This summer my dating life really took off through a fun little phone app called Tinder. Yes, you heard right. I decided to give it a try since I was not having any luck being asked out otherwise. I decided that I had to take dating into my own hands and do something because doing nothing just wasn't working. Joining tinder was one of the best decisions that I've made and yet one of the worst all at the same time! How can it be the best and the worst decision you ask? Well for starters getting back into dating scared me and I felt totally clueless as to how dating even worked anymore! So I began my journey on tinder by swiping left and right to my hearts content and I was discovering that I was making matches. Guys were actually wanting to get to know me! Success! Followed by...a large gulp.
Soon after making matches I got asked out on my first date in years. I was excited yet nervous all at once. The date itself actually went a lot better than I expected it to haha...This pleased me. Before I knew it I was going on at least one date a week sometimes more. With each date I gained a little bit more confidence in myself and my ability to feel comfortable with complete strangers improved. With practice dating was actually a little fun! Who knew? If nothing happens romantically you at least have some new friends :) I have never been on so many dates with so many different people in my entire life. Quantity really isn't important to me by any means, it has just surprised me how many dates that I have been on in just a few months.
Now dating has presented its challenges for me but somehow I doubt that I am the only one who has experienced this. Seriously, I can't be the only one who has experienced hiccups with dating am I right? Who wants to be vulnerable and put themselves out there with the risk of being hurt? It's totally natural to want to protect yourself from others hurting you as well as protecting yourself from yourself. But not letting your guard down only gets you so far...so your choice is to stay put in your comfort zone or to take a risk..Not going to lie taking risks is not my strong suit. I know that I can take risks but do I like taking them? Mmm...no. Do I want someone to know me and love me for who I am? Of course the answer is yes. Everyone has the same basic needs and wants and a BIG one is to feel loved. How can we receive this basic need if we aren't willing to be vulnerable? We can't! See the predicament? In the words of Liz Lemon,
" Blurgh." So I've been practicing taking risks. Letting people in. Letting them see and know who I am..the good, the stuff you don't want to be seen in the light of day, the insecurities...Laying yourself bare literally leaves you feeling naked! There's nothing to hide behind, it's just you standing there exposed. Here is your chance to see how the other person will react to your risk..your "nakedness". Pushing yourself to be outside of your comfort zone is uncomfortable. Staying outside of your comfort zone takes courage! But anyway, I've been learning that being vulnerable and striving to live outside of my comfort zone are NOT bad things. Here are some awesome quotes:
Lastly, I wanted to share that boy does dating teach you a lot about yourself as well as others. It has helped me to figure out that I am trying to bridge the person who I once was when I last dated (8 years ago!) to the person that I currently am. Dating has also helped me to know what I want in someone as well as what I need. You are going to make mistakes and have "freak outs" but what is important is how to bounce back from them. Finding someone who understands and listens to you through these kinds of moments is truly a wonderful thing. It makes the risks, vulnerability, and nakedness feel worth it. My journey with dating is no where near over and I know that it will continue to teach me life lessons that will shape me and get me that much closer to the things that I desire. So even though dating sometimes stinks there is always a silver lining! Happy dating to you all! We are all in this together just like the high school musical song :) haha...