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Why It’s Harder To Fall In Love When You’re Growing Older (And That’s A Good Sign)

Why It’s Harder To Fall In Love When You’re Growing Older (And That’s A Good Sign)

Never Love Anyone Who Treats You Like You’re Ordinary – Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde would have been wasting his time preaching those words to me in my youth. I never listened to anyone and fell in love with the wrong people time and again – people who didn’t treat me well. But I didn’t care as long as I got the one I wanted.

As I matured I slowly learned that to be treated well, not only would I have to demand respect but I would also have to become more selective in finding a partner – and that’s when it got tricky, but it wasn’t such a bad thing.

Here’s why the struggle to fall in love when you’re older isn’t that bad after all.

1. You Love Yourself

As we mature and put bad life experiences behind us, many of us learn that to move on in a positive way we must learn to love ourselves.

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When we love ourselves we put ourselves first and this really is a good thing. Sure, we may need to give to others but we can’t do that without looking after ourselves first.

But when it comes to love, many people shy away from a partner who is only attentive to themselves – and these are the kind of partners you want to avoid.

You want to attract a partner who appreciates your worth and admires your ability to put yourself first. While it may take time, this makes it easier to sift through the pile of potential love interests, getting to the best ones on the top.

2. You Have a Full Life

If you have been single for a while you have probably filled your life with very interesting things. Fun activities, family visits, holidays and work all take up your time.

You may even have children from a previous relationship and it can be hard to fit a date into the middle of all of this. Isn’t it wonderful to have such a full life and so much choice available to you.

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You can re-prioritize if that is your wish. You can juggle some things around to fit in a prospective partner and see how it goes. It is entirely up to you how much time you wish to devote to a significant other. Make it work for you.

3. You’re Self Protective

Many of us have been seriously hurt by someone we held dear and these wounds take a long time to heal. We can become weary of meeting someone new and put up our guard. Being self protective is not innately a bad thing.

If anything, this is the intelligent thing to do. Why would anyone rush back into another relationship for the same thing to happen again? When we’re self protective we are cautious about who we let into our lives.

The more careful we are the less likely we are to fall in love with a loser or a user.

4. You Enjoy Your Space

It is a lovely thing to be able to enjoy your own space. During times of solitude – be it a weekend alone on a break or a night in by the fire – we allow for self-development and introspection.

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This is very healthy and helps us to become more well rounded people. Sometimes, however, while we want a companion in life we don’t necessarily want to share all of that space with them.

This is perfectly understandable and anyone worth their salt will respect that and give you your space. If they are happy to give you your space you will know you are on the right track.

5. You Don’t Suffer Fools

Over the years you’ve learned not to entertain people who seem highly likely to waste your time. Through experience you’ve figured out who these people are likely to be and you don’t take long in releasing them from your life.

This is truly wonderful. Wisdom is a great reward. The path to meeting someone who is truly right for you is clear because of this gift.

6. You Have Your Independence

You learn to look after yourself in every way when you are single. You work so you have your own money and you have your friends and family for company. There comes a point when you can survive easily if you never met someone.

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The choice is ours when we reach this point. We can do as we wish – we have no need to meet someone unless we really do want to fall in love.

7. You Want A Meaningful Relationship

As we grow older we want a relationship that will be rewarding and meaningful. We want to be on the same page as our new date. We want to have a lot in common, be able to talk together and have that physical attraction at the same time.

It’s not good enough anymore to simply hook up with the first person we feel attracted to and hope for the best; as mature people we want more.

Experience and wisdom are fantastic assets when it comes to falling in love.

Falling in love gets harder as you get older but is it really love that we find in our youth– or infatuation? Real love is what we look for as we mature and while that may be harder to find it is longer lasting and far more rewarding.

So take your time, at least you know when you find them they will be a good fit for a long time.

Featured photo credit: Stephan Blomberg Photography via static.flickr.com

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Published on May 4, 2021

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

They say we are the average of the five persons we spend the most time with. For a minute, consider the people around you. Are they truly who your “tribe” should be or who you aspire to become in the future? Are they really genuine people who want to see you succeed? Or are they fake people who don’t really want to see you happy?

In this article, I’ll review why it is important to surround yourself with genuine individuals—the ones who care, bring something to our table, and first and foremost, who leave all fakeness behind.

How to Spot Fake People?

When you’ve been working in the helping professions for a while, spotting fake people gets a bit easier. There are some very clear signs that the person you are looking at is hiding something, acting somehow, or simply wanting to get somewhere. Most often, there is a secondary gain—perhaps attention, sympathy, or even a promotion.

Whatever it is, you’re better off working their true agenda and staying the hell away. Here are some things you should look out for to help spot fake people.

1. Full of Themselves

Fake people like to show off. They love looking at themselves in the mirror. They collect photos and videos of every single achievement they had and every part of their body and claim to be the “best at what they do.”

Most of these people are actually not that good in real life. But they act like they are and ensure that they appear better than the next person. The issue for you is that you may find yourself always feeling “beneath” them and irritated at their constant need to be in the spotlight.

2. Murky in Expressing Their Emotions

Have you ever tried having a deep and meaningful conversation with a fake person? It’s almost impossible. It’s because they have limited emotional intelligence and don’t know how they truly feel deep down—and partly because they don’t want to have their true emotions exposed, no matter how normal these might be.

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It’s much harder to say “I’m the best at what I do” while simultaneously sharing “average” emotions with “equal” people.

