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Deeper Dating

How to Drop the Games of Seduction and Discover the Power of Intimacy

By Ken Page
  • Read in 12 minutes
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  • Contains 7 key ideas
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Deeper Dating by Ken Page

Deeper Dating (2014) is a roadmap to intimacy and loving relationships. It breaks down how looking inward can help us identify the kinds of people we’ll connect with most deeply, and shares tools for finding these people and fostering relationships that will inspire and fulfill us.

Key idea 1 of 7

Discovering your Core Gifts will lead you to love.

If you’ve ever tried to find your way through a maze, you’ll know that it’s a challenge. Some routes lead to dead ends, while others make you feel like you’re going around in circles. When you think about it, navigating a maze isn’t that different from looking for love. Except in the search for love, the obstacles aren’t fun challenges – they’re points of frustration.

But here’s something interesting: There’s a trick to navigating mazes, and it applies to finding love, too.

When you start at the center of a maze and work your way out, it’s easy to see exactly which route to take. And you can find love in the same way: by starting at your center – or, more precisely, your core.

The key message here is: Discovering your Core Gifts will lead you to love.

Your Core Gifts are the parts of you that are highly sensitive. When they’re stimulated, you can be incredibly inspired or terribly hurt. And since these are your Core Gifts, they’re not the same as other people’s. For instance, an experience that moves you deeply might do nothing for someone else. Or a friend might easily brush off a slight that leaves you fuming.

Being highly sensitive means that your Core Gifts are also the areas most affected by love and intimacy. This makes connecting with them essential when looking for a partner. But in order to connect with these gifts, you need to identify them. And you can do this by exploring what brings you joy as well as pain.

Reflect on times you’ve felt joy and fulfillment in a relationship – romantic or otherwise – and ask yourself which parts of you those moments spoke to the most. For example, maybe a partner supported and encouraged your ambition, making you feel seen. This would make ambition one of your Core Gifts.

Then consider things about which you’ve felt pain or shame. It’s common to feel hurt or insecure when your Core Gifts are misunderstood or disregarded. If you’re ashamed of being a quiet person, for instance, your Core Gift might be deep humility that hasn’t been appreciated or healthily expressed. 

By paying attention to what makes you feel inspired or hurt, you can discover your Core Gifts. And this is where the magic happens, right at the heart of the maze: Your deepest connections will be with people who value the gifts you have to offer.

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