Before you can find what you want, you first must inventory what you need, so start the New Year off by making a dream list of qualities you want in a potential mate and don't just file it away when you're done. Keep the list in mind whenever you meet someone with potential, instead of solely relying on physical attraction.
Remember: It doesn't matter if a guy looks like George Clooney if he doesn't treat you well.
Be honest with yourself; if you have any residual feelings or anger leftover from your last relationship, don't take it with you into the New Year. See a shrink, vent on your blog, whatever you need to do - just get rid of it!
The likelihood of meeting Mr Right while you're parked in front of your TV watching Heroes is miniscule (unless, of course, your mailman or local pizza delivery boy just happens to be a dead ringer for
). Instead, begin brainstorming places where you might meet available, single men and then call-up some likeminded girlfriends and make plans to go there.
If you are the type of person who has worn the same haircut for the past eight years, it's likely that you've been dating the same type of guy for just as long. If your past relationships haven't panned out the way you hoped, it may be time to shake some things up in your love life. This year, make it your goal to rethink the kind of men you are dating and be more open to pursuing new kinds of relationships. For example, if you are a serial online dater, try dating more offline. (And vice-versa.)
Dating more than one person at a time helps takes that this-has-to-work-out-or-else pressure off of you that can doom many a fledgling, new relationship. So while I certainly don't advocate sleeping with more than one guy; until you get serious, try to date at least three men simultaneously.
For those of you who are thinking "But it's so hard to just meet one!" my advice is to stop being so picky. If a man is into you and treats you well, then put him into your bullpen!
You can't whip yourself into tip-top love shape without dumping any lingering baggage, whether it be bootie calls, friends with benefits, or ex-boyfriends that you can never quite shake. If these so-called relationships don't have the ability to go anywhere, than it's not worth exerting your emotional energy to maintain them. Refrain from dwelling or hooking up with yesterday's bad news and instead rechannel that momentum into meeting someone new.
If you find yourself getting jaded by the whole dating thing, step back a little and take a break. It's okay to not always be on-task. Give yourself a week off, and don't even think about online profiles, taking flattering photos of yourself, awkward first dates, or wondering whether or not he will actually call. (A little me-time is never out of place -- whether you're dating or not.)
Milestone birthdays have the ability to send even the most rational of women into a frenzy, so stop comparing yourself to your friends, sisters, and/or bitchy co-workers, and realize, with as much Zen-like tranquility as you can muster, that everyone is on their own unique path. When it comes to love, there is no right time for it to happen.
Remember that the longest relationship you will ever have is with yourself, so be your own BFF and don't wait until you're in a relationship to eat at that new bistro you've been dying to try or take a trip overseas. Give yourself permission to splurge on something that's totally indulgent and only for you.
Dating is a process, not unlike applying to colleges as a high school senior. Sometimes it can be exciting (OMG, he said yes!) and sometimes disappointing (How could your safety pick reject you!) but no matter what happens this year, remember that it is only the end-result that matters. Whatever your love resolutions are, keep them. Go public with them, if need be. You won't regret it when you are ringing in 2010 with a special someone.
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