Raise your SMV by understanding neuroticism in relationships
If you experience anxiety about dating and marriage then this post is for you.
Even if you do not score high on the neuroticism scale this post will help you understand how to date someone who does.
Neuroticism is one of the Big Five higher-order personality traits in the study of psychology. People who score high on neuroticism are more likely than average to experience so called negative emotions such as anxiety, worry, fear, anger, frustration, envy, jealousy, guilt, depressed mood, and loneliness. They are generally change and risk averse.
Neuroticism is not inherently negative and you are not defective for scoring high on the scale. Very low neuroticism is not necessary better as it can lead to excessive risk taking and sensation seeking.
During times of great stability, we don't need to pursue risk or change to achieve success. Often, in such circumstances the best strategy is to keep your head down, go with the flow and enjoy the security of monotony.
Unfortunately for the more neurotic we live in a time of great chaos where risk and change is pursuing us. Right now it's the masters of chaos who are the kings surfing the so called Kali Yuga.
Neuroticism, SMV and Dating
Suggestions for neurotic people seeking healthy relationships.
When engaging in SMV improvement or dating, those with high neuroticism scores have a tendency to focus on potential negative outcomes.
What if I make a fool of myself?
What if I fail to achieve my goal?
What if Im rejected?
What if I'm just not good enough for him/her?
What if there are no good men/women left?
Getting married is too risky, what if I get divorced?
What if I break his/her heart?
What if I break my own heart?
What if this is just a big waste of time?
All of these fears are natural and real. Your brain is just trying to protect you. Dont ignore your brains warnings.
Unfortunately, neuroticism taken to an extreme they can also be paralyzing and painful. A focus on potential negative outcomes can stop you from developing the best and happiest life that you can.
Lifestyle changes and personal growth are inherently risky and can cause extreme anxiety for the more neurotic. This is especially true when the outcomes are not well defined and secured by strong social institutions, cultures and community.
Those with high neuroticism tend to put up barriers to protect themselves against the need to change. They create many “reasons” why they can't pursue their dreams right now.
They have lists of things that they must do first, before they can date or even socialize.
They may subconsciously sabotage themselves or potential relationships and underestimate their own worth.
Intelligence + high neuroticism
Anecdotally, I find that people with higher IQs tend to have their neuroticism amplified. This may also be supported by research. The greater our intelligence the easier it is for us to notice potential risks. This can be an advantage, helping to prevent us from making bad decisions.
Now, you can't do much to change your neuroticism level, however you can learn how to use your neuroticism plus your intelligence to your advantage.
Redirect your ability to see potential negative outcomes into something that is consistently positive. Instead of looking for the potential negative outcomes of doing things, look for the very real and certain negative outcomes that will occur if your dont do the things you need to do.
Instead of focusing on the effort, time and cost of looking for a mate, focus on the negative outcomes of not starting that quest. Focus on the probability of being old and alone.
Rather than think about the potential embarrassment of going to a gym to get fit, focus on the negative effects of being weak or overweight.
Focus on negatives that motivate you to action. The risk of doing nothing is far greater than the risk of doing something.
You need help
Redirecting your neuroticism isn't easy. You need outside perspective and help from mature friends or a coach. Don't try to do it alone. Don't give up socializing until you are “perfect” because that's a sure way for your social skills to simply deteriorate.
Some of the behaviours and attitudes that often accompany neuroticism tend to push away potential allies. You may need to work much harder to make good friends than less neurotic people. On the plus side, you will probably choose a better quality of friend due to your caution.
Create tools that can help you to redirect your neurotic anxiety into positive actions. Write down your emotions about certain challenges. Create plans with specific goals and actions. Ensure that somehow you are being held accountable for your actions by outside forces.
Learn anxiety management techniques such as controlled breathing, meditation, mindfulness practice, etc. Go to therapy if you can't manage your anxiety on your own.
Special notes for women
Women are naturally more neurotic than men, on average. This can lead to some very horrible and society wrecking behaviours if left unchecked.
On the other hand, women who are lacking in neuroticism make terrible mothers. They may take excessive risks with their health and their children. Historically such women were not successful at reproducing. Imagine a mother living in primitive europe asking questions such as:
Is this meat too rotten to eat? Can I safely feed it to the kids?
Should I see if the kids screaming is just play or maybe something is wrong?
Should I take the shortcut through the dark forest to get home?
Is that very aggressive guy from the neighbouring tribe going to make a good husband?
Recognize the value of your fear and anxiety. It may be uncomfortable, but its not a bad thing.
Setup external, platonic male gatekeepers to protect you so that you can safely open yourself up to the risks of potential relationships.
Decide what type of person you want to be and why.
Decide what type of person you want to marry and why.
Create great stability in every other aspect of your life so that you have the energy to face the chaos of the dating world.
Look to marry a man that is a master of risk. A man with an appetite for risk and the follow through (consciousness) to take advantage of chaos. A super boring and stable man will not make you feel safe during the unpredictable times we live in now.
Special notes for men
My experience with men who score high on the neuroticism scale is that they often have a very deflated view of their SMV and self worth. Therefore they focus on self improvement to the exclusion of socializing and dating. This is a mistake.
Unless you have some very major issues to deal with you should be diversifying your efforts about 50/50. Spending half your time on self improvement and half your time on dating.
Imagine developing a product for market but never actually testing it on real potential customers. How would you know that you were developing something of value?
Do you know about the concept of minimum viable product (MVP)? A MVP is a product with enough features to satisfy the initial customers, and provide feedback for future development.
As men you should be making yourself into a MVP for the sexual market. Become at least the minimal value needed to attract the type of woman you are interested in. Then, go out and test yourself in the real marketplace.
Take the feedback you get. Bring it to your wolf pack or coach and figure out where to improve next. Often you will find that already have a much higher SMV than you ever realized and all you need is some skills, motivation and courage to pursue the wife hunt.
More than likely your future wife will be more neurotic than you, get comfortable being the rock in your relationship. Learn how to project confidence, security and assertiveness and women will be naturally drawn to you.
Be aware of your levels of neuroticism. Be aware that highly intelligent people may be prone to more anxiety.
Rather than seeing your neuroticism and anxiety as negatives, learn to use them to your advantage.
Avoid being totally alone when making decisions, get help and create tools to re channel your emotions into positive directions.
Most importantly; high neuroticism should not stop you from creating a wonderful and happy life. You are the boss of your future. Start creating it today!