The beginning of a relationship can be one of the most exciting times in your life. You’re filled with hope – the sun is always shining (and even if it isn’t – who cares – you’re falling in love!) and it seems like nothing could ever change the way you feel at this moment. We all know however, the honeymoon phase doesn’t usually last forever, which is why it’s important to stay grounded during the beginning phase of a relationship. In fact, the way things take shape during this time can also set the stage and foundation for your relationship’s future. Everyone wants a healthy relationship; here are some tips from 25Dates about how to create a healthy start:
1. Be yourself from the very beginning. This doesn’t mean you should spill your guts about every little embarrassment or tragedy in your life on the first date, but the whole point is to find someone you feel completely comfortable around. Anticipating what this new person in your life is feeling or thinking is pointless, and far too much work. If they like you for who you are, wonderful. If they don’t – they are clearly not the one for you. Let this unfold naturally.
2. Keep things fun and spontaneous. From the beginning of a relationship, it’s important to stay active and experience fun things together. This helps you get to know each other in a variety of situations, and always ensures you have things to talk about and great memories to reminisce over. Do spontaneous things for each other to add excitement to your time together.
3. Communication. This is probably the very most important ingredient of a healthy relationship so you want to set a precedent by talking about things as they come up. Keeping your mouth shut and hoping things will change on their own when you’re unhappy about something is irresponsible and will only create more trouble in the long run. Check in with each other (but don’t go overboard) to see how things are going. If you feel something’s off kilter, bring it up and talk about it.
4. Keep your independence in check. Just because there is someone new in your life doesn’t mean you throw everything else away. It’s extremely important to maintain your friendships with social outings and to not change your routine too much. It’s a common error to lose yourself in a new relationship or any relationship for that matter, but where are you if it ends? You’re left with a life that has little to do with who you are as an individual. It’s also extremely important to be able to bring unique things back into your relationship consistently. Maintaining friends and interests on an individual basis will help you do this and keep things interesting.
5. Make some plans for the future and talk about common goals. This doesn’t mean you have to plan out how many kids you want to have or the seating chart for your wedding, but perhaps plan a vacation together or plan on meeting each other’s family. This creates security and helps you combine your lives with common goals.
6. Hold back on physical intimacy even though it can be very difficult. Sex tends to accelerate a relationship extremely quickly, while other parts of the relationship are still just developing, like trust. For a woman it’s very important for her to trust the man she is sleeping with, and if it happens too soon, mistrust can be an issue. If the attraction is great and you really are interested in having a relationship with this person, waiting can be instrumental in creating a very strong bond. Your bond will be reinforced through physical intimacy, instead of sex itself being the bond.
7. Listen to your partner. Remember there is a unique individual before you who has been brought into your life for a reason. Never assume you know someone, let them show you who they are instead.