5 Things To Look For In A Partner And In Yourself
Why are we so bad for each other? Have you ever wondered why relationships you've gotten into have ended so badly? Conversely, perhaps the opposite is true; relationships ends with no fanfare, fading away without a whimper. Wish you could evaluate a new prospect earlier in the dating cycle and cut your losses and run if it doesn't look good?
Here are a few things to look for in anyone you date:
Does your date hide part of their life from you or others? See if your date compartmentalizes their life.
- For example is work kept secret from personal life or vice versa?
- Are there aspects of this person's life that they keep from you for reasons not reasonably explained?
Transparency is one of the keys to a happy relationship. People that won't let you in to all parts of their life are hiding something...
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Unless your date is a secret agent be wary if he/she is secretive about certain parts of their life.
Does your date make themselves emotionally available and emotionally vulnerable once they get to know you or do you see one of these types of behavior?
- "moods" that cause them to withdraw for significant periods of time
- Getting angry to avoid talking about difficult emotions
- Emotionally shutting down or getting distant to avoid talking about difficult things.
Is your date a caring person even when they aren't being watched? Is your date a person who automatically moves towards a compassionate response even though nobody will notice?
- Pay attention to how they respond to the less fortunate you see on the street.
- Notice how they talk about people at work or acquaintances that are struggling with a personal issue.
- Are they critical and derisive or are they compassionate and able to recognize that the person is suffering and not be judgemental.
Date people who have a kind heart.
Even if your date doesn't agree with you is he or she able to tell you he/she sees things differently without trying to make you feel like you are wrong or stupid?
- Is your date a positive force in your life?
- Are you both able to disagree without having to make each other wrong?
- Are you both able to recognize that two different points of view are clashing but that neither one of you is wrong?
Look to date those who are unconditionally accepting even when they don't agree. This doesn't mean that your date might not try to talk you into their point of view but it does mean they are not trying to make you wrong or stupid.
Does your date takes responsibility for their lives?
- Is every bad thing that happened to them always someone else's fault?
- Can your date admit partial responsibility for failed relationships in their past or does he/she blame x-partner for all of the problems?
Every relationship failure has fault on both sides. Make sure your date doesn't blame others for all of their struggles. Blaming everything that happens onto others is a victim mentality. Don't date victims.
Look for these qualities in your dates and you should be able to filter out those who are not genuine but are instead putting on a good show in an attempt to win your favor. Be honest with yourself about what you notice and then be honest with your date. Pretending a problem is not a problem just to keep from hurting someone's feelings only creates more pain later. Don't make promises you can't keep and if you change your mind about something be willing to say so in a kind and constructive way.
Of course if you have a history of doing any of the behaviors mentioned above, work on yourself to remove those destructive behaviors from your life. Find a good coach or psychotherapist to help you move beyond dysfunctional relationship behavior.
This article was originally published at yourdenvercounseling.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.