Are you wondering am I ready for a relationship or not? Sometimes it’s hard to know if you’re sufficiently healed from past relationships and in a positive emotional space to set out to meet someone new.
Knowing that you are ready for a relationship means that you have reached a place of maturity and recovery in yourself that allows you to let another person into your heart fully.
Here are a few important pointers for you to consider when you’re trying to figure out if you’re ready for a relationship or not.
Being Comfortable on Your Own
People tend to overlook the importance of being alone. Knowing you’re ready to start again means feeling comfortable on your own. You have the ability to be content with yourself and enjoy your own company.
It helps to have an established set of interests, hobbies and your own social circle. Being happy in your own company is a fabulous place to be because it means that you’ve developed a healthy set of interests and a life that you can share with another because your relationship with yourself is so strong.
Choosing to be in a relationship only because you don’t want to be alone, or you don’t like being single, will inevitably mean you enter into relationships that are unhealthy because you aren’t happy or satisfied with yourself.
It could also be destructive to your partner as you seek out relationships to fulfill an empty need in yourself. You will always be at your strongest in a relationship when you feel whole on your own. A valuable question to ask yourself is whether your feelings for the person you are with are greater than your fear of being alone.
Knowing How to Establish Boundaries
Having firm boundaries creates a framework for you to assert your needs, desires and interests. It also means that you can have the ability to recognize and appreciate a partner who is whole and can exist separately.
Knowing that a partner will enrich your current life and not complete it, is a definitive measure of knowing you are ready for a relationship. Good measures of how to establish whether you are ready for a new relationship is to check how positive you feel about yourself and how firmly your own identity is established.
Ask yourself whether you draw your identity and affirmation from dating others. Does your world revolve around your partner or are you able to engage in activities and friendships separate from your partner?
A fundamental and often overlooked question to ask is what your relationship goals are in wanting a new relationship. Do you want a committed relationship or are you looking to have fun? How high is your EQ? By this I mean, how well do you know yourself? Do you have the ability to be open and direct about your needs with a partner?
Check that there are no issues that scare you or that you are avoiding. Hidden issues tend to creep up unexpectedly and sabotage relationships. Ensure you’re aware of your own behaviors that could negatively impact a new relationship. Patterns like addictions are unhealthy and make you a selfish partner. Be ready to put your partner’s interests ahead of yours. This entails compromise and the ability to make some sacrifices to accommodate your partner.
Emotional intelligence means that you don’t expect your partner to be perfect. The ability to accept important people in your life and not have a checklist that needs to be adhered to allows for your partner to exist as an individual and not try to contort themselves into an unhealthy version of what you are asking of them.
Understanding your own challenges and stumbling blocks and then working through these puts you in the place of being able to build a healthy relationship from the foundation up.
You’re Over Your Ex
You’re not ready for a new relationship if you’re bringing the shadows of an ex and past relationship into a new one. We all carry memories and some scars of previous relationships, however it’s important that you have time alone to reflect and understand what you learned from your last relationship, to bring a richer understanding into the next one.
People who jump from one relationship to the next rarely have the opportunity for self- reflection and internal growth, they fill the gap with someone new. Take the time you need to learn and heal before moving on to the next one.
Assess Your Priorities
If you’re a workaholic or a sports fanatic, an obsessive shopper or a big party animal, check if those priorities will serve you well in a new relationship. When we spend a lot of time alone, we have no one to consider when pursuing our interests. Consider what kind of life you would like to have outside of interests which may have become distractions.
We all go through periods in our life that are filled with excess, however, you are ready for a relationship when you crave balance and understand that a successful life is a well-rounded life. Having a career, friends, finding time for family, a romantic relationship with a partner, incorporating fun, travel, and most of all, living life to the full.
When this type of balance is important to you and you really understand the connection between happiness and the health of your personal relationships, then you’re ready for a relationship.
You Want to Share Your Life
As human beings we all crave companionship and even more so during this unprecedented time of Covid-19. While this need for companionship will be stronger in some people than others, the reality is that as we age, we want to build a life and we want to do it with another person.
You will know when you’re really ready for a serious relationship when you’re yearning for a partner, to fulfill all aspects of your life more so then the freedom of being alone.
When weighing up am I ready for a relationship or not, check whether you are genuinely emotionally in a balanced space and what type of relationship you do want. Ensure you are over previous relationships. Have a clear idea of where your life is headed and what you want from life. Be open and flexible enough to accommodate change and cultivate a sense of adventure.
Relationships are important and successful romantic relationships will be big factors contributing to your happiness, but the most important relationship is always the one with yourself.
If you aren’t happy within yourself, then there’s no point in getting anybody else involved just yet. Be patient and kind with yourself, and let yourself heal and grow to the place where you can build a beautiful relationship together with someone special.
Louisa Niehaus is a psychotherapist and relationship expert specializing in love, the second time around. You can find out more about her on her website.
Her areas of specialization are in midlife transition, working through old patterns of behavior and identifying and attracting the love you need. Schedule a session with Louisa to see how you can grow with her, or learn more about her on Facebook.