Last Updated on December 14, 2022 by Angela Vaz
I’ve been in 2 unhealthy relationships.
One of them was severely toxic.
And when I got out of the second one, I took my time to heal and be single so that I could clear my heart and mind.
I knew I wanted to love and be loved.
But I also knew I was not ready to compromise on my principles and just shack up with anybody.
I had to prepare myself mentally for a relationship.
I knew I had to be patient.
In exactly six months, I met a man who would turn out to be my current partner.
I found love.
And in this post, I want to discuss how to prepare yourself for a relationship so that you can move smoothly into it when you find love.
You’re reading this post because you haven’t found love yet or dating someone you’re not sure could be the one.
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Why should you prepare yourself for a relationship?
A lot of us begin dating the moment we emerge from a breakup.
Society has put so many demands and restraints on us that we feel pressured to be in a committed relationship.
Sometimes, we may not be ready.
Or we may not know what we are looking for.
Or even worse, we may not have healed from our previous relationship yet.
Instead of entering a relationship with the wrong person and wasting both your time and your partner’s, it is best to prepare yourself emotionally and mentally for a new relationship.
This will actually help you filter out most of the people who are not meant for you.
I can tell you from first-hand experience that if you have the desire to be in a loving and committed relationship with someone who respects you and treats you kindly, you will find it.
Let’s learn how to go about it.
How to prepare yourself for a relationship
1. Let go of the past
If you are single, then there is a very good chance you’ve either been hurt before or disappointed due to a previous relationship going south.
Or maybe you liked someone, and they didn’t reciprocate your feelings.
Either way, you cannot move forward unless you learn to let go of the past.
Look at everything you’ve been through as a learning experience instead of a waste of time, and move forward with everything you’ve learned.
Either way, move on.
Close the doors to the past and start on a clean slate.
You deserve to find love if you are looking for it.
And the only way you will find it is if you’ve let go of all the negative experiences haunting your past.
Here are a few ways to heal and move on from the past:
- Journal daily: Journaling will help you get out all of the feelings that are pent up within you. It will also help you self-introspect and learn more about yourself to improve and become wiser and mature.
- Meditate: Meditating daily for 5-10 minutes will help you clear your mind and be calmer and relaxed. It will teach you to observe your feelings and not engage with them. You will find yourself reacting less to feelings of anger, hate, or envy.
- Read: Learn from people who have gone through what you have. I discuss the best self-love books in this post. Learn to love yourself and let go of the past so that you can make space for love.
2. Learn who you are
You cannot enter a relationship with someone else if you do not know who you really are.
Learn what makes you tick and spend some time getting to know yourself.
You have been given the fantastic opportunity to be with yourself.
You don’t know how long you are going to be single.
So, use this opportunity to discover who you really are.
Spend time doing things you love, move out of your comfort zone to make friends, and explore the city around you.
Journaling will really help you discover more about yourself.
But in addition to that, you can also spend time working on projects you want to do and picking up new skills or languages.
Be invested in your growth and happiness.
This will help build up your character and a wonderful personality.
3. Identify what you want
If you want to prepare yourself for a relationship, you need to know what you are looking for.
Identify the values and morals that you hold close to your heart.
Write it down if it helps.
Spend some time thinking about what qualities you are looking for in a partner.
Answer questions like:
- What qualities should my partner have?
- What are the common goals we should have together?
- Do we want children?
- What kind of lifestyle am I looking for that we can share?
- What kind of relationship am I looking for?
- Are there cultural and religious values you are looking for from your partner?
Understanding what you want from your future partner will save you and the person you are dating a lot of time.
It will bring you closer to the person that is compatible and right for you because you can say no to anyone who does not match your list of needs and wants.
It is crucial that you enter a relationship with someone who loves you and treats you with respect.
But both of you also have to be on the same page with your goals and visions.
4. Love yourself
It may sound redundant and boring that I constantly repeat myself in these articles, but I know that this is something I worked very hard on.
We are incredibly kind and loving to others.
But it is tough to show that love and kindness to ourselves.
I picked up this exercise from a book.
Please give it a shot.
- Look into the mirror and tell yourself that you love yourself.
- Tell yourself that you love yourself for who you are, all your mistakes in the past, and your imperfections.
- Tell yourself that you love yourself for your looks, mind, and heart.
You may find yourself moved to tears. It did happen to me.
And this is only the beginning.
Please understand that you aren’t unhealthy or flawed if you are not in a relationship.
It’s okay to be single.
Being single doesn’t decrease your self-worth.
