First things first. Are you ready and available for dating? Be honest with yourself. Are you jumping back into the dating pool because you’re lonely or scared or both? Are you seeking to fill up a void in your life? Are you trying to use it as a distraction to avoid other priorities that truly need to be handled?
Most singles are not ready or available to date. They haven’t asked themselves the tough questions. They haven’t made a true self-assessment to determine if this is really the right time to move forward.
Be honest with yourself about your degree of relationship readiness. It’s foundational to any future success you desire. Sometimes the mantra of “Just do it!” can be a recipe for failure, disappointment or possibly worse. Jumping into something you’re unprepared for can actually set you back in many areas of your life. And, this doesn’t even address the potential disappointment you might cause for someone else who might get swept up into a relationship along with you. Dating isn’t just about you – it can and will affect anyone with whom you get involved.
When you’re not ready or available to date
Sometimes, when you’re neither ready nor available to date, that’s the time you most often crave closeness and connection with others. However, it’s not always the best time to start dating. You know it and so do the people you meet during times like this.
When you’re consumed in the throes of life’s twists and turns, you just don’t have the emotional bandwidth to create meaningful relationships. Take time for yourself. Practice self-care and give yourself the space you need to take care of important life responsibilities and priorities. This is the time to seek out connection with family and friends until you can move through some of the issues you’re dealing with.
Being ready to date is different from being available to date. Both of these must be true for you to engage meaningfully with another person.
Are you ready to date?
So what does it mean to be ready? Being ready means you’ve cleared the decks of various life issues. For example, you’re probably not ready to date if you recently ended a relationship, if you’re healing from an illness, or if you’ve just experienced the loss of a loved one. We all need time to heal, whether emotionally or physically. Or, you may be working on personal issues such as self-improvement, getting your finances in order, or handling legal issues. You might be unemployed and focusing all of your energy towards finding a new job. Sometimes it’s necessary to just work on getting your life in order.
Are you available to date?
What about availability? Sometimes you’re just not available to date. You may have been juggling a demanding career with long hours, caring for young children, or working on a college degree at night. You could be caring for elderly parents or working on projects that are all-consuming.
Whatever the case, your time is at a premium and your mind is highly focused on areas that are important to you. In all fairness to yourself and to others you might date, the fact is that you’re just not available. Can you date and do all of these things, too? Absolutely, you can. However, the quality of your relationship, not to mention all of your other priorities, may suffer.
A relationship is about two people coming together to spend meaningful time together. If you can’t spend quality time together and really “be there” for the other person, often it’s better to wait until you can. You’ll be happier, the other person will be happier, and the relationship has a better chance of succeeding in the long term.
Relationships require a significant time and emotional investment. If you’re not engaged fully on all levels, you’ll feel out of balance and out of alignment with your authentic self. Cultivate good dating karma by treating others the way you would like to be treated. Respect others and don’t mislead them.
Attend to your responsibilities and commitments and when you’re ready and available, not only will you have the confidence you need to date, but you’ll be in the best position to meet the man or woman of your dreams.