Read these 24 Falling In Love Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Date tips and hundreds of other topics.
Given one wish in life, most people would wish to be loved--to be able to reveal themselves entirely to another human being and be embraced by that acceptance. People who have successfully built an intimate relationship know its power and comfort. But they also know that taking the emotional risks that allow intimacy aren't easy. Built upon the sharing of feelings, intimacy requires consummate trust (Avery, 1989).
Infatuation is instant desire. It's one set of glands calling to another. Love is friendship that has caught fire. It takes root and grows one day at a time. Infatuation is marked by a feeling of insecurity. You are excited and eager, but not genuinely happy. There are nagging doubts, unanswered questions, little bits and pieces about your beloved that you would just as soon not examine too closely. It might spoil the dream. Love is the quiet understanding and mature acceptance of imperfections. It is real. It gives you strength, and grows beyond you--to bolster your beloved. You are warmed by his/her presence, even when he/she is away. Miles do not separate you. You want him near. Be it near or far, you know he/she is yours and you can wait.
The very beginning of a relationship can be intoxicating! You want to spend every moment with each other, and flaws are non-existent. Is this true love? At this very early stage, probably not. You are in the throes of infatuation. True love generally develops over time. So, don't rush into love; enjoy the process! Spend time together in many different situations -- the good times and the bad. And keep your eyes open for any potential areas of concern. This infatuation just may become the real thing.
Infatuation says "We must get married right away. I can't risk losing him/her." Love says "Be patient; don't panic. He/she is yours. Plan your future with confidence." Infatuation has an element of sexual excitement. If you are honest, you will admit it is difficult to be in one another's company unless you are sure it will end in intimacy. Love is the maturation of friendship. You must be friends before you can be lovers.
Infatuation lacks confidence. When he/she's away you wonder if he/she's cheating. Some of you even check. Love means trust. You are calm, secure and unthreatened. He/she feels that trust, and it makes him/her even more trustworthy. Infatuation might lead you to do things you'll regret later, but love never will. Love lifts you up. It makes you look up. It makes you think up. It makes you a better person than you were before.
Dr. Robert Sternberg suggests we look at love as a triangle. If love is equally divided, it includes commitment, intimacy and passion. Commitment, the cognitive component of love, is all that some couples have left after intimacy is lost and the passion has died. Intimacy is the emotional component of love. Some people can bare their souls to each other but have little in the way of commitment or passion. It's a high-level friendship. Passion, the motivational component of love, rules in some love triangles. This might be an affair or a fling in which there is little intimacy and even less commitment. According to Dr. Sternberg, all three components must be present in a long-term, healthy relationship.
Most of us rush through life, speeding from milestone to milestone, without stopping to really enjoy each day. If you are currently dating and hoping to fall in love some day soon, remember to enjoy the dating process and not just view it as a means to an end. Falling in love is so much fun! Many people will tell you it was one of the best times of their lives. If you aren't having a good time dating, take a long look at your current partner. It may be time to move on or to simply have an attitude adjustment!
Eros is the physical, sexual side of love. It is needing and desiring, and wanting the other person physically. The physical, sexual side of love called "Cupid" by the Romans.
Agape is the altruistic, giving, nondemanding side of love. It is an active concern for the life and growth of those whom we love. It is most clearly demonstrated by a parent's love for a child. Agape is an unconditional affirmation of another person. It is a Greek term for spiritual love.
Philos is the love found in deep and enduring friendships. It is also the kind of love described in the biblical injunction "Love thy neighbor as thyself." It is also the greek term for the love found in deep, enduring friendships; a general love of humanity.
To have a love that includes all three is to truly be 'in love.'
Here are a few questions to ask yourself about your love to see if it is enough to marry.
1) Do you enjoy his/her company (really enjoy it)?
2) Are you proud of him/her in company?
3) In your mind how does he/she fare in competition with others?
4) Is he/she personally attractive to you?
5) Is there more than physical attraction?
6) Do you need his/her physical presence to keep you enthusiastic about him/her?
7) Do you love him/her as a person or do you merely like your feelings about him/her?
8) Do you have serious doubts about your love?
9) Do you love him/her in your calmer moments?
10)Are you in love with him/her or what he/she can give you?
11) Over what matters and how frequently do you have conflict?
12) Have you found a satisfactory way to settle conflicts?
13) How do you weather a crisis together?
14) Are you willing to make concessions or do you expect him/her to make them all?
15) Do you forgive, tolerate, accept, overlook, or resent his/her faults?
16) How much do think of his/her welfare--can you set yours aside for his/her?
17) Do you think in terms of WE? How do you think you will feel about him/her five, ten, or fifteen years from now?
18) Do you have common interests and goals?
19) Does he/she wear well with you?
20) Has enough time elapsed for you to tell how you really feel?
21) Are you attracted to him/her for what he/she is or for what you read into him/her?
In his book, Finding the Love of Your Life, Dr. Warren suggests that people who are dating should have a clear mental image of their ideal spouse. He believes it is important to know what you really want. Ask yourself: How important is attraction to me? What type of personality do I like? Does intelligence and ambition matter to me? How important are religious beliefs and character? Asking questions like as part of a conscious process can help you ultimately choose a better marriage partner.
Harry Stack Sullivan, a wise psychologist, once said, "Love begins when a person finds another person's needs to be as important as his own." Use this ideal as a measuring stick for every relationship. Do you care more for your partner's needs than your own? If you can honestly answer yes, then you may be in love! If your partner feels the same, you can both consider yourselves lucky. You have each found your soulmate and, hopefully, you will continue to be happy together.
