How to Go From Casual Dating to a Serious Relationship

How to Go From Casual Dating to a Serious RelationshipDo you know what a “relationship bomb” is? Even if you’ve never heard that phrase, you’ve probably dealt with a few.

A relationship bomb is a situation where things could easily blow up in your face. Here’s a common relationship bomb: the dreaded state-of-the-relationship talk.

There are times when talking to your man about the future of your romance can be a tricky business. If you approach the topic the wrong way, BOOM!

When a relationship bomb explodes, you’ll almost always end up feeling a sense of disconnection from your partner. Sometimes a bad talk about the future will even bring the relationship to a grinding halt.

That’s no good.

But you can’t just ignore this particular relationship bomb, either. If you need to talk to your guy about where the relationship is headed, you can’t just avoid the conversation.

Ticking bombs that get ignored have a tendency to explode. It’s better to do something proactive.

Fortunately, I’ve uncovered some amazing tips from a literal explosives expert.

Recently, I read about an interview with a Navy EOD (Explosive Ordnance Disposal) professional. [i] Naval EODs defuse bombs for a living. How do they do that without getting blown up in the process?

They follow three simple rules. And the great thing about those rules is they work just as well for relationships as they do in combat.

Continue reading

The Simple Mind Hack that Can Change the Way You Date

The Simple Mind Hack that Can Change the Way You DateHow do you feel about dating?

Depending on when you’re asked that question, your answer might change dramatically. That’s because dating is a mix of wildly different experiences.

Sometimes it’s fun, like a first kiss. Sometimes it’s intense, like the first real fight. Sometimes it’s lighthearted and carefree. And sometimes it’s nerve racking and exhausting.

Dating is all of those things and more because dating is an EMOTIONAL experience.

Which is good! One of the things that makes romance so fulfilling is the impact it has on our emotions. But there’s a downside.

When emotions run high, it’s much harder to make smart choices. Just think about the last time you were really angry. Were you at the top of your game, 100% rational?

Nope, probably not. That’s okay. Me, neither.

Any emotion, from anger to exhilaration, can muddy the waters. When that happens, a lot of people, both men and women, find themselves making poor decisions.

But there’s a way to surf the emotional wave AND make good choices. It’s a simple mind hack that’s been proven to have several positive effects on decision making.[i]

All you have to do is create what’s known as “psychological distance.” Psychological distance means creating distance from yourself within your mind.

There are a couple of easy ways to do that. You can imagine yourself as a completely different person. For example, instead of an American professional woman, you could imagine that you’re a sheep herder in another part of the world.

Another way is to imagine yourself far off in the future. Like, decades from now.

Either technique will give you some mental breathing room and allow you to see your present life and relationship very differently. As a result, you’ll have a clearer picture of your options.

Below are three times you can use this simple-yet-powerful strategy.

Continue reading

How to Deal With That ONE THING That’s Not Working In Your Relationship

dealing with relationship problemsFill in the blank in the following sentence. Ready?

Everything about my current relationship is great…except _______________________.

What did you put in the blank?

It sucks when almost everything about a dating relationship works. It is because it feels like you are just so close to heaven on earth… If it wasn’t for that one annoying issue.

And yet, it’s extremely common. Often, even really solid couples have one or two core complaints about each other.

But as common as this is, most folks don’t know how to get over the hump. And, ironically, when everything else seems to fit, it makes that one thing that doesn’t fit really stick out.

Like a thorn in your side.

Recently, I came across some good advice for dealing with this kind of thing. In a constant quest to bring you the very best relationship tips, I read a lot – everything from psychological journals to the kinds of magazines you find in supermarkets.

This little tidbit was in an article in Glamour. It was specifically about sex, but the principle can be applied to anything that’s holding you back.

Check out this quote:

“According to sex therapist Vanessa Marin, [getting past that one thing] all comes down to how willing you and your partner are to work on it. If you both are, there’s usually something that can be done. And if one of you isn’t, your relationship probably has bigger problems than sex.”[i]

That’s dead-on.

As long as you and your guy can communicate effectively, no single issue should undo your whole relationship.

So, the real question is when something’s holding your relationship back, how do the two of you work through it?

It’s not too tough as long as you have a good strategy, and the following pointers can help.

Continue reading

The Perfect Date for Your Long Term Relationship

Dating In A Long Term RelationshipAre your dates beginning to feel a little stale and predictable?

It happens. Dinner and a movie is exciting the first time you share it with someone new, but it can become ho-hum after a while.

So what do you do to inject some energy and passion into your dates? I recommend you make a date out of the process of searching for “the perfect date.” Let me explain.

Here’s how you do it.

Start with a conversation. You and your partner go out to dinner with one item on the agenda. You’re going to engineer the most exciting, unforgettable date you can imagine.

And I mean that. Let your imagination run wild. This is a brainstorming conversation. No idea is too outlandish. Don’t worry about being realistic or sticking to a budget. If your perfect date would include a flight to Paris, that goes on the list. Silly things are okay, too. Still kind of fond of those Friday nights in middle school you spent at the roller skating rink? Put that on the list!

Don’t be shy during the brainstorming session, and don’t worry about sounding selfish. Even if there are things you want to do that you know your partner hates, list them. Later on the two of you can work together to find creative compromises. The goal during this first conversation is to get it all out there.

Continue reading