Is There Ever A Right Time To Date?

It’s easy to fall into a trap of making excuses; especially to have your love life take the back seat to everything else going on in life. If you find yourself putting off your love life to some point in the future that will be the ‘right time’, this is one you need to watch. In this week’s episode of LOVELife, I talk to Chantelle and dissect this excuse for anyone in the same boat.

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17 Responses to Is There Ever A Right Time To Date?

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  1. Emily Shepard says:

    I LOVE you, Chantalle! Thank you for asking these questions.

    I like the analogy of the jobs–I have definitely had jobs I took, especially as an office temp, where I learned a lot but was glad I didn’t have to stay in them long. The only thing is that when you leave a job, although they may have to train a new person to fill your space, it’s not usually a question of someone’s feelings getting hurt.

    Most of the guys I’ve been involved with weren’t into me as much as I was into them, so the feelings involved were mostly my own, which meant it was up to me to handle the emotional fallout, and I got to develop “character” and whatever as a result. But when I met someone who was interested in me and I decided to date him even though I wasn’t that attracted to him, in order to have the experience, it wasn’t just my feelings on the line. I mean, it was definitely a learning experience for me, in a lot of ways, but one of the things I learned was that my decisions can–even unintentionally–affect someone else’s life (as nelly says below). He had read a lot into our relationship that wasn’t there, but my actions allowed that to happen, and I did feel bad. I also had to deal with a long period of “maintenance” after we stopped seeing each other, since I had promised him I wouldn’t cut off all contact as his previous relationships had done, and he had issues with abandonment, and I didn’t want to be callous and like “No, screw you, I’m out.”

    So what seemed in the beginning like possibly just a low-key dating situation for the heck of it turned into a painful and frustrating situation for both of us, and really turned me off trying any such thing for a while. SO although I think it’s a great idea to just get out there and have experiences, dating is not in the same arena as digging ditches, signing up for painting classes or going rock climbing.

    It’s really interesting that Matthew brings up Rilke here. He was (according to a biographer) really preoccupied with this question; apparently he wanted to learn how to become a poet as a PERSON before he actually started writing poetry, so he spent much of his life working on himself in order to become the poet he wanted to be. Which no doubt was responsible for him being the incredibly deep and soulful dude that he was, but if he had died before getting to the stage of actually writing, the world would have been deprived of some deeply beloved work.

  2. nelly says:

    Hey! How to be sure you are not playing with someones feelings? Because while you are getting prepared and dating others, some people will start to take you super seriously…

  3. sarah says:

    totally disagree with this peace of advice! im in a place right now where i know im not in a great place, so would, if i allowed myself to, be with men who arent actually worthy of the true me. i know this because the 3 partners ive had long term relationships while i was in a ‘good place’ treated me like an absolute diamond and worshipped the ground i walked on. then after suffering depression and leaving my wonderful partner of 12yrs because i felt he deserved better than me, i ended up dating a guy for 4 yrs who beat me black and blue, was controlling, jealous, and paranoid. i finally found the strength to walk away and will not even contemplate dating until i feel im in the right ‘place’. you dont need loads of failed relationships in order to find the perfect one :/ if you are happy and confident alone, when you are ready to start dating you wont accept anything less than the best.

  4. Pixie says:

    I think this is a good video and agree, but I also agree with another commenter from last year that we do need to somewhat have our stuff together and not just date to get experience. I think maybe it was just the wording lack of definition that doesn’t work for me because I agree that we should use our relationships that didn’t work out as a learning experience to improve ourselves and learn what we do and don’t like in a partner and how to recognize those traits early on but not just date to get experience. I think there is a difference between not being ready and making excuses because your scared. I think not being ready is an internal and emotional thing thing such as you recently broke up with someone or they died so you’re not emotionally ready to start seeing someone else or you’ve become a toxic person and need to detoxify yourself before you start dating again. I think excuses are more external and thought based like I want to have my own place or make so much money or I want my child/children to be a certain age before dating again.

  5. Desiree says:

    This video is so timely! I was talking with my dad last night giving him my reasons why I am not dating right now.

    However, after watching this video I see the error in my thinking! My perspective on spending time with new guys and those I know with respect to dating will be different – less intense, less about seeking a long term relationship, more about spending time in the company of others and learning and having fun.

    The upside? I’ll be less of a homebody, have company to do things with and create experiences and memories all in one fell swoop. Thanks Matthew and Chantelle!
    Xxx

  6. A. says:

    This was a bit confusing. You say men want everything. And shouldn’t we be thinking what we are bringing to the table? Won’t we attract people with standards if we meet our own first?

    You also lately seem to be advocating dating experience vs. non-experience. I don’t know if I agree. It doesn’t mean your socially stymied if you are a little less experienced than others. Every guy is different. Dating lots of other men doesn’t really prepare you for the next one. I used to think that but no, each one man is his own person. And I wouldn’t want a guy dating me just to get ‘experience’. Ugh. I’m just not a “weekend guy” kinda girl.

    I wish I could multi-task work and dating. But I am very unsuccessful at that. On a different note, I went to two more Halloween parties! Had fun! Back to focus on working now!

