HOW TO NOT LET DATING AFFECT YOUR SELF-ESTEEM (ESPECIALLY DURING A PANDEMIC).

August 13, 2021
HOW TO NOT LET DATING AFFECT YOUR SELF-ESTEEM (ESPECIALLY DURING A PANDEMIC).


By Guest Contributor, Marisa Jayne


Man oh man, being single, in both the digital era and also a global pandemic, is not easy for so many reasons. Not only is it trickier to meet people in the flesh for the very first time, but it also means that a lot of our matchmaking is coming through the so-called deviled dating apps.


2020 almost signalled the death of in-person connections and what we got in the place of a long-winded and beautiful romance based on like-minded souls and similar interests, was what many see as superficial and skin-deep dating apps.


These dating apps are not all doom and gloom and sure, there is many a success story from them (not sure how or what I am doing wrong??) but at the very core of what they are, they are shallow and create a form of connection that is based the majority of the time on looks and appearance.


Because of this, the profiles we build and share with the world are now created with a very fine science to manufacture a persona that is fun but not crazy, sexy but not slutty, smart but not boring and most importantly, beautiful, pretty and hot all rolled together. It also means it is so simple to be sucked in by this artificialness, which can quickly lead us to a long, slippery slope of negative self-esteem and low self-worth.


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I personally have felt this detrimental effect several times during my very succinct and often unsuccessful dating life and can often see tangible differences in my intrapersonal view due to the outcomes that come from this very app.


If a date goes badly, it is so easy to start questioning what is wrong with yourself (answer, nothing..) and if a date goes well, you may find a very superficial pep back in your step, which honestly can be just as bad.


My philosophy on self-love and esteem has changed so much in the past few years and I now know how important it is to mitigate the amount of impact that an external source may have on it. If you can control your self-view completely, then you are well on your way to living a fulfilling life, which if you wish, may pertain to a number of fun and flirty dates and relationships.


Now I am sure that sounds all well and good, but you are likely wondering, how the f*%k do I actually get here? Well, as a self-declared queen of loving herself sick, today I would like to share with you some of the tips I have implemented in my everyday life in order not to feel like a bag of potatoes every time my prince, princess or royal charming doesn’t quite like me back, which surprisingly, is quite a lot these days.


Also, a very fun fact and one to keep in mind, these tips work for every facet of life so they won’t just benefit the single babes and their dating lives, but for anyone that is ready to be unapologetically themselves, and like that person too.


MORNING MANTRAS
I am not one to meditate, and I really struggle to sit still for more than a minute so one of the best daily rituals that I have implemented into my life is experimenting with morning mantras.


Every day after I wake up, I look at myself in the mirror and chant my mantra for the day loudly and confidently. When my confidence was at an all-time low, this practice was the very thing that got me out of my slump and ever since then, I have never looked back. You may feel silly at first (sometimes I still do!), but honestly, it works and it works quickly.


To help you get on the right path, I’ve listed some of my favourite morning mantras below, which you are more than welcome to beg, borrow or steal:


• You are strong, beautiful and powerful
• You deserve all the things you desire
• You are worthy of love
• Your confidence is contagious


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Pic: Repeat after me…


EVERYBODY MOVE YOUR FEET
I live and die by the wise words of Elle from Legally Blonde “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they just don't.”


Although a comedy film, Elle actually has a point - exercise makes you a much better person who consequently, actually has a better view of themselves and avoids self-sabotaging activity not limited to talking badly about themselves or you know shooting their husbands.


Make sure you move every single day and not for the fitspo side of it but for your mental state. Even a nice stroll around the neighbourhood will help to get the happy chemicals flowing in your mind and subsequently, flush any negative self-worth ideas that pop into your mind.


TAKE A BREAK AND USE IT WISELY
If you aren’t quite ready to date, you have had a bit of a rut or it turned out your last lover is better off in the bin, it is SO okay to take a break from dating. Dating isn’t easy so it doesn’t need to be a constant hustle from your end.


While you are on this little detox, take a moment to work out what you want, what you deserve and also actually dedicate the time to sit alone with yourself and work out all of the things you love about yourself.


Also, being single actually rocks and to be honest, dating and all of that jazz is so low on the list as to why that is. I love ordering UberEats and sitting alone, naked in bed with my kebab with extra garlic sauce. I love doing what I want when I want. Work out those reasons that make you love being alone and go from there.


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IT’S ALL CHARACTER BUILDING BABY
Sarcasm and humour are the best ways to navigate through a tricky situation, and one of my favourite sayings which I most certainly should get tattooed on my neck (maybe not neck) is “it’s just character building.”


You got stood up on a date? Character building. Went out for dinner with your period on your dress? Character building. You had drastic food poisoning back at his house? Character building.


All of these negative situations that at the time make you want to creep into a dark hole and hibernate for a few years, will all make you a better and more well-rounded person. Trust me, I am bursting with character...


The final note I would like to leave you on, is I always tell myself, the worse the date is, the better the story is to tell your besties the next day and as cliché, as it sounds everything happens for a reason. I probably wouldn’t be here today if it worked out with the first person I shagged, so lucky for you (and me).


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Pic: Marisa Jayne


Marisa Jayne is the voice, the brains and the beauty behind the Selfish Sesh, a podcast exploring self-love, identity, mental health, sex and relationships - without all of the bullshit.

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