Despite what you may have been told or believe, there’s no one clear path or secret to finding love.
Tabloid covers can promise to “unleash the truth” and websites will tell you to “click here” to find your soulmate, but what no one is telling you is that finding true love starts with you.
Instead of rushing the process or worrying that you’re missing out, you need to shift your focus and make a solid thought process and approach to dating. To do so, consider these five basic rules.
1. Take it slow.
Whether you use online dating sites, attend speed dating events, have friends set you up or test your luck at bars, before you can find the right man it’s key that you gauge your expectations. This means that regardless of where or how you meet potential partners, it’s important that you take the time to get to know them. Sure, you may feel like you’ve clicked after a few drinks or hours of talking, but keep in mind this isn’t the real deal that you’re seeing – at least not fully.
To find love that lasts it’s important that you take your time and allow the get-to-know-you process to take its natural course. The side of you he shows on night one is going to be vastly different from what you see six months down the road. To avoid any unpleasant surprises avoid rushing things or jumping to conclusions.
2. Be honest about what you really want.
Are you looking for a casual fling or a more serious, committed relationship? Since physical attraction and infatuation have a way of setting off the feeling of a “real connection,” it’s common for women to fall in puppy love and think they’ve found their dream man. Unfortunately, that’s rarely the case.
Unless both people want the same thing — casual fling or long-term relationship — disconnect will likely occur. As you get to know new men, clarify where things are going and what you both want from each other at this time in your life. No matter how smitten you may be feeling, make sure you see the men you’re dating for who they really are, not for who you want them to be.
3. Know your worth.
As a woman, you’ve probably struggled with insecurities, compared yourself to other women and questioned what it is that men are attracted to. The truth is, after talking to many different men I’ve come to learn that there is no such things as one “ideal woman.” What one man finds attractive another does not, and vice versa. Just because the mainstream media has brainwashed women into believing that they need the chest of Scarlett Johansson, hips of Shakira or booty of Beyonce, that’s not necessarily the case. Under no circumstances do you need to turn yourself inside out to be sexy or desired by men. Marketing campaigns will tell you that you need to look or be a certain way, but their end game is to sell you a product, not to instill self worth and confidence.
Knowing your worth is key to being sexy, so sit back and think of all the things you have to offer a relationship. Understand that you’re deserving of love and make sure that your energy and attitude confirms it. Believing that you are worthy of a committed, intimate relationship will do wonders for your love life. So smile lots, laugh often and live life to the fullest. The real secret of attractiveness is regular and compassionate self care, so build habits around doing things that are not only good for you, but also feel good and maximize your inner and outer beauty.
4. Don’t fear being single.
Anyone who has watched a lonely friend shack up with a useless buffoon can relate to this new finding: People really do settle for less in a relationship when they fear being single. So many women are afraid of sleeping alone, eating alone, not getting laid, not getting a text, etc. What they should really be worried about is sleeping with the wrong person, wasting a meal with bad conversation, having meaningless sex or wasting time waiting for a text.
Wanting a relationship is one thing, but needing one is another. When you need a relationship you usually end up ignoring red flags, which leads to heartache, disappointment and other issues down the road. Instead of settling for less than what you want and deserve, embrace the idea of being single and realize that taking a pass on a relationship now means finding your Mr. Right later. Good deal, right? Take your time while dating and don’t feel obligated to stick out a relationship if it means settling.
5. Lighten up, be playful and have fun.
Men love when women make them feel young and alive, and the ones that do are the women who are bursting with youthfulness and fresh energy. Despite what you may think, you don’t have to be an accomplished dancer or worldly traveller to have this trait. In fact, you can be 25 years old with the soul of an 80 year old, carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders and lacking vibrancy. Or, you can be 80 and unaffected by life’s toils, free of stress and worry, living like a loving and peaceful child. To send off the right message, pay attention to your words and body language, especially around men. Even if you think you’re just blowing off steam or opening up to them, too much of negativity can ruin an otherwise great relationship.
Dating is meant to be fun, so put your fears aside, get out there and enjoy meeting new people. If you’re tired of searching bars for your future lover or have exhausted your friend’s list of potential men, then you may want to start thinking out of the box. Take a class, be it cooking, art or yoga, and be social with those attending. Since you already have at least one common interest with the guys there, it would be a great way to meet someone new. Above all, have fun. Life is serious enough and knowing when to lighten up fuels a happy, attractive woman.
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