The state of modern dating has taken a turn for the worse. Getting a date for most is as easy as swiping right. People chat for endless hours without even meeting – textationships anyone? Between lying about what you look like to ghosting, it seems basic human decency and respect have been thrown out the window. But what is the one important thing missing in modern dating? Compassion. Essentially, compassion is defined as the “sympathetic concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others”. What role does it have in dating? I would argue, it has a big role to play!
The One Important Thing Missing in Modern Dating
According to psychology experts, we need compassion because “life is hard“. They go on to say that “we all have an intuitive wisdom that loving kindness, support and compassion helps us to bear our suffering, and that criticism, neglect, shaming and blaming usually make things much worse“. This also includes being compassionate towards ourselves. What does this mean? This means not being so hard on ourselves and on others. Each person you go on a date with has their own life experiences they’ve lived with, some have dealt with them, others have not. The important thing is to always treat others the way you would want to be treated (it’s the Golden Rule after all!!) In historian Karen Armstrong’s words, compassion is how we can change the world as we know it. Being compassionate to others, as well, is not only putting kindness and goodness out to a universe filled with negativity, it has also been a proven way to feel good about yourself.
Compassion scholars have asserted that “when we develop feelings of love or compassion, we may not always be able to actually benefit others in a direct way, but we ourselves do always benefit from such feelings. They serve as causes for our own happiness. And, as we give more and more time to developing such feelings, then we will naturally begin benefiting others as well … [it is] by developing deep, powerful feelings of compassionate connection with others that we can learn to live meaningful and joyful lives. Only such feelings can help us to learn experientially how to work for meaningful causes and give of ourselves without becoming exhausted or burnt out-such feelings of joyful compassion teach us how taking care of others is actually a supreme method for taking care of ourselves.” Just make sure your intentions aren’t selfish ones. Feel compassion for the sake of putting positivity out into the world. Imagine what kind of world we would be living in if people were genuinely kind and compassionate with each other?
Why Do We Need Compassion in Modern Dating?
So how does this ultimately apply to modern dating? Easy. Most people out there have experienced the darker side of dating. They’ve had some good, more bad and a good number of ugly dating experiences. But let’s consider this, that horrible date you had could very well have had a really shitty day that day but didn’t want to tell you, perhaps your date who had the attitude had one too many bad dates and you just happened to be the one they decided to take it out on, perhaps your date has unresolved baggage … not that this excuses bad behavior in any way, but being compassionate towards all the people you meet is a good modern dating practice.
This means respecting someone enough to not ghost on them, it also means respecting someone’s decision not to see you again or not meet you at all, this means not standing someone up, this also means not taking it personally if someone you met once doesn’t click with you. All of us, even you, bring our previous experiences with us on every date, whether we’d like to admit it or not. So be compassionate with those you date, why? Because it’s the right thing to do. Don’t be the ass. Just don’t. You know what it feels like to be rejected and disrespected right? Then don’t make others feel that way! Be compassionate. Besides, it also helps you learn from your dating experiences and gives you social intelligence which is important in your daily life. The way I see it, compassion in modern dating is a no brainer. It just requires you put your ego aside and be mature. Challenge accepted?
READERS: Do you agree that basic compassion is missing in modern dating? Do you feel that would help making the dating experience generally more positive? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Your Sister in Dating Bliss,
Single Dating Diva
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