Want to Succeed at a New Relationship? Try This!

Following is a partial set of recommendations in how to succeed in connecting, bonding and falling in love with someone new:

  • Treat the search for a new love as an active—not a passive—process, and give it as much time, energy, attention and focus as you do every other high priority in your life.  Treat it with the same priority that you would give to actively looking for a job.
  • Assume responsibility in making the first encounter interesting and comfortable.  Put enthusiasm and effort into attempting to create the connection you are looking for.
  • Look carefully at what you’re doing internally when you’re sitting across from a new person.  Are you looking for reasons to say “yes” to a possible relationship, or reasons to say “no?”  Is your focus on why it couldn’t work and what you’re not attracted to—or what you are attracted to and how it could work?   You can find excellent reasons to reject everyone, so be careful here, or you’ll wind up continually sabotaging yourself.
  • Don’t run away from a promising opportunity unless you absolutely have to.  Promising opportunities do not come along every day.
  • Only choose people who are emotionally and physically available for a relationship.  Everyone else—no matter how hot, enticing or seductive—is either a distraction or heartache.  That means no one who is already in a serious relationship, no one on the rebound still pining over a recent breakup, nobody who is so focused on their career or personal goals that they don’t have time, energy or heart for you—and nobody still carrying a lot of unresolved emotional baggage from their past.
  • If you hit it off with someone, drop all other romantic possibilities and sexual temptations, or put them on hold.  Don’t put yourself at risk to sabotage a relationship you may want.
  • In a new relationship, be willing to open up and reveal yourself.  Don’t be emotionally hidden, too superficial or fearful of letting someone else in.  It is far better to risk getting hurt or rejected then to play it too safe.  The bonding and falling in love process isn’t emotionally safe, and playing it too safe all but guarantees that you’ll fail.
  • Learn how to negotiate through differences, and get comfortable with the skills needed to resolve conflicts effectively.  Don’t avoid, withdraw or shut down when you encounter conflicts, or your relationship will grow cold and distant.  Be willing to do the hard work all successful relationships require: identify when there’s a problem or an irritation in a timely manner, and do everything you can to work through the dilemma in such a way where both of you feel valued and respected.
  • Learn to blend and accommodate to the wishes, needs, preferences and requests of your partner.  Whenever you possibly can, make what’s important to your partner important to you.
  • Clean up your own emotional baggage from your past so you don’t wind up charging subsequent intimate partners a price for the mistakes, rejections, disappointments or betrayals you’ve been through.
  • You’re more likely to get the relationship you want if you refuse to give up.  You can’t hit a home run unless you’re in the game.  Actively stay in the game.  That means keeping your mental and emotional attitudes hopeful and optimistic, and not letting yourself become cynical, jaded, mistrusting or negative.
  • Learn to combine your desire to be independent with the opposing desire: to be inter-dependent and to merge lives with another.
  • Keep your heart open and risk being hurt or disappointed yet again.  It is far better to risk your heart—even if you’re rejected—than to not risk your heart.  Keeping your heart safe will just give you psychosclorosis:  a hardening of the heart, mind and spirit.

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