Let’s Make Caring Cool Again

As seen in the February issue of Mile High Sports Magazine

Kindness is the newest trend in love and dating

By Jessica Smith, International Dating Coach, Yoga Instructor, host of the Game of Love Podcast, radio show and sports enthusiast

Instagram: @jessicasmith.love 

We all want to be cool. We want to be respected, admired and loved. However, right now in our society, it is cool to not care, especially in our love lives. Caring is associated with being needy and weak. It is seemingly uncool to show your feelings, put your heart on the line or treat someone with kindness.

It might be cool not to care on the surface, but underneath it’s doing us all a disservice. When we close ourselves off, hide our true feelings, act non-committal, and string people along, we might seem “cool” –  but we are left wanting.

Deep down we want to feel all the feels. Some of the best feelings in the world are flirting with your crush, the excitement when you first start dating someone and the joy and satisfaction of having that ride or die to share your life with.

If we want these things, why are we acting this way?

We want to avoid pain. Especially in our love lives. We are doing whatever it takes to not look stupid, avoid rejection and not have our hearts broken. 

Love is scary. With so many unknowns—Will they like us in return? Are they going to text us back or say yes to a date?—it can leave us feeling anxious and vulnerable, which is why we resort to playing the “cool card.” 

Here are three very uncool myths that hold us back from catching the feels and finding our boo.

Myth No. 1: If I show feelings, I’ll look like a fool.

When we were kids and we had a crush on someone, it was embarrassing. As we get older, we still act like the little kid that had their crush exposed. We do everything we can to hide our true feelings in fear of people finding out. 

Showing how you feel is admirable, courageous, is a sign of strength and is rather attractive. Take Steph Curry, for example, a man who wears his heart on his sleeve and shares his love of his wife and kids with the world while averaging 23.5 points a game. That’s pretty cool.

Myth No. 2: If nobody gets in, I won’t get hurt.

We assume that by not letting anybody into our hearts, we can avoid pain and suffering. We protect our heart at all costs, many times coming off as emotionally unavailable, cold and uncaring.

Shutting people out hurts more than it helps. Human beings thrive on connection, intimacy and love. Without it, our hearts harden, we become lonely and next thing you know we’re wasting our lives away binge-watching New Girl while eating Totino’s pizza rolls.

Let good people into your life. It’s satisfying and fulfilling. Life is more fun when you have someone to share it with. 

Myth No. 3: If I ignore the feelings, they’ll go away.

If we deny our feelings, we won’t actually have them – that’s delusional. When we push our feelings down, we’re hoping to steer clear of rejection, embarrassment and disappointment. 

The truth is, the feelings do exist, and we need to embrace them. Acknowledging—yes I’m scared, yes I caught the feels, yes I got my feelings hurt – is very empowering and an act of bravery. Simply acknowledging your feelings will make you feel better, provide you with relief and allow you to move on. 

What if it was cool to let go of these myths and make caring cool again?

Real talk, the world would be a better place. Friendships would be deeper, interactions with strangers would be kinder, work environments would be more peaceful and our love lives would be more satisfying. 

Caring is strong. Caring is admirable. Caring is courageous. 

I challenge us to do better! Look, love is like football. You’re going to take some hits on your road to the championship. That’s why you should keep on the path and dare to show your feelings. Take that risk and follow your heart. You won’t regret it.

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