  7. kish says:

    Matthew you are right, there is no “right” time to date and dating can teach us a lot and prepare us for our future partner. But it is important to not get attached while doing this, otherwise there is only heartbreak and a lot of baggage.

  8. Cheryl Fisher says:

    your answer to the above question from Chantelle was the most brilliant view of this whole subject I’ve ever ever heard. In fact I’ve been looking for this answer for ages, no kidding! Thank you soooo much! love always, Cberyl

  9. Kiraz says:

    Matthew, you nailed it as always! I think, what you call experience can also be called “experiment”. I am in the same place with the lady on the phone. I am working on my career. I don’t want to feel uncomfortable economically around someone which could cause subconscious problems and effect the relationship negatively. But I also believe in what Will Smith said once “Don’t chase people. Be yourself, do your own thing and work hard. The right people- the ones who really belong in your life will come to you and stay.” I feel like if I work hard and take care of myself mentally and physically well, everything will magically work out.

    On another note, I watched an older video of you on youtube where you told some people off for criticizing you for using a certain word. That was awesome! There is a lot of “one up-manship” on social media, rather than sincere debate – people would rather disagree without further discussion and take the moral high ground, making themselves look good and identifying with the ‘popular’. This is not constructive for anyone, even themselves. Your kind but no bs attitude was great!

    Looking forward to more great stuff from you, Steve….and Jameson! =) =)

    Kiraz xxx

    • Emily Shepard says:

      Hi Kiraz,

      I’m interested in the video you mention–do you remember the title?

      I also relate to the stuff you say. It’s interesting, I hadn’t thought about the financial aspect before Chantalle brought it up, but it’s totally true. My lifestyle works really well for me right now, because I’m able have my own parameters, but I definitely don’t have the moolah (or the wardrobe!) to do anything expensive in terms of dating at the moment, so that would cut me out of the running for a lot of people. Which is probably just as well! ;) Well, we’ll just see what happens, eh?
      :)
      Emily

  10. Vilde Ellingsberg says:

    Hey matt! I’ve been watching your videos and read your blog for about a year now. I’m always looking for a way to get more knowledge and to learn how to think in different ways then I currently do. You have blown my mind more times then I can count, and I’m so grateful for that. Thank you !!

    I have this question that has been burning inside of me for so long. I’ve tried to discuss it with people, but they useally answer the same thing which I think is a very safe and (sometimes childish) opinion. The question is do I have to be jealous and is it wrong if I accept the guy to be the same way?
    So when I’m dating guys I don’t feel jealousy when other girls approch him and/or flirts with him. Most people say that it’s because I do not like him enough, which I don’t agree with at all. I think that someone making him feel good about himself always is a positive thing. I also notice that guys get way less compliments on the daily than women do.

    I like to think that I’m somewhat realistic, and I know that other people are attractive, intelligent, sexy ect and therefore I don’t have a problem with the him looking at other people or flirting a little. I just think it is a part of human nature. I want to guys I’m with to feel the same way so I’ve been very honest about all of this. They useally kind of agree with all of this until there is a situation where a girl hit on them at a party or something. I don’t stop it because I feel that if he cheats on me is out of my control anyway, and I don’t want to waste my life thinking about what might happen. The guys that I’ve dated then starts trying to make me jealous which I guess doesn’t work the way they want. They just become more unattractive to me if anything. Some of them has made it real ugly and two of them has cheated on me. Trust is crusal and on the top 3 things I need to get sexually involved with someone. So for me the trust is already there from my side. It feels awful when I realize that he doesn’t trust me the same way. I don’t know if it is too much to ask for him to feel the same way? Am I meeting the wrong men, or is it me that do something wrong? I also don’t know how I can have a relationship without that kind of trust.

    Would love to hear your opinion on this. Since I’m still in my early 20s I do know I’m probably immature.

    (English is my 4th language, so I highly apologize for any mistakes)

    • Emily Shepard says:

      Hi Vilde! You sound to me like you have a great attitude, a really healthy one, and that your outlook is something the right guy will *really* appreciate. And you don’t sound immature for early 20s to me! Maybe it’s just that the guys you have been meeting haven’t figured this stuff out yet. I wish you better luck in the future!
      xo emily

  11. Vavavoom says:

    I liked this one, I can use it.

  12. anon says:

    Hi Matt, I was just looking at your facebook page & I can see by one or two of the comments on your facebook page……that some slightly older women are in despair & disillusioned about their ability to get into a relationship. Matt, I have an idea- suppose you do a video about relationships & ask women (who are married or are in a happy steady relationship) to write in to your blog (not facebook, cause the comments/stories on facebook are usually too short)…DETAILING THEIR PATHWAY TO LOVE WITH THE PERSON THEY ARE WITH NOW ie. from the time that they were single, to getting into the relationship with that person, to the ups & downs & obstacles, whether one of them broke it off & then they got back together after a short time etc. It would be interesting & insightful for women who have little experience in relationships, & have difficulty getting into a relationship.What do you think?

  13. cristina says:

    Matthew is great,he has such a good heart and is always nice listening to him.i like his perspective on things,he makes me feel more relaxed and reminds me not to take everything so seriously.so thank you Matthew for your words and your work and for being a ray of light! :)

  14. gg says:

    what was the name of the book?

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