Coping with Dating Anxiety
It’s normal to feel a bit of anxiety when you first start dating someone new. However for some of us the anxiety can be truly overwhelming, to the point it might prevent us from dating altogether. That doesn’t mean you should avoid dating though.
Don’t let a new relationship be spoiled by worry – yes, it is normal to feel the butterflies so embrace them. If that’s what you’re feeling then this is clearly someone you like and you should try to minimise your anxiety around them, from the very first date. So here are some ways you can do just that.
Best way to limit anxiety in any situation? Plan ahead. The same goes for your first date with a new person. Talk to them beforehand about what you’d both like from a date, but if there’s anything you’re particularly nervous about don’t be afraid to be a little vocal about it. If you’re worried about dating somewhere far from home, why not ask about meeting somewhere nearby?
Whatever it takes to make you feel a little more comfortable on your first date, ask your date about it and come up with a plan together. It’s good practice for making future decisions together, after all.
Talk about It
Don’t keep your feelings to yourself. For one that’s not setting a great precedent for any future relationship. But if you’re anxious about something, your date can’t read your mind so you need to let them know about it. Your date can read body language, so the last thing you want is for them to feel like they’ve done something wrong when actually you’re just a bit nervous.
Be open about how you feel, especially if you’re struggling a little with nerves too. Your date will be more understanding and the experience will be a whole lot more fun that way.
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Anticipating anxiety can often lead to further anxiety. So it’s a good idea to think about how to manage your mood in the first place. Simple techniques like deep breathing, meditation, journaling and mindfulness mediation can be a great help with managing anxiety.
Don’t Beat Yourself Up
Sometimes we have bad dates, and that doesn’t mean it’s our fault. If your anxiety got the better of you, don’t be disheartened – we’re all human and we all stumble sometimes. Talk to your date, explain how you felt and if they understand try another date. If they’re not so understanding (or possibly even caused a bit of anxiety) then perhaps consider that you’re lucky it didn’t go well – the last thing you want is someone that doesn’t want to understand your feelings.
Dating anxiety happens to the best of us, even if we’re the most confident person in the world. Don’t let it put you off dating, however. Instead turn that anxiety in to excitement, much easier said than done, but once your date gets started it’ll be much easier. So go an enjoy your dates!