A little over half of American adults are currently single, but dating can still be difficult for many people. Even though there are many methods to look for love, finding the right person can be an exhausting task.
This is especially true of people who return to dating after a long-term relationship. Navigating the dating world after being out for so long can feel like existing in a foreign land.
Dating after a breakup can be scary, but it’s not impossible. You can find love again. Here are six dating tips for anyone returning to the dating world after getting out of a relationship.
1. Take Your Time to Heal
The most crucial step to re-entering the dating world is to ensure that you’re ready to date again. Take time to check on yourself and your heart to make sure you’re healed enough for the rollercoaster that can be dating.
If you still text your ex after a night of drinking or routinely cry at the thought of the breakup, you may not be ready to date again. You should take time to focus on yourself, work through any issues, and heal from past hurt.
You don’t have to wait until you feel 100% ready. But you should feel overall okay with your previous relationship ending a new one to begin. Being ready to move on will ultimately make you more successful in your new dating life.
2. Create a Positive Mindset
Breakups are difficult, and they can put you in a bad headspace. Re-entering the dating world means transitioning from a couple mindset to a single and dating mindset. And that mindset switch can be difficult for everyone.
It can be even more difficult feeling like you’re starting the process over, trying to find someone you want to be in a relationship with. Through the dating process, you’ll meet new people, and not all of them will turn into relationships.
It’s important to go into dating with a positive mindset and maintain it through the process. Dating can be hard, and you shouldn’t get down on yourself if a first meeting doesn’t turn into a marriage proposal.
If you go in with a positive mindset, you’re more likely to have positive behaviors that will increase the chance of a positive outcome.
3. Reflect on Your Wants and Don’t Wants
The time after a breakup allows you to look back and evaluate your previous relationship. You can reflect on what worked and what didn’t work. This evaluation can help you figure out what you want in future relationships.
Consider how you and your ex-partner communicated, what personality traits you liked and didn’t, and what values matched yours. Separate these qualities into positive and negative lists.
You don’t have to stop at your most recent ex; you can create a list for all of your previous exes as well. Seeing these characteristics written out can help you know what to focus on when you start dating again.
This exercise can give you a sense of focus, steering you towards a healthier future relationship.
4. Don’t Compare
It may be tempting to compare potential partners, their personalities, and how you get along to the qualities of your previous exes. Comparison may even seem natural to try to find a person that’s better suited to you.
But you should curb the urge to compare potential partners to previous ones. Obsessively comparing can harm a new relationship. Your dates may feel as if they won’t measure up to your ex if you frequently bring them up.
You shouldn’t compare your ex and potential partner on personality, date activities, or sex life. Instead, you should focus on the list of qualities you do and don’t want that you developed with your exes in mind.
This will ensure that you’re comparing core values and qualities rather than people.
5. You Can Focus on Other Things, Too
When you jump back into dating, it doesn’t have to be your sole purpose. Dating apps don’t have to be your new hobby, and blind dates don’t need to become a pastime.
You’re allowed to take things slow and feel out the connections you’re creating. You’re allowed to take a break if dating begins to feel overwhelming. You’re allowed to take time for yourself to recharge and reevaluate.
People who are dating can still have activities they enjoy doing by themselves. You can still spend time with friends and family. And you can try new things to help find yourself again.
Try a new hobby that keeps you creative. Go to the gym and get in your best shape. Here you can read more about getting in shape for the dating world.
You can seriously date, look for your soulmate, and have your own life simultaneously. Partaking in hobbies may even help you meet a new partner when you least expect it.
6. Have Realistic Expectations
It’s totally fine to imagine a meet-cute. You may imagine meeting your future spouse when their pup runs up to you in the park. And you may reach for the same box of strawberries at the grocery store.
This daydreaming is healthy for anyone re-entering the dating world. But you should still have realistic expectations. You probably won’t meet your soulmate or future spouse the first day you put yourself back out there.
It’s okay if it takes time to get back into the groove of dating or find someone you want to start a relationship with. If experts had to rank their dating tips, having realistic expectations may be at the top of the list.
Must-Know Tips for Dating After a Long-Term Relationship
Nobody wants to experience heartbreak. In the moment, a broken heart may make it seem like romance will never happen again. But you can find love when you start dating after a long-term relationship.
These six dating tips can help you get back on the dating scene and navigate it with a little less anxiety. Starting over can be a scary experience. But the benefit of finding love again far outweighs the fears and the risks.
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