Saying "I love you" is a simple thing. But relationships advance as love is shown, not just spoken in words. If you want to express love to your dating partner, display your feelings in acts of kindness, going out of your way to show that you care, being patient, and being gentle. Remember, if someone is trying to decide if you really love them, they will probably judge your actions more so than what you say. And showing someone you love them is a pleasure for both of you!
When you love someone, you want to give them everything you have...and sometimes things that you can't afford to give. Remember, there are many things you can give that cost only your time and effort, and those are often the things that mean the most. For example, go out of your way to spend extra time with your partner. Give him/her a small gift for no specific reason. Resolve to say only positive things to your partner for a week. Do something for your partner that he/she is not expecting, or give him/her a compliment in public. These gifts cost little but will be appreciated beyond words.
Not everyone sees love from the same point of view...or even what you could call a positive one. Consider George Bernard Shaw who wrote, "Love is the gross exaggeration of the difference between one person and everybody else." Intrinsic to Shaw's comments is the notion that individuals idealize their romantic partners, seeing virtues in them that may not be apparent to other observers. One of the greatest challenges in dating is taking off those rose-colored glasses before plunging into a serious relationship; however, once the decision feels good and commitments have been made, it is good to have some positive illusions about your mate. Keeping those positive images is one predictor of relationship success.
Society has taught us that sex is the most vital way of expressing our love. However, in his book Finding the Love of Your Life, Dr Warren suggests that, "When sexual expression is not kept in check, the emotional, cognitive and spiritual aspects of the relationship become slaves to the physical desires." It is important to express love in many ways other than sex. Instead, express love with acts of friendship, compassion, kindness and just plain fun! Don't think that a romantic relationship doesn't appreciate a little TLC, too.
Marriage is one of the biggest commitments you make in life. Before you jump in, ask yourself these four important questions. First, "How do I feel about him/her?" Second, "How do I feel about me around him/her?" Third, "How does he/she feel about me?" Fourth, "How does he/she feel about themself around me?"
You should also consider the following questions. a) How does my partner act under stress? b) What do my instincts tell me about this relationship? c) Does my family like him? d) What are the things he does that might bother me in the future? Can I live with these things? e) Do I have any doubts at all about this relationship? If yes, what are they? Write them down, if you can live with these things, marriage might work for you.
What are the relationship qualities that lead to family strength and wellness?
1) A high degree of commitment.
2) Family members appreciate one another and make each other feel good about themselves.
3) Members of strong families spend time talking to one another, listen well and fight fairly.
4) Strong families genuinely enjoy being together and actively structure their lifestyles so that they can spend time together.
5) Members of strong families share a strong value system. Research from the past 40 years shows a positive correlation among religion, marriage happiness, and successful family relationships.
6) Strong families have the ability to deal with crises and problems in a positive way. Such families are resilient and can bounce back from adversity.
How long does it takes to get to know someone well enough to marry them? Is one month long enough? Six months? One year? The specific timeframe is different for everyone, but one thing is universally true: rushing into a relationship makes you much more vulnerable for a bad experience. If you take your time getting to know someone, you will learn about their good and bad points. If you watch their behaviors over time, you will get a feel for how they handle pressure and stress, how they are with children, how they are with their family and how they treat you when you are with their friends. Time will also let you know if you and your partner can trust each other with each other's hearts.
You're dating exclusively, and you have been for a while. Perhaps you've both said the "L" word. Now may be a good time to talk about what you both want out of this relationship. When you become more serious with your boyfriend or girlfriend, take time to talk about your expectations for the relationship and its future. This will help you both stay on the same page and eliminate some rather unpleasant surprises. Talking regularly will bring you both closer together, strengthen your communication skills and hopefully make a good relationship even better.
In our society 90 percent of all people will eventually marry, so many young people feel pressure to marry. Despite this statistic, more and more people are marrying later in life. For example, in 1993 the average woman married at age 24.5 and the average man married at age 26.5. These statistics may not surprise some people, but it is good for younger people to know that there should not be a rush to get married. The most important thing someone dating can do is be prepared and other things will fall into place.
It is very important to define what you want and need in a dating relationship and in marriage. Then look at your resources. Are you ready to marry? Do you have enough dating experience to feel like you are marrying the right person? Gather as much information as you can on the person you are dating. Take your time and make a wise choice. Definitely compare your choices. If you feel like you don't have a choice, step back and evaluate further. Never rush into a serious relationship. Once you have decided to advance your relationship, develop a plan and get started on improving your relationship. Finally, evaluate your decision and make relationship changes if necessary.
Have you ever considered how your family patterns have affected your dating behavior? Consider the following:
How does your family solve problems?
How does your family communicate?
Does your family spend time together?
Is religion important in your family?
How important is commitment to your parents?
How do your parents show appreciation and affection?
Once you have analyzed your family, it is a good idea to write down specific ways that you have been influenced by your family. For example, do you want to show affection the way your parents did or would you like to do it differently? If you want to do it differently, how will you make that happen?
Imagine you and your dating partner haven't seen each other for a month or more. Write a love letter to your partner...write about how you miss him/her, how you enjoyed the last time you were together, or what you plan to do when you see each other again. Begin to express your feelings of love and tenderness for your partner with notes like this on a regular basis. It may be difficult to do this at first, but it will get easier the more you do it. Eventually, you may even think it is fun!
You have made it through 365 days together; it's time to celebrate! You have many options -- some will be more expensive, some less, so consider the following ideas. A more expensive date: an upscale restaurant, a Broadway play, or renting a honeymoon suite. A less expensive date: a restaurant where you can dress up and feel comfortable; a local play (if there is a university close, check the calendar of events); or a drive to a nearby romantic destination (i.e., to a beach or up in the mountains).