I am not a counsellor or a romantic expert, but I have noticed that people like to talk about their insecurities and doubts when it comes to matters of the heart. Sometimes, it is just a simple conversation that can reassure someone.
I often feel awkward when someone clearly wants to discuss their personal life. Although I like it when people open up and I can have a chat with close friends, there are some things that I am unsure if I am able to advise on. However, it wasn’t until recently when a friend asked for advice on dating and their connection with someone that I realised people often aren’t looking for a topic to discuss or to share a common idea, they are often searching for reassurance and a confidence boost.
When it comes to asking about dating and sensitive topics like that, I find that there is usually a clear truth at the crux of someone’s problem. Sometimes, I have found it is simply that people aren’t confident and want some reassurance. Sometimes, I think people need to just reaffirm some of their beliefs and observation, even if that is that old cliché ‘they’re just not into you’. Unfortunately, this is a hard one. I have had friends explain a situation to me and hearing it from an outside viewpoint, the message is clear. They most likely aren’t interested. In circumstances like this it can be hard to share this opinion with someone you are close with but it might be what they need to hear.
At the end of the day, I usually find a middle ground that it never hurts to respectfully ask. While you can’t push something that isn’t there, if you are unsure, the best thing to do is be honest, respectful and in many ways accept that you might have to make yourself vulnerable.
With this in mind, I have also heard my fair share of friends who are clearly doubting themselves for no reason. They’ll construct excuses, find ways to demean and discourage themselves and eventually muster the courage to say something or let it pass by. In this situation, while I find it can be awkward, a confidence boost is often needed. I try to remind my friends of the good qualities they possess, critique their self-doubts and try to motivate them to put themselves out there.
It can find it a worrisome endeavour to provide advice on this when it is sought by someone close to me in the event it doesn’t pan out the way they wanted. However, I think when reinforcing values for self-worth, respect for others and confidence, there will always be a positive. It might be that someone finds another person they really like and connect with, or it might be another case of them not finding the person they were looking for. Either way, nothing ventured nothing gained as the old saying goes.