moments in time, feelings cannot be the main measurement of your relationship. They describe what is happening now, while expectations speak to what is going to happen tomorrow, or even next year. Feelings are malleable, they can make you think things must be ok, or are meant to be, but they don’t represent the actual relationship. Unlike feelings, expectations almost never change drastically within a relationship. Your expectations are part of who you are, what you want in life, and from a partner. Meeting your expectations is the only true way to being happy in your relationships.

The only way to avoid these painful dating and relationship experiences is to choose to only start and stay in relationships with people who have similar expectations. When people decide to not meet your expectations, you have either not communicated them clearly, or your partner is not motivated to be in that type of relationship with you. The longer you stay in a relationship due to temporary feelings or hope, the more frustration and pain you will inevitably experience. You can avoid almost all of your future relationship problems by preventing them from ever happening, and living true to what type of relationship will truly make you happy.

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How texting is ruining your life

Your mind treats using the phone as an extension of your reality. You are literally experiencing, physically and mentally, everything that happens to you through your phone. For example, when you text your mind is transported into a type of “matrix” made up of the person/people you are texting and the emotions of the exchange.

The emotions you are experiencing due to your text messages can affect you mentally and physically in your present situation. When a connection is stressful you are actually experiencing the same physiological response to stress as if you were physically in the situation. How many times a day are you lost in your own “matrix,” and how often is it a negative or stressful?

The accessibility of the phone makes it incredibly easy to become affected by other areas of your life that are not right in front of you. The only way to prevent the affect is to cut off the technological extension of your reality. Physically leaving a stressful situation does not have a positive affect if you stay connected to it through your phone.

Stop allowing stress to follow you throughout your day. Turn your phone off, temporarily block a specific person, and be present in life. Unplug from the matrix, reconnect to reality, your friends, and ultimately greater levels of personal happiness.

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Tinder For Relationships: Can You Really Use Tinder To Find A Relationship?

Tinder is unquestionably the hottest mobile dating app of the moment. In case you've taken up residence under a large rock, the new app, similar to the famous “Hot or Not” website, utilizes Facebook profile information, gender preferences, and geographic location to match people based on mutually “liking” photos.

Media sources have been touting Tinder as the “get-laid quick app” and a direct product of hook-up culture. At one time or another you’ve probably laughed with your friends about how Tinder is like window shopping in the Red Light district without the service fee. Just swipe right for “yes,” and before you know it, a cocktail turns into a one-night stand. But is hooking up really that hard?

Compare the amount of women with whom you’ve hooked up to the amount of your serious relationships. Hook-ups are easy; that’s why dimly lit, loud nightclubs and cheap beer were created. It’s a lot harder to find someone that makes you desire a serious relationship, especially if you’re trying to connect through a strobe light and over the most recent Avicii track. What if I told you that Tinder was actually created to focus on relationships, not hooking up? Tinder was intended to help reduce the time it takes to find someone attractive while relieving the risk and the social anxieties of meeting new people cold.

Here are the top 6 mistakes you’re making if you’re using Tinder to find a relationship:

Your profile looks like you’re still in “Frat” mode: If you want a girl that is relationship material, you need to present yourself as relationship material. Delete any shirtless selfies, “promiscuous” pics, or alcohol- and drug-related photos. Delete sexual innuendo from your “About me” section and replace it with a “call to action” that fits your interest level and something genuinely unique about yourself. Ask your female friends their first impressions of your Tinder profile. You may be surprised by the assumptions they make from just a little bit of information.

You're not screening properly: You don’t get more points for having more matches. Stop swiping right for every “doable” woman. Take time deciding if her profile actually fits what you want from a relationship.

Dating to date: A date with a little bit of boredom and alcohol can easily turn into a morning-after regret. Meeting up with someone who doesn’t have long-term potential is a waste of money and time. Focus on quality, not quantity, and invest your resources wisely.

But you thought it’d be more: Make sure to evaluate your date’s intentions as well. Tinder, just like any in-person dating situation, is full of people that are not looking for a relationship — people on vacation, just looking for fun, a hook-up or to cheat. Does your date appear to be interested in developing more of a connection, or is she focusing on her next lemon drop? Pay attention to the obvious signs that a hook-up is clearly just a hook-up.

Looking at the wrong time: Tindering past midnight is exactly like strolling the bars looking to take someone home. It also implies that you are lonely, desperate or looking to hook up. None of these things scream “relationship material.” Tinder in the morning, during lunch or after work. People tend to spend time on their phone apps during commutes or down time, which are perfect opportunities to have a more meaningful conversation.  

You don’t build the right amount of comfort: Treat your Tinder matches just like girls you’ve met in person. Hook-ups get invited from Tinder messenger to a bar with friends, relationships get each stage of communication and a personal date. Move from Tinder messenger to regular texts and then to phone calls.

Tinder is a great tool to bring together people who may be attracted to each other. Represent that you want a relationship by how you present yourself and how you evaluate and treat your matches. Swiping right doesn’t have to mean you just want to hook-up. It can be the start of the screening process to determine if you want to make that match a one night stand or begin to explore a long term relationship. Also, once you do get in an incredible relationship with a girl on Tinder, then you get to have the "OK, let's both delete our Tinder accounts" conversation. But you'd already deleted yours, right?

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