3 Things to Do Before You Start Dating

(Plus Hacks to Get You in Dating Shape FAST!)

Think you’re ready to get back “out there?” Maybe . . . maybe not! When preparing to jump back into the dating scene, it’s important to put your best foot forward. Follow the suggestions below to develop your dating “A-Game!”

  1. Feel Confident About What You Have to Offer: It sounds basic and even clichéd but it’s also very true—we can’t expect anyone else to be drawn to us if we don’t honestly believe we have anything to offer a relationship. Consider the question, “Would you want to date you?” If the answer is no then by all means, do whatever it takes to recognize your worth! This may mean embarking upon some personal growth via self-help books and podcasts. Or perhaps it’s time to see a counselor to address any lingering childhood emotional issues or feelings of inadequacy. Dating Hack: Research shows the most effective way to increase your self-esteem is to set a goal and reach it. Create a list of goals you’d like to achieve and start tackling them. Be sure they’re realistic and attainable so you can enjoy a relatively quick sense of accomplishment and boost to your ego!
  2. Extinguish Any “Old Flames”: We all have them—the ghosts of relationships past. Your dating history is a part of you and of course your former partners have left an impression. Naturally, as you and your new love interest get to know each other, stories about exes may come up from time to time. That’s not a problem—what is a problem however, is the energy attached to your old flames. Have you made peace with the dissolution of past relationships? Are you still carrying a torch? Have you identified what went wrong? Before striking up new relationships, it’s prudent to process any unresolved anger, bitterness, angst, or regret from prior loves. Dating Hack: Here’s the “litmus test” question for figuring out if you’re over your ex: What do you feel when you think of him/her? Remember, the opposite of love is not hate—it’s indifference.
  3. Know What You Want (But Be Flexible): Before hopping back into the dating scene, spend some time determining what type of partner you actually want! A clear understanding of what you’re looking for allows you to focus your energies on appropriate prospects and avoid wasting your time and anyone else’s. Identify preferences regarding personality type, lifestyle, and values—especially values. The vast majority of conflict is rooted in opposing values, and marriage is much more satisfying and fulfilling when spouses possess similar core beliefs and desire the same things from life. Dating Hack: Write down all the qualities you hope to find in a partner. Highlight the ones pertaining to character and values but cross out anything superficial (hair color, height, etc.).

Before you make a foray into the dating scene, implement the strategies and hacks above. That way, you’ll be in tip-top shape and best prepared to find love!


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