YourTango Experts offer nine tips for beating a dating or relationship rut.
Committing to a new course of action or a new frame of mind doesn't mean you meet your relationship goals overnight. Here are YourTango Expert tips on how to stay the course when motivation or confidence starts to lag.
- Maintain a positive attitude. Are you excited to practice new behaviors that will catapult you into success? It is imperative to look at what you are going to accomplish by sticking to your goals. Stay focused on the outcome. Is Positive Thinking Sabotaging Your Love Life?
- Create an action plan that you can track and measure. Research shows that when you actively document what you are going to do, you are more likely to make it happen. For example, appreciation is one of the "sexiest" things that you can do for a relationship, so commit to appreciating your love interest at least two times per day. Check in on a daily basis and ask yourself "Did I accomplish my task?"
- Develop the proper infrastructure to support your goals. Explore relationship guides and websites that will assist you in your strategy. There is no reason to reinvent the wheel, check in with the experts to see what they would recommend. It might be helpful for you to join a support or peer group that will encourage you to stay focused on your ultimate relationship.
- Most people know exactly what they need to do to "rev" up their relationship skills but they don't know the formula to make it happen. Following these three easy steps will assist you in creating the life you deserve. —Carol Juergensen Sheets, Counselor/Therapist
- Exchange coaching services with a friend. Make an agreement to set up a mini-support group on Facebook with friends who are trying to make similar changes in his or her life. Send each other messages each night checking in about your successes and challenges for that day. Joining forces with someone in this way keeps you accountable and also provides you with a cheerleader when your confidence starts to slip. Doing this through social media or email, instead of by phone, is essential because it will keep you focused and will be quick enough to continue daily.
- Acknowledge and celebrate all of your successes along the way, such as posting a new profile online or finally choosing to no longer continue an unhealthy romantic liaison. Practice self-forgiveness regularly so you can go ahead and freely let yourself feel excitement about opening to more love. Remind yourself of other times in your life that you have successfully changed habits, big or small. Connecting back to previous successes helps you see that you do have the ability to change the patterns in your life.
- Remind yourself of all the loving relationships you have had in your life. This helps you realize that you already have many valuable tools for building and maintaining strong relationships, now you can apply those same skills to your love life. 3 Ways To Change Your Bad Dating Attitude —Eve Agee, Ph.D
- Remember to stay honest with yourself. You'll need to continually take an honest look at yourself and decide what you do and don't want out of a relationship, as it is always changing. Although this can feel like a daunting task, it's well worth the effort. It's so easy to stick with the old way of doing things, because fear of the unknown can keep you stuck, but this can make you miserable.
- Make a list of the partner attributes that have made you happy in the past. Be sure to include the things that you liked and disliked about your own interactions, as well as those of your partner. You can continually add or subtract from this list, as your love life progresses and changes. Check back in with this list often to stay clear on what it is you really want. When "He's Not My Type" Ends Up Being "The One" —Joyce A. Thompson, Counselor/Therapist