Dating can be so complex for humans. Penguins have it much easier. They’re straightforward and get right to the point. We are often so overwhelmed, especially when comparing our love lives to that of a Penguin.
The modern dating scene is anything but encouraging. After your 53rd first date, all the dating app prompts and first-date faces melt into one single entity. Your goal is to kiss every frog along the way, hoping one turns into Prince Charming. But what if Prince Charming doesn’t want to commit? What if he needs to ‘find himself’, or ‘focus on his career’? Then you’re back to asking, ‘What’s your best travel story?’ on your 54th first date.
You know who doesn’t have to deal with that? Penguins.
Female Adélie penguins spend months at sea hunting for fish and swimming in freezing waters. After which, they make their way back to the same breeding grounds year after year. They waddle right through grounds full of interested males, ignoring their advances and heading straight for their mates from the previous season. Must be so nice to know you don’t have to deal with getting to know a new penguin every season.
This is not to say that all penguins’ sex lives are monogamous, but it does make you wonder how things got so complicated and tedious for us.
Back in the caveman days, people were all about communal living, sharing was caring (even when it came to partners). But as societies grew and became more complex, monogamy became a handy tool for controlling inheritance and making sure little Chintu's dad was actually Chintu's dad. The idea of monogamy may be the little niggling subconscious thought that makes us want commitment, as opposed to enjoying multiple partners when it comes to dating. Because if you really think about it, going on first dates can be a really enjoyable experience. But we come out of it fatigued because we aren't focusing on the fun, we’re often just focusing on ‘the one’.
“Dating fatigue might present as an attitude of indifference, feeling depressed and hopeless, exhausted at the thought of another date, or thinking you’re ready to give up. Some people will experience dating fatigue after just a few dates, and others won’t experience it for a few years of dating.” - Caitlin Cantor LCSW, CST, CGT, a writer for Psychology Today.
How To Overcome Dating Fatigue?
- Take a break: Just like penguins need to waddle off for some chill time, you too need to give yourself a break from dating. Focus on self-care, put your dating apps away and grab Palm, or any other full body massager instead.
- Assess your dating goals: Make sure your dating goals and preferences align with what you truly want in a relationship. Penguins, just want to make babies, so if a partner doesn’t show up, they don't cry over it, they just choose another mate. All penguins aren’t looking for monogamy. Occasionally, a penguin will choose two or three partners in a year! You can choose the path you want without having to conform to what the majority wants. It can be helpful to make a list of non-negotiable deal-breakers and go from there.
- Change your approach: Switch up your dating rituals! Penguins generally look for pretty pebbles to impress their dates. But sometimes, to spice things up, perform fancy dances instead. Breaking the routine of ‘dinner and drinks’ may help you look forward to dates more.
- Be selective: Don't feel pressured to go on every date that comes your way. It's okay to be picky and only go out with people you're truly interested in, even if that means you're not interested in anyone for a while.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is, dating can be maddening enough to send you down an internet rabbit hole that makes you believe the grass is greener elsewhere. For me, evidently, it was Penguins’ love lives. So, if you’re out there looking for love, and feeling dejected, you may need to reassess. As cliche as it sounds, you need to cultivate self-love, because the grass is always greenest where you water it.
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