Cameron Diaz's list of ex-beaus reads like a who's who of Hollywood — including an athlete (Alexander Rodriguez), a chart topper (Justin Timberlake) and an Oscar winner (Jared Leto) — to name a few. But now that she's rumored to be dating rocker Benji Madden, she's getting candid about her past relationship mistakes and what she's doing right this time.

Cameron Diaz dishes advice on what makes a relationship work

The actress plays coy when talking about Benji, 35, for Cosmopolitan's January 2014 issue. She doesn't confirm or deny reports that they are close to making a walk down the aisle, but said "You have to find someone in the same place as you are."

The beloved star goes on to say that what often makes or breaks a romance is simply dependent on what stage of life you're in.

"Timing is everything. If you get into a relationship where you want something the guy doesn't want, it's never gonna work," the 42-year-old added. "You're never going to get him to be in that place. No matter how old you are, finding the guy who's in the same place as you are and wants to show up is the only way a relationship works, period."

Benji and Cameron with author Vicky Vlachonis

Cameron also talked about the mistakes she — and many other women — make in their failed relationships. "Here's the thing. You make the same mistake over and over again until you learn your lesson," she said.

"We girls sometimes do the thing where we pick the same person over and over again — they look and seem different, but deep down, they're the same. And that's on us."

Cameron is all smiles in her Cosmopolitan cover story

The actress's new movie, a modern re-make of the musical Annie in which she plays the salty villain Miss Hannigan, hits theaters December 19.

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