How to use sofa dating theory to find love
She suggests approaching dating with a simple analogy: Looking for a partner is like looking for a sofa. As she was developing her theory, Dr. Greenberg discovered that many women and patients identified women during her therapy in New York City who seemed easy to date. Dating and finding a partner – people who are objectively good – good looking, successful, and interesting – feel the worst of their dating lives.
In addition to the very real pressures women and girls face in order to settle down and have children, her patient also reports the pressures to look and act a certain way when dating. Example: always show interest but don’t also caring, warm and friendly, but not also warm and friendly. Dr. Greenberg finds that these influences are making her patients less than interested in dating and more distressed in the process.
“The foundation of sofa theory is to help eliminate shame and comparison, and to help eliminate coping mechanisms that are actually counterproductive.”—Dr. Elinor Greenberg, psychologist
“There’s a lot of hoops for women to get through in the dating game and a lot of pressure on women and not on men,” says Dr. Greenberg. “The foundation of sofa theory is to help eliminate shame and comparison, and help them remove the coping mechanisms they are using that are actually counterproductive,” she says.
So knowing what you like and need, find something that fits your needs, and search until you find what you want is the framework for her method.
5 applications of sofa dating theory to start following right away
1. Clarify what you want
You wouldn’t buy a sofa without a clear idea of the type or size you need. Before making a decision, you should probably research the size of the space it will enter and decide on the type of style and material you are interested in.
Apply the same insight when determining what you want in a potential partner, especially if you’re looking for something serious. Dr. Greenberg advises taking the time to decide what you want in a relationship and partnership and keeping those things in mind as you meet people.
For example, when Greenberg dated before meeting her husband of 45 years, she knew she wanted a partner who could confront her intellectually, so she only seriously pursued men. which she finds to be very intelligent.
2. But be careful when looking for perfection in a potential partner
Dr. Greenberg cautions, don’t fall into the trap of making a list so complete that no one fits it. Instead, one view she encourages people to give up is the idea of waiting for your soul mate to arrive.
This doesn’t mean accepting someone you don’t want, but Dr. Greenberg says waiting for the perfect match to show up while ignoring some pretty good people can leave you alone. “I believe there are thousands of people in the world that any of us can be satisfied with,” she said.
3. Only date people who have the traits you want in a partner
Dr. Greenberg says you wouldn’t look at sofas in stores you can’t afford or in styles you don’t like. “You’re not going to shop at a store that sells sofas that you won’t take home,” she adds — so does everyone.
Dr. Greenberg says that on dating apps or IRL, match and chat with people who share your interests and values. She adds that don’t waste your time with people whose values are very different from yours or who are not interested and serious.
4. Put yourself out there in high potential places
Even if you’re an online shopper, you wouldn’t expect a sofa to fall on your lap—you’ll browse stores and websites to find one you like.
Dr. Greenberg says the same goes for finding a mate. You can’t expect to meet someone at home, and you won’t meet people you care about if you go to places you don’t care about.
So after you identify the traits you want in a partner and put yourself in a situation of encountering such people. For example, if you want someone to be an athlete, joining an intramural sports league is a good option.
On the contrary, don’t look for potential partners in places where you won’t find them. If you’re more of a stay-at-home person and want a partner like you, you probably won’t find a compatible mate at a club. Instead, regular places and groups are better suited to your interests.
5. See unsuccessful days as lessons, not reasons to lose hope
Going back to the sofa comparison, you wouldn’t raise your hand and say, “I’m not going to buy any sofas!” if what you want is sold out or if you can’t find what you like. You will make another plan and regroup.
Dating can be frustrating, no doubt, but Dr Greenberg stresses that it’s a numbers game, so part of the process could involve having multiple dates. dating, not every date will be a winner. Take the time to analyze what you’ve learned from your bad days to see what you want in a partner—and what you don’t. If you’re having a bad day and unsatisfactory relationships, take the time to recalibrate, but don’t eliminate yourself forever.