Dating is at best another extracurricular, number six or number seven down the list, somewhere between Model UN and intramural badminton.

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Here's the thing: Your romantic success has nothing to do with your mental jewelry and everything to do with how you make the other person feel.

And making someone feel a certain way is a somewhat nonlinear process that requires a different kind of mastery than that of calculus or Shakespeare.

In fact, the smarter you are, the more clueless you will be, and the more problems you're going to have in your dating life. Smart people spent more time on achievements than on relationships when growing up. And smart families are usually achievement-oriented. The upshot of all that achievement is that you get into a top college -- congratulations!

Once upon a day I used to be pretty smart, and believe me, I had a lock on clueless. -- and then continue doing even more of what you were doing before.

It may get you a first date, but it's probably not going to get you a second date.

And it certainly won't bring you lasting love and fulfillment.

Well, congratulations -- you've just eliminated 95 percent of the world's population as a potential mate, Mr. Even if only 1 percent of those are single enough, good-looking enough, local enough and just all-around cool enough for you, that's over a million people you can date out there. And if you live in a smaller city, it may be just a handful of folks who are going to meet your stringent criteria.

At this point, you have three choices: A) Loosen up B) Do a very thorough search all over the planet and be prepared to move to Duesseldorf OR C) Join a monastery. The purpose of relationship (and perhaps all of life) is to practice the loving. Nobody's asking to lower your standards here; you should still spend time only with worthwhile company.

So it only makes sense that in the romantic arena, it should work the same way. The more stuff I do, the more accomplishments and awards I have, the more girls (or boys) will like me. Please say I'm right, because I've spent a LOT of time and energy accumulating this mental jewelry, and I'm going to be really bummed if you tell me it's not going to get me laid.