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Dating Based on Values: Aligning Principles and Beliefs for Stronger Connections

Shared values are becoming a crucial factor in forming strong relationships. Here's six golden rules to finding the potential partners who align with your principles, beliefs, and lifestyle choices.

Lorraine Adams
Lorraine Adams
Dating expert and founder of Gorgeous Networks Ltd.

In my early years as a matchmaker, I rapidly discovered that helping my clients find love was not how I had expected it to be. I had based my advice and guidance on my own journey and also that of the people around me, like my friends and family.

However, over time, having learned so much about people, their habits, their desires, their vulnerability and insecurities, I can confidently say that I have stumbled upon the golden chalice, the secret – and nowadays when my clients place themselves completely in my hands, I can hand hold and steer them to discovering that elusive prize, finding love. Typically, the biggest barrier to people falling in love and embarking on a meaningful relationship is themselves.

So many singles expect too much and too quickly, they don’t want to invest their time, or are incapable of devoting energy into getting to know people, so they let all these potential romance opportunities pass them by. Over the last couple of decades, so many people’s expectations of what is required from a potential partner have become totally unrealistic: unreachable in fact.

Those who understand that shared values are monumentally more important than a perfect visual aesthetic are discovering love with far more ease. People are beginning to realise that shared principles, beliefs and lifestyle choices are going to sustain a long-term meaningful relationship way better than someone being a certain height or shape or living in a convenient locality.

Are Dating Apps Bad for Our Mental Health?

Dating apps haven't helped the situation. All the most popular apps are geared towards superficial aspects and algorithms are way more favourable to subscribers with the most visually pleasing photos and within a certain age frame.

Apps can make a woman in her 40s and beyond feel old and past it, which in real life is absolutely ridiculous. Because there are so many fake profiles and also people who are not genuinely seeking love but instead looking for flirty fun, it distorts reality. So many singles have reinvented themselves for dating via apps, and are not the people they reflect, so it makes sense that the most likely outcome is going to be dismally disappointing.

Some of the new, smaller, more niche dating apps are trying to make positive changes, but the damage has sadly already been done, so many people have taken the “if you can’t beat them, join them” attitude and start behaving out of character because they deem that 'normal' dating app behaviour is ok.

The result is hundreds of thousands of single people being driven to utter despair and depression as they jump on to the bandwagon of thinking that the surface level traits and aspects are the key to helping them finding long term love. As we get older, it can be even more dispiriting, when we know that so many people are judging us based on looks.

If you are still open to online dating, read about Writing A Dating Profile When You're Over 50 for our expert tips.

The person you fall in love with is NOT going to come in the package that you expect.

The Six Easy Steps to Finding Love in Six Months for Over 50s

1. Spend time genuinely getting to know each romance opportunity that presents itself to you – even if you are not attracted to the photo and do not feel instant chemistry. (I call instant chemistry fake chemistry, because it is quick to fade; real chemistry takes time to discover).

2. The vast majority of the couples that I have brought together over the years did not do somersaults when they first saw the profile of their ‘soon to be’ partner. Most did not feel instant attraction, either, even upon meeting. Find time to invest in meeting more people and, when you do meet. it makes sense to push the boundaries and explore each person more deeply. Listen more intently, be patient with people, be less dismissive and judgmental.

3. Go on more second and third dates. If someone makes you smile, if you discover a mutual respect, if you feel energised in their company and you feel they have a generosity of spirit – go on another date, these could be the buds of REAL chemistry.

4. Please yourself – instead of trying to please your friends, family and colleagues. Many people seek a partner who they think their friends and family are going to be totally impressed by, instead of finding out what is actually going to work for them.

5. Keep reminding yourself that you are seeking a long-term partner, not a short term fling, and act accordingly. Seek out the aspects and traits under the surface, values, shared outlook and beliefs, instead of the unimportant surface level stuff.

6. Come to terms with the fact that the person you fall in love with is NOT going to come in ‘the package that you expect’―mostly they don’t!

If you adopt this code, it is very likely that you can find love within months. Obviously the more help you can get the better, join a matchmaking service or club to gain access to a more vetted and larger network (find more on The Dating Directory), or go to a dating coach such as James Preece to keep you on track. (James offers a 15-minute free evaluation packed with great advice).