Three years ago I moved to the city of Chicago without knowing anyone at all and single. I told myself when I moved there I would say yes to any date as long as they didn’t give me creep vibes. My intention wasn’t as much to find a relationship but to learn about myself and other people.
I absolutely love meeting new people, and dates were such a fun way to do that. If I actually liked the guy, I would let him pay. If I knew I wasn’t interested, I would ask to split. That way I wasn’t carrying the guilt of feeling like I was using people.
And If I wasn’t sure? I would just flow with it. I think a lot of us have a fear of using people when we’re single. As long as you are not intentionally using or deceiving, you TRULY do not have to worry about that. You are allowed to explore. You are SUPPOSED to explore.
But this isn’t a post about the surplus of weird situations this got me into, this is a post about how to cultivate confidence for yourself when you’re dating, or even just meeting new people.
Flip through the hot gym girls on IG and they will tell you their best first date tip is to go in with confidence. But like, how the fuck?
That is like writing someone a prescription and not telling them where the pharmacy is. You can’t do anything with it if you don’t know how to get there. If we could just choose to be confident, don’t you think you would be confident by now??
Confidence is far more complex than simply choosing it, and unwavering confidence takes time to cultivate. BUT there are some simple mindset tricks we can use to kind of fake it till we make it. An “act as if it were already true” kind of thing.
My first tip is to get out of that scarcity mindset. Going into a date with the mindset “this is the only chance I have to have a partner” is a lot of pressure! You’re going to be nervous with the weight of your entire love life on your shoulders.
So flip it. Before a date, I will literally picture the number of attractive people that are all around me. That apartment building down the street? Statistically, there have to be at least a few hot people (math G??). Multiply that by every apartment building in my area? That’s quite a few attractive people (more math G????).
Remind yourself that it literally doesn’t matter if this one works out or not. If it doesn’t there are SO many other people out there. The chances of you never finding someone ever again aren’t very realistic. Keep that anxiety in check.
Don’t be so worried if the person across from you will like you, rather, is the person across from you even good enough for you? In my early 20’s there were so many men I clung to that I would have been embarrassed to bring around my friends. Where is my self-value in that?
My second tip is to trick them into thinking you’re a boss bitch by acting like you’re a boss bitch. The person you are meeting is a stranger to you just as much as you are to them. You could be the CEO of a Fortune 500 company, they don’t know. So trick them. Come in with the energy that you are the baddest thing they have ever been on a date with, and they will believe you.
They don’t know any better. When you carry the energy of “I take nothing but the best” these strangers are going to believe you. Then all of a sudden the person across from you is the one who is nervous and awkward 😉
I tap into this energy by thinking about the things I have to offer that not everyone else does. I am rather proud of my maturity and emotional stability. So I lean into that before my dates. I tell myself “this person would be LUCKY to have someone as mature and stable as me”. This helps to flip the “am I good enough for them?” to “are they good enough for me?”
Third and final tip……..trust the process. There is nothing we can do to affect the timeline of when our soulmate, or the person we are meant to be with, will come into our lives so don’t take it
so seriously. Approach it with some curiosity and playfulness.
Know that clinging to the best thing you can find right now is not the same as getting what you deserve. Forcing it, and ignoring red flags can only last so long. Red flags, in the beginning, are just going to be the same things that eventually lead to your break up.
I literally practiced these things before going on a date. Like I would literally write out a list of where I thought a lot of attractive people would be around me before I would order my Uber. The great thing about mindset practices is that they eventually stick. I don’t need to do them so intentionally now, they come a bit more naturally.
Thanks for such interesting advice! You are absolutely right - it is not us who are chosen, but we are choosing! It remains only to somehow inspire yourself with all this and you can get ready for a date :)