What is conscious dating? That’s what you’ll discover in this episode of the Breathe Love & Magic podcast with my guest, mindful dating expert, Lauren Smith. This will improve the way you date forever so treat yourself and listen in!
Conscious Dating Is a Mindful Approach
Lauren started the interview by clarifying that’s she’s not a dating coach. But with her extensive knowledge of what gets in the way emotionally, she sure could be.
She’s just a human who went through a lot of heartbreak and needed a tool to get through it during the pandemic. It worked so well for her, Lauren wants to share this tool with other singles.
This all started with the quarantine when it became hard to meet anyone new because businesses weren’t open. Not the movies, nor the restaurants or bars. So, she got on the dating apps and found someone!
Lauren decided to date a woman this time and attributes this coming out to the solitude and time to think provided by COVID. Meeting this new woman was SO exciting. She’d never felt this way about anyone before.
Because dating couldn’t happen the normal way with dinner dates, etc., they ended up spending a lot of time together at each other’s homes. This sped up the process and things got hot and heavy quickly.
The pace dramatized all the things Lauren had been doing wrong in relationships. She noticed a lot of micro-behaviors leading her to toxic partners. The sped up time frame allowed her to clearly see the crazy things she was doing.
Gaps in Her Skill Set
Gaps in her relationship skill set caused these problems. For example, the hardest gap to admit to was her expectation that the person she’s dating should have their sh*t together. Lauren found she was hyper-focused on why her girlfriend wasn’t trying to fix her own problems.
Bravely, Lauren admits that she should have been focused on taking responsibility for HER OWN problems. Not looking within created a fog around her that made it harder to see these toxic behaviors.
Finally, Lauren figured out that she wasn’t actually resentful about her girlfriend’s problems. Nope, instead she was mad at herself for not taking steps to create a good situation for HERSELF. In other words, she was bummed she chose someone who wasn’t right for her.
In fact, she recognized she chose the woman for who she could BECOME, vs. being who a person who could meet her needs right from the start.
The Brilliant Ah-Ha Moment
This was a brilliant ah-ha moment because when you realize you are externally focused and putting pressure on someone else, that’s your first chance to look at what you are doing. You need to focus on yourself and figure out if your date can meet your needs exactly as they are today.
You have to accept the person you’re dating as who they are in the moment. You can’t hope and wait that they improve.
Your dates that don’t work out aren’t bad people. But they aren’t right for you since they might not have the same values, want the same kind of relationship, or look at life the same way. That’s why it’s a mismatch!
The point here is that you cannot fix anyone. Conscious dating means that you are looking for a good match based on who the person is right now.
Many of my clients come to each new relationship with the attitude that they can “make it work.” That’s not appropriate!
If you’re in a year long relationship and a problem comes up that you want to resolve to make things work, that’s fine. But not on date two or three!
That realization for Lauren was massive. She could no longer point the finger at everybody else. She admitted, “Oh it’s me. I’m the one that has my priorities mixed up or I’m the one avoiding conflict.” At that point, it became clear she was the one who had to change.
Mindful Dating – Fantasy vs. the Present Moment
Another big lesson was to beware of getting lost in a fantasy. Since this was the first woman she had dated, she got lost in how great it felt and how excited she was about the future possibilities. She wasn’t paying attention to the facts about the present moment.
Basic mindfulness is about coming back to the now, re-engaging with your senses, figuring out the real experience you are having. You have to look at the evidence. If you lose touch with this information, you might be thinking everything will be better later.
This is a place to apply mindfulness and why it’s called mindful dating. You stay aware as you get to know someone new and don’t let your heart take you away in the fantasy of your romantic future.
Even when things are great now, if you ignore facts and focus on how great it COULD BE, you’re thinking you’ll be happy someday. It’s almost like you’re trading happiness in the present moment for happiness in the future that hasn’t existed and may not ever exist.
In Lauren’s past, focusing on a fabulous future was better than looking at how she might need to look within and make some changes.
This is where Lauren truly up leveled her consciousness about herself and dating. She started to meet new people using this new conscious dating concept, really thinking about the practicality and facts about the people she met.
Future romantic fantasy is a huge trap women fall into, thinking things will be better later when the guy falls in love with her. However, a relationship will NEVER be better than the first few dates.
Sex on the first date and more dating questions answered here
When to Walk Away
If you don’t see what you like in the first three dates, walk away. If someone is close to what you are looking for in the first few dates, go on another date to learn more.
However, if the person doesn’t make you happy, lift your spirits, or add fun to your life, walk away. Or, if the person you’re dating doesn’t treat you right or bring out the best in you, move on.
This mindset shift that happened for Lauren has trickled into every part of her life and now she has the most confidence in dating! She thought that was backwards but I assured her that much of life is just like dating. For example, sales – plenty of rejection there!
Love is Your Destiny
One thing I’m a firm believer in is that love is YOUR destiny. At one point Lauren had said something about get your matches while you can as if they were scarce. This is where I disagree.
If love is your destiny, then there is no shortage. Every person you meet brings you closer to the right mate for you. After a bad date, dust yourself off and ask, “Okay, who is next?”
Insecurities come up for everyone. But having your standards set and feeling worthy of love, helps you get through the rough patch of doubting yourself. Keep those standards in mind! That’s what conscious dating and mindful dating are all about.
You are worthy of being treated with respect and feeling safe to be yourself. Don’t let go of standards like these or others you may develop. This is how you find someone you are compatible with for a lasting love that is fun and fulfilling.
Oh my gosh there was so much more in the episode, you’ll have to listen to the rest yourself. Lots of gems tumbled out of her mouth and Lauren is a fountain of dating wisdom you just can’t miss.
If you want more, listen to Lauren’s podcast Date in Peace on any platform or her website Mettadatestudios.com
BIO – Lauren Smith
Lauren is an author, speaker, and host of the Date in Peace Podcast. Combining her own personal success story with her professional mindfulness training, Lauren empowers singles to ditch the dating struggle and claim the loving relationship they so deeply deserve.
She is the creator of the MettaDate Journal mobile app, and author of The Mindful Dating Journal: Find a Healthy Love that Lasts. Learn more at https://mettadatestudio.com