I did lunch with a great guy last week and as we sat discussing some of the many complexities of dating, he mentioned a term that I just loved – ‘Analysis Paralysis’! It got me wondering to what extent this term affects our lives and in particular the selection process we go through when looking for a spouse.
Okay, let’s start at the beginning. According to Wikipedia the term ‘analysis paralysis’ or‘paralysis of analysis’ refers to over-analysing (or over-thinking) a situation, so that a decision or action is never taken, in effect paralysing the outcome. It goes on to define it further by saying, ‘A person might be seeking the optimal or “perfect” solution upfront, and fear making any decision which could lead to erroneous (in simple English, wrong) results, when on the way to a better solution’.
WOW! Okay, so maybe it’s just me but when I look around it isn’t hard to identify what a massive problem this has become. It’s not that all the good guys are taken or all the girls you would take home to meet the parents are married. Is it possible that we are just over analysing things to the extent that we have stopped taking risks? No, I’m not saying go out and just randomly start handing out your number to every person of the opposite sex but what I am asking is, “Why not take a risk?” Why is it that we have to psychoanalyse them, their family and even their dog before we would even put ourselves out there?
Okay, so I need to backtrack here slightly and say that I totally believe in having core principles that you should never wander from when dating. Your values and beliefs are vital and no matter how nice the package is on the outside, no relationship can grow to last without core principles being shared. So know what is most important to you. Personally, when I hear people say, “I’m looking for someone who’s tall, dark and handsome'”or “cute, petite and blonde” I just want to shake them. I know of endless relationships where both partners would admit to the other not being ‘their type’ at first but that over time and through getting to know each other this changed and now if you were to ask them, “What is your type?” they would all agree to their husband or wife being it.
So, basically, what I am saying is, “TAKE SOME RISKS!” There are no set ways or rules to dating. If it was that easy then John, who loves tennis, could just go down to his local tennis club to meet Sally. Personally, I think dating is a bit like going for job interviews. You are put on the spot, asked all sorts of questions and made to sweat but the more you go through, the better you get.
So next time you start analysing a potential date and they come up short because they aren’t into hiking, like you are, ask yourself, “Is this analysis paralysis?” If your answer is yes, then you need to remind yourself that life is all about taking risks. If we willingly take chances every day, whether driving, eating or even sleeping, why not take a risk on something that could have one of the greatest rewards?!
Just something to think about.