New relationship anxiety is natural and normal, but it is not so much fun to deal with. Stop worrying about holding on and let go to enjoy the ride!
There is nothing more exciting than a new relationship, but for some of us who might not have been so lucky in love in the past, a new relationship can be a mixed bag of feelings. The thing about a new relationship is that it is either going to work or not. And, as hard as it is to accept, you probably have very little control over the relationship. All you can do is control your own behavior, which includes squashing your new relationship anxiety.
No one wants to feel rejected or to deal with a broken heart, but the sad reality is that no one makes it out of this life without some bumps in the road, which include some cracks to the heart. But, if you never experience love, then what is life about? [Read: The 7 stages of first date panic and how to calm them]
16 ways to shed your new relationship anxiety
Anxiety is natural when you fear losing something, but don’t let it overcome you and lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy, or, even worse, sabotage your new relationship. Take a breath, relax, and take it day by day. Stop thinking about where your relationship is going, and just enjoy the here and now no matter where it takes you.
#1 Realize that nothing lasts forever. Unfortunately, there is nothing in life that is certain. Stop predicting if you will make it in a relationship with your new love or if it will end.
There is no way to control the future, so stop trying and just live in the moment. Enjoy whatever time you have together. Don’t spend it worrying about what you might lose. [Read: 31 moments of bliss most of us overlook]
#2 Let go of your past. Most of the time anxiety stems from experience. If you had a rough time in a previous relationship then the fear of heartbreak and rejection is a huge motivating force driving your new relationship anxiety.
Whatever happened in the past, leave it in the past and move forward. Until someone develops a time machine, the only thing that you can change is the future. So, leave what is behind you behind you. Don’t let it taint the here and now. [Read: How to let go of the past and be excited for the future]
#3 Don’t put too many eggs in one basket. Sometimes when we get to close too quickly, we become super dependent. The anxiety of losing something becomes greater. In new relationships, it is easy to isolate yourself. Then, one day you look around and feel like all you have is the person you are dating.
That makes you pretty anxious about losing them. To make sure you aren’t limiting other relationships and making yourself feel dependent, stay in touch with your friends and don’t stop doing the things that you love.
#4 Be you and don’t hide pieces away. When you start a new relationship, everyone is on their best behavior. The problem is sometimes it isn’t really who we are. And, if you fight to keep the new relationship face too hard, it makes you feel like a fake.
When someone feels like a fake, it brings on a whole lot of anxiety. It is okay to be a better version of yourself during the beginning parts of your relationship, but it also is important to still be you. Express what you want, and what you don’t. Otherwise, you won’t feel genuine, leaving you feeling anxious. [Read: 13 new relationship mistakes new couples make all the time]
#5 Have the attitude if it works, it is meant to be. Fate is a pretty incredible thing, yet, at the same time very hard to accept. To do away with new relationship anxiety, go into the relationship knowing that sometimes what we want and what is good for us, or meant to be, are not the same thing.
Fate will do what fate wants. So, adopt the attitude that if it doesn’t work, then it wasn’t meant to be. That way, you won’t worry so much about losing your new love. If it doesn’t work, you believe something better is out there waiting for you.
#6 Figure out what drives your anxiety then squash it. The only way to solve a problem is to know what the problem is. If you aren’t used to new relationship anxiety and haven’t experienced it in previous relationships, then it might not be it at all.
It might be your gut telling you something is wrong. To figure out if it is anxiety or incompatibility that stirs your anxious feelings, think long and hard about what triggers your emotions and seek to control them. [Read: 13 warning signs to look out for in the first few dates]
#7 Stop playing games. There is nothing more anxiety-provoking than playing games. Have you ever been wrapped up in watching a football game? God, is that anxiety-inducing. If you twist, turn, and play all sorts of games in your new relationship, you create a whole lot of drama for yourself and probably cause the churning anxiety within.
