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6 Tips for Dating Honestly

I have been organizing Honest Date Nights in Finland for some years now and really enjoy them.
I love people meeting others when being honest and real.

(and by the way Pete and I talked in our first meeting about divorce and alcoholism – maybe you have heard this story too!)

In my opinion that is the best start for having real connection.
Been seen and heard.

Instead of showing just the best sides.
Using photos which are 10 years old.
Lying their age.

I like what Chelsea wrote some time back about honest dating and want to share it with you.

6 Tips for Dating Honestly

1. Notice what you feel in your body.

A great tool in dating (and in life in general) is to be able to notice the physical sensations you’re experiencing in your body at any given moment.
Why it matters:
our whole body, not just our mind, is a source of important information. For example, by noticing chest pain, you may realize you’re feeling stressed. You might notice a fluttering, butterfly-like feeling in your stomach – and know you’re falling in love. Our bodies can tell us a lot. On the other hand, not paying attention to the body’s signals – like ignoring pain, hunger or thirst – could land us in the hospital. So take note of what you feel in your body right now. It could be something like:

  • cold fingers
  • sweat under the arms
  • moving feet
  • pressure in the knee
  • pain in the back

Not only will you have valuable information about your current state to use to make decisions – but you can also share your physical sensations with your date to get even more connected and invite them to do the same.
2. Share how you (really) feel.

This sounds kind of obvious, and it must be stated. At any moment with your date (as long as you feel safe doing so), tell them how or what you feel. Focus on the present moment. This might sound like:

  • “I’m really excited to meet you tomorrow! And a little nervous, I have to admit.”
  • “I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed right now – in a good way. I think I want to take some time for myself tonight.”
  • “I’m feeling self-conscious – I’m worried that you might not like me when you see the blemishes on my face.”
  • “I feel so good cuddling you – so warm and safe.”
  • “I’m afraid you’re mad at me because of what I said earlier.”

Notice what you want to withhold – and ask yourself what is your motivation for doing so? Are you trying to manipulate the other into liking you more? Or trying to control their image of you – so they see you a certain way?
Good, now you’re ready for step three.

3. Come clean about who you really are.

When dating, we often want to present the best side of ourselves. Okay. But fuck that. Really.
If you present a polished version of yourself – one that does not accurately represent the whole beautiful mess that is you – your date doesn’t have the chance to love you as you truly are.
Instead, they may fall in love with a fake version of you – which is a recipe for heartbreak later down the road. Nobody can wear a mask forever, nor would they be happy doing so.
So I encourage you and your date to really share vulnerably with each other – especially the things that are uncomfortable to share. For example, here are some things Stefan and I revealed to each other already on our first or second date:

  • “I’m attracted to you”
  • “I don’t want to tell you anything embarrassing – I want you to like me”
  • “I’m afraid you will see me as weak”
  • “If we went to my house right now, I’d run inside and sneakily clean up the dirty clothes I left on the bathroom floor. I would want to hide those from you.”
  • “I’m not great at doing the dishes – I always seem to have a sink full of dirty dishes no matter what I do!”
  • “What are you looking for in a relationship?”
  • “I’m looking for ___________ in a relationship.” (Ex: love, longterm commitment , etc)
  • “Do you want to cuddle? I’m imagining cuddling you right now.”
  • “I don’t usually wear makeup – I’m wearing it today because I want you to find me attractive.”

4. Pay attention to your date’s words and actions.

If you’re still with me and liking my advice so far, chances are you’re gonna be great at this honest dating thing. Radically honest dating can be exhilarating. And it can also be really fucking painful – speaking from experience. If you’re lucky, you’ll meet the love of your life on your next date, all will go well and boom! Happily ever after. Except it doesn’t usually happen like that right?So the next step is important. Start to pay attention to what your date says and does. Simply notice and start keeping tabs – as if you were a scientist observing an experiment. If it helps you can even write down the chain of events. Look at what the person actually did or said, not just your interpretation of it.And finally
5. Don’t tolerate red flags.

Dating is a process of weeding out the wrong people, to make way for the right person to come in. And let’s face it – when it comes to our innermost intimate circle – that space should be reserved for people who treat us like the precious, wonderful fucking beings that we are.

So you’ll meet a lot of people who are wrong for you. Don’t try to make it work with everyone. Don’t let your fear of lack, or your sense of not being good enough, convince you that you should give that fuckboy a chance to become a loving partner. Not gonna happen.
Of course, you should have no tolerance for overt red flags like name calling, abuse, putting you down, etc. Walk away.
But sometimes, the person you’re dating might use honesty only as a way to manufacture chemistry between you – as they have done with many people before. They might date you, use ‘honesty’ to get what they want from you, and then move on to the next victim. You could be left with your head spinning, and your heart broken. I have been there before.
How do you know if someone is a basket or red flags or not? I’ve found that a good way to judge that is by how you’re feeling internally about the relationship.

Are you constantly feeling confused about it, not sure what the two of you are? Red flag. Or do you feel anxious, angry, disappointed, triggered and abandoned most of the time? RED FLAG! Does the person say one thing, and do another, and you are confused if they really love you? Red flag!
In my experience, you won’t feel like shit when you start dating the right person.

So in step six let’s talk about setting boundaries.
6. Take good care of yourself and your boundaries.❤️

So notice how you feel, what’s going on in your body, what the other person says or does and how you feel about the relationship.Walk away from dates who are abusive or otherwise leave you feeling overall “bad”. Life’s too short for bad relationships, which can steal our happiness and peace.
But guess what.
You can also walk away just because someone isn’t loving you the way you want to be loved.
This is your dating journey. This is your search for love. And you don’t need to waste a minute of your time hanging around to find out if the wrong person will be right for you.Sometimes, the wrong person might feel like a good friend. Sometimes, they might feel like a soulmate that you’re obsessed with and couldn’t imagine life without.
In any case, if they don’t treat you like you’re the most incredible human being they’ve ever laid eyes on, you owe it to yourself to walk away.
That was one lesson I had to learn the hard way.But when I finally did, I made room for Stefan to come into my life ❤️I learned how to treasure and honor myself.How to care for me fully, even if no one else did. How to stop abandoning myself.***
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I wish you a great & honest week! ☀️

Tuulia (& Pete) ❤️

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