I’ve thought about joining a dating site again.

Honestly, despite all of the horrible outcomes I’ve had with people from dating sites (and there have been many,) I’ve had some insanely memorable ones too. Same goes for hiring my own employees, and for saying “yes” to anything, when I could’ve said “no”.

It’s all a risk, and I tend to be a risky person.

I’m learning rapidly that some risks aren’t worth taking—at least not for the moment.

Crazy can be fun. Energy is exciting, and new experiences are typically worthwhile, but, crazy also gets very tiring, very quickly, and sometimes the consequences aren’t worth it.
One minute you’re hanging out with someone fun and exciting, and the next you find out they do coke and live a reckless lifestyle that starts to wear on your own. One minute, you’re dating someone who lights up your entire world, and the next you find out they’re a dishonest and manipulative narcissist, inevitably tearing down your entire sense of self. One minute you’re excited about a new employee who is a little overly friendly, and months later they’re breaking into your apartment—or is that just me?

People are risky. Always.

After awhile, though, you learn the signs of toxicity. I’ve spent a lot of this year dealing with a lot of chaos. Someone close to me recently told me, “you attract crazy people.” They’re not wrong—it sure seems like I do—but I think a lot of it had to do with my own inexperience. There have been a lot of red flags I’ve overlooked for the sake of believing in people; in giving them benefit of the doubt. I still often believe in seeing the good in others, but I’m learning how to protect myself, too. I’m learning the difference between good people who are worth taking risks on, and people who are just risky.

I think taking risks has to be a calculated jump. I’m an impulsive person who is constantly swaying between, “what have I got to lose?” and, “I have literally everything to lose.” I think when it comes to trusting people, there needs to be a balance.

People often show you who they are the first time (believe them.) Sometimes they don’t. Sometimes we get blindsided. Personally, I’ve always learned a lesson—even if it was the hard way, (and it usually is.) I don’t know if I would’ve learned the difference between good people and toxic people if I didn’t take the risks, but I’ll never know. All I can do now is take the lessons I’ve learned, put them in a backpack, and keep moving onward.

So, I’m trying my best to slow down. My life has been anything but calm, and though oftentimes it’s been out of my control, sometimes it’s been a result of my risk-taking.

I don’t regret any of it. There have been times I thought I did, and of course, there are things I could’ve done differently. But I’ve learned a shit ton of lessons in a small amount of time, and it’s made me a stronger person.

So… I don’t think I’ll be joining any dating sites anytime soon. I’m not ready to throw myself into a pool that’s so risky quite yet, but I am hiring new people, and I am still saying “yes” when I can choose to say “no.” I’m just a little more careful, a little more thoughtful, a little less impulsive. Maybe I’m growing just a little bit wiser.

God, I hope so.