The beginning stage of dating sometimes isn’t for the faint of heart. You know that feeling, they’ve been on your mind nonstop. You’ve imagined many scenarios where you two are happy and in love. All you want to do now is skip to the part where you guys confess the three magic words — kiss each other on the lips — and hold hands.
Before you get ahead of yourself, though, you have to weather through the development stage where it’s full of uncertainty and guessing. Every time they’re slow to respond or don’t respond, you wonder if anything went wrong. The longer you wait, the darker of a hole your mind falls into. Consumed by their opinion, you start wondering if they’re serious or if they only see you as another priority. Next thing you know, you contemplate confronting them to relieve the suspense. But then you can’t. Because that would ruin everything — the entire perfect image you’ve been building.
Then you receive a text saying, “Hey, sorry for the delay, I was in a meeting.” and suddenly, the dark clouds clear and the sun shines again. You realize their reaction makes or breaks your day. And you can’t control yourself.
I’m going through it as I’m writing this. When I don’t receive a proper response from her, I can’t eat, sleep, or work without wondering what’s going on. When she appears engaging and curious in our conversations, I’m a happy hippie and all is well in the world.
When you go all-in on one stock, the slightest tension can make you go insane, which is why mental preparation is advised.
Find something else other than them to look forward to
Start something new in your life. The reason you’re stuck romanticizing them is that they represent hope. You’re waiting for someone to bring light into your dull, unsatisfying life. A relationship means you won’t have to spend any more lonely nights. On the next Valentine’s day, people will envy you instead of the other way around. There’ll be someone to lean on emotionally. Your life will turn around. They’re your savior.
After dissecting a text conversation repeatedly, I’ve realized my happiness fluctuates directly to how much attention she’s giving me. Knowing this, I’ve started establishing a fulfilling life of my own. I’m my own savior. I set bigger goals. I search for more hobbies. I seek more friends. She needs to become one of my top priorities, not the only one. I have many more things going on in life besides her.
Keep your life full so you don’t need another person to fill it up.
Work on your EQ
When facing doubt in the dating game, emotional intelligence is key — the awareness and ability to manage your emotions. It’s a poker game where the person who can remain unphased by uncertainty and volatility wins.
You can’t blame someone for their indifference or scrutinize yourself for not being good enough. That’s a bit extreme. All you have to do and can do is continue to move as if nothing serious happened. If they aren’t expressing the level of affection you’d prefer or not replying at all, do what I did, text them again a few days later. It’s sending a message that whether they like you or not, you aren’t making a big deal out of it and that you’re secure, mature, and have options. They’re not indispensable.
If you do anything unusual after them leaving you cold feet, like throwing a temper or bomb texting, you’re likely on your way out their door.
A hack to think about them less
When you’re drowning in infatuation, the other person will dominate your mind even if you occupy yourself with busy work and have a blast partying — you’re emotionally attached.
There’s no clean way to say this but — find other people to think about. Scatter your attention by talking to a few more people of the opposite sex just for fun, whether you like them or not. At the end of the day, you still know who you truly want and that everything else is simply a distraction.
. . .
The rush of dopamine is intoxicating. Sometimes you can’t get off of it. Other times you don’t want to let it go. But even in the midst of all the flowery joy taking over you, don’t forget to stay even kilt despite what the other person is giving back.
This post was previously published on Medium.
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