Dating out of your comfort zone

As a relationship advice columnist, one of the best pieces of dating advice I can pass along to those of you who are looking for a serious/longterm/committed relationship, is to date someone who isn't your type. HE may not be the perfect guy for you, but a cool thing happens when you break the pattern of dating the same type of person -- you begin breaking the pattern of having the same type of relationship (and if you're single and wanting a longterm relationship, this is probably a good thing, assuming none of your relationships have worked thus far). We've been together ten years this May, married for seven, and have two pretty great kids. Instead of swiping left, go out for coffee with him (or her).It’s a universal truth that the same causes produce the same effects.If you keep doing what you are doing, chances are that the same thing will keep happening to you time and time again. We French are especially good at following unwritten social rules – take my word for it!And some of us are still waiting for their very own Prince Charming. Get rid of this ‘judgey’ vibe that you seem to carry everywhere with you.Get real, girls: no guy is going to sweep you off your feet on a white steed; sorry, I just had to break it to you. You know, the one that makes you criticise everything. Once again, dating outside of your comfort zone doesn’t mean lowering your standards. Cut yourself some slack: we can’t always be perfect. Succeeding in the dating game takes grit and determination.

A different partner can bring out sides of your personality that you didn’t even know existed. Or some long earrings if you usually have short ones. Talk to friends, chat on line, use the latest Match dating app or whatever but just DO something. As I am French I need to remind all women that some lines must not be crossed: ALWAYS wear matching underwear and no granny pants on a date please. It could be because I spent a few days outside – fresh air, amazing views, lots of laughter with great friends (and I didn’t have to worry about fixing dinner for 4 nights! There is something about challenging yourself, and doing something a bit different that gives you confidence, an edge, and a sense of accomplishment that does wonders for your personal growth. I came back refreshed and renewed, and vowed I would do things like this more often. But, I strongly believe that it had a great deal more to do with the fact that I completely stepped outside of my comfort zone, got my adrenaline flowing, dealt with a little bit of fear and nervousness (OK, a lot of fear and nervousness), and did something I had never done before.But people continue staying in their comfort zone, afraid of straying from the same type of person they've always dated, and my theory is that the type of person they tell themselves they're attracted to helps to tell a narrative or sell an image they're trying to project to the world.For example, a woman who believes she was an unattractive child and then grew up to be pretty might seek out only the hottest guys to help sell her Ugly Duckling narrative. ~Brian Tracy I recently returned from a long weekend in Utah where I hiked, rappelled into a slot canyon, and climbed back out again. I’m not used to hiking up mountains and standing on the edge of sheer drops where one misstep could lead to a quick drop hundreds of feet down to the ground (yes, my guide smiled and responded when I asked her about liability; she reminded me that I did sign a piece of paper waiving all of my rights should something happen to me! Something about trying something new and being really clumsy in the beginning, but soon figuring it out, that makes you proud of yourself. ) people, this could be jumping out of an airplane, but it doesn’t have to be that extreme. It might be taking a road trip to visit an old friend. There is something about overcoming some nerves that builds confidence.For us, the dating game is all about going out with someone who shares similar values but also a similar background.I wonder if this is because we don’t like taking risks? To make matters even worse, most of us women have been brought up listening to fairy-tales.Here we get up close and personal with some useful techniques to grow your confidence.At some stage in your life you’ve likely spotted one of those ghastly motivational posters, the kind that sports a generic landscape underscored by some nebulous phrase championing the merits of “success” (or something similar).