Dating anxiety affects most single people to some degree. Here are some common anxious questions that run through people’s minds during the dating process. See how many apply to you:

  • Will others find me attractive enough?
  • Will I be interesting/funny on this date?
  • Will I ever find someone I really love?
  • Is the person I’m dating the right one for me?
  • If I end this relationship, will I find someone else?

This anxiety can sabotage your ability to connect confidently and authentically with other people. Here’s how to stay grounded and actually enjoy the dating process.

Dating Reminders to Keep You Grounded

When you feel dating anxiety coming on, here are five reminders to keep you from feeling hopeless and out of control.

Everyone is anxious about dating

Even the most seemingly confident people struggle with some doubt or anxiety about meeting and keeping the “right’’ partner. There is nobody who is 100% confident about all aspects of dating, and most people have quite a bit of insecurity.

The person you’re meeting for a date is probably just as anxious as you are, and if you can remember this, it can help you calm down. After all, if you have met someone with zero dating anxiety, they are likely narcissistic, and this is nothing to aspire to!

If you have to force it, it isn’t right

When you meet someone who is good for you, you will not be consumed with doubts and anxiety. Most people know in their gut if they are truly into someone or if they are pushing something that doesn’t really work.

Listen to yourself and be true to what you feel. If this is hard for you in general, then therapy can help you develop more confidence and be more decisive about key issues in your life.

Being yourself is key

Although this is the most hackneyed of dating advice, it is spot on.

If you change yourself early on to fit the mold of whatever your potential partner seems to want, then you are setting yourself up for a world of hurt later on. Eventually, your true personality, desires, and interests will come out, and your partner may well feel like you’ve pulled a bait and switch. If you are genuine from the beginning of the relationship, you can find someone who is actually interested in you, and you know that you can sustain being yourself for a lifetime.

Everything worthwhile takes patience and effort

Dating is not effortless, and nothing important is. You will have to figure out what you want and how to be your best self, dating many people before you find the person who is best suited for you. If you expect the dating process to take time and effort, then you are setting yourself up to succeed; if you think it should happen effortlessly, you will likely be sorely disappointed.

Very few people end up alone (if they don’t want to)

The vast majority of people are in relationships, and statistically, you are likely to be among them. In my practice, I have very rarely seen people who genuinely are open to the idea of relationships but still remain consistently single.

If you want to find someone and are putting in the effort to do so, the odds are excellent that you will find someone who is a great fit for you.

Don’t Let Anxiety Sabotage Your Dating Life

Hopefully some of these tips can work as mantras to soothe the savage beast of dating anxiety when it rears its ugly head. If you are genuinely putting yourself out there, and you stay grounded using this advice, you may end up looking forward to dating instead of feeling consumed by worry and anxiety. Dating can be fun and exciting, so don’t let anxiety sabotage it for you!

Originally published on Talkspace.

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