The Single Life: How To Stop Stressing About Dating

Dating is a pretty stressful thing. You are trying to look your best while paying attention to what you're saying (and already thinking about the second date). It doesn't have to be like that.

If you’re going on regular first dates, you totally deserve some kind of gold star or prize. It’s definitely not an easy thing to do.

From getting stood up to last minute cancellations, from awkward small talk to people that don’t talk at all, it’s tough to actually have fun on the date.

Sometimes it’s hard to even remember that dating is supposed to be fun at all. Since when did the searching for your soulmate become so awful?

If you can relate to this, then read on to find out how to stop stressing about dating. You will feel better in no time.

1) Actually, go on dates

Young man and woman say hi each other in cafe flirting situation

You may think that this sounds silly – and maybe it does at first – but if you’re single and you want to meet someone, you have to leave your apartment and go on a date every once in a while.

Thanks to online dating and dating apps, it’s really easy to find dates. Super easy. All you have to do is swipe and message and chat. But it’s just as easy to cancel dates last-minute because you want to watch the latest Netflix show that everyone is obsessing over.

Make sure that you keep the dates that you make and actually go on them. If you never go on dates but are worried about the fact that you’re still on your own, then that doesn’t really make much sense, right?

If you want to know how to stop stressing about dating, then you need to go on dates and meet people. Then at least you’ll know that you’re doing something and being productive.

2) Don’t take anything personally

Here’s the truth: you’re going to hate dating sometimes. Okay, most of the time. Some guys are going to cancel on you last-minute or the night before.

They’re going to take forever to make a plan, be really fussy about the bar or restaurant that you picked out, and generally make you wonder why it seems so difficult to make a simple plan.

That says more about them than it does about you. In fact, it says absolutely nothing about you. Maybe they’re scared to date, or they want to stay single, or they just lost interest.

If you don’t take it personally, then you’ll know exactly how to stop stressing about dating. If the alternative is to think that everyone must hate you before they’ve even met you, well, you can already guess how well that’s going to work out for you.

3.) Be yourself more

Okay, so, of course, you’re yourself on your first dates. Who else would you be? You know by now that pretending to be someone else is immature and silly and won’t get you anything but a really bad date.

But sometimes it can be tempting to just sit there and listen and not show off your whole self. It’s tough to open up to a total and complete stranger, especially if you’re wondering if he’s judging you or if he even likes you.

Sometimes it feels like admitting that you like or dislike something or sharing a story is like opening yourself up for rejection.

If you can make the effort to be yourself more and talk more about your quirky interests and what really makes you who you are, you would be surprised at how less stressful dating becomes. You might even have fun on a date. Who knew that was possible?

4) Schedule back-to-back dates

Portrait of beautiful happy smiling young woman lying on white carpet making cal

You don’t want to go on three first dates in a single evening. That’s taking things way too far and would get confusing and awkward fast. But you also don’t want to go on a first date every once in a blue moon because if things don’t go very well, then you’re right back to square one.

If you can schedule back-to-back dates – as in, maybe two dates a week, or at least a date every week – then you’ll be in a much better position. You won’t have to stress about not getting dates since you will get them on a regular basis, and you will feel calmer on the dates themselves since you’ll be so used to going on first dates.

This stuff will truly become no big deal, just another aspect of your otherwise amazing life, and you will feel the stress melt away. It’ll be like the equivalent of yoga for your love life.

5) Stop overthinking

Wondering how to stop stressing about dating? This is another really good idea. Of course, overthinking and dating go together like peanut butter and jelly. It’s really difficult to have one without the other.

There are just so many things to think and worry about. You wonder if this guy you’re meeting for drinks after work tonight is going to be your soulmate. You wonder if you’re going to get along and if he’s going to be funny (or think that you’re funny). You wonder how long it’s going to take to get another date if this one doesn’t work out.

Your head is always full of super confusing and conflicting thoughts, and it’s definitely not much fun. But if you can stop overthinking and just let things happen the way that they’re going to happen, things are going to be much easier for you.

6) Talk to your best friends

The truth is that if you have BFFs who are also single, they are probably going through the same (sometimes awful) stuff that you are. No woman is an island when she’s dating in this crazy modern world, after all. So don’t go it alone when you don’t have to.

Chances are, if a guy canceled on you in a weird way or something awkward happened, your best friend has been there, done that. Sometimes it’s just super comforting to know that you’re not the only one going through something.

It can be tempting to want to be self-sufficient and independent and think that you don’t need anyone. But you’ve been there for your friends when they’ve needed you, and it just so happens that you need them right now, too.

Let them be there for you. It’ll be good for all of you since when they need some dating advice, you can totally return the favor.

7) Take the focus off

Two friends relaxing and drinking coffee

Sure, you want to focus on your love life or you’re never going to meet anyone. But you don’t need to be so laser-focused on dating that you don’t have any fun or appreciate the other parts of your life.

Give yourself permission to take a bit of a break from dating sometimes, even if it just means not swiping or messaging two days a week. Go to work and do your best. Hang out with your friends and family. Watch some fun shows.

As long as you remember what is really great about your life, that’s the best way to learn how to stop stressing about dating. After all, no one wants to date a total basket case, right?

8) Get with the program

The things that you hate about dating – awkward small talk with strangers, wondering if someone wants a hook-up or a real relationship, putting yourself out there only to be rejected – have always been around. Sure, this stuff is sometimes magnified by online dating, but finding someone to love and care about has always been pretty difficult.

If you’re thinking about how to stop stressing about dating, the best thing that you can do is to get with the program, so to speak. Accept that this is your reality.

You are single and you have to date in order to meet someone. It’s not always pleasant and it can be pretty confusing, but it’s going to be worth it in the end. It really will.

After all, focusing on the negative parts of dating and thinking about how miserable you are is only going to make you, well, miserable. It’s not going to bring you love or anything good. Remember that when you hate dating and are super stressed out.

Dating may not always be fun, but that doesn’t mean it has to be the most stressful thing in your life. If you follow the ideas on this list, you might just find that you can relax enough to enjoy yourself every once in a while, which will make finding true love a whole lot easier.

After all, you don’t have to make your life suck just because you’re trying your best to find a partner in this life.

How do you stop stressing about dating? Do you agree with our ideas? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

About the author

Aya Tsintziras

Aya Tsintziras is a freelance lifestyle writer and editor. She loves coffee, barre classes, 90s television and pop culture. She is a food blogger at A Healthy Story and shares gluten-free, dairy-free recipes and personal stories.

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