If you are shy or a little unsure of yourself, it’s easy to become nervous when someone flirts with you – but you don’t have to remain in a state of uneasiness. Using healthy coping strategies for anxiety can help you move past your nervousness and potentially meet a worthwhile romantic partner. The more you practice effective strategies for nervousness, the more able you will be to deal with any anxiety that comes from a stranger’s flirtatious smile.
Taking deep breaths when you feel the nervousness coming on from a suitor’s flirts can help you feel more at ease. When you get nervous, you may notice that your breathing becomes rapid and shallow. Deep breathing helps to calm you and deactivate the “flight or fight” response that is often stimulated when nervousness arises, says Dr. Robin Friedlander, writing for the total wellness website MindBodyGreen.com. The next time you feel nervous after receiving a flirt from someone, take a few deep breaths – with exhales lasting a little longer than your inhales, recommends Dr. Friedlander – and enjoy the special attention you are receiving.
Reframe Your Thoughts
Have you ever examined what you are thinking when you feel nervous about someone flirting with you? Are you thinking, “Oh no, is he looking at this huge zit on my face?” or “What am I going to say when she comes over here? I don’t want to sound like an idiot!” If you hold negative thoughts in your mind about people flirting with you, it may unnecessarily contribute to your nervousness. Cognitive restructuring is a technique used in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that helps you engage thoughts that are more useful to you, explains Nelson Bengali, Ph.D. Instead of thinking the worse when someone is flirting with you, remind yourself that another person wouldn’t be flirting with you if he didn’t find you attractive, and focus on your strengths in order to elevate your thinking to a more positive state.
Smiling is contagious, and can make you appear more attractive, writes guest blogger Sarah Stevenson for “Psychology Today.” When someone flirts with you and you feel incredibly nervous, just smile. You don’t have to say anything initially, just give yourself time to calm your nerves and think of something cordial to say as you smile at a potential romantic interest. Smiling can also stimulate your mood, too, adds Stevenson, which may even inspire you to be more gracious or engaging with the person flirting with you. Smiling will help put you at ease, in addition to the techniques mentioned above.
Having confidence in yourself is one of the most effective ways to decrease the feelings of nervousness you have when a romantic interest is flirting with you. You may recognize that self-confidence is not your strongest suit, but there are techniques that you can use to build your confidence and decrease your angst, says PickTheBrain.com. Wear clothes that make you feel attractive and good about yourself to boost your self-confidence, says the website’s editor-in-chief. Be mindful of your physical health – eating well and working out – and practice showing gratitude for things that you have in your life in order to feel better about yourself, and less anxious about entertaining a potential new love interest.
K. Nola Mokeyane has written professionally since 2006, and has contributed to various online publications, including "Global Post" and Modern Mom. Nola enjoys writing about health, wellness and spirituality. She is a member of the Atlanta Writer's Club.