We all want to feel connected. We’re social beings. And some of the most important connections that we create are in our romantic relationships. We understand that craving, yearning, and deep desire for romantic connections.
That’s why dating can feel so heavy sometimes. When you want something so badly, it sometimes takes the fun out of it. Mix that in with societal expectations, pressure from family, and comparison to other people in your life or on social media and you might start to dread dating.
You forget that relationships aren’t something to check off your to-do list, but a way to connect and get more depth out of life. Dating is part of the relationship process for many people, and it’s a step that you should be able to enjoy. If dating has been weighing you down, we’re here to help make it fun again!
Why Dating Should Be Fun
When you’re taking yourself and life too seriously, it zaps the joy from what could be a spontaneous, fun interaction. Sometimes when we show up to dates, we have this preconceived notion of who this person is, and what they can give to us.
But the reality is that you don’t really know them, at least not in the context of a romantic relationship. You don’t know what the dynamics of your connection will look like over time. You don’t know if this is your future spouse or co-parent. And that’s ok. You don’t need to know right now.
All you need to do right now is enjoy the process. Yes, life and relationships can be serious sometimes, but dating is an opportunity for fun and spontaneity. A way to meet new people and get a better understanding of what you want in a partner and how you show up in relationships.
Dating lets you try out new things, and new people, and go to places that you might not have been otherwise. Like that wine bar meets ceramic studio downtown, or the restaurant you’ve walked past a million times but have never been to.
You don’t need to know what the future holds right now, nor can you. But you can focus on showing up as honestly and authentically as possible and committing to enjoying the process.
Joy Is Magnetic
Fun and joy go hand in hand, and guess what? Joy is sexy. Joy makes you memorable. Joy makes people want to be around you. Joy is magnetic.
If we’re being honest (and we always are), people don’t usually want to date someone who is negative, a buzzkill, or just not engaging. We’re not saying that’s you, but sometimes if you’re not enjoying the process of dating, people can pick up on that.
So if the sheer feeling of joy itself isn’t motivation enough, think of it this way: Joy helps attract people who are more aligned with what you need, and what makes you feel good. Plus you’ll notice if someone doesn’t match your joyful energy and know they’re probably not it!
Plus if you’re able to enjoy yourself no matter what the outcome is, then any relationship that comes from that has a happy, positive foundation to grow from.
How To Have Fun Dating
All of this is nice in theory, but how do you actually start to have fun while dating?
Take the Pressure Off
It’s helpful to set an intention before going on a date. What do you want from this date outside of a relationship, future spouse, someone to have sex with, etc? Focus on how you want to feel.
- Do you want to try to connect over common interests?
- Do you want to laugh your butt off?
- Do you want some intimacy and softness?
These kinds of intentions keep you focused on how you’re feeling versus trying to force certain things to happen that meet your expectations.
Do Something Fun
This may seem obvious, but sometimes we forget. A fancy dinner is not a fun first date for a lot of people. If it works for you, great, but a lot of times it can feel awkward and unnatural.
If you want to have fun dating, try doing something that you both find fun!
Here are some ideas:
- Go to a cooking class instead of a fancy dinner
- Bring a board game to the park with some snacks
- Adrenaline junkies unite over climbing, surfing, or whatever your activity of choice is
Know When to Take a Break
All that being said, if you’re feeling zapped and drained by dating, know when to hit the pause button. If it’s not fun anymore, if you’re feeling the sting of rejection, if you’re feeling deeper issues come up or be triggered – it might be time to focus on yourself for a bit.
Dating can feel like a lot, and that’s ok. Be gentle with yourself. You deserve to enjoy the process just like you deserve to have a relationship that feels stable, nurturing, and of course… fun!