How To “Put Yourself Out There” Again After Divorce

How To “Put Yourself Out There” Again After Divorce

When you’re in a long-term, committed relationship with someone you thought you’d spend the rest of your life with, it can be devastating when it all comes crashing down. However, divorce isn’t something to be ashamed of or let drain you of hope. While the divorce rates are slightly coming down, they’re still pretty high — and loads of those people go on to find love again. In fact, 40% of marriages now include at least one partner who’s said “I do” before. If you’re ready to get back out there and try again but you’re not sure where to start, here are some tips to get you started.

1. Go on a date with yourself.

It might sound corny, but after a divorce, you might be feeling a bit low on self-confidence or be forgetting your self-worth. You don’t want to get back out in the dating game if you’re feeling like this because it’s going to attract the wrong people to you. So, before you do anything, focus on learning about and loving who you are now. Take yourself on a date and buy yourself flowers or chocolate. You can romance yourself, and you definitely should!

2. Enjoy your alone time.

If your divorce is a recent thing, you might feel weird about being alone. This is not a good reason to get back into the dating game! Spend more time alone, even if it’s uncomfortable at first. This will ensure that you not only give yourself love and realize the beauty of your life, but it will help you choose someone new out of love, not fear. When the time comes, you know you’ll be truly ready for the right reasons, not because you were desperate not to be on your own.

3. See dating as fun, not as a means to an end.

It’s easy to get caught up in the stressful aspects of dating, but it should be fun! Right now, you’re flying solo and want to feel people out and see what’s out there. So, approach going on dates with a bit of curiosity and lightheartedness. You don’t know what will happen, but enjoy the process of finding out.

4. Don’t load yourself with stress.

Moving on from divorce might make you feel like you have to be perfect and the ideal catch because the pool is that much smaller when you’re a bit older. However, that’s not the case at all. You just have to be yourself. Leave all the dating expectations at home instead of thinking you have to meet “The One” — that’s far too much pressure!

5. Focus on making friends, not lovers.

To help you stay in the moment and not become overwhelmed, avoid trying too hard to get a new partner. Instead, go on dates feeling like you’re going to meet some new people and make friends. Even if you don’t click when it comes to romantic chemistry, you might find platonic friends to hang out with — and you can never have enough friends.

6. Reconnect with the people you lost touch with during the marriage.

two women chatting at cafe

Sometimes, during marriage, you might feel like you can’t reach out to people as much as you could when you were single since so much of your focus is on what’s happening in your relationship. Because of this, you might be a tad out of practice with socializing. Now’s the time to reconnect with your old friends and spend time getting to know them again. In doing so, you can find the parts of yourself you lost in your marriage.

7. Hang out with your single friends.

While you should reconnect with the people you’ve known forever, regardless of their relationships status, you should definitely plan some fun nights out with those who are still single and ready to mingle. Now’s the time to go club-hopping and out for boozy dinner with your friends who aren’t coupled up. You’ll have fun and feel platonic love from those around you, which is what you need right now. And, hey, your friends might have some cute friends for you to chat with.

8. Don’t wait for a partner to live your life to the fullest.

While it might be intimidating, do all the stuff you love and the things you’ve been wanting to try on your own. Go for dinner or go watch a movie alone, or maybe even plan that major vacation you’ve been dreaming about for years solo. This will help you to embrace new opportunities and boost your sense of confidence. It’s excellent prep work for dating again, and it gives you plenty of enriching experiences to talk about when you go out with someone new.

9. Let people know that you want to get back out there.

While you don’t want to go overboard with telling the people in your life that you’re ready to find love again, it can work to your advantage if you’re open about it. Let your friends, colleagues, and family members know that you’re ready to open your heart again. They can not only give you some support and encouragement as you embark on this journey again, they might also have someone to introduce you to in the future, if you’re into that!

10. Consider going on group dates.

Group dates are a fantastic way to explore potential romantic connections without the intensity of one-on-one encounters. With your friends by your side, you can get to know interesting people in a more relaxed setting. It’s the perfect opportunity to test the waters of the dating world at your own pace.

11. Get your dating priorities sorted.

Now’s the time to reflect on your priorities. What do you want from dating? Maybe you’re only looking for fun, or maybe you want to find someone that you can build a future with. It’s also good to consider your deal-breakers. Basically, take stock of your relationship needs and wants so you don’t get into situations that aren’t right for you.

12. Date outside your previous type.

Being single again after divorce is the perfect time to explore dating other types of people. Were you married to a musician? Consider the sporty guy or woman who’s sliding into your DMs. Are you always reaching out to introverts? Accept a date with an extrovert. See what’s out there and surprise yourself with the connections you’ll make.

13. Remember the positive things about being single.

Healing from a divorce is taxing and can make you feel negative. Try to stay positive by remembering what’s good about flying solo. For example, now you have time to explore new interests, learn more about yourself, and use your spare time to chase your dreams. Plus, there’s the chance to fall in love all over again, which is exhilarating!

14. End every date with a bit of self-care.

Smiling woman embracing herself at home. Copy space.

Whether you’re meeting new people spontaneously, through your social circle, or via a dating app, there might come a time when you have some bad dates. It happens to everyone, but don’t let them bring you down! To maintain your light, fun approach, end every date with a self-care session. Whether it’s booking a massage or going for a run with your dog, take care of yourself.

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Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.