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Bringing mindfulness to dating could help you feel less stressed, anxious or overwhelmed about the experience to reveal the beautiful you. Pressing pause on “dating autopilot” can help to break a cycle of negative thoughts or behaviours by encouraging self-awareness of what is going on inside you and around you. Not only is this liberating, it’s incredibly empowering putting you in a position to respond to dating situations with insight as opposed to reacting out of emotion or desperation.
I hear from my clients, friends and family that the search for love can often be influenced by advice that focuses on external things like seduction, looking attractive, saying or doing the “right” things, all of which are fine but mindfulness is different because it starts with a journey inside you. It encourages you be true to you, to look beyond superficial aspects and approach dating as an adventure of self discovery which requires you to keep an open curious mind with kindness.
Here are some tips on dating mindfully. They are meant to help you to grow in areas of self-care, self-respect and self-love. When you are comfortable in your own skin you are more likely to attract a like-minded partner who will complement you rather than entering a relationship of imbalance or co-dependency where one is expected to “fix” or “complete” the other.
- Let go of Perfection. Its quite easy to get caught up in the search for the “perfect” partner or if your current date does not “tick all the boxes” – but do remember that imperfection is the norm, it’s real life. You can take a lot of pressure off yourself or your dates if you can dig deep to find it in yourself to accept that life is not perfect, nor are you, I or anyone for that matter. By doing this you will allow more space to discover insights about you and your date, partner or potential dates.
Tip: Attend the next date without any expectations or “tick boxes”, keep a completely open mind.
- Stay in the Moment by Embracing Changes. Life does not stand still; your thoughts, feelings, hormones, workload, relationship or dating status are constantly shifting. Instead of trying to control and force things to happen, take each moment as it comes and let go of the things you cannot change. Let life unfold, go with the flow, be free to enjoy the adventure. Use the moment to focus on the positive new things that you learn about yourself, or your dating experience so that you can continue to grow and shine brighter.
Tip: to stay in the moment, when you notice you start thinking negatively about dating, bring your attention back to what you were doing and focus on that instead.
- Remain Grateful & Positive. If you constantly think or believe that you will always be abandoned, sadly, you will continue to create these situations. This self-fulfilling prophecy can be avoided by pausing to notice the times when friends, family or dates are loyal. By shifting the gears of your mind from “lack” to focusing on positive moments, being truly grateful for them will attract more of this good stuff. You see, your growth is about stopping yourself repeating the same old patterns so become fully aware of the ways you keep proving these stories true and break the habit.
Tip: Keep a gratitude journal and note one thing you are grateful for in your relationships with friends or family daily.
- Try Not to Judge. When you are unsure or feeling insecure about your partner or date, it’s quite natural to jump to conclusions or judge the situation based on your thoughts and not reality. Always, always, always take a step back and connect with yourself first before reacting, check in to see how YOU are feeling and what your soul is telling YOU.
Tip: You can do this by just taking deep breaths for 5 minutes, meditation or going to a yoga class. When you are clear, respond wisely with kindness and compassion.
- Keep Calm, allow Kindness & Compassion in. If you have an argument or misunderstanding and feel angered by it, take a step back and let the anger pass this will also help you to see the bigger picture and act out of a place of compassion whoever is at fault.
Tip: You can try going for a walk, listening to music or simply do nothing and reflect on what has happened. When the anger has settled (it always does), approach the situation with a clear mind to help you express your feelings to set appropriate boundaries or resolve the argument.
If you choose to part do whatever it takes to extend kindness and compassion to part on good terms. It is much kinder to not leave scars once wounds are opened, this will help you grow and attract more goodness.
Relationships and dating can be painful but they don’t have to be. You only need to put some effort into nurturing your thoughts to be fully whole, complete and true in each moment. When two whole people join in an equal relationship where each is whole to begin with, the union can be magical. You have a choice, you can either hold back the true you to feel safe and secure or you can take a deep breath, exhale negative thoughts and take a leap of faith into the fire of passion and warmth, a risk worth taking every single time for unconditional love.
Bio: Mita Mistry is a Mindfulness Coach, Acupuncturist, Newspaper Columnist and expert in holistic care of chronic diseases and mental health. www.mitamistry.co.uk/go/thepowerofmindfulness/