THE BLOG
03/20/2014 05:24 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Don't Waste Hours on Useless Dating

Co-authored by Saskia Edwards

The dating roller coaster is all about ups and downs. It's inspired everything from the Beatles' "I Just Saw a Face" to JoJo's "Leave (Get Out)." But a lot of the time, it can seem more like the latter.

Hey, I'm not an exception. I once met a pretty attractive guy whom we'll call Tom. When Tom asked me to dinner, I jumped at the opportunity. I fantasized about his witty banter, his generous humanitarian efforts and his charm. In reality, Tom was more interested in discussing his pet lizard for the entirety of the meeting. And it definitely wasn't innuendo. I was astonished by how you could segue so many topics into relating to lizards. I said, "This salad is really nice," to which Tom replied, "Oh, man! My gecko loves chewing on little bits of lettuce. He's such a cute little thing." After the date finally finished, I felt like a lizard aficionado knowledgeable in everything from their diet to, unfortunately, their mating habits.

The real problem with Tom was that he was all green, and I wanted blue.

What?

It's all according to True Colors, a tool for identifying someone's personality and how they think, feel and operate. The colors orange, gold, blue and green are used to differentiate four basic personality types. Most of us have a dominant, or "brightest," color and are influenced, or "shaded," by the other three colors. This is our "True Colors Spectrum."

But what do the colors mean?

Orange is all about being daring and having no inhibitions. People who lead with orange are spontaneous and don't think about consequences. They're usually a lot of fun. But orange people can also tell you they'll come over in 10 minutes, and when you call to see where they are, they're practicing amateur base-jumping.

People who lead with green are analytical, scientifically focused and intellectual. Green minds are usually fascinating if you share their interest. However, they can be socially inept and unsympathetic.

Blue is all about caring. They're selfless, creative and affectionate. A blue person will be very nurturing and adoring. But if someone requests that you leave your phone on while you sleep so that they can hear your breathing and you find that smothering more than romantic, blue isn't for you.

Want someone who's reliable? You're looking for gold. They'll always be on time, be good with their money and respect authority. While gold people are secure, they can be dull.

Of course, it gets a little complicated, as people usually have a combination of these colors. But generally, their most dominant color is pretty representative of their personality.

So how does this relate to dating? Well, you've got to figure out what you want in an ideal partner. And be realistic.

Think about it this way: Which of the following would you prefer?

The strikingly orange "Wolf of Wall Street"? Maybe you want a Jordan Belfort type. He likes fun and excitement and basically doesn't care.

Do you want someone who'll write you a letter every day of the year, pouring his heart out? Is Noah from The Notebook your ultimate guy? Ding, ding, ding! You want blue.

Maybe you're more interested in someone's mind. Greens are intellectually stimulating and provide in-depth, educated conversation. Do you want to date a Mark Zuckerberg-type genius?

What about a man who never lets you down? They can be conservative, but they've got their life together. I'm talking about the gold Mark Darcy.

So once you know what you want in a partner -- and that isn't easy -- you have to be able to identify the colors. Before you even consider a date, ask a few questions.

First, find out where they work. It'll give you a hint. Golds are usually bankers or accountants. Greens are mathematicians, philosophers, writers or engineers. Oranges work in advertising, sports or acting. Blues are nurses or in hospitality or the arts.

If they make the cut, you should then ask them, without making it seem like "21 Questions," about their ideal holiday. Blues will want to relax, read a book and do whatever makes their companion happy. Oranges are more interested in activity, adventure and any recreation that requires you to get a tetanus booster shot. Greens want to go to museums, read about the history of the area and learn about their culture. Golds want to go on a structured and well-planned holiday, maybe a cruise or a bus tour.

If you still can't pin them down, weave into the conversation a question about what they would do if they came into a lot of money -- say, by winning the lottery. Oranges will splurge. They will buy whatever, whenever they want. You'll possibly end up with two trampolines and a flame-adorned Ferrari. Golds are going to invest. They'll do the research and make well-informed decisions for the future. If a blue had a lot of cash, some would go to charity, and some would go into making family and friends happy. And greens would spend it on something esoteric that excites their mind, like a state-of-the-art telescope, a flight to the Moon or a first-edition novel.

In about 10 minutes you should be able to identify if they're the right color for you.

So there's hope. All that time dating spent pretending to like sashimi or tolerating a graphic horror film or listening to a Shakespearean monologue isn't for nothing. In the wise words of Cyndi Lauper, "don't be afraid to let them show, your true colors. True colors are beautiful, like a rainbow."

Saskia Edwards is a journalist residing in Brisbane, Australia. She's worked as a radio presenter and reporter for several years and has been broadcasted on over 200 radio stations. Saskia is also a freelance and creative writer for her own website and other feature writing publications. Saskia has been a finalist for prestigious awards like the Ossie Awards and the Voiceless broadcast awards. She loves all dogs and chocolate.