Whatever You Do, Don’t Date These 10 Types Of People


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I believe that over the years, we tend to notice trends in certain “types” of people. This is not to say that we should label, or group, categorize, or generalize — but it is to say that if we can spot tendencies or patterns in a person that point to a road we’ve been down before, then those are flags worth paying attention to.

Let’s discuss, then, 10 different types of people whom, when they cross your path, it’s best to politely scoot right by them.

1: The “freshly back on the market.”

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve seen relationship problems be tied back to this one simple thing:

One person involved is recently out of a relationship and hasn’t had time to process the breakup, or figure themselves out, or become emotionally ready again.

All of which are necessary for being ready to enter a healthy relationship.

The difficult lesson to learn here is that, in another life or at another time, this person might actually be great for you, but if they’re not fully ready to enter into a relationship, to be an equal partner, to be fully secure in themselves or what they want…then they will inevitably create distance between the two of you at one point or another.

It doesn’t mean they’re a bad person, or even that you’re incompatible…it just means that the timing isn’t right, and as the saying goes: “Timing is everything.”

2: The “it’s never my fault.”

You know the type…the person who is always deflecting or avoiding responsibility, because they couldn’t possibly be to blame.

There’s always a reason, or an excuse, or a justification.

Obviously, a healthy and stable relationship can never truly be formed with this person, because emotional connections require mutual trust, openness, vulnerability, and personal accountability.

None of these are possible when a person refuses to admit their own mistakes, or recognize areas that they can improve.

They’ll always be shifting the blame onto the other person in the relationship (ahem…you), and they’ll never work to fix their shortcomings, because they don’t think they have any in the first place.

3: The “full throttle.”

As an auto enthusiast, I enjoy going full throttle (on legally sanctioned tracks, of course…)

But, in a relationship, people who go full steam ahead right off the bat can appear desperate, possessive, and controlling.

Relationships take time to build.

Love takes time to build.

Trust, respect, a strong foundation — all take time to build.

I understand that it’s easy to get excited about and infatuated with a new person, we’ve all been there before. The lust, the adventure, the passion, the energy…

But, that doesn’t change the reality that we need to move at a rational and reasonable pace that allows for a real connection to form without being rushed, forced, or hurried.

All that leads to is missed red flags, not fully getting to know someone, and the potential for secrets to be hidden until you’ve committed on a much deeper level than you normally would’ve, making you feel stuck or trapped with someone you don’t actually know.

4: The “check engine light.”

Ah, another car reference.

It doesn’t matter if you know anything about cars or not, everyone knows what a check engine light means.

It means that something is wrong.

Something needs to be checked, or fixed.

Now — I don’t think that people are “broken” or that they need to be “fixed,” but we’ve all been with someone before who always seems to have a problem.

They feel more like a project than they do a partner.

They need you to rush to their aide constantly.

Yes, you should always be there for the person you’re with, that’s part of being in a committed and loving relationship — however, you are supposed to be their equal partner, support system, friend, teammate…

Not their therapist, doctor, or counselor.

This can easily create a strange dynamic within the relationship and can prevent full mutual respect or equality from being formed.

Be wary of people who always seem to have warning lights flashing. It’s probably for a reason.

5: The “perpetual guilt trip.”

Do you find yourself apologizing for breathing? Or sitting the wrong way? Or just…existing?

Alright, I’m being dramatic, but the point I’m making is that some people tend to criticize you for everything. They make you feel bad or guilty for everything. Over time, they start to make you question your judgment, your character, or yourself.

I’ve been having this same conversation with a private client whose recently ended this same type of relationship.

He’s finding himself again, feeling a sense of freedom that he’d lost for the past two years, and regaining the trust and confidence that he had in himself before this past relationship started chipping away at it.

Partners like this often overlap with #2, because they love making you feel guilty for virtually everything you do, while they, of course, are never held to the same standards.

6: The “junk food.”

Sometimes, the best tasting food is the unhealthiest.

Junk food is tempting because it looks good, smells good, tastes good…but after awhile, it makes you feel like crap.

It’s short term pleasure that actually harms you in the long run.

Just like a lot of people who may be suitable as “friends with benefits,” or a mutually consenting adult fling, but aren’t long term relationship material.

You can only live for so long on junk food before it comes back to bite you.

7: The “Corolla.”

I love making this reference because I think it’s fitting and accurate, and it just happens to be another car reference.

The Toyota Corolla is the best selling car of all time.

So, one would think this would be a positive. It’s reliable. It’s consistent. It’s there when you need it.

And, yes, all of these things are valuable qualities of a person in a relationship. In fact — they’re requirements.

However, relationships aren’t just about consistency and boring reliability.

They’re about passion. Fun. Adventure. Connection. Love. Lust. Excitement.

You’re choosing someone that you want to spend the rest of your life with, what do you want that to look like?

Much like…well, a cardboard cutout, there’s not much dimension or depth to someone who is just…there.

You need a partner, a teammate, an equal that you can respect and be inspired by, while you inspire them in return.

People buy a Corolla because it’s a safe bet, but it doesn’t fill any of their other wants or needs — and a relationship has to be much more varied than just “safe.”

8: The “anchor.”

Have you ever been with someone who makes you feel held back?

Weighed down?

Locked in place?

Life and love is about forward motion. Creating a future. Building a life. Achieving goals together. Being co-pilots on the road of life.

Someone who’s an anchor will keep you stuck in one place. They’ll dig into where they are because it’s safe, or comfortable, or “good enough,” and they’ll refuse to move anywhere else.

9: The “Pelican.”


Have you ever seen a Pelican hunt for food?

It dive bombs into the water.

It dives in, gets what it wants, and then flies back out again.

Have you ever dated someone like this? They go in strong for what they want…but then, after that…meh.

They couldn’t be bothered.

Until, of course, they get hungry again.

Remember that the intensity of someone’s actions doesn’t show their interest — the consistency of them does.

10: The “fortune teller.”

Can anyone really tell you the future?

Well — someone who straight up tells you that they’re not ready for a relationship is telling you something you really need to listen to, even if you don’t want to.

They’re not secretly asking you to try harder.

They’re not playing hard to get.

They’re not sending subliminal messages.

They are really, honestly, and truly telling you that they’re not looking for a commitment right now. They’re laying out the future right in front of you, and you’ll save yourself a lot of time and pain if you believe them from the beginning, rather than sticking around for too long to see if they’re telling the truth.

They are.

How many of these people have you dated in the past? Are you dating one right now? Sound off in the comments and share your experiences, what I missed, and what you agree or disagree with.

Subscribe to my newsletter “The Next Level” for honest and uncensored advice normally reserved for private clients.

James Michael Sama is an internationally recognized speaker, author, and personal development coach.

Finding success in creating hundreds of viral articles and videos on building limitless confidence and healthier relationships, James has accumulated over 39 million visitors to his website and a collective social media following of over 400,000.

James speaks at live events and in the media across the U.S. and has become a go-to expert with outlets such as CNN, Bravo, The New York Post, The Huffington Post, The Daily Beast, CNBC, The Boston Globe, CBS, and more.

1 Comment

  1. Ninah on August 29, 2023 at 8:53 pm

    Oh dear, I’m afraid I’ve dated all of them.

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