Even if you are the most outgoing, confident person on the planet, you still will probably suffer from pre-date anxiety. It is the most normal thing in the world, and this is because love and relationships are pretty important to us. Before first dates, we are constantly asking ourselves, ‘Am I good enough for them?, ‘Will they like me?’, and most importantly, ‘Will I like them?’! Pre-date anxiety makes us picture the worst. A boring date, an outfit mishap, and awkward silences are all on our minds before we go on the date.
Fall can make anxiety worse. According to Healthline, changes in the season mean that some people find that the autumn months trigger high levels of anxiety. Alongside autumn anxiety, people also suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. According to the Help Guide, Seasonal Affective Disorder is a form of depression that is triggered by certain seasons, mostly the autumn and winter months.
If you suffer from autumn anxiety or Seasonal Affective Disorder, having first dates during these months can be tough. All our pre-date anxieties seem magnified and we are so tempted to just cancel things and stay at home.
But, there are loads of great ways of stomping out that first date anxiety! We at #Dating want to give you some advice so you can relax, have fun, and enjoy that first date.
1. Make sure you plan a date that is safe and comfortable
You should always meet your date in a safe, public environment, but we recommend meeting them somewhere you know well in order to get rid of that first date anxiety.
Be it a bar you love or a bowling alley that you have gone to for years, meeting your date in a familiar environment will put you at ease.
Also, make sure that you are wearing something super comfortable, too! Putting on a brand new dress and super high heels can be tempting, but wearing your trusted jeans will make you feel more relaxed, meaning you can focus on the date and not your outfit.
2. Realize that they are nervous, too
Yup, your date is probably just as nervous as you, too! First dates are anxiety-inducing for everyone, and your date isn’t immune. This means that they’ll probably understand your nervous habits and anything that you need to do in order to tackle your first date anxiety. Letting them know that you’re a bit nervous could even be a great icebreaker!
3. Come with conversation ideas
One of the main pre-date anxieties that most people get is the worry that the date will be filled with a lot of awkward silences. Of course, there are probably going to be some moments of silence, but coming into the date with conversation ideas can be a great way to boost your confidence and feel ready for the date.
Check out our 50 first date questions that you can ask in order to get to know your date. Also, take time to think about what you and your date have in common. If you like the same music, art, or films, the conversation will flow!
4. Remember - it is just a date
Pre-date anxiety means that we fill our minds with the worst-case scenarios. Will something awfully embarrassing happen? Or, will the person really dislike you?
What we say is, ‘So what?!’
Let’s face it, it is just a date. Some people won’t like you, but whatever, so many other people will! Sometimes people just don’t click, but that is okay. We go on first dates to find people we click with, so we will obviously encounter people that we don’t click with!
Oh, and if something awfully embarrassing happens? You will get over it, and have yourself a very funny first date story to tell your friends! Life is full of ups and downs, and unfortunately, bad first dates are just part of the dating process. You just gotta laugh, shrug it off, and move on!
5. Nerves are normal
Finally, it is super important to remember that nerves are normal. When it comes to pre-date anxiety, sometimes the fact we are nervous actually stresses us out more! But remember, you are only human, and being nervous shows that you care.
Embrace your nerves and realize that nobody in the world is completely stress-free when it comes to first dates. You are an amazing person, and your nerves and anxieties are a part of you.
But, what if the anxiety is too much?
If you are suffering from autumn anxiety and Seasonal Affective Disorder and it is really impacting your day-to-day life, it is okay to reach out for help! There is so much help out there for mental health issues. It might be scary at first, but talking to your doctor about your anxiety and depression will allow you to get the help you need.
According to the Help Guide, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a great way to take on your anxiety. It is all about challenging your thought process and addressing negative thoughts. It is okay to reach out and get the help you need!