Pacing Not Racing: How To Not Lose Yourself When Dating

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Dating Advice: How to not lose yourself when dating.

WOW!!! You have met someone and they have completely blown your mind. It might even seem too good to be true!

Conversation is incredible, chemistry is on fire and the connection runs deep.

But wait a minute, how did it get from “tell me your favorite color” to “planning our wedding favors” in a hot second?

Only a few weeks back, we were talking about what we enjoyed doing when we were kids, to now sharing a toothbrush! Okay… maybe not that far!

Whilst dating can sometimes have its challenges and be quite daunting and stressful because of the uncertainty of the whole situation, it can also be such an exhilarating time. You have the opportunity to get to know someone before you decide to take any next step to transitioning into a relationship.

How To Not Lose Yourself When Dating

“Pacing Not Racing”

Relationship Specialist Ivona Gordon uses the term “pacing not racing” when reviewing aspects of her life. This term can objectively be applied to matters of dating too.

It is not to say that there cannot be fast progress when you meet someone. That is for each individual to use their discernment based on their personal situation.

As quoted by Kira Cochrane: “And the only rule is that there are no rules.”

However, in most cases, one of the main purposes of dating is to appraise one another’s suitability and compatibility as a long term companion.

Do you share the same “core” values and common goals, dreams, and desires as the other person? Commonalities that can lead to sustaining a healthy, fulfilling, diamond-dazzling relationship with them? If there are differences, can you work together to appreciate and embrace them?

Have you allowed sufficient time to assess the person’s character? Do they have the ability to fulfill your needs, to treat you with love, respect, kindness, compassion, and understanding? Do they have the overall qualities and attributes you deserve from a significant other?

Remember, to attract your ideal love life, the responsibility for connecting starts with you. It begins with you having a strong, loving relationship with yourself, particularly as this sets the bar for any relationship you will have in the future.

Taking all of the above into account, here are 5 more strong considerations to factor in, to ensure that you do not lose yourself when dating and in any relationship that might develop:

1: Emotional Availability

Is the person emotionally available for you?

Everything in life starts with connection and this includes a relationship with a compatible significant other. We make a true relationship connection when our heart touches another heart. It is therefore difficult to have a healthy relationship without an emotional connection.

Identifying emotional unavailability is not always easy. Emotionally unavailable people tend to have trouble with their relationships, often maintaining some distance and desiring to date casually.

Emotionally unavailable people can make you feel amazing about yourself and have all of the intentions to be your ideal significant other. They can give you hope about creating a life with you, but when it comes to commitment and taking action, they are wishy-washy, offer false promises, and do not “show up” for you.

Not only that, if they are not long out of a previous relationship, are pining for their ex, family, or previous life, and/or have past traumas, you might find that their heart and mind will not be with you completely.

It is not your responsibility to make an emotionally unavailable person more available. This is their choice and they will need to explore the reasons why they cannot be “all in” with you.

Should you find that you are doing all of the relationship work and/or despite all of your efforts to build a solid connection with the person, they are choosing not to fully commit to you and you have spoken to them about your feelings and concerns, it is essential that you do not compromise your self-worth and your value by changing who you are to accommodate their unavailability.

You will need to honestly reflect upon whether the person is best serving the happiness and fulfillment you truly desire and deserve and is indeed right for you.

2: Art of Conversation

Effective, consistent communication and authentic connection are 100% vital when dating. This is particularly heightened during this current pandemic when a key component of dating such as meeting in person might be missing due to social distancing rules.

Communicating with integrity helps to build trust and confidence. This is why it is so important to master your online and offline conversations. This can be achieved by understanding your thoughts, feelings, and emotions and how the other person thinks and communicates.

This awareness helps you to know how you can adapt and improve your style in order to communicate well and deepen your emotional connection with them. During your conversations, ask yourself:

  1. How do I feel right now?
  2. What could the other person be feeling right now?
  3. How does the situation feel right now?

