Dating Devotion

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The Problems of Hanging Out and Other Dating Habits

The Problems of Hanging Out and Other Dating Habits

This article is based largely off of the comments by Elder Oaks in the June 2006 Ensign “Dating Versus Hanging Out”
Essentially, the prophets have expressed to young single adults that they need to devote more attention to the proper dating methods and to cease relying on poor dating habits that are developments of modern society.
A few prominent modern habits include:

Hanging outSpending time with a group of people, male and female, merely to be entertained, have fun, or relax. This could simply be partying together, or an unexpected, casual invitation to spend time together.Group DatingWhen four or more individuals go on a date together.Emphasizing “Friends First”When your primary strategy for finding an eternal companion consists of making friends first and after a lengthy period of time as friends deciding if you want to date them or not; or, in other words, not making the decision that you want to date an individual early on. Prioritizing Career over FamilyChoosing to postpone dating or starting a family in order to pursue a challenging careerRelying on Others for MarriageCounting on your bishop, stake president, family, or friends to line you up with someone to marry.Waiting to be LovedChoosing to postpone dating because you are expecting to find someone who will love you right off the bad, or someone who you instantly connect with.

Although there are a few pros to engaging in the above behavior, there are also a lot more cons, which is why the prophets have discouraged them in the past. Below are some explanations of the problems with having these habits:
Hanging Out – One big problem with hanging out is that it gets you into a subconscious habit of assuming that the people you are hanging out with are merely there to entertain you. Your mind makes a connection with those individuals that there is an expectation for them to make life fun for you. Later down the road they stop being entertaining and you lose interest in them. The real issue occurs when you rely on hanging out to build a long-term relationship. –it is nearly impossible to get to know someone when you have only seen the side of them that is entertaining. How do you discuss life goals or express your feelings while you are “having fun”?
Group Dating – When you are in a group of people, you tend to act differently than you do when you are spending one-on-one time with someone. The same is true with your date. If the only dates you go on are with a group of people, you are failing to truly get to know the people you date. The reason this is a bad habit is that it is better to have a habit of simply asking people on single dates. Single dating is highly encouraged.
Emphasizing “Friends First” – Having a policy of being friends first then deciding if you want to date them has the same effect as hanging out. You get in a subconscious habit of associating that individual with being a friend and you lose interest in them as anything more. Later on, when it comes time to start dating your friends, things are “awkward” (because of your established psychological associations). You are better off separating friends from love interests.
Prioritizing Career Over Family – Claiming that you want to get started on your career or finish your schooling is a false excuse. You will always be able to find an excuse for why now isn’t a good time to date or to get married and start a family; and just like any other excuse, it is merely a poor reason for why you are not taking risks or doing the things you know you should.—You will always have financial problems or be “too busy”—excuses never fly when it comes to important things.
Relying on Others for Marriage – No one knows your likes and dislikes better than yourself and no one is as invested in you as you are. It is your responsibility to get married and no one else’s. Therefore, you are not only the best person, but you should be the only person making an effort at getting yourself married.
Waiting to be Loved: – Very few people are easy to fall in love with. Chances are that you are not one of them. Love is a two-way street, so if you want to be loved you need to love as well. You will need to woo someone into loving you as much as they will need to woo you. You can’t expect things to happen for you if you don’t put forth an effort.
Dating requires taking risks; imagine it as being an investment. You put various things on the line (emotions, time, finances, etc.) and hope that they will give you a beneficial return. If you burry your investment or spend it on other things, you will never have any kind of return.
Life is hard, don’t get discouraged!
You will need to set goals and plans  in order to see the desired outcomes you would like.

You need to be the right person if you are going to get married.
You can change, and if things aren’t working out for you the way that they are now, then you need to change.
Sometimes it merely comes down to having the motivation and the courage to make things happen for yourself.

And if you need a little help, Dating Zion is now offering Dating Coaching to people living in Logan, UT. Check it out!
And if you’d like more information, be sure to request a pamphlet by emailing [email protected].

Also, be sure to check out my official blog: Dating Zion ( )

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