Saturday, February 22, 2014
An Ounce of Prevention: 'Tips for a New Relationship'
A few of y'all have hit me up to let me know that you're in the "first few pages" of a new relationship (Mazel Tov!). For that reason, I thought it would be appropriate to share tips from an article I read on the very topic. Here are 10 good points to keep in mind (and please do some serious praying and pondering about #9!):
#1 Real Love Isn't Like the Fairy tales.
Be careful with your ideas about what a relationship really is. You may be thinking that your Prince Charming is going to kiss you and then you will live happily ever after. Make sure you are ready for the time and energy a happy, and healthy relationship takes.
#2 Jealousy Is Never a Good Thing.
Your partner probably has friends that make you feel a little jealous. Whether it’s an ex that’s still hanging around or just someone that you feel threatened by, you will probably come across someone like this. If you do, the first thing you need to do is understand that jealousy gets you nowhere and that your partner probably has no idea that it’s bothering you. Have a mature conversation about it and express your insecurities in a respectful way.
#3 Learn from Your Past Relationship Mistakes.
While it’s not good to live in the past, you probably learned some things from the way you behaved in your past relationships. Perhaps you were too clingy or didn’t focus on your relationship enough. Maybe you were too jealous or took them for granted. Whatever it was, you can learn from it so you won’t carry the same baggage into this relationship.
#4 It Won't Happen Fast Like the Movies.
Love is not exactly like the story in your favorite movie, it takes work, time and commitment. Don’t start throwing around the word “love” or expecting your partner to say it until you’re both sure you mean it. Let it happen naturally.
#5 Don't Try to Control Everything.
Part of the beauty of a relationship is that a lot of things are spontaneous or out of your control. It is easy to feel a little bit possessive in a new relationship but it will only make it harder for the relationship to mature. You may be setting up your partner for trust issues and other problems that will cause your relationship to unravel later so just learn to go with the flow and enjoy!
#6 Keep Living Your Life.
It is so important that as you form your relationship that you are not giving it all your time and energy. Don’t stop your life and don’t expect your partner to stop theirs. You should still have hobbies and personal goals no matter who you are dating.
#7 Take Your Time to Build.
There is no need to rush into anything. Let the relationship happen naturally as you build up love and respect for one another. Despite what the movies or tv shows may say, you don’t have to be in a rush for intimacy or commitment. You’ll know when you’re ready and so will your partner.
#8 Your Friends' Opinions Matter.
It’s easy to get swept off your feet in a new relationship but don’t leave your friends out of your life just because you might be falling in love. Your partner should get close to your friends if they are going to be a part of your life. If you feel the need to hide your partner from your friends, it’s time to question if there might be a reason.
#9 You Should Be on the Same Timeline.
People date for different reasons. Maybe you’re not ready to settle down any time soon but he’s shopping for a spouse. Make sure you know what you’re wanting from the relationship and that your partner does too. If you’re not looking for the same things, it’s better to know early in the relationship than later when you’ve both invested so much into it.
#10 Set Clear Boundaries.
You should never be involved with someone that pressures you into something or makes you feel disrespected. If you find yourself compromising your beliefs or comfort level for your relationship then it may not be a good idea. Make your boundaries clear with your partner and respect theirs. If you find that they still try to talk you into things that make you uncomfortable, it is probably time to end it.
Hold it close. Guard your heart (Proverbs 4:26). Trust in God's timing (Acts 1:7-Message).