You are a beautiful human being who has not met the right person yet.
So, please love yourself.
Because if you don’t love yourself, no one else has reason to either.
It is up to you to fall in love with yourself and become the best version of yourself.
Treat yourself with the same kindness and love that you would a child who is hurt.
These articles will help you more:
5. Start dating
You will have to kiss a few frogs till you find your Prince.
That’s what one of my friends told me.
Dating can get exhausting.
But unless you put yourself out there, you will not find love.
It is not going to plop onto your lap from the sky. How I wish it were that way, though…
So, start dating.
You can either start meeting people physically or try online dating.
Online dating works well because you can chat with the person for a bit to see their overall demeanor.
It will also help you weed out many people who are just not right for you.
But please be careful when you are dating. Make sure that you meet the person in a public place for the first few times till you get to know the person and build that level of trust.
Many articles will tell you that it’s okay to have sex on the first date.
But trust me, unless you are looking for something casual, sex on the first date is a bad idea.
It has nothing to do with morals and code.
It’s challenging to build an emotional connection with a person if you’ve already established that physical intimacy is more important.
If you are looking for a loving and committed relationship and are looking for someone to last, build an emotional and mental connection first.
It will result in really good sex, I promise.
6. Do not compromise
It can be very tempting to enter into a relationship because we are tired of being single.
But if you compromise on your principles and turn a deaf ear to the red flags, you will only set yourself up for heartbreak.
So, do not settle for anything less than what you want and need.
Have your wants and needs in the back of your head.
If you see that the person is not treating you with the love and respect, you deserve, walk away.
Do not enter a relationship with the mindset that the person will change.
What you see is what you get; remember that.
If the person tells you that they do not want kids, respect that and walk away if you want children.
Do not force the person you are dating to change.
Do not enter a relationship with expectations that the person will improve and become better.
This is why it is important to take your time to date a person and get to know them.
Everyone has had enough experience in this world to sugarcoat themselves for a first date.
Our true natures reveal themselves after 2-3 months of dating – sometimes longer.
So, be careful when dating.
Use dating as data collection.
Spend enough time with the person to understand:
- Who they are
- How they operate under stress or rage
- What their goals and values in life are
- What they are doing about it
and so on.
Saying no to the wrong people will help you find the right person faster and help you prepare yourself for a relationship.
7. Be yourself
Honesty is crucial when you are looking for long.
Do not try to be somebody you are not when you are dating.
The truth will eventually come out if things get serious, and you definitely want someone who will love you for who you are.
So, be yourself.
Be proud of your accomplishments and values.
This is why it is vital to love yourself.
When you love yourself, you aren’t ashamed of who you are or what you believe in.
And if your partner is making you uncomfortable or there is something on your mind, be honest.
You want to enter a relationship with a mature person with who you can communicate.
So, be honest and open while you are dating.
Tell them what you are looking for and lay out your cards on the table.
Walk away if both of you are looking for something different.
8. Do not place your life on hold
It can be very tempting to cast aside your life and focus 100% on dating.
But don’t do that.
Do not place your whole life around dating and finding love.
It will disappoint and crush you.
It is vital to keep a healthy balance of everything:
- Your job/career
- Skills and hobbies you love
- Family and friends
So, learn to focus on a life outside of love.
You may not have found the right person yet, but that doesn’t mean you will be single forever.
Continue to date while also engaging in your hobbies.
9. Learn to be happy alone
It can get tiring to be single at times.
You may run into couples who are friends or colleagues, and sometimes, you may feel like the last single person on earth.
I know; we’ve all been there.
But it’s okay.
It’s okay to want a relationship and understand that you haven’t found the right person yet.
But it would be best if you focused on your life and how it is right now.
It is already full.
A partner will only add to what is already there.
So learn to find happiness inside of you.
A relationship should not be your goal if you believe it will make you happy.
Here are two posts to help you with this:
10. Get rid of toxic habits and people
If you want to prepare yourself for a relationship, get rid of all the toxic habits and people in your life.
It isn’t necessary that we need to add more and more.
The less we have, the better we will see.
Spend some time thinking about all the habits and people you have now that are draining your energy and not really adding anything to your life.
And cut them out.
Here’s how you can do that:
- Learn to say no to people
- Cut out friends and family that are only bringing you down
- Get rid of toxic habits
- Declutter your home
Our entire lives are filled with unnecessary things that are only crowding it.
More is not always better.
So learn to draw healthy boundaries.
