Everyone gets nervous before a first date, from the pressure of meeting someone new, the back and forth about where to go, and, of course, the ever-tortuous pre-date debate: what to wear. Throw in the ongoing health crisis and the fact that you may be having your first date via FaceTime or Zoom, and the stress is very, very real.
Luckily, Hinge and Headspace want to help make all of your pesky date anxiety go away. The dating app and the mindfulness app have partnered on a series of meditation videos designed to make you feel calm and confident before a date.
The two guided sessions, available for free on YouTube and the Hinge website, are called "Pre-Date Meditation" and "Inner Voice Meditation." Each one clocks in at just under eight minutes and is narrated by Eve Lewis, the director of meditation at Headspace.
"It is very natural to feel nervous or even stressed about going on a date," Lewis reassures in the Pre-Date Meditation. "You are potentially meeting someone for the first time, and it can feel really uncomfortable not knowing how it will go." Lewis explains that the tendency to imagine different scenarios of what might happen — though a tempting thought-process — takes you out of the present moment. This meditation session focuses on the body scan technique, in which you pay close attention to different parts of your body from head to toe, grounding yourself firmly in the present.
The Inner Voice meditation is intended to help you identify negative thoughts and quiet uncertainty. Lewis talks through the noting technique of labeling any distractions during the meditation as either thoughts or feelings. You can apply this method after your meditation session is over to catch yourself when you get carried away with negative thoughts.
Hinge and Headspace may not be able to tell you which sweater matches your boots or which Zoom background to choose, but these meditation videos can help ease some of the self-doubt that inevitably comes with dating.