8 Ways to Become Your Own Relationship "Expert"

Jennifer Brown Banks

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In seeking greater relationship wisdom and better odds with love, you can read all the relationship books on the market. Heck, I have.

From Dr. Joyce Brothers’ “How to Get Everything you Want out of Life”, to “Men are from Mars”, to “How to Catch and Keep the Man of your Dreams,” to “The Rules”, to the “Idiot’s Guide to Healthy Relationships,” and everything in between.

You can consult the “stars”. Heck, I have.

My zodiac chart reveals, that as a “water-sign” I ‘m most compatible with Scorpio, Virgo, and Taurus.

You can garner worldly wisdom from your mom (that’s a whole different article at another time).

But at some point in life, as daunting of a task as it may seem to be, you will have to become your own “relationship expert.” For the sake of sanity and self-preservation.

WHY I DECIDED TO BECOME MY OWN “EXPERT”

“To thine own self be true.”

I’ve learned a few things, because I’ve lived a few things. Not to mention, I’m not afraid to pray for discernment in matters of the heart, in areas that cause struggle or confusion.

And as time has evolved, through trial and error, I have happily become my own relationship expert. (Which does not mean that my dealings are always drama free, or that my decision making is perfect.)

Nobody can boast those types of results!

Still…I have experienced less emotional "wear and tear" over the years, due to greater self-empowerment and awareness.

Here's how you can increase your love aptitude and become your own "expert" too:

1) IF IT DOESN’T FEEL GOOD, DON’T DO IT!

When medical doctors prescribe medication for what ails us, they typically take into consideration our medical history, allergies, general health, and other factors. What might be good for you, might be hazardous to me! The same applies to dating and mating “remedies.”

Be true to yourself. Don’t submit to silly strategies or do things that are in conflict with your value system, regardless to what “expert” recommends it! Hello?

2) GO WITH YOUR GUT.

You know, that little voice inside that lets you know when something just doesn’t feel right despite outer appearances.

3) KNOW YOURSELF INTIMATELY BEFORE YOU SEEK INTIMACY.

What turns you on? What ticks you off? For example, I don’t care what studies show, I am spiritually drawn and rooted to “nice guys.” Which doesn’t mean that I don’t like a challenge, or that looks are not a factor in my romantic decisions. But, most importantly, a guy would have to be genuinely and consistently nice to ultimately “win me over” and keep me.

4) LEARN FROM PAST MISTAKES.

As an accounting teacher used to say to us in college, “it’s okay to be stupid, just don’t stay stuck there!” Be discerning, and chronicle your journey for future reference in a dating diary.

5) PAY ATTENTION TO A POTENTIAL MATE’S LONG-TERM ACTIONS AS WELL AS WORDS.

Real talk here. Recognize that all men are nice in the beginning. The issue is whether his kindness is “for show” or “for sure”. Pay attention.

6) TAKE “OWNERSHIP” OF YOUR OWN EMOTIONAL HEALTH AND ROMANTIC DECISIONS.

Stop the blame game. No one knows you better, or has as much vestige in your happiness as you do!

7) WHEN MAKING ROMANTIC DECISIONS, USE YOUR HEAD AS WELL AS YOUR HEART.

In the words of author and Being Single Magazine publisher, "Learn to intellectualize love."

8) PRAY

Because the “creator” is the ultimate “authority" and expert!

Final Thought

In serious matters of the heart, sometimes objectivity and professional training are required. Do seek professional, qualified assistance for “major” relationship issues such as abuse, addiction, infidelity, depression, pre-marital counseling, and crises situations. Don't go it alone.

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Veteran freelance writer, award-winning blogger, thought leader, herbal tea enthusiast. My mission is to entertain, engage and inform readers with articles that are interesting, enriching and diverse.

Chicago, IL
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