May 2011, by Tara Kachaturoff
If you want to be more successful at dating, you need knowledge and skills. With a little forethought and planning, you can have more fun, enjoy the process, and possibly meet the love of your life. Here are some dating tips to help you get started.
1. Plan for success. Why do you want to date? What type of relationship do you want? What’s the vision for your life? What are your relationship requirements, needs, and wants? These are just some of the things you need to explore before you begin the journey of finding the love of your life. The clearer you are about who and what you want, the easier it will be for you to find it.
2. Communication is key. Communication is the underlying dynamic of all successful and unsuccessful relationships. Cultivating an open and honest relating environment, from the beginning, will help to mitigate misunderstandings, while at the same time create an atmosphere that can allow your relationship to grow and flourish.
3. Set boundaries. In any type of relationship, whether personal or professional, it’s important to set boundaries. Not only does this provide you with a solid foundation for living your life, but also it conveys to others who you are and how you expect to be treated. Boundaries are like an “operations manual” for you and for others.
4. Have fun. Dating should be something you enjoy. I’m not saying that it will always be fun and exciting, but if it’s not, you need to spend some time finding out why. You might not be ready or available to date. If you’re not, that’s okay. There’s nothing wrong with being single and not dating. In any case, keep up with your friendships and acquaintances. It’s important to nurture some aspect of socialization in your life – especially around activities that bring you enjoyment.
5. Comfort is not always a good thing. It’s nice to be comfortable in your dating experience with someone, but if things are always singing along and you never disagree on anything and everything is “perfect” as in a “Stepford Wives” version for singles, watch out. One or both of you may not be acting authentically, living fully into your vision, or truly aligned with your values. Many singles feel such “sense of relief” when they’ve finally “got” someone in their life that they begin editing and twisting themselves into a pretzel to “not rock the boat.” Healthy relationships start with being true to yourself first.
6. Manage dating expectations. How do you manage expectations in a dating relationship? How do you avoid misunderstandings that can lead to disappointment and unhappiness? You do it by engaging in open and honest communications right from the start. And, just as important, you need to make sure that your actions are aligned with what you communicate. When your thoughts, speech, and actions are in alignment, you’ll have the best results – both for you and with others.
7. Take your time. Finding the right relationship takes both time and patience. Conscious singles don’t rush into committed relationships because they know that it takes time to get to know someone else and that in haste they may miss important things like red flags which can lead to dating disappointment. Also, any new relationship is a time for further exploration of yourself. Each person you date will bring forth new understandings of who you are. You need time to digest and understand who you are, juxtaposed to the person that you’re dating. Take your time, enjoy the journey since that is really what it’s all about.