Samantha Burns helps you find the real deal.
You’re not the only one who has invested months or even years into a relationship because you convinced yourself that you found “the one,” only to feel duped later on. If you fall hard and fast, than you might be blinded by the love potion! It’s time to date with intent and dig deep early on so that you can separate those butterflies from lasting love.
During the beginning, when you’re in the courtship phase, your brain is producing chemicals, such as dopamine and noradrenaline, which act like a love potion—enhancing excitement, focus and attention. This leads to that giddy and happy feeling. If you throw sex into the mix, your body also releases oxytocin, the bonding hormone that makes you feel more connected and attached to your partner.
When you leave your new partner’s side, your brain struggles with diminished serotonin, a chemical that calms anxiety and obsessive thinking. This is usually when you start worrying when you’ll see that person again, if you should call, and you start questioning their feelings for you.
It’s important to date with intent. Date with the purpose of finding your perfect match.
This love potion can make it difficult to rationally evaluate whether this new partner is a good long-term match, and sometimes you may miss red flags.
At the beginning, it’s easy to put someone new on a pedestal, become attached, and get too far ahead of yourself.
Identify your love lessons learned from past dates and relationships.
A love lesson is an opportunity to reflect on your experiences, whether it was just one date, or a multi-year relationship. Thoughtfully reflect on your likes and dislikes, what you’re willing to compromise on in the future, and your new deal breakers.
Identify negative patterns in your dating behavior, and keep an eye out for these red flags as you meet new potential partners. It can be helpful to work with a therapist or dating coach, who can more objectively identify these behaviors.
Dig deep and align your core values.
Picking a forever partner isn’t about sharing a group of friends or enjoying the same music. Don’t get lost in that love potion—you need to dig deeper at the beginning of a new relationship! This means having conversations about what really matters in life.
- What is your work-life balance?
- How do you save and spend money?
- What are your family values?
- What are your sexual beliefs and preferences?
- What socio-economic status do you need in order to live the lifestyle that you want?
- Do you want children and what is your parenting style?
- Is religion important to you?
You don’t need to be able to answer all of these questions right now, but you need to be discussing these topics on an emotionally intimate level in new relationships. You will gain clarity on these values and deal breakers as they are put into perspective by dating new people and learn about their beliefs and expectations.
Save yourself the heartache (and headache) by exploring these factors early on. It’s more difficult to breakup after you’ve invested time, energy, love, commitment and finances into a relationship.
If you don’t have time to make dating a priority, why should a high-quality person make you a priority?
Online dating is a wonderful tool to help put you into contact with hundreds of people with whom your paths may have never crossed, especially when you’re stuck in your daily routine. Nowadays, the exact same singles who you may bump into at your local coffee shop are also the ones online—it’s the norm.
Dating with intent is all about creating as many windows of opportunity as possible.
A lot of people make blanket statements, such as, “I never meet anyone good.” Challenge yourself and ask how many times in the past month did you go to an event and socialize with new people? Of these people, how many were you attracted to that were actually single? And then, were they interested in you too? A few factors need to align for a potential match, so the more people with whom you come into contact, the better for a chance of making a connection.
Say, “Yes!” to social opportunities and invitations. Join an intramural sports team (you don’t even have to be good), a gym with interactive classes, volunteer, go to professional networking events, sign up for a local class, volunteer, or check out meetup.com.
If you don’t hit it off with anyone, you can still make friends. These new friends will expand your network and increase your opportunity to be introduced to more people.
Have a realistic view of dating.
It’s time to think about dating in a different way, which may ease rejection. The majority of relationships and dates you enter into are not going to work out. Ideally, only one relationship is going to last for the long run if you want marriage or a committed life partner. It’s about maintaining optimism and an open mind in the face of rejection and disappointment.
Not everyone is going to click on your profile, send you a message, or approach you in public. When you walk down the street and pass 100 people, are you attracted to all of them? Of course not! They aren’t all going to like you either, and that’s OK as long as you don’t let this bruise your ego every time attraction is unreciprocated.
It’s normal to be nervous and want to impress your date—we all want to be liked. But sometimes nerves get the best of you, and you wind up doing what I call “false advertising.” This is when you’re not really demonstrating who you are, but rather trying to be the person you think your date wants you to be.
Don’t give in to this anxiety. Bring your personality to the table, and be confidant in who you are. The right person is going to adore your quirks.
Remember that this potential partner needs to fit comfortably into your life, too.
Tune out of your own self-talk and into what your date is saying so that you can better evaluate whether you even like him or her. Bring a positive attitude with you, and remind yourself that you are deserving and worthy of a loving relationship.
Be sure to check out Samantha’s free ebook: Love Successfully. 10 Secrets You Need to Know Right Now.
What’s Next? Talk with others. Take action.
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