If you want to stop feeling anxious, stop plotting and planning your next move. Just put yourself out there. [Read: How to stop playing relationship games]
#8 Don’t worry about what the rules say, take a chance and go for it. I don’t know how your generation does it. Texting rules, dating rules, social media rules… it is all anxiety provoking if you ask me. Text them when you want, or ask them out the same night if you feel like it.
And, stop being guided by what the rules say. You aren’t going to lose someone if you are honest and upfront about how you feel and what you want. And, honestly, if you do, then they aren’t worth the anxiety to begin with.
#9 Stay off of social media! Social media is probably to blame for the death of many, many, many a relationship whether in the beginning stages or well into the relationship. If you are on their social media page checking things out, stop.
You only find reasons to be anxious. If you want to find out about what they do or who they are, ask, don’t check their status. Man, honestly, I don’t know how your generation exists with the anxiety that social media causes both individuals and relationships. [Read: The happy couple’s guide to social media]
#10 Don’t snoop. If worried that they aren’t that into you, I will give you the best piece of advice anyone can give you—don’t snoop. Yep, it is super alluring to see their cell phone and think, “Well… I’ll just give it a little peek.”
Don’t do it. You feel guilty no matter what you find. And, snooping is never a good way to squash anxiety. It is only an excellent way to stir it up.
#11 Put you first. If you start a precedence now, it goes on forever. If you experience new relationship anxiety, it might just be that you put their needs and wants above your own. That is never a good idea. Don’t let anxiety make you behave differently or sacrifice who you are.
If you have an opinion, let it out. If you don’t like something, say so. Although you want to hold onto them and establish a relationship, you shouldn’t do it to your own detriment. Otherwise, you set up a long-term scenario that probably won’t end well either way.
#12 Know you are worth it. If you are anxious in your relationship, then there might be something making you feel as if they are out of your league.
Know your own worth to be with someone else, or you won’t ever find the security just to sit back, relax, and be yourself. Know who you are and that you are worthy of love and goodness. And, you will be amazed at how quickly that anxiety melts away. [Read: 6 reasons to love yourself first before falling in love]
#13 Take it slowly. Don’t get so caught up in the puppy love moment that you jump head over heels too quickly. That leaves you feeling way too connected without any real connection, which causes anxiety.
If you want to do away with the new relationship anxiety, make sure to take it slowly and not get caught up in the heat of the moment.
#14 Don’t read too much into things. For someone prone to anxiety, the smallest comment, text or action on the part of the other person, has you analyzing it for hours on end, which equals eternal anxiety.
Take what someone has to say at face value. Don’t make assumptions or try to put your own interpretations into what they say or do. Keep an open mind and try to take what they say at face value instead of projecting your own insecurities into your communication.
#15 Put the phone away. We have all become Pavlov’s dogs. For those of you who don’t know what that is, it was an experiment in the 1890s by a researcher named Pavlov about conditioning people to react in a specific way. Well, actually it was about dogs, but we are all creatures of habit, literally.
If you constantly look for them to blow up your phone, wondering why they aren’t answering you, or thinking their lack of answering you is a sign, you make yourself miserable. Leave your phone behind, and see them when you see them.
Texting and instant gratification are too much when you first start out a relationship, and the constant need to feel connected via messages does no one any favors. [Read: How to stop being codependent and have a healthy relationship]
#16 Don’t try to be someone you are not just to please them. If you aren’t you, then you probably worry that if they find out who you really are, they might not like you as much. That leads to a perpetual state of anxiety.
The idea is for someone to fall in love with you, not someone you are being for them. Be genuine to stop the anxiety.
New relationships are awesome, don’t get me wrong. But, alongside all those butterflies and excitement can be feelings of anxiety that might be making you behave differently, worry perpetually, or constantly look for signs that might or might not be there.
The sad reality of life is that even if we want something super bad, sometimes we can’t have it. The good news is that fate has a plan for you. And, if it isn’t the person you are with now, fate will send you someone even better to be the love of your life.
So, stop worrying about holding on. Let go of your new relationship anxiety and be in the here and now to figure out if they are the one. Most of all, just enjoy the ride.