What is dating for, if not to find the love of your life? But how on earth does anyone do that? Where do you start and how do you know if someone is the one? What should you do if you think youâ€™ve found them? Here are some practical tips to bear in mind if youâ€™re single and looking:
Set your expectations
Out of the whole world, there are an awful lot of people to meet. How do you start narrowing down the field? Well, before thinking about who is available, you need to decide what your own needs and standards are for a relationship, like important characteristics such as beliefs, ambitions, lifestyle.
You need to have a list of deal-breakers as well as a list of ideal characteristics in a partner, so you will recognize a strong prospect when they come along.
Put yourself out there
You wonâ€™t meet someone by never being outside your daily routine. Home, work, family, friends â€“ itâ€™s easy to fall into a pattern that makes your dating prospects look pretty limited.
Join a class or a sports team â€“ youâ€™ll meet people with similar interests to you. Say yes to invitations from friends and even actively tell your friends that youâ€™re looking for a relationship â€“ friends of friends might have a similar outlook to you. Plus, a friend who knows you well may be your best cheerleader and dating scout.
Online dating through reputable sites such as eHarmony.com is a great way to match up with someone who has similar interests and beliefs to you. Lifestyle, location, life goals â€“ itâ€™s something you can find out almost instantly instead of maybe wasting time dating someone for a few weeks before finding out they have an ambition to move to Singapore one day.
Online dating is a way to strike out a lot of potential dead-ends, fast. Click here for more information about online dating.
But once youâ€™ve found a partner, how do you hold on to them?
Communication is key
Explaining how you feel is the most important aspect of any relationship. Many potential arguments can be averted when you sit down and talk about where youâ€™re coming from. It can be daunting, but itâ€™s the only way to move the relationship forward.
Give each other space
Having time apart to continue to pursue hobbies and friendships outside the relationship is important, too. Keeping your own identity is an essential part of any relationship. Plus, time apart means you have time to miss each other.
Making special time for one another
That said, a date-night in the midst of all the goings-on of life is essential, too. After milestones like moving in together, marriage and kids, life gets overwhelming, and you can forget to make a space for just the relationship.