Are you looking for a relationship that won’t blow up in your face despite your best efforts? Then you have to find someone you’re actually compatible with rather than someone who just looks good on paper. Here’s how to find a relationship that will actually last.
Figure out your future plans.
Relationships fail when goals don’t align. Before you bring another person into your life, figure out what you want. Where do you want to live in five years? What kind of person do you want to be? You need to know what you want so you can see whether your life goals are compatible. If they’re not, it will never work.
Communicate frankly from the start.
The only way to keep a relationship from blowing up in your face is to communicate. Over-communicate if you have to. Make sure you’re clear about what you want so you’re both on the same page. I’m not suggesting you freak him out with talk of marriage, but be honest and be vocal from the beginning instead of holding things in only to have them explode later.
Be curious and open-minded.
The key to dating is to actually be curious about the person. This means you have to ask questions and pay attention to their responses. You can’t play games or keep them at a distance. You have to show interest because people can’t read minds. If you like someone, you have to show it.
It’s not doing you or your love life any favors. Stop looking for perfection in yourself and others. Stop judging. Stop whining every time you realize there’s no such thing as the perfect person, the perfect date, or the perfect relationship.
Don’t waste your time.
If someone likes you, you’ll know. If you don’t know, that means they don’t like you or they don’t like you enough to put in the work. Either way, that’s not the person for you and definitely not someone you should be wasting your time on. Move on.
Be yourself from day one.
If you’re shy, don’t pretend to be extroverted. If you’re smart, don’t pretend to be stupid. The only way for a relationship to work is if you show your genuine self. That doesn’t mean you should fart on date number one, but don’t hide the characteristics that make you who you are.
Focus on the positives.
When you meet someone for the first time, focus on their good qualities instead of the ways they fall short. I’m not saying you should ignore red flags, but don’t search for them. Don’t go into dates thinking you’re going to be let down or embarrassed. Think the best and the best might actually happen.
Trust your gut.
If something feels wrong, it is. Trust your gut instinct and listen to that little voice inside your head. If he seems weird, don’t go out with him. There’s no reason to force a relationship with a guy you’d label as “kind of creepy.”
Don’t take rejection personally.
You’ve experienced rejection and you’ll continue experiencing it. Don’t assume it’s a reflection of who you are or your self-worth even though it can feel like a very personal thing. Rejection means you’re one step closer to finding a more compatible person. Don’t let someone letting you go ruin the way you date.
Focus on having fun.
Don’t get caught up wondering if this person is right for you—focus on having fun with them instead. That’s the best way to get to know someone anyway. People lie. He might tell you he likes dogs, but until you spend time with him at a dog park, you won’t really know. Will you?
Don’t compromise on the important stuff.
We’re all attracted to certain characteristics. Whether you like nice guys, smart guys, or considerate guys, it’s important to define the characteristics you want (and aren’t willing to compromise on) before you start dating.
It’s easy to start doubting yourself after a few failed dates, but all you can do is brush it off and keep it pushing. If you want to spend some time analyzing your actions in order to better yourself, have at it. What you can’t do? Spend time fueling yourself with hate and self-doubt.
Enjoy the present.
Most relationships form when you least expect it, which is why you should stop expecting. You have to actively try to be happy. Get out there and go on trips, plan movie nights, read books, apply for a higher paying job. Enjoy your life at this moment.
Plan your single future.
We all want to find love, but that doesn’t mean it’s something you should plan on. Live your life like you’re going to be single forever. Buy a dog, adopt a baby, move out of state. Don’t stall plans because you’re hoping Mr. or Mrs. Right might come along. Focus on being in a relationship with yourself because it’s the longest-lasting one you’ll have.
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