Are you headed on a first date this weekend? Navigate the plethora of possible landmines with these expert tips from Annie Lavin on how to present your best self and make sure you find the perfect partner for you
As a dating and relationship coach, I meet a number of clients in my private practice who describe feeling unsatisfied in their dating life. Here’s five ways we can all try to more successful in our personal lives.
Being other centred
Being other centred rather than being grounded in self. If you are focussing on what the other person thinks of you, how available are you to be who you truly are? Not very much is the answer, and if you are not being you are on a date, then who are you being? A lot of people describe first date nerves taking over and that can turn them into a bumbling mess.
Top Tip: Ground yourself before a date. If you suffer from dating anxiety, trying to hide your anxiety will only make it worse instead tell your date you are feeling a little bit anxious. It will ease your mind and will offer you a chance to be vulnerable; which can enhance connection between you and your date.
Do you consider your needs in dating? If the answer is no, then you’re unconscious dating. You’re spending all your time wondering if your date likes you rather than discovering something about your date. And it is a rooky mistake.
Top Tip: Figure out what you need from a partner and reflect on those needs as you prepare for your date. For example, if you want to meet someone who is kind, how would that person behave? Simply observe how they treat strangers in your company and see if it matches your needs.
Using the term shallow is harsh. But do you focusing only on the exterior (e.g. appearance), rather than interior (e.g. qualities a person possesses such as kindness, loyalty). If you do you might miss your perfect match by being so caught up with what you see first compared to what is underneath.
Top Tip: Balance your inner and outer work or your heart-head response when you first meet someone. You may be physically attracted to the person, but ultimately they may be bad for you. Work with someone to understand yourself and your patterns when dating and then work backwards when choosing a mate.
Ignoring your gut
Your gut is there for a reason, and let’s be honest it’s normally right. If you quieten your gut because you find somebody physically attractive or because they’re successful, you may live you regret it.
Top Tip: Always pay attention to your gut response,.Every unhealthy relationship begins by ignoring your gut. Quieten your mind enough to hear what your body is warning you.
Do you think your perfect partner will meet all your needs? This is a myth. You need to know how to love and take care of yourself first. Ignoring this or expecting another person to take care of you may result in you finding yourself in a very unhealthy relationship.
Top Tip: Remember to consider what you can offer the other, rather than on just focussing on what they can offer you.
Annie Lavin is a dating and relationship coach and psychology lecturer, based in Dublin but works with people face-to-face and remotely. She empowers people to achieve relationship success by transforming their relationship with self. For the month of February she is currently offering a 10% discount on select services. More information can be found here. In response to these common dating mistakes and in an effort to enhance the dating lives of Irish women, Annie has designed a one hour Get Ready for Love consultation to save you the trouble of going this alone.