No one denies that life in the modern era is stressful—and dating can add another layer of worry. You get nervous about going out with someone new (who doesn’t?), and may start asking yourself, “Am I ever going to find a great partner? Why don’t my relationships work out? Am I doing something wrong?”
If this sounds familiar to you, take a deep breath and choose to enjoy the pursuit of love. Start here:
1. Don’t stop believin’ … in yourself. Believe the best about yourself, and know that you have lots to bring to the right relationship.
2. Don’t stop believin’ … in your future partner. Yes, the love of your life is out there, and that person is probably dreaming about you right now, too.
3. Choose wisely the words that write your inner script. When you edit out words like “hopeless,” “never,” and “futile,” you will see stress replaced by optimism.
4. Look ahead with confidence. Stress comes when you feel destined to forever stand on the outside of love looking in. Just because you’ve had bad luck in the past doesn’t mean you won’t have brilliant luck in the future.
5. Acknowledge what’s in your control and what’s not. There are lots of things you can control (such as meeting new people and taking risks) and things you can’t (getting someone to respond to your texts). Do all you can, and let go of the rest.
6. Fend off other people’s insensitive comments. Your parents, siblings, or friends might add to your stress by remarking about your love life (or lack thereof). Next time you get one of these zingers, just smile and walk away. Resolve to let those prying or pushy comments slide right off you.
7. Refuse to pin your happiness on someone else’s presence in your life. Of course you want to find that special someone to share your life with, but being happy and fulfilled right where you are—in a relationship or not—will relieve the pressure to find romance.
8. Know that dating does not determine your value. Dating isn’t a high-stakes referendum on your personal appeal. To lower your stress level, mentally disconnect your self-worth from anything outside of yourself, including your relationship status.
9. Ease the pressure. Your dates will be far less stressful if your intent is simply to have fun–and if that fun date turns into something more, then that’s all the better.
10. Practice “purposeful gratitude.” Stress always screams loudest for our attention, but gratitude turns down the volume and shifts the focus to the abundance of things to be thankful for.
11. Realize that your attitude shapes your actions. Your thoughts and beliefs organize a thousand unseen signals you send to the world every day and influence subtle decisions that affect your search for lasting love.
12. Take good care of yourself. Keep in mind the axiom, “Dating is a marathon, not a sprint.” Be intentional about maintaining your physical and mental health for the trek.
13. Take inventory of all the things you’re doing right. Stress escalates when we focus on what’s going wrong. Reverse that trend by recounting what you are doing well in your love life.
14. Release stress-inducing emotions. Regrets, anger, and grudges sap your energy and drag you down. Forget the past, and choose to move on.
15. Let go of your sense of urgency. Where new romance is concerned, there is absolutely no hurry. Take one small step at a time, and clear-mindedly see how things unfold.
About Ashley and eH+:
eHarmony’s service, eH+ , gives you the benefit of a personal matchmaker who picks your matches and guides you to success. We’re taking the best of what eHarmony does and combining that with what personal matchmakers do best – person-to-person conversation, opportunities for feedback, and coaching to put your best foot forward.
eHarmony users, be sure to include your phone number in your account information so that Ashley can contact you if you are a match for an eH+ client.