In the throes of dating or pining after a crush, there can be the all-too-familiar feeling that you've been there before.Someone's profession, hair colour or height might be different from that of an ex, but their fear of commitment, wandering eye or air of unavailability is essentially the same.When dating, I seem to automatically seek what I've already sought: charming pseudo-intellectuals, suggestive and flirtatious, but essentially not interested in me.
Philosopher and author Alain de Botton believes this destructive dating pattern may be the fault of our feelings.We place too great an emphasis on our instincts or having "that feeling" to guide us to the right person, but that very feeling is not reliable.It is often warped by our experiences, explains de Botton."We are not merely looking to find love, we are looking for familiarity." READ MORE: * The new dating rules * Why is wanting a partner shameful?* Men don't fancy smart women It seems so many of us can't be trusted with the matters of our own hearts.
But if we can change our exercise or eating habits, can we overhaul our love lives?I was curious to see if I could tweak my own habitual dating tendencies.Over the span of three months, I had friends, friends-of-friends and colleagues-of-friends set me up on dates with complete strangers.Armed with just a name and a phone number, I proceeded to go on more than a dozen dates in cafes, rooftop bars and pubs, the idea being if others chose for me, I'd be jolted out of the experience of dating the same type of man over and over.There was a handful of goodnight kisses, and a smaller proportion of second dates.Dates were peppered with anything from stunted conversations to belly laughs, ending with anything from sexual advances to blunt rejections.