Opening the door for your date shows good manners. Picking up the check demonstrates thoughtfulness. First impressions matter while dating, and respectful behavior signifies quality relationship material — until the red flags emerge. Once a red flag turns into a dealbreaker, courtship? Destroyed.
If your love life is in turmoil, you may just be a victim of the following dealbreakers:
Physical attractiveness and chemistry create that initial spark that makes two people long for one another. No rule says you must have the body of a swimsuit model or a pro athlete, but a healthy lifestyle and an in-shape body can increase that lustful physical attractiveness. Excessive weight gain, poor diets and health problems can be undesirable traits because they may indicate laziness or that you don't value yourself. A healthy body, mind and energy improves your appeal. By looking and feeling your best, you'll build confidence — and confidence is sexy.
Everyone feels down occasionally and bad days are a natural part of life. Wallowing in ongoing self-pity though is a turn-off. People who suffer from low self-esteem carry a negative attitude, and people want to be surrounded by people who are happy and uplifting. Someone who's confident possesses a dynamic personality that draws people in. If your insecurities get the best of you, then you may be deterring those romantic prospects. Positivity is infectious, and happy people build happy relationships.
Ego. Vanity. Narcissism. People who have inflated self-esteem and hold themselves in a higher regard than anyone else are off-putting individuals to be around. A dose of humility is always welcome and rewarded. Maintain a healthy balance between narcissism and confidence. Are your friends turned off by your bragging? Do you seek out validation rather than humbly receive it? Evaluate your self-awareness. Perhaps your self-perception needs a makeover.
In the company of someone who's selfish, a person feels invisible and unappreciated. No one wants to compete with someone else's self-focused behavior. Sacrifices and compromises are foundations for building a fun, happy and healthy relationship. If you've been called selfish and wish to change your ways, start with your listening skills. Rather than dwell on yourself, ask your date questions and get to know them beyond a superficial level. Then throughout courtship, think outside of yourself and your needs. By giving rather than taking, you may eliminate that constant trend of people walking away from you.
Finances do influence a relationship. No one wants to be surprised to find out that their partner is inundated with exponential debt. The New York Times recently shed light on how a bad credit score has actually become an upfront dealbreaker for single men and women. Poor credit reflects an irresponsible and mismanaged lifestyle. A dark credit history doesn't mean you're doomed in dating though. Create a budget, pay off balances monthly and keep credit card balances low — a healthy credit score is around 800 or higher, according the New York Times. Work to reduce outstanding debt accumulated from student loans, car loans and other loans as well. Once you're on the right track, protection from identity theft by Lifelock can further safeguard your credit. Identity theft can destroy your credit that you've worked so hard to restore, which can be as frustrating as a breakup. The only difference is, you won't have to change your relationship status on Facebook if you sign up with Lifelock, you just have to “like” their page.
Shannon is a baseball fan and freelance writer living in Chicago.