Ken Page Gives Advice For Secure Relationships

Men's Dating

The Best Advice for Secure Dating: Honor Your Sensitivity

Chloë Hylkema

Written by: Chloë Hylkema

Chloë Hylkema

Chloë Hylkema uses her writing skills to create useful and up-to-date content for DatingAdvice.com. Chloë is an Emory University grad who is familiar with what it means to date in the modern age, and she works to write material that is engaging, truthful, and as helpful as possible. Being on the front lines of the dating scene, Chloë is committed to staying engaged with the ever-changing world of dating to provide the most useful content to readers.

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Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

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The Short Version: Insecurities are a big threat in dating. But they don’t have to be. Licensed Clinical Social Worker and host of the podcast “Deeper Dating” Ken Page talked to us about what insecurity is, why it arises, and how it can actually be a beneficial tool for singles as they navigate dating. When singles can explore and understand their sensitivities and what makes them insecure, they can step into their own authenticity and find partners who also respect that authenticity. Ken talked to us about his Deeper Dating® process and podcast and showed singles how to find true love – simply by being themselves.

If someone has ever told you, “You’re too sensitive,” don’t take it to heart. The truth is all of us have sensitivities, and most of us have had to deal with those sensitivities in some way, especially when navigating romantic relationships. People who are routinely told they’re too sensitive may just be the ones who are actually in touch with their emotional needs.

Once we realize we all have our own sensitivities, we can equip ourselves with this knowledge as we build relationships. Acknowledging and understanding the places where you may be sensitive or insecure is just as important as knowing the parts of yourself that are confident and secure. 

Ken Page LCSW is a Relationship, Intimacy, and Dating Expert and the host of the Deeper Dating® podcast. Ken is a renowned psychotherapist and a leading voice for people searching for authentic love. He talked to us about attachment in dating, what insecurity is and why it arises, and how people can become secure individuals and, in due course, secure partners.

Ken dug into why not all dating advice is created equal and helped us understand his model for forming intimate connections, called Deeper Dating. The Deeper Dating process includes four steps that guide singles through the journey of connective and genuine dating.

“So much dating advice actually breeds insecurity,” Ken said. “I like to call it self loathing in a sexy self-improvement outfit. So much advice tells you to change. But the truth is, we all have insecurities and some kind of fear of intimacy, and the goal isn’t to get rid of it. The goal is to just be us. So much of dating is discovering who you are.”

Romance Advice That Respects Authenticity

Ken said that a bulk of the dating advice out there focuses on what people ought to change about themselves. Often, this advice focuses on insecurities. “It does something that looks benevolent, but it’s actually destructive. It tells you what you’re doing wrong and what you need to do to keep a partner. It tells you how to make yourself more attractive or better, but all of this is actually what’s wrong.”

A genuine partnership with a person you truly love will never require you to change the core aspects of who you are. When single people consume advice that tells them to change things about themselves, this is too often internalized and causes people to show up less than authentically in dating. And there’s nothing worse than that.

“I’ve come to discover in my 35 years as a psychotherapist that the things we’re insecure about usually end up being our best qualities,” Ken said. “The very things we think we need to hide to find love are the exact things we must attend to to find love.”

ken page, LCSW
Ken talked to us about secure and self-realized dating.

Ken said our sensitivities are our core gifts. Insecurities and sensitivities usually reveal what is most important to our hearts and emotional selves. They signal the exact areas we are looking to be nurtured and attended to by our romantic partners. Getting in touch with your insecurities is all about getting in touch with your authentic self – and you must have an intimate knowledge of yourself to find any real joy in dating.

“The way to find healthy love is to celebrate who you are,” Ken told us. “You need to lead with your authentic self.” But finding and knowing your authentic self isn’t the easiest thing to do. Ken said he often asks his clients to ask themselves what they’re afraid to show on a date and also what they’re looking for in a true partner.

“Our need for love, our longing for love, is one of the greatest gifts we have,” Ken said. “We get very embarrassed about our sense of need. But our longing for love isn’t weakness, it’s wisdom. When people learn to honor their sensitivity, to appreciate their personal sense of power, and respect their need for love, they date in a completely different way.”

