Whether you’ve danced around the bar blissfully unaware of the loo roll stuck to your shoe, flirted with a dapper chap only to discover he’s happily hitched, or experienced that heart-sinking moment after sending a text intended for a specific someone to everyone – there’s a little bit of Bridget Jones in all of us.
But, believe it or not, there’s a lot to be learned about dating from Bridget, and before she graces our bookshelves once more with her latest diary instalment “Mad About the Boy” we thought we’d take a look at what she’s taught us so far…

1. Don’t disregard someone who wears a reindeer jumper

When Bridget first met the man who was to become the love of her life, Mark Darcy, she was appalled by his festive attire and consequently tried to talk herself out of dating him.
However, fans of Bridget Jones’ Diary will realise that the moral of the story here is not to dismiss a potential match based on their style, or even an interest or hobby you find odd. You could have a lot more in common, and a much greater connection with that person than you realise.

2. Avoid smug married couples at parties

Bridget Jones once famously said that “the only thing worse than a smug married couple is lots of smug married couples!” She might have had a point, but we’re by no means encouraging you to avoid your dearest friends who just so happen to behave like lovesick teens.
However, there is a risk that if you spend too much time with loved-up couples who are constantly trying to “set you up with a friend” you’ll become bitter about dating and relationships. Be happy that they’ve found love and take inspiration from their stories as you enjoy your own, unique dating experiences.

3. Don’t take other people’s opinions to heart

Bridget is endlessly plagued by the question “how’s the love life?” and dreads the prospect of attending family gatherings, for fear of being paired up with someone her mother deems suitable. However, while she becomes somewhat irritated by people’s attempts to help, deep down she understands that they only have her best interests at heart.

4. Be realistic when it comes to dating

On the 1st of every January, Bridget scribbles down her goals, one of which is to find a “nice sensible boy and stop forming romantic attachments with the following *insert unsuitable attributes*”.
Bridget is concerned by her single status as the years tick by, and feels as though she’s wandered from the script and from her parents’ expectations.
There really is no right or wrong time for dating and relationships; it’s best to invest your time in finding someone special rather than rush it and run the risk of being unhappy with someone who’s not quite right for you.

5. Don’t get carried away too easily

Bridget often found herself getting lost in fantasies of romantic trips away and marrying her boss, Daniel Cleaver, which ultimately led to disappointment every time she came back to reality with a bump!
While it’s wonderful to find someone who truly excites you, in the early stages of dating it’s a good idea not to get too carried away. Take each day and date one step at a time and enjoy the moment, there’s plenty of time to make bigger plans.

6. Embrace who you are

Whether you’re clumsy, bossy, outgoing or quiet, you should never stray from the real you. As Mark Darcy demonstrated, there’s always someone who likes you just the way you are.