In the search for love, it's all too easy to get sidetracked by bad dates, broken hearts, and bad love habits. And while bad dates and broken hearts are part of the journey toward happily ever after, bad love habits can and should be avoided at all costs.

So what's a bad love habit? Any dysfunctional, destructive, difficult belief or habit you have towards love and relationships that’s keeping you from finding, attracting, and/or maintaining a healthy relationship. The following are some common bad love habits:

* Do you choose potential partners who are incapable of meeting your emotional needs?
* Do you think love have to be difficult, painful, and/or hard?
* Do you think your potential partner is going to fix whatever it is that you don't like about yourself or your life?
* Do you believe time is running out on your search for love and/or your chance to have children?

If any of the above sound familiar, don't worry. You're not a lost cause. In fact, with a little time and effort, you can turn things around! What follows are five simple and effective tips and techniques geared towards helping you break free of limiting relationship beliefs and bad love habits. Practiced over time, you can and will kick any bad love habit -- for good!

Identify the dating traps you’re stuck in
Think you've got to miraculously solve all your problems before you'll be deserving of love? Convinced there are no good "ones" left? Or do you believe that your perfect partner will one day swoop in and magically save you from your life? If any or all of the above sound familiar, chances are good that you suffer from some common dating traps. In order to become a successful single, you first need to free yourself from these traps. Acknowledging the traps you're stuck in is the first step. Next, you've got to break free of these traps, as well as any other limiting or destructive beliefs that are keeping you stuck. To find out how, keep reading.

Assess your excess baggage
Next, it's important to get honest with yourself about what you might be lugging around with you on dates (or in life in general). What are you holding onto that no longer serves you? Rejection, disappointment, betrayal? This is from your past, not your present or future. If you've got negative or destructive beliefs or fears weighing you down, you owe it to yourself to dump that excess baggage!

Dump your excess baggage
In order to have a happily ever after future, you have to first believe you deserve one. Gather those painful memories, that chip on your shoulder, any residual anger from past relationship experiences, and tell them they've got to go. Thank them for the lessons you've learned and tell them that it's now time for you to stand on your own two feet. In your mind's eye, give them the heave ho! Next, start visualizing the kind of life you want to have, complete with your dream job, perfect partner, ideal home, etc. By giving clear about what you want, you give yourself permission to attract it.

Stop putting off your life and/or personal happiness
So many of us put off personal happiness waiting for some external result like "I'll be happy when I lose weight, when I pay off my debts, when I get a better job," etc. The truth is, you deserve to enjoy your fabulously imperfect life right this very minute! When you stop putting off happiness, you start attracting happy people, healthy relationships, exciting and new opportunities. Instead of postponing joy until something external happens, today's the day to start celebrating the joy in your everyday life.

Embrace a new dating vocabulary
Now that you're baggage light and dating trap-free, it's time to introduce a new vocabulary to your dating belief system. Every morning and night for 30 days, practice the following exercise: Say to yourself "Love/dating/my ideal relationship is …” and then fill in the blank with the appropriate words. (Words like healthy, whole, loving, fun, etc.) By creating a new vocabulary for yourself, you may be surprised at how your outlook on dating and relationships changes, and as a result, you’ll start attracting happier and healthier potential partners. Love that!

So there you have it -- five simple tips and techniques to help you break free of limiting relationship beliefs and bad love habits. May you learn them, love them, live them. In doing so, you just may fall in love with your life all over again, not to mention exponentially increase your chances of future relationship success. Good luck and happy dating!

Author's Bio: 

Internationally known as The Relationship Journalist™, Lisa Steadman is the author of It's a Breakup, Not a Breakdown: Get over the big one and change your life -- for good! Additionally, her e-book Bad Love No More: How to kick limiting relationship beliefs to the curb and say yes to real and lasting love is now available online at Lisa can be found at