By Gus Baxter, Founder of Atlas Readings LLC
Photo courtesy of © Redbook
Welcome, Empaths! Dating is a wonderful and exciting part of life, but for highly sensitive
people, dating can seem like a minefield. My name is Gus Baxter. I am an empath and the
owner of Atlas Readings LLC, a coaching and intuitive advising company. This week on my
podcast, Dear Empath with Gus Baxter, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Celebrity
for empaths. Today, I want to share my own advice on getting to know yourself so you can step onto the dating scene with confidence. To set yourself up for success in dating, start with three things: get to know yourself, clarify what you want, and be open to the experience.
Get to know yourself.
A strong relationship begins with you! Take yourself out on a date. You are a beautiful,
wonderful, creative being, and you should celebrate that. Set up a movie night with your favorite take out. Cook a special dinner, and pair it with your favorite wine. Grab some painting supplies, find a Bob Ross video online, and treat yourself to an evening of art. Carve out time to spend with yourself: no phones, no email, no distractions.
You create a new sense of personal intimacy when you take time to intentionally be with yourself. You will learn more about yourself and find new things to celebrate and honor. You
may confront parts of yourself that are less noble. That is okay too. We are all imperfect. This is an exercise in creating intimacy with yourself. You are a whole and complete being, just as you are.
Another powerful and accessible way to get to know yourself is journaling. This is one of my
personal favorite self-discovery practices. I tell every client of mine to create a journal and write for ten minutes at least three times a week. This allows you to put the events of your life into a sequence and see them from a higher perspective. These thoughts are no longer bouncing around your head but have a place to live on the paper. Now that you have a sequence on the page, for example, first X happened, and then Y happened, you can view these events with more objectivity. You can ask deeper questions of yourself and have an honest self-dialogue.
A journal is one of the few places in 2022 that is entirely for you. The pages within your journal
are a private world. No one will read these words. Use this to your advantage. Let this become an intimate space where you are free to be everything that you are, to truly connect with yourself without expectation. When you move into dating, bring this sense of wholeness and self-discovery with you. As you meet new people, remember the grace that you have shown yourself. Even when you confronted parts of yourself that were less virtuous, you showed compassion and love. You accepted yourself as you are and celebrated your imperfection. By accepting your flaws, you also accept that others have them too, and yet they still have the capacity to love.
Clarify what you want.
A list of priorities can be unintentionally misleading. When you start with a list of demands:
“I want someone who is six feet tall, has a good job, owns a nice car, etc.,” you close yourself off to possibilities. I want you to focus on the emotion behind your priorities. What does it mean to date someone six feet tall? Perhaps you associate that physical trait with dependability and support. What does it mean to you that your date has a good job? For you, dating someone with a good job means that they understand the demands of high-pressure jobs and respect work/life boundaries. Why does their car matter to you? Their nice car may show their thoughtfulness as a consumer. Not only do you need to afford the initial payment, but in addition the upkeep and maintenance are continued costs. A well-maintained vehicle may show you that they have this financial foresight. Explore your list of priorities and ask yourself, “Why does this matter to me? What quality or qualities does this represent?”
Now your list may look something like this, “I am looking for someone who is dependable and
secure. I am looking for someone who understands the demands of a challenging job and can respect my work/life boundaries. I am looking for someone who makes good financial decisions and lives within their means.” This list is intentionally non-descript! Instead of focusing on the physical and limiting your field of view, you are concentrating on the traits that are most important to you. With these traits as your guide, let yourself be open to the different dating opportunities that come into your life.
Be open to the experience.
Say yes! As empaths, we are quick at deciding whether we will give someone our time. I want
you to recognize what kind of headspace you are in when you say yes to a date. Are you calm? Are you confident, or are you a little nervous? Are you unsure of what will happen, maybe even a little scared? This is not the best headspace to be in for trusting your empathic reactions. In response to this fear, you can project into the future, and explore what might happen on this date. “I bet he will be late.” “What if the conversation boring?” “Maybe I should just stay home.” At this point, you have talked yourself out of meeting the person!
I challenge you to approach dating situations, even opening the conversation on a dating app, with this idea: “I do not know what this is for.” Experience the ambiguity. Could this be the
person with whom you will spend the rest of your life? Sure. Could this date teach you
something important about yourself or your style of relationship? Definitely. Could this date be an opportunity to practice your skills in flirting and being present with another person? Yes. Ultimately, you are unsure of the purpose or outcome of this date. Acknowledge that truth and offer that up to God, Spirit, the Universe, and be open to the experience. “I do not know what this is for, and I am open to wherever this path will lead me!”
Listen to the Dear Empath with Gus Baxter podcast episode with
matchmaking guru Alessandra Conti, where I discuss dating for empaths. Alessandra shares her advice on how to navigate the dating world as an empath and how to use your emotional skills to an advantage. This special episode is available now on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
You can find more about Atlas Readings, LLC at www.atlasreadings.com. Follow me on
Gus Baxter is the owner of Atlas Readings LLC, a coaching and intuitive advising company. He works with empaths in their 30’s and 40’s to hone their inner authority, make purposeful decisions, and lead from their hearts not their fears. With 15 years of combined experience, Gus synthesizes tarot reading and life coaching to create a holistic approach to personal, professional, and spiritual growth.