Research more into minimalism, and you will find so much peace and joy when you learn to live with less and make room for more – thus helping you prepare yourself for a relationship.
11. Strengthen existing relationships
Do not forget who you are.
It can be stressful if you want a partner and are looking for love to find yourself inadequate.
But you are much more than that.
Your relationship does not just define you.
Look at your other roles and responsibilities and nurture those relationships with love.
- You may be a dog mom or a cat mom.
- Or a sister to a loving sibling
- A child to your folks
- A wonderful neighbor
- Maybe a parent to child
Identify your relationships (the ones that matter the most) and spend time building them.
Send voice notes, make efforts to meet the people you love, and visit them.
Show them how much you care and value them being in your life.
You need to realize that having a romantic relationship is essential, but it should not replace the relationships you have with people close to you.
12. Take care of yourself
Dating can get exhausting.
So take breaks when you feel overwhelmed.
If you feel like dating is getting too much, it’s okay to take a step back and just be by yourself for a while.
There is no hard and fast rule that you have to find somebody by a predetermined age.
So, take care of yourself.
Keep your health as your priority:
- Eat the right food and get enough sleep
- Get enough exercise to keep yourself active and fit
- Look after your emotional well-being
Set goals in different areas of your life and actively work toward them every day.
Focus on improving yourself and taking care of yourself when you feel tired.
Taking care of yourself and loving yourself first is the best way to prepare yourself for a relationship.
13. Do not rush into a relationship
I have already stressed this before, but I will do so again because it is imperative.
If you are dating someone who checks all the boxes except 1, take a look at that box.
If it is something that is not so important to you, go ahead.
But if it’s a significant issue that you are unwilling to compromise on, learn to walk away.
Do not take advice from your friends and family. They may be tired of seeing you single and want you to enter a post-haste relationship.
Learn to listen to your gut and not settle.
By choosing to enter a relationship with the wrong person.
Be patient, and do not be in a rush to enter a relationship.
Your patience will reward you, I promise.
14. Do not look back
Once you have closed the door to someone, let them go.
Do not look back or be tempted to contact your ex or someone you may have dated in the past.
If the relationship didn’t work out, it has ended for a reason.
Respect the person and your time and let them go.
Trust the process and have patience.
Look forward and continue to work on yourself while dating.
You will find someone when both you and your future partner are ready.
15. Have patience
I know it can sometimes get too much.
I’ve been there.
I know what waiting is like.
But we have to make peace with the fact that we cannot control when we will run into that person who is compatible with us or suitable for us.
We can only take care of ourselves and prepare ourselves for a relationship.
So, learn to make peace with this fact and find happiness in your current state of being.
Love and accept yourself for who you are right now.
And be patient.
You will find someone if you desire to be in a loving and committed relationship.
Frequently asked questions
How to prepare for a relationship while single?
Love yourself and the life you are leading.
You will obviously want someone who is happy and loves their life. Nobody wants someone miserable and lonely.
Likewise, learn to love your life so that you can attract the same positive energy you are giving out.
Understand your needs and wants, and do not settle for anybody less.
Keep your standards high, and remember to have fun when dating. Spend time getting to know the person so that your relationship can be built on a solid foundation.
How to make someone ready for a relationship?
If you are trying to change someone and make them ready for a relationship, you are controlling that person and taking their freedom away from them.
People may change, or they may not.
It isn’t up to you.
What you see is what you get.
So, if you find yourself with a person that doesn’t want to be in a relationship (but you want to), then make your peace with casual dating or end the relationship peacefully and find someone else.
Final Takeaway- How to prepare yourself for a relationship
This article was written to help you realize that there is more to life than finding love.
We can’t really control when we may find a compatible person to spend the rest of our lives with, so we must focus on what we can control.
You don’t know how much time you may have left being single, so enjoy every minute.
Make the best use of your time while simultaneously keeping your heart and mind open to love.
Learn to trust people and build relationships with people.
And one day, you will find that special someone.
I wish you nothing but the best.
Here are a few more posts you may enjoy:
- 13 signs of unrequited love and how to let go
- 13 signs you are healing from a painful breakup
- How to recover from a toxic relationship
- How to love yourself while you’re single
- Dating Advice every single woman needs
- How to stop letting things bother you
- The ultimate guide to getting over heartbreak and finding happiness again
- 35 honest ways to get your life together
- How to trust the process and just let go
- The best advice for living alone and not being lonely
- How to let go of the past
- 15 ways to get a fresh start this year
- 13 ways to reset your life
- How to create a plan and stick to it