We’re on a mission to provide an affordable channel to boost your mental health. So, each week, we’re checking in with our community to see how they’re working on their mental health and their goal towards happiness. We invited to Jaime Morgan, Relationship Coach to share us some tips on how to cope with dating anxiety.
Q: “I’m 28 and have never been in a relationship. Every so often I try online dating, and sometimes I do start connecting with a person, but then I usually end things when I start feeling anxious or upset. I’m trying to be self-aware not to react this way, but haven’t succeeded so far. It upsets me because I still long for companionships and battle feelings of loneliness. What should I do?”
A: “Thank you for this great question! I feel like you are definitely on the right track with working on becoming more self-aware. A large part of my approach involves raising our awareness and getting curious about who we really are. It is only when we truly know who we are and what we need, that we can enter into a relationship from a healthy and whole place.
3 Self Help exercises that I would encourage you to embrace are:
1. Focus less on starting a relationship and more on discovering exactly who you are and what you need to be fulfilled on your own. I can appreciate that this may seem difficult during a lonely time, but believe me when I say that this is the first step towards creating a future relationship that will last. It will also help you to gain a positive sense of self and increased self-confidence which are both also assets in dating!
A good place to begin would be to assess the deeper reasons that your anxiety is showing up while dating online. Where is this feeling coming from? Often, when we can name our fear or emotion directly, and consciously decide to face it head on, it becomes easier to step into that space. Use a journal to write out any emotions and thoughts that may come up from these questions.
2: Be completely open and honest with those that you are communicating with online. Start even a casual relationship off by setting clear and specific boundaries that are important to you. Often when we allow people to cross our personal boundaries, it can leave us feeling anxious and uncomfortable. Truth and honesty, for example, might be an important aspect of this process for you and I think it would be wise to be forthcoming with this information when initiating communication with a potential partner.
3. Remember to start small and that even baby steps are still stepping in the right direction. Perhaps connect with only one person at a time and focus on finding common ground. Try changing your mindset revolving around fear and the goal of the process. Although the world of online dating can feel scary, approach it with the intention of growing from facing your fears. There is a lot of learning that can happen by stepping into the unknown and letting go of control. Starting small and allowing time for yourself to adjust to one uncomfortable moment at a time can be liberating. Try to enjoy the process of trying new things and celebrate all of your wins no matter how small!” – Jaime Morgan, Relationship Coach
If you’re struggling with dating, feel free reach out Jaime via Instagram.