When you find yourself willing to do anything other than looking for a date like watch old reruns on Netflix, clean your apartment, complain about your piss poor dating issues, or even call your mother to see how she’s doing on a Friday night. You then have to ask the question repeatedly, is now the time to meet someone for a night out on the town? I bet you’re already worried about the first kiss… Stop it! Don’t be your worst enemy, that will come with time and happen naturally if you just relax and go with the flow but in case you just can’t keep your head clear of self-sabotaging thoughts I have a few tip that might help.
“I have better things to do than look for a date”. Sound familiar? It’s all too common, whether you’re new to dating or a seasoned but burnt-out veteran. When you find it hard or even impossible to date, even go as far as to trick your lonely and hungry for a romance self into thinking you’re better off not trying to find a connection, you have dating anxiety or what I call the Dating Boogeyman Syndrome (DBS).
Actually most single people have DBS. Whether you are recently divorced, lifelong dater or new to the game, no one is immune to DBS. Symptoms include:
- Getting tongue tied at the simplest of conversations
- Perfuse sweating during physical contact
- Upset stomach after eye contact
- Inability to remember where you are after a compliment
- Running the other way instead of saying hello to the cute guy or girl in the hallway at work
You might have tried online dating but when you need to find a profile photo, you see nothing but pimples, warts and just how big our nose really is. You might write and rewrite your emails to prospective dates, trying to be more witty, sexy and funnier than you need to be. Moreover, once you finally submit your response you now dread ever meeting that person because they will have no idea who the hell you are because the person in your email is nothing like you. You have just set yourself up for a truly awkward or quiet date and suddenly your witty charm turns into babbling gibberish.
Maybe you’re on the other side of the coin. You might be the type who thinks “I don’t date because nobody’s good enough.” I’ve dated too many nerds losers and gold diggers and I’ve had enough, thank you very much. What you might have overlooked is your own superiority outlook masks a certain insecurity, a secret belief that, “There’s something really wrong with me.”
When DBS is truly running amuck in our lives, we may be paralyzed to the point that we can’t or don’t even try to jump into any prospects of a possible dating encounter. And even if we do manage to date, negative thoughts lurk in our minds like the boogeyman, ruining almost any chance of ever being ourselves in a future relationship.
DBS can however be cured and you can find love. So here is the good news: All you have to do is get off the couch, ditch a few bad habits and live by these four steps
Step 1: Keep in mind that you are not alone. Almost all single people have been through some sort of dating trip up. It’s OK to feel anxious, get tongue tied, feel intimidated, or awkward. In fact, it’s OK to feel whatever you’re feeling at the moment.
Step 2: Understand that falling flat on your face is part of the process. You’re supposed to make mistakes. No one is born a Casanova or Vixen. That’s how we learn. You learn to walk by falling down. You learn to date by writing hilarious emails, sticking your foot in your mouth, and making clumsy, silly, sweaty and just plain stupid moves. You know, the ones that make you a little sick when you think back to how stupid that last thing you said or did was. It’s OK!! It’s just part of the process and we all do it. Your poor date is probably having it worse than you. Besides, the right person will find those not-cool things you did funny, endearing and just plain adorable! Take a moment; close your eyes, breath. When being your ever so cool self, just think, most people would call you out if they weren’t digging it.
Step 3: You should… You must try to train yourself to take action. Just do it. Email five of the hottest people you find online, walk by that hot guy at work and tell him you would love to have a cup of coffee after work, even “IF” they are “out of your league.” Open your mouth and say something, anything. Compliment them, grab them and give them a hot wet kiss (no, don’t do that, I was just seeing if you were still paying attention). Doing something is infinitely better than doing nothing. Once you practice jumping in, you’ll be surprised at the possibilities.
Step 4: Understand it is normal to get ‘shot down’. Putting yourself out there is the first rule in this game it’s like learning to drive. You have to get in gear and hit the gas before you get anywhere. Right? Hell you could crash and burn, but the whole thing is very exciting and at least you get the blood flowing.
Keep a level head and if by the slim chance you get rejected… So the hell what! It happens. When it does, you are that much closer to meeting the person who will just thank the stars you had the guts to ask them because they are so in love with you but never had the brass to approach you. It happens more than you think. The bottom line is, you never know until you try.
Have fun, Enjoy life and live in the moment.