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5 Ways to Cope With Dating Fatigue

Dating can be draining if you don't take care of yourself.

Source: AnnaKraynova/Shutterstock

You're not alone if you hate dating. Most people don't enjoy it. They do it because they want a relationship.

But the dating process is often difficult. The painful disappointments and rejections that inevitably come with dating can take a toll, leading to dating fatigue.

Dating fatigue might present as an attitude of indifference, feeling depressed and hopeless, exhausted at the thought of another date, or thinking you're ready to give up. Some people will experience dating fatigue after just a few dates, and others won't experience it for a few years of dating. Most will feel dating fatigue on and off over time. When you will experience it depends on your expectations, how you handle rejection and disappointment, how you take care of yourself, and whether or not you view the dating journey as an opportunity for growth or you resist change.

It's important to learn to cope with dating fatigue so that you don't give up on finding a partner. The journey might be difficult, but it's ultimately worth it. There are ways you can shift your mindset and take care of yourself so that you can cope with dating fatigue and continue to move forward toward what you long for.

The following tips will help you cope with dating fatigue and make it less likely to get in your way:

1. Check your expectations. If you expect to find someone quickly, you're going to be disappointed way faster than if you recognize that it takes time to meet the right person. Online dating apps and websites might try to hook you up with people with matching interests or similarities, but that is a far cry from matching you up with your soulmate.

Expect that developing a connection and a relationship with someone takes time; expect that finding the right person to develop a relationship with will also take time. The time it takes is out of your control. Expect this to be a marathon, not a sprint.

2. Don't take it personally. As stated above, online dating apps and websites are matching you up with random people, so it takes time to find the right person. During that time, there will be a lot of people who don't work out. If you take it personally, it will be a painful journey.

Practice not taking things personally in dating and in general. Someone else's behavior is information about who they are, not who you are. Other people's opinions don't define who you are or your worth. If you get rejected, it doesn't mean anything about your worth. If you get ghosted, it doesn't mean anything about you.

You are who you are and worthy regardless of who likes you and who doesn't. Don't give other people the power to determine your worth. This is a difficult skill to master, but it's a practice that you can continue to return to. Repeat in difficult times, "this is information about who they are, not who I am."

3. Learn dating skills. There are specific dating skills you can learn that make the dating journey less draining, less painful, and which elevate your self-love and self-respect. You can learn these skills from a therapist, a dating coach, or other resource. Don't assume that you know what you're doing, and you're still single because something is wrong with you. You probably were never taught dating skills, as most of us weren't.

4. Be open to change. Each dating experience is an opportunity for growth. It's important to look at the experience and ask yourself what you want to do differently in the future. Ask yourself what you need to work on and what you can learn from past experiences. Use that information to propel you forward.

5. Nourish the rest of your life. It's important not to let dating or dating apps/websites consume you. Give them some of your time, but nourish your friendships and other meaningful relationships.

Participate in the world in a way that is meaningful to you. Don't expect that a relationship will be all that you need to be happy. A healthy relationship will come along when you're already as happy as you can be without that area of your life fulfilled.

Dating fatigue is a normal part of the dating journey. It's important to learn to cope with it rather than letting it defeat you. If you want to have a relationship, there's no reason you can't. You just have to continue to learn, grow, shift your mindset, and take good care of yourself.

More from Caitlin Cantor LCSW, CST, CGT
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