It’s important to set goals in life, and dating is no different. Setting goals helps us create a clear-cut vision for the type of relationship we’re seeking and allows us to avoid any potential affairs that don’t suit our needs.
That’s why I make lists. I have a bucket list, a travel list, a recipe list, a list of animals I want to own, a shopping list, a daily to-do list, and, of course, my list of dating goals. Whether you’re currently single or in a relationship, you should make your own list. You can use it as a reminder of the kind of partner you want in your life, and how quickly you’re willing to move.
Here are three goals to set while in a relationship:
1. Focus on good communication: communication is the key to a lasting relationship. Some of us bottle up our feelings. Some of us jump to conclusions and get irrationally angry. Some of us don’t know how to articulate our own emotions. Often times, this leads us to terminate the relationship without trying to make it work first. Focus on making your relationship as open and honest as possible. Any time a disagreement arises or you feel unsettled by something, have a healthy conversation about it.
Imagine there’s a therapist in the room with you, allotting a certain amount of time for each of you to speak your side. This will encourage you to listen and give you your space to explain.
2. Don’t sacrifice your own happiness: most of us can recall at least one relationship in which we’ve felt completely lost. Relationships take time and effort; however, that doesn’t mean we should lose sight of our own life goals. Your hobbies, friends, and family should all stay intact. Don’t sacrifice anything that makes you happy, or makes you feel more like you. This also refers to pieces of yourself, like your confidence or sense of humor.
If you feel as if this has already happened, you may want to evaluate your relationship. The right partner will love these aspects of your life.
3. Trust your partner until given a reason not to: jealousy can be a real issue in a relationship. It’s an emotion most of us have no control over and can become all-consuming if we allow it. Since jealousy is such a hard habit to kick, it’s more important to focus your energy on trust. There’s a fine line between being protective and being overprotective. Crossing this line is the fast track to self-sabotaging your own relationship. A little jealousy will let your partners know you care; a lot of jealousy will make them think you’re crazy.
If, deep down, you don’t trust the person you’re with, there’s probably a good reason for it. You might need a new partner.
Here are a couple of goals to set while single:
1. Don’t worry about finding someone: just let it happen. We usually find what we’re looking for as soon as we stop looking. When you’re desperate for a boyfriend or girlfriend, you often end up with the wrong one. Don’t date people just to date them. Listen to your heart and make sure you both have the right intentions before you dive in.
Don’t forget to enjoy your time alone! It may not last forever.
2. Date someone that complements you.
I don’t mean complimenting in the traditional “you’re amazing” kind of way, although that’s quite nice too. I mean someone you get along with, someone who respects you and has the same outlook on life. The best piece of advice my grandmother ever gave me about dating was to find someone who shares the same morals. You and your partner should agree upon what is truly important in life: hard work, family, laughter, patience, loyalty, kindness, and tolerance. If you share the same morals, you’ll be proud to call that person your own.
Setting goals is essential to leading a fulfilling life . Whether you’re available or taken, sticking with them can help boost your self-awareness and prep you for the kind of dating success you desire.
Sarah Williams is an avid lifestyle blogger and dating coach. She believes that true happiness stems from continuous self-development and satisfying social interactions. You can check out her blog and get access to her life, dating, and online fitness resources at Wingman Magazine.