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Lions Roar : March 2019
“Geez, most of us out there are swiping away when Netflix gets boring or we’re on the toilet,” one per- son said. “And here you are setting aside time to do this consciously and mindfully.” So I asked our mentors, “How do you ‘mindfully swipe?’” Yael Shy offers these words: “Not every person is for every person. It’s okay to feel weird about something someone puts in a profile, or a picture they took, and decide to swipe left. Trust that someone else will find them who is excited about their electronic music obsession or their strangely- shaped head. “At the same time, the online dating medium is imperfect. It’s hard to get a read on people before you meet them in person, and snap judgements can often be wrong. It’s easy to layer projections on someone (good and bad) from a photo or a simple profile. At this early stage, successful dating is about walking the line between trusting your gut—and your sense of attraction to others—and overjudg- ing or over-projecting onto them. Feel free to move slowly and keep checking in with your heart.” “Notice when you’re inventing fantasies about oth- ers,” advises Melvin Escobar. “What are the underlying feelings? Is craving arising? Is comparing mind happening? You might also connect to the energies of your heart and to the hearts of others and wish them well as you swipe left. “It’s okay to mix some humor into your loving- kindness for them: ‘May you be safe and protected.’ ‘May all beings be free from bad lighting and the causes of bad lighting.’ ‘May you not be attached to the way you looked ten years ago.’ ‘May I not get caught up in self- delusion.’ ‘May the person you cropped out of your profile pic be happy.’ ‘May I find peace in an uncertain world.’ ‘May your good looks take you far in life.’ ‘May you love yourself just as you are.’ ‘May I love myself just as I am.’” Escobar says we can also use equanimity practice here: “Use phrases like: ‘I feel your pain, but I’m not responsible for your pain.’” ALICIA SELECTED FIVE MATCHES and began chatting. But something surprising happened as she did—she began to meet herself in ways she didn’t expect. “I suddenly started to think, ‘What’s wrong with me that I have to look online for love? Why can’t I just go see someone across the coffee shop and that’s it?’ Then I reminded myself that no one talks in coffee shops anymore, and this is the way the world works now.” Well...sometimes. Alicia started chatting one night with someone we’ll call “Mark.” The next morning at her local coffee shop, she happened to spot...you guessed it...Mark. “We chatted, we messaged later that we thought each other was cute, and we planned a date,” she says. But the night before the date, Alicia’s sense of who she was took some major turns. “At first, I felt confident,” she says. “Then my old inse- curity appeared and said, ‘Someone thinks I’m cute. Really?’” Once her insecuri- ties got a voice, Alicia sud- denly saw it was because she had... gulp... hope that this would turn into something. “I started to panic because, oh no, this could be something. It’s so serendipitous.” Ali- cia’s next statement sums up pretty much every human’s fear in such a situation: “Fuuuuuck. I could get hurt. I have to show up—like, the real me. I could like this per- son. This person could like me. Fuuuuuck.” Alicia had convinced herself that she had been single for so long that her life was complete and she didn’t need anyone. match 42% Lad1e5man 33 • Lansing, MI Message... Send Yesterday - 2:53pm Telme 7:16 PM Conversation 65% Hi Alicia! You’re gorgeous, I’m looking for a partner in crime lol I need you! Matches ISTOCK.COM/KHOSRORK LION’S ROAR | MARCH 2019 68