Embark on the online dating journey as if it was an adventure. You don’t know who’ll meet or what part they’ll play in the larger theatre of your life. Take some basic steps to prepare yourself for this adventure:
- Ask people you trust about their online dating experience
- Investigate the various sites for the right fit for you
- Write your profile in advance and ask a close friend to read it to see if it sounds like you
- If the website has a questionnaire, answer all the questions
- Set an intention for what you want
Learning What You Want in a Relationship
Knowing what you’re searching for is a good exercise for discovering your inner sense of self. Sonia Choquette, author of Your Heart’s Desire (Three Rivers Press, 1997), writes that discovering your heart’s desire is an evolutionary process. And the evolution is in you.
Healthy Risk Taking
Relationship building requires a healthy amount of risk taking. Dating, and in particular online dating, can open you up to experiencing many negative feelings such as hurt or disappointment if things don’t work out. Broken promises can trigger pain. Unmet expectations can cause anger. It is essential to keep clear in your heart your deepest desires for your own best self.
How to Build a Relationship with Yourself
The most significant relationship you will ever have is the one you build with yourself. You know you are in a healthy relationship with yourself if you can
- Accept yourself and all your stumblings with tenderness
- Permit life to happen around you without blaming yourself when things go wrong
- Protect yourself from harm when confronted with controlling, inattentive, or unloving individuals
Learn to Love Yourself First
Learning to love yourself is such a well-known concept that it is easy to dismiss it as a cliché. And yet, what if the word love was expressed in a practical fashion? David Richo, author of How to Be an Adult in Relationships (Shambhala), refers to the five A’s of love. Here they are as they apply to self love:
- Attention – listening to yourself
- Affection – expressing fondness for yourself (not beating yourself up)
- Allowance – letting yourself just be, without judging yourself
- Acceptance – not trying to meet others expectations
- Appreciation – no criticism or blame or shame
When the Date Doesn’t Work Out
The online dating game has more unpredictable elements than physical meeting. It’s hard to know why part way through the process a partner will suddenly stop answering. The lack of closure can feel like abandonment. The key is to feel the feeling that is triggered and not hide from it. Observe your feelings with tenderness and acceptance. Check in with the five A’s of self-love. And really listen for any self-blame, or lack of acceptance and affection. Also, try alternative options such as professional matchmaking service or casual free local phone chat line, which are more personal but still offer convenience and save a lot of time.
Self Discovery Brings Confidence
As your confidence in yourself grows, you’ll find that the vagaries of the online dating scene will matter less. You’ll grow more sure in following the path of your deepest desires, trusting the universe and the amazing power of synchronicity to bring you the person who is best for you.