As a coach working with women after divorce, and the best selling author of two books on the subject of how to move on and find new love successfully, I spend a lot of time helping women understand when and how is the best time to start dating again.
When considering if you are ready to start dating again, you need first to look at how you feel when the subject of past relationships comes up. If there are still strong negative emotions, such as anger, and blame, then it will be necessary to work through these first instead of carrying them over to taint your next relationship. If you are carrying issues from your past relationship into the next one, then trust will be very difficult for you.
Having a strong sense of who you are and what you want is necessary to break the patterns that may have led you to date men that turned out to be less than ideal matches for you. In order to find out what these boundaries are for you, you can make 3 master lists of what would be a deal breaker for you, what you would like to have and what you specifically need to have in a relationship.
If you are ready to go into this process with a sense of fun and adventure, the whole thing will seem to flow in a much easier manner. Building confidence and losing any sense of desperation is key to letting go of the things that haven’t been working for you and being able to walk away when this is not what you want.
The ability to spot the redflags and lose the excuses we all have made for men in the past. -thinking that we can fix them- will leave space in your life for the guys that may have some human imperfections, but are someone who you feel you can love and have a healthy and happy relationship with.
Figuring out WHAT exactly you want from a relationship and being clear on boundaries will ensure that this time you can find the love you deserve.
Of course there are still organic ways to find your match. One of my best friends went to a bat mitzvah and was introduced by a mutual friend to the man who would eventually become her husband. So it does happen. Also there are religious groups, meet ups and classes at local town YMCAs as great places to meet new people . However, for the most part, in this day and age especially, some form of online dating is the norm. These give the opportunity to meet people that you would normally never bump into. There are a ton of options. You can really specialize…looking for a particular religion only or want to date farmers exclusively? There are apps for that. Looking to only date in a certain age range…you can do that. Want to get out there and experience it all for free, you can. If just starting out, though maybe stick to the most popular and well known for now, like Bumble, Match.com or EHarmony. They have a vast pool of members and seem to have the most security protocols.
Thank goodness we now live in a time when being single is not seen as quite so outrageous anymore. Infact, Singles are now one of the fastest rising demographics in the world. Which allows for more platonic friendships as there are less ready made couples doing things together. Women in general are able to be more independent (even though we earn less on average than men).
According to Pew Research center, “about three-in-ten U.S. adults (31%) say they are single – that is, not married, living with a partner or in a committed romantic relationship”.
They say that “half of singles say they are not currently looking for a relationship or dates”
The reasons for this are many and varied, and of course the difficulty of dating in the world of Covid has had an impact. However, the rise of divorce in older people, and possibly the relatively recent shift in both sexes looking to spend more time reflecting on how they want to live their lives now, rather than just put up with how things ended up, is possibly a factor.
The most important factor to dating again is knowing that you have put in the self -work to feel confident and know you are and what you want going forward in your life. Not only is confidence sexy, but it is the armour that will protect you from allowing someone into your life that does not value you as highly as you deserve.
If you are still struggling with finding that confidence, I’d love to help. Start by grabbing a copy of my book, Too Scared To Love Again at go.fionaeckersleycoaching.com/book