119 - Want Meaningful Connections? Try This

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Today, we're taking a look at the skills that lead to meaningful connections in dating. While that’s obviously been the intention of dating as long as dating has been around, I definitely feel in the last few years with our post Covid world and so many people meeting online, that developing a meaningful connection with someone has become even more challenging.

We’re going to explore this through four key skills. However before we go there, I want to talk about skills as they relate to dating. Now obviously, I’m a big proponent of skills and our potential to always improve upon them. I think much of the reason why I’m so skill focused comes from being a mental health counselor and spending my career breaking down problems with people and helping them identify what tools, ie skills, are within them to solve the problems. I see dating as no different.

There are of course many skills when it comes to dating. You could easily overwhelm yourself with the number of skills to work on. In my membership that teaches dating skills and provides coaching, Dating Made Easier, I’m recommending that members pick just three skills to focus on for the year. This is so they can really hone in on them and see the progress they can make by gaining just a few skills. And as you know, when we become skilled in one area, it naturally begins to refine our skills in other areas.

For the purpose of our discussion today, let’s focus on these four skills - being friendly, giving genuine compliments, being helpful and supportive, and showing interest while listening effectively. These skills can be game-changers when it comes to building meaningful connections. I encourage you to pick two of the four to focus on over the next couple months and take note of the changes you see within yourself.

Being Friendly

How does this contribute to successful dating? Being friendly creates a warm and inviting atmosphere. It puts both individuals at ease, making the entire dating experience more enjoyable. People are naturally drawn to positive energy, so being friendly can open the door to deeper connections.

Being friendly involves cultivating a warm and approachable demeanor that fosters positive connections with others. Start by maintaining open body language, such as smiling, making eye contact, and offering a genuine handshake. Actively listen to others, showing interest in their thoughts and feelings. Use inclusive language, and be mindful of your tone to create a welcoming atmosphere. Small gestures like remembering names, expressing gratitude, and offering help when needed contribute to a friendly persona. Additionally, be supportive and encouraging, recognizing the value of diversity and treating everyone with respect. A friendly attitude not only brightens your interactions but also contributes to building strong and meaningful relationships. It's all about setting the right tone from the beginning.

Now, let's move on to our second skill. Giving Genuine Compliments Compliments can be tricky. How can giving genuine compliments impact the dating dynamic? Genuine compliments show that you're paying attention and appreciate the other person. They should be sincere and specific, focusing on qualities that genuinely impress you. It boosts confidence and fosters a positive connection.

Giving a sincere and thoughtful compliment involves expressing genuine appreciation for someone's qualities or actions. Start by being specific and identifying the particular aspect you admire, whether it's a person's skills, achievements, or personal attributes. Be genuine and avoid exaggeration, as authenticity is key to a meaningful compliment. Use positive language and a warm tone to convey your admiration, and consider the impact your words may have on the recipient. Timing is crucial; offer your compliment at an appropriate moment to ensure it is well-received. 

Being Helpful and Supportive

Being helpful and supportive might not be the first things that come to mind in dating. How do these play a role? Dating is about forming a partnership, and being there for each other is crucial. Offering help or support when needed shows that you're invested in the other person's well-being. It builds trust and strengthens the connection. In the realm of dating, being helpful and supportive involves fostering open communication, understanding, and empathy.

A supportive partner actively listens to their significant other's thoughts and feelings, creating a safe space for open dialogue. Offering encouragement and validation, especially during challenging times, helps build a foundation of trust. Being reliable and dependable demonstrates commitment, as does actively participating in shared interests and activities. Understanding and respecting boundaries is crucial, allowing each person to maintain their individuality within the relationship. A helpful and supportive partner seeks to celebrate successes, provide comfort during setbacks, and consistently demonstrate care and consideration. In essence, cultivating a relationship built on mutual support can contribute to a strong and enduring connection. It's a collaborative effort.

Showing Interest and Listening Effectively

Now I’m going to have a whole podcast on communication coming up because I’m going to be updating my communication guide. This one is often underestimated – showing genuine interest and listening effectively. Why is it so important? Effective communication is the foundation of any successful relationship. Showing interest and active listening demonstrate that you value the other person's thoughts and feelings. It creates a sense of connection and understanding. Effective communication is the cornerstone of any successful relationship, and this holds true in the realm of dating as well. Showing genuine interest and listening actively are crucial elements that contribute to building a strong connection between individuals. 

Check out our Dating Memberships:

Dating Made Easier (for all people wanting to date) - is a monthly membership for anyone (with or without disabilities) who wants support and guidance in dating skills and getting the RESULTS you want in dating and relationships. Click here to learn more.

Supporting Dating and Relationships membership (for special educators and professionals in disability services) - is for professionals in the disability field who are looking for training and resources to effectively help students/people with disabilities in developing dating and relationship skills. Click here to learn more.

Music by Successful Motivation

Artwork photo by Elevate