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5 ways to recharge after online dating burnout

It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed and exhausted by the online dating process

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As a dating coach, a question I get all the time from clients and friends is, “What should I do if I feel burned out by the dating process?”

Let me be the first to say that it’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed and exhausted by the online dating process, and dating in general. It can be a lot of work to sift through profiles, craft messages and go on dates.

But there are a few things you can do to help recharge your batteries:

1. Take a break

Sometimes the best thing you can do for your mental health and dating life is to take a break. If you’re feeling like you’re on an endless hamster wheel of swiping and messaging, it might be time to step away from the apps for a bit. Delete the apps from your phone, turn off notifications and focus on other areas of your life for a while. Use the time to pursue your hobbies, spend time with friends and family or focus on your career. When you come back to online dating, you may find you’re feeling more energized and excited to put yourself out there again.

2. Re-evaluate your goals

If you’re feeling burned out by online dating, it could be a sign that your goals are out of alignment with your actual desires. Are you looking for a serious relationship? A sexual partner? Someone to go on adventures with? Take some time to think about what you really want out of online dating, and make sure your profile and messaging reflect those goals. And are those goals actually driven by you, or by society or family? It’s all worth taking a beat to think about. Along those lines, it’s also worth asking yourself if you’re putting too much pressure on the first date. Remember that it’s just that: a date.

3. Change your approach

If you’re feeling stuck in a dating rut, maybe it’s time to change your approach. Instead of messaging the same types of people you usually do, try broadening your horizons and reaching out to someone who might not be your typical “type.” Is there some wiggle room in your criteria? Just because you can filter by height doesn’t mean you have to. Or maybe your ideal person lives five miles outside of your normal search radius.

4. Get some support

Don’t be afraid to reach out to friends, family or a dating coach for support and guidance. Sometimes it can be helpful to get an outside perspective. In my coaching sessions with clients, we not only craft a profile and discuss tips on how to message people in a way that leads to conversations and connections, but we also talk about steps to help you stay accountable to your goals.

5. Take care of yourself

Don’t forget to take care of yourself throughout the online dating process. Dating can be emotionally taxing, especially when you’re not getting the results you want. (Remember that everything short of finding “your person” is not a failure; it’s an important part of the process.) Make sure you’re taking time for self-care, whether that’s getting enough sleep, eating well and/or practicing mindfulness. Online dating is just one part of your life, and it’s important to maintain a healthy balance between dating and everything else that’s important to you.

Remember, dating is a journey, not a destination. It’s OK to take a break or try a different approach if what you’re doing isn’t working for you. The most important thing is to stay true to yourself and what you want out of your dating life.

Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating.

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