People seem to be in a big hurry these days. Rush rush rush. We want fast service. We want our food brought to us immediately. We want instant connections for our technology. We know what we want and we want it NOW. Unfortunately, that same impatience can carry over into our dating lives as well, and the results can be disastrous.
Usually when we hear someone talking about patience in dating the discussion is about waiting to have sex until marriage. I think most people have already made up their mind about that issue, though. Nothing I write would probably have much affect on those opinions. So I am going to point out a few other areas where waiting could help and even save your relationship:
1) Wait a while before you start showering her with compliments. A compliment every now and then is fine, but too many too early can make you look like a kiss-up. Even if the compliments are sincere, a try-hard approach rarely works out well. So keep the compliments light when you first start dating and look for a good connection instead of a challenge.
2) Wait a while before you buy her presents. Maybe I can win her over if I buy her this awesome bracelet or something else really expensive! Ugh. Go to the back of the line. Do yourself a favor and get the idea of trying to buy her affection out of your mind. Even if it worked, what kind of girl would go for that anyway? If you have been dating for a few months and you want to buy her something nice, feel free. Just don't try to get something started with her by trying to win her heart with your checkbook. Good grief.
3) Wait a while before asking her out. Friends first? Are you crazy? I need a girlfriend NOW! AHHHH! Take it easy. I am all for being a go-getter, but sometimes patience is best. Unless you just have no choice but to lay all of your cards on the table, being friends first can be a great way to build a strong foundation for something romantic later.
4) Wait a while before telling her you love her. I can see it now--people grabbing their pitchforks and torches ready to come after me for this one. But hold on a second. We have somehow come to expect the "I love you" and "I love you" return to happen almost immediately in relationships these days. Stop faking it. You are better off waiting until you really mean it.
5) Wait a while before introducing your kids to your new girlfriend. I am probably preaching to the choir here, but single parents are impacting more than just themselves and their dating partner. The longer you wait to be sure that you have something long-term going, the better chance you have of not hurting your children.
6) Wait a while before you move in together. Moving in together and playing marriage to see how it goes may sound like a great idea, but studies have shown that this actually hurts your chances of staying together. If living together is an absolute must for you, at least take the decision seriously and don't rush into it. You'll be glad later.
7) Wait a while before asking her to marry you. I know that you may be 100% sure after dating for two months that you have found your soul mate. That's awesome. Even so, take a little while and get past that early pretending stage. A lot of people can act sweet for a while until the true person really shows up. At least a year of dating should get past that problem for most people.
Like the saying goes, "patience is a virtue." Being patient at every stage of a dating relationship will almost always be beneficial. Don't mess up something potentially great just because you got antsy. Just wait. I realize that sometimes there are situations in which you can't afford to be patient. Trust me, I get that. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. In most cases, though, patience will pay off and you will find and keep the best relationship possible.
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