Margarita Confessionals: How to tell if you could benefit from a dating hiatus

It’s Margarita Monday! Each week, we’ll be publishing a story about dating by Lauren Levine and/or Ali Washburn to go along with the latest episode of “The Margarita Confessionals,” a podcast for the jaded dater. You can find it on Soundcloud or iTunes.

Dating requires a pretty significant time and energy investment, particularly in 2016 when it seems to be both an art and a science involving swiping, perfectly worded messages and the right kind of first date. Combine all of these elements together and the whole thing can get draining after a while. If you’re feeling burnt out, it’s okay to hit “pause” on dating. Come back refreshed, positive, and ready to meet someone great.

Here’s how to tell if you could benefit from a dating hiatus:

Using dating apps feels like a chore

When you go through Bumble and just keep left-swiping without really paying attention, it’s time to take a break. Using these apps isn’t a requirement, so don’t force yourself if you’re not interested right now.

Life got insanely busy

You have a huge project you’re in charge of at work. You’re traveling a lot. Your best friend is getting married and you’re the maid of honor. Sometimes you hit a period where you just don’t have time to focus on dating.

You were seeing someone and it ended

Give yourself a chance to move past that first so you can start seeing someone new with a clean slate.

You don’t think you have it in you to keep answering the same basic questions you always get on dating apps

Where are you from originally? How long have you been in Charlotte? What do you do? Where do you go on the weekends? You know these questions are a necessary part of getting to know someone, but right now you’d rather sit here and watch season two of “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” than answer them.

You don’t really know what you want

Are you ready for something serious? Would you rather casually date a few people? It’s okay to take some time to figure out what kind of relationship you’re looking for before you continue dating.

You’re the last single friend and feel obligated to change that

If you’re ready to stop fifth or seventh wheeling, that’s awesome. But make sure you’re dating because you want to meet someone, not because you feel like you have to for social purposes.

On the other end of the spectrum, sometimes nerves or a bad date experience leave you tempted to hide in your house watching “Lemonade” on repeat forever. Meeting strangers and putting yourself out there is nerve-wracking, definitely, but don’t shy away from it because you’re anticipating rejection, awkwardness, or failure. Make it a point to keep trying in a way that feels manageable for you. It’s what Beyoncé would want.

Photo: Courtney Scramm