There are a couple of ways this article could go. One option will see me gratuitously talk about past relationships and all the things that worked and all the things that didn’t. Another route is that I enact a rather lengthy discourse on emotional wish fulfilment of things I wish they’d done. 

Well, I’m going to give you both. It’s your lucky day, guys – I’m about to tell how you to get your girl. And girls – this can only be good news for us too. Gone are the days where it’s appropriate for you to just send a drunken message at 3 am asking ‘U up’. You don’t even include the question mark! It’s 2019, guys, let’s punctuate our messages appropriately!!!

Okay, grammar lesson over – time for the love lesson…

The first rule of love? Brace yourself now, I’m about to blow your mind.

Be yourself. 

I’m not going to pretend that life is always going to be sunshine and daisies, dear readers. The simple fact of the matter is that sometimes life sucks, and it sucks hard. I’m not sure that there is an emotional experience more frustrating, heart-wrenching, guilt-tripping, or generally horrible than unrequited love. If you remember feeling like Rosaline in Romeo and Juliet … the brief object of his whims only to be side-lined for the flashier, younger model…

Then you’re in the right place.

It is so hard to find value and validation in who you are as a person without the reciprocal feedback from another person. Indeed, if your feelings of worthiness stem from the emotional support of another person, as so often it does, that person is, for better or worse, responsible for your state of mind and sense of self. This isn’t fair on anyone, and don’t we know it as we angst and stress about the lack of emotional reciprocation we’re receiving, all the while lamenting that it’s not necessarily even their fault. That’s always the kicker, that the people causing such emotional distress and pain aren’t actually aware they’re doing it. The quest for a satisfying and enduring, comfortable love is a long journey and often one that doesn’t have a specific end point. Certainly, ‘enduring love’ cannot be achieved through sheer force of will.

Oh, but haven’t we tried!

But you aren’t alone! I promise you that there are millions of people around the world and close to you that feel exactly the same way; helpless, confused, frustrated, and like you’re ‘lacking’ something fundamental. That feeling doesn’t even necessarily go away when you’re in a relationship, and there’s no two ways about it, love is hard. But it’s even harder when you don’t feel loved.

It’s so important to communicate this confidence and your willingness to prioritise the object of your affection. Make sure you send that ‘good morning’ text. Follow it up with a ‘night x’ message in the evening if you are so inclined. Whip out an affectionate ‘xx’ suffix to a couple of your messages to hint at your playful and fun loving side. Don’t be afraid to make the first move. We always struggle with whether we want chivalry or not but the truth is it’s always nice to be treated well, spoiled, or at least have the option of knowing it is being offered to us. 

Then, make sure you guys establish common interests.

Swap books that you love, or recommend or buy a new book that you think they will love. Leave it on their nightstand and don’t make a huge deal out of it. This shows you making an effort and wanting to share hobbies. You can tell so much about a person by their bookshelf – maybe even suggest going in together on a bookshelf! 

Then share music tastes, offer to show her your favourite artists. That’s fun in both respects. One, you both become more well-rounded individuals and expand your music choices. Secondly, you can see why they like the song, and discover more about what makes them tick and see why they are who they are. When you’re invested in someone, there’s nothing better than bonding with them and getting to know them when vulnerable. 

Whip in some compliments too, when you can see that she’s made an effort to impress you.

If you notice it, say something!

Her hair, clothes or shoes… even her body – so long as you are respectful and above all else, when you compliment anyone, the golden rule… Mean what you say!

Don’t just say things for the sake of saying them, or say things that you think she wants to hear.

Stick to your instincts and you’ll be grand. 

Good luck!