Are you about to throw in the towel when it comes to dating?
I hear you. It can feel frustrating when their online profile looked super alluring, and you really thought she or he was the one.
Or, your friends wanted you to meet because she or he was supposedly perfect for you! But then that “can’t-miss” person turned out to be a flop.
No matter what the logistical circumstances are behind your dating, it’s really deflating and disheartening when things are just not working out. Furthermore, maybe you feel that some of those past attempted connections were not even close to being someone with whom you truly can feel happy and comfortable!
Are you tired of these disappointment-driven letdowns?
Do you feel discouraged because you can’t seem to meet anyone who is real? Someone who doesn’t end up playing those upsetting and, at times, cruel head games? You know what I mean—those confusing games called “mixed messages” and push-pull”!
Friendship: The One-Word Game Changer for Dating
A wise young woman in her early 20s shared with me a discovery she made after she, too, was fed up with the artificial nonsense that often goes along with dating. She decided that when preparing to meet guys she was interested in, and even when getting to know them further, she’d go with this premise in mind—friend! That’s right; she found that approaching a date as if she were making a friend felt much better than putting pressure on herself to be involved in the “Who Can Best Impress Who” game.
To be clear, this dating wisdom of leading with a vibe of friendship extends to same-sex, trans relationships, and the gender-neutral population as well. Why? Because at the end of the day, we are human and looking to feel not judged. Rather, we crave to feel valued and accepted for our true selves—even when an enduring romantic connection is not immediately, or even ultimately, in the cards!
Feeling Skeptical About This New Friendship Dating Dynamic?
If you are immediately doubting what I am suggesting about leading with a friendship vibe for dating, then I have two things to say to you:
1. I get it. Why wouldn’t you feel super skeptical if you have been misled, lied to, rejected, and perhaps even played for a fool in some past unsuccessful dating experiences?
2. As you read this post, stay skeptical. Please keep bringing it. But also consider that you probably would not even be reading these words if what you’ve been doing so far has really left you feeling good about dating,
How to Bring in a Friendship Mindset to Dating
- Don’t set yourself up to feel you have anything to prove.
- As the great Dale Carnegie book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, says, take a true interest in the other person and follow this interest with genuine, yet considerate questions.
- Go with gratitude. Be grateful for the opportunity to meet and learn about another person. Our fast-paced, social media-driven world does not readily lend itself to really experience others with realness. So, feel gratitude for a chance to connect with someone new in a real way.
- Think less is more. Realize you don’t have to impress this other person as you allow yourself to fairly get a sense of them. So, talk less and listen more.
- If you are not feeling a romantic connection, keep your boundaries while being nice. You don’t have to treat someone coldly to convey that you are not comfortable going forward in a romantic sense.
- Realize that going in with a friendship mindset does not obligate you to be their friend. You can be friendly without getting too familiar. Often, the other person may try to suppress their romantic desires under the false premise of friendship (i.e., “OK, so let’s just be friends”). Perhaps some people can have a “friendship” with one of the parties holding a hidden romantic desire. But in most cases, it just gets way too complicated.
The Benefits of Seeing Your Dates Through the Lens of Friendship
By approaching dating with a friendship mindset, you will likely experience the following positive outcomes:
- You’ll likely be much less anxious. That’s because you’ll feel more at ease by being your friendly self versus hiding behind the mask called “False Positive Impressions.”
- The person you are connecting with will likely feed off your friendly vibes and feel more relaxed and authentic as well. No guarantees here, but your being authentic is more likely to get the same realness from the other person versus you acting like someone you’re not.
- The chances of feeling let down are far less when you are keeping it real, to begin with.
- The likelihood of meeting someone you will happily go the distance with is far greater when you get to know each other as friendly, genuine people versus trying to impress one another with your idealized selves. Remember, the only perfect people are in the cemetery!