3. Zero Self-Reflection

To grow, we must accept feedback from others. We must be open to our strengths and to our weaknesses. We must accept that we all come in different shapes and can always improve.

Self-reflection requires us to think, forgive, admit fault, and learn from our mistakes. But to do that, we have to be able to adopt a level of genuineness and depth that fake people don’t routinely have. A fake person generally never apologizes, but when they do, it is often followed with a “but” in the next breath.

4. Unrealistic Perceptions

Fake people most often have an unrealistic perception of the world—things that they want to portray to others (pseudo achievements, materialistic gains, or a made-up sense of happiness) or simply how they genuinely regard life outside themselves.

A lot of fake people hide pain, shame, and other underlying reasons in their behavior. This could explain why they can’t be authentic and/or have difficulties seeing their environment for the way it objectively is (both good and bad).

5. Love Attention

As I mentioned earlier, the biggest sign that something isn’t quite right with someone’s behavior can be established by how much they love attention. Are you being interrupted every time you speak by someone who wants to make sure that the spotlight gets reverted back to them? Is the focus always on them, no matter the topic? If yes, you’re probably dealing with a fake person.

6. People Pleaser

Appreciation feels nice but having everyone like you is even better. While it is completely unrealistic for most people to please everyone all the time, fake people seem to always say yes in pursuit of constant approval.

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Now, this is a problem for two reasons. Firstly, these people are simply saying yes to things for their own satisfaction. Secondly, they often end up changing their minds or retracting their offer for one reason or another (“I would have loved to, but my grandmother suddenly fell ill.”), leaving you in the lurch for the 100th time this year.

7. Sarcasm and Cynicism

Behind the chronic pasted smile, fake people are well known for brewing resentment, jealousy, or anger. This is because, behind the postcard life, they are often unhappy. Sarcasm and cynicism are well known to act as a defense mechanism, sometimes even a diversion—anything so they can remain feeling on top of the world, whether it is through boosting themselves or bringing people down.

8. Crappy friend

Fake people are bad friends. They don’t listen to you, your feelings, and whatever news you might have to share. In fact, you might find yourself migrating away from them when you have exciting or bad news to share, knowing that it will always end up one way—their way. In addition, you might find that they’re not available when you truly need them or worse, cancel plans at the last minute.

It’s not unusual to hear that a fake person talks constantly behind people’s backs. Let’s be honest, if they do it to others, they’re doing it to you too. If your “friend” makes you feel bad constantly, trust me, they’re not achieving their purpose, and they’re simply not a good person to have around.

The sooner you learn to spot these fake people, the sooner you can meet meaningful individuals again.

How to Cope With Fake People Moving Forward?

It is important to remind yourself that you deserve more than what you’re getting. You are worthy, valuable, precious, and just as important as the next person.

There are many ways to manage fake people. Here are some tips on how to deal with them.

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1. Boundaries

Keep your boundaries very clear. As explained in the book Unlock Your Resilience, boundaries are what keep you sane when the world tries to suffocate you. When fake people become emotional vampires, make sure to keep your distances, limit contact, and simply replace them with more valuable interactions.

2. Don’t Take Their Behavior Personally

Sadly, they most likely have behaved this way before they knew you and will continue much longer after you have moved on. It isn’t about you. It is about their inner need to meet a void that you are not responsible for. And in all honesty, unless you are a trained professional, you are unlikely to improve it anyway.

3. Be Upfront and Honest About How You Feel

If your “friend” has been hurtful or engaged in behaviors you struggle with, let them know—nicely, firmly, however you want, but let them know that they are affecting you. If it works, great. If it doesn’t, you’ll feel better and when you’re ready to move on, you’ll know you tried to reach out. Your conscience is clear.

4. Ask for Advice

If you’re unsure about what you’re seeing or feeling, ask for advice. Perhaps a relative, a good friend, or a colleague might have some input as to whether you are overreacting or seeing some genuine concerns.

Now, don’t confuse asking for advice with gossiping behind the fake person’s back because, in the end, you don’t want to stoop down to their level. However, a little reminder as to how to stay on your own wellness track can never hurt.

5. Dig Deeper

Now, this one, I offer with caution. If you are emotionally strong, up to it, guaranteed you won’t get sucked into it, and have the skills to manage, perhaps you could dig into the reasons a fake person is acting the way they do.

Have they suffered recent trauma? Have they been rejected all their lives? Is their self-esteem so low that they must resort to making themselves feel good in any way they can? Sometimes, having an understanding of a person’s behavior can help in processing it.

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6. Practice Self-Care!

Clearly, putting some distance between the fake person and yourself is probably the way to go. However, sometimes, it takes time to get there. In the meantime, make sure to practice self-care, be gentle with yourself, and compensate with lots of positives!

Self-care can be as simple as taking a hot shower after talking to them or declining an invitation when you’re not feeling up to the challenge.

Spotting fake people isn’t too hard. They generally glow with wanna-be vibes. However, most often, there are reasons as to why they are like this. Calling their behavior might be the first step. Providing them with support might be the second. But if these don’t work, it’s time to stay away and surround yourself with the positivity that you deserve.

Final Thoughts

Remember that life is a rollercoaster. It has good moments, tough moments, and moments you wouldn’t change for the world. So, look around and make sure that you take the time to choose the right people to share it all with.

We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with, so take a good look around and choose wisely!

More Tips on Dealing With Fake People

Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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