Handling Dating And Anxieties About Myself.
I'm not sure if this is the kind of thing to inquire for help about on here, so my apologies if it's not...
I work from home, always have since high school. All my dating has ever been through online apps etc (e.g tinder). It's been difficult, because whilst I've had relationships from this. I never dated someone I just head over heels fell for, rather, I compromised because I thought they were all I could get.
Some times, I've matched with a girl that got me very excited. We clicked, had a lot in common and before any in person date had taken place I was already thinking months into the future, getting too excited for what usually turned out in disaster. (i.e after one date, the 'dream' girl messaged me and told me they were interested in someone else).
Now... I've matched with someone that has ticked so many boxes for me. With some incredible coincidences and mutual interests. Unlike me, they're not free all the time. And I usually don't hear back until bedtime at the end of each day.
I want to ask essentially, a couple of things; how can I stop my brain from jumping ahead, and just taking things as they come? And how can someone who is free all the time, and can reply instantly, interact with a romantic interest that is the complete opposite?
Hi. We have moved from a time (before 2000) when people wrote letters to each other. Even in the 90s people could wait a day for a reply to an email - that was acceptable. Between then and now, I feel, there is a thought or a need to respond to someone else immediately. And what does it mean if we do not respond in a timely manner.
(Writing these I remember talking to the person who would become my wife on the phone because that was the only way we could converse and that was also at night time.)
A positive is that you recognise your friend cannot respond immediately. If the person is also responding they sound interested still. Have you met her at all?
For many too many years I worked from home. Please note these are only my thoughts as they applied to me. In this environment it is easy to reply to someone immediately and then get back to whatever else we might have been doing. Of course, there were people who sent emails, and would call 5 min later asking the same question in the email! The work/home boundary is blurred also. This may impact on doing things we might enjoy. Also, because we may not talk with other people as much as in a work environment, our thoughts can wander (both good and bad).
Changing our habits is difficult - or was for me.
It is easy to say to "distract yourself" as the solution. It is one solution but takes time - at least for me. Look at short meditation apps type things as a way of stopping yourself of thinking about them; something that will bring you back into present moment. Perhaps write the thoughts on paper to get it off your mind. Stop responding immediately?
Do you have friends or family you would feel comfortable to talk to?
I know exactly how you feel, I have a tendency to fantasize about my life in the future when I might girls that I really like (whether it is through tinder or in real life). I've recognised this to be a detriment in my life because it means I come on a little bit too strong (or even desperate!). I'll share my tactics.
Firstly, I'd like to mention that I cannot remove these thoughts entirely, but I do observe them when they come and then employ the tactics.
(1) Meditation, which is a big part of my life- but this might be hard if you haven't practised that much before. For me, meditation means that I am not thinking about anything except for right now.
(2) Distraction: get out, do some exercise, read. I recognise what smallwolf has said- it's an easy thing to say and harder to do. Especially when you would rather be thinking about something else. Might I suggest even doing this instead of replying immediately? Giving yourself time to think of a response (I don't think Tinder has read receipts).
(3) Becoming busy: filling my day with things to do so that I only reply to the girl when I have the time to. Thus, I am only thinking about this girl for a small fraction of my day, and am otherwise focussing on myself.
(4) This comes with being able to recognise when you are fantasizing, and I guess would be classified as CBT. When I recognise I am fantasizing, I tell myself to stop (without deriding myself!) and change my thought pattern. This is to the point where it has become almost habit like to me. Read 'Awaken the Giant Within' by Tony Robbins.
(5) This might be the most controversial one but it works for me. I don't close off avenues of pursuit with other girls when I have found the one that I am interested in. As in- I am still messaging other girls on Tinder, still talking with other girls in real life. This might be similar to distraction, but for me, it reminds me that no matter what happens with this girl that I like, there are still others out there.
Hope this has been helpful!
Awesome advice! Thank you. I definitely am going to try getting busy and distracting myself with productive things like working out and learning new skills.
I’m thinking it could be a good idea for me to speak with a psych in regards to number 4 and CBT because when I’m at home and I simply don’t have a distraction of some kind, I need to find a way control my thinking and combat my mental state of fantasising.
And I’m definitely still doing number 5. I haven’t stop pursuing anyone else or starting new conversations with others it’s just unfortunately once a special one comes ‘into the ring‘ as such I tend to become quite focused on them rather quickly.