The new relationship anxiety
So, you meet a guy and the first date goes well. He asked for a second date on the first, score. Second date goest great too. There’s been some fun playful banter over text in-between seeing each other. Third date turns out to be even better. And now, you’re not really hearing from him. He’s still reaching out but, maybe there’s more time in-between his responses to yours. The anxiety sets in. Is it me? What happened? Is he bailing?
Does this sound familiar to anyone? I have both my hands raised over here. I’ve been through this scenario more times than I would like to admit. I know the grip of anxiety as I used to wait for my phone to ding and the ding to be from a dude. My phone became the enemy. When the responses from a guy did come in, I would over analyze them with my girlfriends. “What do you think he meant by, see you later?”. I poured my energy into making sure my new interest stayed afloat. But, to quote Taylor swift,
All of that worry and anxiety would cause me to be overly eager to please and say yes to plans even when I wanted to stay home or do something else. And then eventually the little flame would in fact burn out. So, what’s going on?
When we are in a fearful state or have anxiety about a new love interest it usually means we feel unworthy of love in the first place. It also means we are projecting our need for love, attention, worth, purpose, etc onto a relationship and suddenly the stakes are super high. This means we aren’t acting authentically, being radically vulnerable or establishing health boundaries. All of these things are required for a lasting, healthy relationship to thrive. When we feel grounded in our worth and know that all our needs are met by ourselves first and foremost, the stakes are very low when meeting someone new. Actually, when you’re really in your worth, the stakes are always low, no matter the circumstance, because you worth is no longer dependent on ANYTHING/ANYONE outside of you. It is the best feeling! We’ve been led to believe that drama is what creates an interesting life or love story but far from the opposite- it’s what sucks the joy out of it.
If you’re freaking out whether your new dude is going to text back or what he’s going to say, you’re not actually freaking out about him. He’s an external projection of the lack of worth, love and attention you feel inwardly. No one outside of you can fill that hole. Only you can fill that hole. In religion it’s called a God Shaped hole. And only God can fill it. Guess where God lives? In us! So, still, only we can fill it. If you’re in that anxiety spin out, step away from your phone. Your subconscious is waving a white flag at you letting you know you need more healing.
How do you start to heal? Great question! First, you need to dig to the root of your fear and feelings of unworthiness. All of this is subconscious and might not easy to see on the surface. My favorite tool is my journal. Break out your journal and start to free write (meaning no stopping to think, just keep your pen moving. Even if you write, I don’t know what to write, over and over. Eventually your subconscious will come forward and answers will come. Be patient.) about the current situation and the anxiety you feel over hearing from this human. Why? Where does this fear stem from? Where did you first learn this? Who did you need the love, attention, validation from when you first felt this pain? Once you have your answers you can start to reprogram your brain. The tool that works best for this is Lacy’s DRE (daily reprogramming exercise). Third, continue to repeat if/when you find yourself feeling anxiety/worry about a new relationship.
If you feel stuck in this process or don’t know where to begin, I look forward to connecting over a session.
Photos from my time in Hampi, India.