While there's nothing wrong with staying single and reflecting on what you want in an ideal partner, someone who wants a relationship will reach a point where they feel ready for one and begin their transformation. Instead of sitting around waiting for love, you might be tempted to put yourself out there.
Stepping out of the comfort zone to find love is probably one of the most underrated yet exciting ways to impact your long-term happiness. By dealing with any personal issues, or past traumas and abuse you may have gone through in another relationship or even in your childhood— reinventing yourself and staying open to dating opportunities, you gain control of your relationship life's journey. Here are six easy ways to get started.
Establish what you're looking for.
Before putting yourself up for a new relationship, you must first ask what you're looking for in a partner and perhaps more importantly—what you’re not. This can be incredibly difficult for those coming from a narcissistic relationship who were forced to identify their happiness based solely on the person. If you don't stand for something or know what you want in a person, you'll most likely fall for anything. This is unhealthy and may jeopardize your efforts to find the love you desire. For those dealing with abandonment issues from their past, you may be more drawn more towards someone who provides stability and open communication.
There's always fear that being this critical might take away the romance, but it’s the only sure way of setting yourself up for success. Draw a list of key traits you want in a person first, and don't settle for anything less. Remember the list of things you're looking for in a person should be somewhat similar to what makes you happy. If possible, fantasize about being in a relationship to see what suits your lifestyle.
Carry yourself with confidence
Confidence is perceived to attract success. Confident people are sexy and hard to ignore, no matter the occasion. How you carry yourself speaks volumes and tells others more about you. It sets the stage for much more and will make it easier to create an easily approachable persona.
When you carry yourself confidently, you're letting everyone know you feel good about yourself. You're more likely to attract a confident partner and someone who knows their self-worth, too. The best way to develop self-confidence is to do what scares you most, like asking a girl for her number.
Join something and actively participate.
You've probably heard this one before, but meeting people is the easiest way to put yourself out there. Whether you want to join a local gym, enroll in a yoga class or be part of a volunteer group, having an expanded network of people opens you up to countless options. You'll be part of something you're passionate about and most likely around an expanded circle of people with whom you now share a passion.
The point of actively participating in something is to meet new people, regardless of if you're interested in dating them. So, cut some time off social networks and dare to try new things in the real world with real people. The enthusiasm of committing to something new will most likely give birth to a spark that will hopefully propel you more into putting yourself out there.
Try meeting people on dating apps
While you can still meet a partner without online dating, joining a dating app is an easy way to put yourself out there and find love. The only challenge is making online dating work for you. One of the secrets to succeeding on a dating app is taking the lead in everything.
“Instead of searching through dating profiles for a potential lifelong partner, look at them more like a brief introduction,” said Jami Rodman, Life Coach & Consultant. “If you think, I might enjoy getting to know this person instead of checking off boxes, you'll likely enjoy the dating process more.”
This means being actively engaged. If possible, be the one to message first and initiate date plans. Being in control of the conversation is a great first step in the right direction because it takes the pressure off your shoulders. It's an interesting way to develop confidence in approaching someone in real life.
Remember that joining a dating app does not necessarily lead to meeting mister or missus ‘right’. It is just a way to open up more opportunities and learn how to express yourself—two things you need the most when seeking a new and meaningful relationship.
Go out on solo dates
Like most people, you probably can't imagine the idea of hanging out alone and looking out of place. But as much as solo dates are weird and unappealing to imagine, they are something worth exploring if you want to find love. It will be a bizarre experience at first, but you'll get used to the feeling with time— becoming empowered in your authenticity of self.
Going out for solo dates is a show of self-sufficiency that'll help you build confidence more subtly, particularly for someone getting over a relationship or just getting out of a divorce. It's the right way to put yourself out there openly while also learning more about the version of yourself you want other people to see. You'll be surprised how beneficial this can be in helping you find love.
Give speed dating a chance
Speed dating has a minimal chance of helping you meet a partner, but it's a great way to put yourself out there. You don't have to worry about anything as you're meeting people who understand what's happening. This may be quite liberating, considering meeting new people on regular dates can sometimes make you vulnerable.
“To love yourself, you have to understand yourself,” said Shakir Malik, Founder & Editor at The Life Hype. When you love yourself, you open up and allow yourself to be vulnerable. This makes you approachable.”
The best part about speed dating is that it's fun and a low-pressure approach to putting yourself out there. It's the perfect way to try and find love if you have been single for a while and you're still getting used to it. Because you talk to a lot of people for only a few minutes with each, you have an opportunity to start over again even after embarrassing yourself.
Regardless of what you expect, the common denominator in any relationships you enter should be you. That's why investing in your emotional well-being is imperative by seeking outside counsel from people with your interests at heart, getting closure, learning more about yourself, and figuring out what you really want are so important.
“When you set healthy boundaries in a relationship, you’re teaching someone how to behave towards you, whether it be a friend, family member, or romantic partner,” said Melissa Damiani, Founder of Gratitude Grace Glamour. “By doing so, you lay the foundation for a happy relationship based on mutual respect."
Good advice from those close to you will help you know when to put yourself out there and how to find love by setting healthy boundaries in relationships. If you are struggling to take the next steps in a relationship or deal with emotional issues from your past, consider seeking additional help from an experienced DBT therapist.