And remember to “Be All E.A.R.S.”

E…xplore by asking questions

A…ffirm to show you are deep listening

R…eflect your understanding

S…ilence, listen some more

Trust your gut and be open and honest in your conversations, whilst sharing at a pace comfortable for you. #PacingNotRacing

3: Set Healthy Boundaries

We all have needs and it is important to allow ourselves to feel that this is natural and okay.

What is not healthy is when you completely set aside what you want and need in an effort to please the other person, particularly if you do not think you have a choice.

If you realize their needs are being met far more often than yours are or they make you believe that you want what they want, it is time to set healthy boundaries.

You need to be crystal clear with the other person on who you are and what you want. You need to express your beliefs, your values, and your limits.

Knowing how to say “No” is a key way to set boundaries.

When effectively expressed, it allows you to step up and stand your ground whilst keeping a workable relationship.

Remember, if you say “Yes” when you mean “No” then you are denying your own needs. This leaves you powerless in the situation.

Your boundaries are imperative and deserve to be acknowledged and respected.

4: Keep Practising Self-Care

Your self-care on a daily basis is crucial. It is necessary to look after your physical, mental, and emotional well-being even whilst dating. Especially when you may find you have less time for yourself as you are spending more time connecting with the other person.

If you allow yourself to be depleted to the point where your physical and emotional tank is empty, everybody loses, including the other person and specifically YOU!

When you nurture yourself, you will have more nurturing to give to the other person.

Factoring in some ‘Me Time’ is a great source of self-care. ‘Me Time’ is anything that lights you up or fascinates you.

It could be going for a walk, a trip to the movies, or a night out with friends. Or having a massage or volunteering. It might be enjoying a long relaxing bath, pampering yourself at home, reading a book, or some personal development. Anything you enjoy!

‘Me Time’ is a chance to fully absorb yourself in what you are doing and celebrate you!

Spend quality and regular time following the passions that stir your soul and make your heart sing. Give you the ‘Me Time’ you are truly worthy of.

As a result, not only will this be of great benefit to you, it will enhance the quality of your dating experience and any relationship that will follow. Why? Because you will be feeling a high vibe!

5: Stay Connected With Others

You do not want to become ‘The Disappearing Act!’

The person who is a BFF or is there for people when you are single. But as soon as you start dating and enter into a relationship, you drop them abruptly.

Although it is normal to have less time and availability when you meet someone new, it is not okay for you to completely disappear only to re-emerge when in need. So be sure to continue to keep nourishing and making time for your existing connections and support networks, both personally and professionally.

Dating and relationships can have ups and downs. Many people find it beneficial to talk to someone about the highs and lows. Whether it is a friend, family member, support groups, online communities, or a professional, either to just bounce off ideas, share their excitement, or during more challenging times.

Surrounding yourself with people who uplift you, brighten your day, and make you feel better can be invaluable in navigating any uncertain moments.

It is critical to note that asking for help and talking things through is not a sign of weakness; it actually shows strength, bravery, and self-awareness. Furthermore, it helps strengthen your relationships and connection with the people you turn to. Whilst also allowing you to oversee the dating experience with perspective.

Final Note:

Here is a bonus nugget… daily affirmations are powerful for helping you to not lose yourself during dating and in your love, life, and relationships in general. One to get you started is:

“I AM the best at being myself.

I AM ready, receptive, and grateful for receiving all goodness in my life.”

Because YOU absolutely ARE!

Dating does not need to be rushed, particularly if you would like to attain a fuller picture of what the person is all about. It is key to manage each other’s expectations and understandings by having openness and transparency around how you would like to “date”, how you feel it is going, and the vision of a future relationship.

AND trust your intuition during the dating experience and any ensuing relationship. It is always right.

KNOWING that when you stay connected with your true personal power, you CAN achieve dating success and make your love life dreams a reality!

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