7 Telling Signs You're Not Ready For a Relationship
Have you been going on a few dates and wondering if you should start a committed relationship? Maybe you just moved to a new city because of a lucrative job offer, or perhaps you just entered university and want to build connections or find companionship. Whatever the reason, you may find yourself wondering:
Am I ready to start a relationship?
Many of us date and enter into a relationship because we feel pressured either by society or by our peers telling us that being in a relationship will fulfill us. We may feel compelled to date when we’re single. But entering into a relationship is a significant commitment, and you should never feel pressured to make that commitment before you’re ready.
Here are a few signs that you may not be ready for a committed relationship.
Poll: Your Last Relationship
When was your last romantic relationship?
1. You’re Still on a Self-Discovery Journey
Do you want to travel and see more of the world? There’s nothing wrong with working on yourself instead of looking for a relationship. Soul-searching is a very worthwhile experience. You can build connections with great people and do things that make you happy.
In fact, when you learn more about yourself, you’ll get to understand better what you need from a future partner. So don’t feel pressured to find someone before you’re ready. Go at your own pace.
2. You Find It Hard to Apologize
Every relationship requires compromise. If you tend to think you’re always right and would hold onto your ego rather than admitting you’re wrong, then you may not be ready for a relationship.
Focus on learning how to move past your ego and owning up to your mistakes. Practice self-reflection and become more self-aware about the decisions you make. Learning to see things from another person’s perspective is also crucial to learning how to compromise and will make it easier to take responsibility for your actions.
3. You Still Think About Your Ex
Just when you think you’re ready to start a new relationship, you find out that the person you’ve been going on dates with is still hung up on their ex. Or maybe you find yourself comparing every date to your ex, and always find the new person lacking. If you’ve recently ended a relationship, don’t feel pressured to jump into a new one. Give yourself some time to reflect and find your equilibrium before starting a new relationship. Yes, it may be lonely when you’ve become used to sharing your life with someone else, but rebound relationships are rarely healthy and are very likely to leave you more disappointed when they end.
Healthy relationships require mutual trust and understanding, and that only happens when both partners are willing to talk about their feelings, dreams, and hopes.
4. You’re Looking For Someone to Save You
As romantic as it may sound to play the role of damsel in distress looking to be saved by a heroic prince, you cannot build a healthy relationship if you’re expecting your partner to pull you out of your misery or offer you an easy way out of whatever problems you’re having. At best, the relationship will only be a distraction from your issues. It is not a cure. In fact, you may even attract toxic partners who like to feed off your misery and codependent behavior.
Be proactive about your life. Don’t wait for someone to save you. Surround yourself with supportive people who will be there for you on the bad days, and learn the skills required to solve your own problems. You’re more capable than you realize and deserve to be with an equal partner, not just someone you need to rely on.
5. You Want Someone to Save
Again, becoming someone’s savior sounds romantic and can make you feel important or needed, but people don’t change. When you want to save someone from their problems or “fix” their bad habits, do you consider them as your equal? Be honest with yourself. It’s more likely that you’ll think of them as a project instead of someone you want to be in a loving relationship with.
You may fall in love with someone you want to save, but ultimately the relationship won’t be the healthiest when you’re continually trying to change someone to better fit your expectations.
Everyone can change, but that change will only come from within themselves. Rarely do people change because of external influence.
6. Your Defenses Are Up All the Time
If you have a tendency to keeping your walls up, you may need to work on learning to be vulnerable first. Healthy relationships require mutual trust and understanding, and that only happens when both partners are willing to talk about their feelings, dreams, and hopes. To be in a relationship means allowing someone to see you for you.
If you’re always holding back, you need to work through your fears and trust issues before committing to a relationship.
7. You're Looking For Your Perfect Soulmate
Walking down the street and seeing other lovey-dovey couples holding hands, do you dream that one day you’ll have a relationship just as perfect and blissful?
When you find someone you share chemistry with is exciting, and it’s perfectly fine to enjoy the initial butterflies-in-the-stomach feeling when you first meet. But real committed long-term relationships require a lot of compromises and effort to last through the years as both partners grow and evolve. Sometimes your soulmate will disappoint you because no one is perfect.
So instead of looking for someone who will fit every point on your list, work on becoming the best version of yourself first.
© 2018 KV Lo