Developing Dating Confidence

Developing Dating Confidence by Dr. Randy Gilchrist, LDS Psychologist (FREE LDS online dating site)

A lot of times in the dating world, LDS singles can suffer from a lack of confidence as dating partners. Sometimes a person's low dating confidence comes from a lack of experience. Other confidence issues arise from rarely going out/dating, being previously "dumped"/rejected, or other previous negative dating experiences. Of course, a lack of dating confidence can also originate from a person possessing low confidence in themselves in general from things like childhood wounds, previous verbal abuse in the family, relational neglect, or other various issues from the past. Low personal confidence also is commonly connected to insecurities over such attributes as weight/appearance issues, church standing/worthiness, education challenges, career/$ problems, and many other assorted individual concerns. Whatever the cause, possessing low confidence usually repels or sabotages other potential daters, thus reinforcing even lower confidence problems in a vicious cycle. This cycle must be broken and dating confidence needs to increase to allow you the best chance for relational success.

Increasing Your Dating Confidence

Here are a few suggestions to help build (or rebuild) your dating confidence:

1) Self-Talk: Pay attention to how you talk to and about yourself inside yourself all day long. Part of what can keep confidence low is negative, unchallenged negative statements you make to yourself. When these pessimistic, self-doubting statements regularly roll through your mind unchallenged and automatically, they create negative self-fulfilling prophesies. We think we are a certain way, so we create that reality and confirm our negative self-perceptions. Examples of negative dating self-talk might include: "that person is out of my league", "what would they see in me?", "this is all going to end in disaster", "I better end this before they do and I get hurt".

To combat this negative self-talk, write a list and regularly recite and rehearse a list of the most positive, self-supportive, optimistic statements you can manage to make about yourself. Look at positive past successes, things you like about yourself, and things you are working to improve about yourself. Complement yourself, make optimistic statements about yourself and your future dating success. The statements need to be true yet positive, so if you struggle to come up with such a list, ask a trusted, supportive family member or friend for assistance. For example, "I am looking better", "I treat people well", "The Lord will help me", "I have a lot to offer", etc. Remember, positive energy attracts, negative energy repels. It is important to develop as much confidence and positive energy that you can possibly generate.

2) Positive Experiences and Understanding with the Opposite Sex: Find as many opportunities that you can to have positive conversations and interactions with the opposite sex. Initiate as many conversations as you reasonably can. Look and act interested and patient with your conversations and be as kind and warm as possible. Learn about and take an interest in others. Group dates, church outings and activities, coworker interaction, and other opportunities create chances to talk and interact with the opposite sex. Notice I didn't mention flirting. Simple discussion and positive interaction will do. Keep it light, fun, positive, kind, and warm. The more positive discussions and interactions you can enjoy, the greater your relational confidence becomes. For more ideas on having positive discussions and interactions, I recommend reading or listening to the classic book, "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie. For understanding the opposite sex better--including their wants, needs, feelings, and perspectives, I recommend another classic, "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus" by John Gray. Knowledge is power and will guide and support your interactions.

3) Track and Journal: Before outings, get-togethers, and dates with the opposite sex, write and predict how you think it will go, being as positive and optimistic as possible. Create positive self-fulfilling prophesies. Also, note a few things you will make sure to focus on/work on to improve and make the situation as positive and enjoyable as possible. Then, after the outing, write out what went well with the experience, as well as a few things to work on. Remember to be as supportive, constructive, and optimistic as possible. Research shows that writing, tracking, and noting improvements and successes--socially and otherwise--are keys to the positive outcomes you are hoping for.

A Few Closing Thoughts:

Discussions on this topic with my clients are often fraught with fear, resistance, and difficulty, even argument. We desire dating success but we also fear failure and the unknown. I'll simply say that social confidence, optimism, and general positive energy will lead to greater dating success than anything less than that. Please work on this issue. Remember the old saying, "if it is to be, it’s up to me". Develop and maintain as much dating confidence as you can. You can have dating success. Develop your confidence in a proactive manner. Because "…neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:11).

Dr. G
**To readers: to submit a question to Dr. G for a future Q and A column, please send your questions to Also, please register for a free account at for access to previous and future Dr. G articles.

2016-08-22 Randy Gilchrist Dating

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About the author

Hello, my name is Dr. Randy Gilchrist (aka "Dr. G"). I am a licensed clinical psychologist, a licensed marriage & family therapist, and a certified hypnotherapist in private practice in Roseville, CA (, practicing since 1997. Also, I am happily married in the temple (Manti) since 1996 and have 4 sons. I am a volunteer writer and contributor to LDS Dimension. I use my training, education, and experience to share insights with LDS Dimension on all things of interest to the LDS dating community. Please read my articles and columns on this site to assist you in your online dating journey. Also, to be considered for an answer in a future Q and A column, please email me your dating/relationship oriented questions to Finally, I also offer a powerful, effective worldwide custom hypnosis recording service just for LDS Dimension members for weight loss, pornography, and many other issues of concern to those in the LDS dating community (please learn more now at; email me questions to