The Groundhogging Dating Trend Is One We Can All Relate To

When you want to find someone to share your life with, you know you’re probably going to have to kiss a few frogs before finding your own Prince or Princess Charming. All your bad experiences will ultimately be worth it in the end. At least that’s the thinking. However, there comes a point when keeping your eyes on the prize and continually going after the same types of people works against you. Are you guilty of the groundhogging dating trend? Here’s what you need to know about it — and how to break free.

What is the groundhogging dating trend about?

Have you ever heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting new results? That’s also the definition of groundhogging. In other words, it’s all about sticking with your “type” even if it’s clearly not working. You date people you think are your ideal match, only to end up feeling underwhelmed or disappointed when it inevitably ends. Instead of learning from these experiences and changing your behavior, you stay the course and nothing changes. As a result, you feel like it’s Groundhog Day because the same thing keeps happening over and over again.

If you’re guilty of this behavior, you’re not alone. Roughly 72% of people admit they have a “type.” Once you get it into your head that there’s one certain version of the person that’s right for you, it’s hard to stray from that. Dating app Inner Circle coined the term “groundhogging” for this dating trend, noting that it’s sadly keeping you from potentially meeting pretty great people.

Signs you might be guilty of groundhogging

  1. You continually date people you know deep down are wrong for you. You know pretty much immediately that things will never work out between you. However, instead of staying far, far away, you go rushing in. There’s a part of you that can’t help hoping that this time will be different. That somehow, you’ll be able to make it work. Of course, things never quite work out that way…
  2. Most of your exes are so similar, they’re nearly identical. If you think about the people you’ve dated in the past, there’s not much that distinguishes them. They all looked similar, had very similar personalities, and maybe even worked in the same career field. Those relationships likely followed the same toxic patterns, as well. That’s because there’s a reason things don’t work out with people like this.
  3. Your relationships never last longer than a few months. This doesn’t mean you’re a failure or there’s something wrong with you. However, if you’re guilty of the groundhogging dating trend, your relationships aren’t built to last. You’re repeatedly drawn to the same types of people. This means that you’re caught in an endless toxic cycle you can’t seem to get out of. Isn’t it exhausting?
  4. You have a very specific idea of the kind of partner you’re looking for. From how tall they should be to the area of town they live in, you know exactly what you’re after in dating. At least you think you do. Your idea of your ideal partner is so cemented that you can’t help but pursue anyone who checks your boxes, even if you know they’re all wrong for you. We shouldn’t have to say why this is so toxic.
  5. You refuse to consider dating outside of your “type.” Not only do you have an ideal partner in mind, but you also refuse to entertain anyone else. It’s like you can’t fathom the idea that your perfect person might actually be someone you’d least expect.

How this is holding you back in life and love

The groundhogging dating trend isn’t just keeping you single, it’s also keeping you from growing and evolving as a person. Here’s how.

  1. You’re not learning from your mistakes. Failed relationships are still worthwhile. They have lessons to teach us, but we have to be willing to learn them. If you’re always doing the same thing over and over again, you’re clearly not taking those lessons on board. This pretty much guarantees you’ll continue to make the same mistakes. As a result, you’ll face the same disappointments and frustrations until you break the cycle.
  2. You’re disregarding your worth. When you recognize your worth, you refuse to do anything that compromises it. By continually dating the same (wrong) people, you’re basically saying you’re cool with being undervalued. You’re happy to date people who don’t respect you or hold you in high regard. At the very least, they’re not interested in putting in the effort to show you they care. Is that really how you want to live?
  3. You’re ignoring your intuition. Your gut tells you when a person or situation is wrong. Why are you ignoring it? Your intuition is there to protect you. When you don’t listen to it, you’re pretty much guaranteed to get hurt.
  4. You’re wasting your time (and theirs). This is ine of the most seemingly innocuous effects of groundhogging. However, it’s a big deal. Your time is limited and tomorrow is never guaranteed. While you’re wasting time dating the same people over and over again, you’re losing valuable hours, days, weeks, months, and even years you’ll never get back. You’re keeping yourself and them from meeting people you might actually mesh with.
  5. You’re stunting your personal growth. You know how we mentioned learning from your mistakes? That’s how you grow and evolve. It’s how you become the best version of yourself. When you let yourself get caught in a toxic cycle of dating the wrong people, you rob yourself of that growth. You’re worth so much more than that. Act like it.
Jennifer Still is a writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. The managing editor of Bolde, she has bylines in Vanity Fair, Business Insider, The New York Times, Glamour, Bon Appetit, and many more. You can follow her on Twitter @jenniferlstill