Posted by: silverliningsblog | April 1, 2021

Why is dating so hard?!

You put your profile up, excited at the possibility of meeting someone wonderful. Soon after, you get a nice message from a cute guy who seems genuine. You chat back and forth, and you start feeling eager to meet him. You suggest meeting up, and then…radio silence.

What happened?! Where did he go? Did you say something wrong?

He could have been a catfisher. He may have social anxiety or commitment issues. You may have said something he didn’t like. Or he may not be that into you…the truth is, you will likely never know what happened.

There’s no doubt about it, dating in the digital world is challenging. It’s like driving on a giant freeway with no rules and everyone going in different directions!

Like many women, when my ex & I first split I dreaded dating, especially online dating. And the more I resisted it, the worse things felt…I felt rejected if someone ghosted me or didn’t choose me. I attracted mama’s boys, emotionally damaged men, and even a narcissist.

And the more failed relationships I had, the worse I felt about myself (and about men). Was there something wrong with me? Were there no good men out there? Was I destined to be alone forever?

Eventually I realized…hey, wait a second, I can blame the guys, but the common denominator here is me! But I know I’m a good person, so it’s not that there’s something wrong with me; it must be that I’m doing something wrong (and sure enough, I was)!

That realization led me to use my journalism training to research dating and relationships for almost a decade, then apply what I learned and fix the underlying reasons why I attracted (and chose) wounded men. Now, I attract a much higher calibre of men, and I don’t settle for less than what I want and deserve. And I no longer get discouraged by the low-calibre ones…I simply say no and move on.

I’ve learned to feel great as a single woman, and even to enjoy the process of dating! Which is why I decided to become a love and empowerment coach for single women, and help other women learn to be happy on their own and enjoy dating too.

What goes wrong when dating

So let’s begin with the main question: Why is dating so hard?

Through my research, I’ve discovered there are five main reasons: 

1. Dating for the wrong reasons – Many people date in order to avoid feelings of sadness and loneliness. But sad and lonely people attract sad and lonely people. Your pain will attract their pain. So to attract someone better, you must do the work to heal and unpack your emotional baggage first. The right reason to date is because you’re feeling great about your life and want to share your happiness with someone (you’re not looking for someone to make you happy).

2. Looking for validation and acceptance – Many people are also looking for validation from their dates/partners…to be chosen so that they feel good about themselves. But you’ll always attract a reflection of what you feel inside. So if you don’t feel confident in yourself, you’ll attract someone who makes you feel less confident. Or you’ll feel overly “rejected” when someone doesn’t choose you. Or you’ll choose too quickly, just because someone is flattering you. To be successful in love, you must first know and love who you are. Feeling good about yourself is the best antidote to perceived rejection and allows you to be more patient and choose better.

3. Not knowing what you actually want – Many people use the trial and error method of dating, and actually have no clue what they really want. Or they have a very vague ideal. But here’s the thing: you can’t get what you want if you don’t even know what that is! And trial and error is a painful way of doing relationships, because you have to keep going through break-ups, over and over again. Just like you shouldn’t get to the drive-through window without knowing what you’re ordering, you shouldn’t sign up for online dating without knowing what you want either.

4. Having limiting beliefs – You don’t get what you want in life, you get what you believe. So even if you figure out what you want, if you believe that online dating sucks, there’s no good men out there, men only want young women, men are all out-of-shape, there’s no one where you live…then that is what will happen in your reality. You will prove yourself right. We will never act contrary to our beliefs. So what you’re seeing and experiencing in your “reality” is simply a mirror of your present beliefs. Don’t like your results? Change your beliefs!

5. Focusing on the wrong thing – What you focus on, expands. So if you keep focusing on the jerks, liars, cheaters, players…that’s what you’ll continue to attract and see! Not because there aren’t good people out there. But because that is what you told your brain to focus on. So stop focusing on what you don’t want, and learn how to control your point of focus.

“Reality” is subjective

Many single women I talk to try to convince me that online dating really does suck and there are no good ones left, because that has been their experience…their “reality.”

