With all of the dating advice flowing in from family, friends and the internet, it’s a challenge to filter out all the well-intentioned but unhelpful tips. To help debunk the misleading advice that you may be hearing, here is a list of rules that you should consider breaking.

1. Always follow your instincts.

Some people really do “just know” when they have found the one, but what happens when following your instincts continuously leads you to date people who are wrong for you? Many people don’t know how to follow their impulse and think it’s an instinct. If this is something you struggle with, stop following your “instincts.” Try to separate your thinking and feelings. Get some perspective, be objective, and think about what kind of person will truly be good for you.

2. Ladies never ask men out.

Ladies, if you are not getting the date suggestions that you want and you know someone who may have great potential, consider taking the first step! Or, if that is too bold, consider just dropping the hint to the potential partner that you have an interest in getting to know them. And remember, just because a guy has not asked you out doesn’t mean he’s not interested. Some men are intimidated and fear rejection, just like you. So ask a guy out if you want, and be yourself while you do it.

3. Don’t date someone who isn’t your look.

If you find that you struggle with connecting with the people who you had expected to match with based on looks, try to date someone who matches you more in personality and values. Many ask, “Is it really worth it to get to know someone if they aren’t your type?” Well it would be a real shame to miss out on what could be your perfect match because of a few physical traits. Get to really know someone before you judge a book by its cover.

4. Only date your personality type.

Often, we are naturally drawn to those with whom we have the most in common. However, if you’re not finding success with this, try dating someone outside your comfort zone. Opposites not only have the potential to attract, they can also help you grow and learn about what you do and do not want in a partner. Try to date someone out of your “type” or what you think you like. This will give good insight to what you truly want. What you think is good for you might not be the only thing that is good for you. If you keep dating the same type, your results may be the same as well.

5. Make any effort to impress your date.

People often assume things about a date and try to match what they think they want. This is a bad habit for two reasons. One, your assumptions about who they are might be completely wrong. Two, you are trying to find someone who will be attracted to the real you. What a waste of effort and waste of a date if you are acting like someone you're not. Be your best self, but do not pretend to be certain things because you think it will make them like you.

6. Never talk to an ex.

Most times this is good advice -nexcept if you think you might like to get back together! If you are still interested, you are allowed to make casual contact and reach out to this person. If it was an unhealthy relationship, definitely do not talk to them. But if the reason it didn’t work was not unhealthy, you can reconnect. Many marriages come from an ex that became a partner once again.

7. If you don’t feel chemistry, dump them early on.

Sometimes it takes more than just a few dates to develop real chemistry. Don’t dump them right away. Instead, hold on for a little longer – especially if you’re dating virtually. Chemistry – and love, for that matter – isn’t just something that happens to people; it’s built over time. Try not to miss out on what could be a great match. The search for a soulmate is not something to be rushed. Give yourself and your dates time to open up to each other so you can make informed and honest decisions in your dating journey.

8. You’ll have clarity if they are the right one.

Just because you are unsure about a potential partner after the first few dates does not mean they are not your match. If you don’t know for sure that it is a “yes”, it does not mean it is definitely a “no”. It is a “maybe”! It is normal to be confused during the important and complicated process of finding your soulmate. Take your time and don't dwell on the lack of clarity. It will eventually come.

May you have patience and clarity in your search for your partner and may you always be led by good advice and wisdom and have the courage to stay true to yourself.