Ken Explores Attachment & How to Handle Insecurity

When people aren’t in touch with their authentic selves, their dating experiences can swiftly become marred by insecurity. Ken said many people don’t know how to handle insecurity when it arises and often immediately try to cover it up or get rid of it as quickly as possible.

“We can’t just stop being insecure,” Ken said. “We need to discover that our insecurities are covering up gifts that haven’t been appreciated or that we haven’t learned to appreciate. When we don’t know how to appreciate our core gifts, we feel insecure, and we end up being romantically and sexually attracted to people who aren’t good for us.”

Ken said a common insecurity he sees in clients is a belief that they are not attractive enough. Social media and other aspects of our culture send near incessant messaging about the way our bodies look and, too often, how they need to look different than what they do. Ken said so much insecurity is born of this messaging, yet the bottom line of facing insecurity remains the same.

ken page quote
Ken urged people to stay open-hearted to the possibilities of love.

“We can’t look at ourselves through a lens of what is wrong with us,” Ken said. “If we do, we’ll be trapped in our insecurities forever. Your dating goal should be to be who you are– the rest will follow.”

Not embracing who you are leads to unstable attachments. If you don’t even know who you are, how do you expect a partner to see and deeply understand you? “When we learn to embrace ourselves, something amazing happens, and we’re attracted to people who are good for us,” Ken said.

If you’re struggling in dating, Ken says the solution isn’t to mask who you are or what you need from relationships. Insecure attachments arise from insecure interior lives that haven’t intimately explored who they are. The solution to insecure dating offers individuals the opportunity to know and love themselves first and then find somebody who appreciates the inner self the way they deserve to be appreciated.

“This is what we don’t get taught,” Ken said. “When you know and accept your authentic self, insecurities and all, you lose a fear of rejection, and your picker improves. You’re looking for people who appreciate you rather than what you think you should be looking for.”

Self-Acceptance Opens the Door to True Love

Stepping into self-acceptance isn’t just a good idea for daters. It’s a necessary practice. As long as a single person dates and forms relationships to serve their insecurities, they will seek and attract unhealthy and unstable attachments. It can quickly become a painful, self-fulfilling cycle.

“There’s this really powerful dynamic we see where any area that you’re not accepting who you are is a path to pain,” Ken said. “If you’re constantly telling yourself that you’re not enough or you need to change, the odds are you will attract people and be attracted to people who think the same things. And that’s not a healthy relationship.”

Unlearning negative dating habits and relearning healthy ones can be challenging. Ken’s Deeper Dater process helps singles stuck in insecurities become familiar with their true selves and discover the joy of authentic living and dating. 

deeper dating ken page
Deeper Dating can help singles and couples learn the joys of authentic connection.

“We’re all familiar with that really passionate and intense love circuitry we feel in the initial stages, but too often, that leads to pain,” Ken said. “Part of it is learning about another kind of circuitry, the processes that happen when we feel attracted to someone because they inspire us, because of their integrity or generosity or consistency.”

Ken’s Deeper Dating® course teaches singles about this often-neglected kind of connection and attraction and gives them the tools they need to explore and accept their true selves. Ken teaches clients how to identify attachments that lead to love and how to pursue those attachments with healthy relationship habits. To dip your toes into the process, check out Ken’s Deeper Dating free gift. Those interested in getting “deeper” into Deeper Dating can join Ken’s six-month intensive coaching program.

The Deeper Dating podcast is an invaluable resource for singles, and you can start making positive changes right now by digging into one of its hundreds of episodes. Ken regularly invites guests onto his show and explores nearly every topic that touches romance and relationships. 

Dating can be a challenging journey, but it becomes a lot easier when you realize all you have to do is show up and show up authentically. The love and connection that’s meant to be will follow.

“Don’t be too rigid and open yourself up to possibilities,” Ken said. “Love surprises us. Love tweaks us. The person we end up with is rarely who we always expected or imagined. It takes time, and many surprises, but we find ourselves in love.”