And granted, it’s true that it’s their experience of reality (subjective reality), but it’s not an objective reality that is true for all people. Many women enjoy dating, and many of my clients have found love while online dating ― we are not all having the same experience!

Think of it this way…when it’s 14⁰ Celsius in the fall after a long hot summer, it feels cold. But when it’s 14⁰ Celsius after a long cold winter, it feels warm! Saying it is cold or warm is not objective truth or reality ― it is subjective experience (and what someone who lives down South finds “cold” will be different than someone who lives up North does).

Your experiences are simply a reflection of your past beliefs, emotions and behaviours…which is what generates your results.

How do I know this? Because I coach single women who come to me with a pattern of attracting the wrong partners…and when they do the inner work to shift this, they start attracting a better quality of partner.

It isn’t magic…it’s frequency and focus. When we complain about what we don’t like (e.g. online dating and players), we reinforce it and attract more of it. It’s like tuning into the country music station where everyone has lost their dog, truck and wife, when what you want to hear is peaceful, spa-like music. Your dial is tuned to the wrong station!

So, when you’re struggling in love, it makes no sense to keep dating. As Einstein famously said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” He also said, “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”

In other words, you won’t see the good guys when you keep complaining about your current “reality” and your vision is clouded by your struggle, pain and fear. Continuing to date when you are feeling this way will not result in a different experience, so it’s wasted time and effort.

How can I change my dating experience?

Contrary to popular belief, there are just as many good single men out there as women. And there is an easier way to find them. Dating doesn’t have to be as hard as people make it out to be.

Long story short, if you’re finding it hard, you’re doing it wrong! And if you want different results, change your approach!

So please, for goodness sake, stop dating if it’s not working for you! Recalibrate, change your beliefs and date from a place of happiness and confidence instead of trying to fill a void in your life.

If you don’t acknowledge your responsibility in who you’re attracting, who you’re choosing, and why you keep staying too long in unhealthy relationships, you are giving your power away to others and you cannot fix the problem.

Your point of power is not in complaining about or trying to change men. It’s in changing yourself…your beliefs, emotions, attitude, behaviours and focus.

Where can I get help?

If you want to know how to change your dating experience, I invite you to a FREE online event on April 6 called Finding Love in these Crazy Times. During this 90-minute masterclass, you will learn:

  • How finding love has changed in modern times (and since COVID)
  • The 10 biggest mistakes people make when looking for love
  • How to be safe when meeting strangers
  • How to know if they’re into you
  • The easier way to find your soulmate

Learn more and register here.

There is also a 1-day virtual workshop on Saturday, May 1 called the Soulmate Attraction Summit.

At this powerful event, you will discover:

  • The real reasons why you’re still single
  • How to avoid the wrong people
  • Why “rejection” is a good thing (and how to get past it)
  • How to consciously attract an evolved partner
  • How to know if they’re a keeper

This event is low-cost, and all proceeds go to Women’s Shelters Canada. Learn more and register here.

Share your ideas

Have you had a positive dating experience? Please share!


For more on this topic, see:

If you’d like to join a global community of single women who want to heal, feel empowered and support each other, I invite you to join my free Facebook group:

About the author

Karen Strang Allen is a love and empowerment coach for single women. She is the author of Free to be me: Create a life you love from the inside out! and international bestselling co-author of Unwavering Strength Volume 2. Widowed at 22 and separated at 35, Karen’s mission is to help single women feel great about who they are and create a life they love so they attract their dream partner.

Check out Karen’s free inspirational resources and workshops at


  1. Thank you for your profound research! I believe this post should be on every dating site as an entry so that everyone could read it before starting their search.

    • You’re welcome Marta, and thanks for the compliment! 🙂

  2. Good post…. dating takes two people to want the same thing and be on the same page. Also, if nothing else good come from it, meeting the wrong person helps you to know what you’re looking for in the right person for you. Last, consider it a good thing is dating comes off a little hard, to me that just means you know specifically what you’re looking for and want and not willing to accept anything. Thus, you’re able to easily filter out people with key red flags…

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