How To Deal With Dating Burnout

If you do anything too much, you're bound to get burnt out. It doesn't matter if it's work, too much time with family, or just being in the same place too long without a break. Burnout is real.

But where it can get really annoying is when it comes to dating burnout. You're out there, trying to find love, and you keep getting bombarded with things that make you feel like you're wasting your time. To call it exhausting is being kind.


"Many describe feelings of hopelessness, inadequacy, and mostly exhaustion," psychologist and dating behavior specialist Rachel MacLynn tells Woman & Home, adding that dating burnout can "mimic symptoms of clinical depression" and lead someone to experience "a loss of interest in daily activities, have a cynical mindset, and experience a loss of empathy."

While this is true, dating is an essential part of trying to meet someone for most people.

According to 2022 research published by Singles Reports, 78.37% of adults in the United States report having felt some type of burnout from online dating, citing how it negatively affects their mental health. 

If you're feeling rundown, depressed, and basically disillusioned with dating, there's a good chance you're experiencing dating burnout. It definitely doesn't feel good, but there are ways to deal with it.


If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

Take a break — a long one

No matter how much you might just want to find "the one" already and settle down into happily ever after, taking a long, healthy break from dating is a great idea. Why? Because the world will never lack for single people. Taking a break from something that's causing you mental anguish is always a healthy choice.


"We can't pour from an empty cup, and we certainly shouldn't date when we feel super stressed and burnt out," Match's chief dating expert Rachel DeAlto tell "Know your limits. You don't have to make dating a job."

But the problem is that this is easier said than done. In general, people who live in the U.S. are horrible at taking time off from anything. Research has found that more than half of Americans don't take all of their vacation days because of fear, usually of getting behind on their work or that no one else can adequately do the work for them (via MarketWatch). Although these are legitimate fears, taking a break from dating won't lead to these sorts of consequences. Instead, you'll gain perspective and a healthier outlook on dating.


Be mindful of how you date

Once you've taken a proper break — at the bare minimum, a month or two off — you can ease your way back in, but only if you're ready, like, really ready. When you do, because you've had time to cultivate a healthier perspective, you can focus on being more present with your intentions firmly intact. 


"Be more intentional about who you'd like to go out with, and send likes to the people who interest you," director of Relationship Science at Hinge Logan Ury tells Cosmopolitan, adding, "Once you're ready to date again, be patient and keep in mind that some of the best connections come from a slow burn rather than 'the spark'. There's no set amount of time it takes to connect with someone, so don't get caught up in comparing others around you. The right relationship will unfold at the right time."

As we've learned, being mindful in everything we do helps alleviate stress and boosts our performance, per If you're mindful enough to take a break from dating, mindful as to why you need the break, then mindful in how you approach dating after the break, it can help ease any future dating burnout. Of course, there's no promise that you won't experience burnout again, but you'll at least experience it in a more present and productive way.


Dating is supposed to be fun. There's no fun in wiping yourself out over something that, in the grand scheme of things, shouldn't hold much water. Recognizing when you need to take a step back until dating is exciting again will help you keep from losing your mind.