One of the things I hear consistently from my male and female friends in the dating pool is the degree to which most people carry past hurts into present interactions. Obviously this is hugely counter-productive but, unlike you, most people seem never to grasp the dynamic they’re locked into.

I suspect if we regarded dating as merely an opportunity for potentially interesting conversation, and have no additional hopes, dreams, or expectations, there’s less likelihood of creating no-win dynamics. It’s only when we’re geared up hoping for a dream future that we simultaneously fear being disappointed, and it is that fear that stimulates the carry-over behavior.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.