Learn how to go from talking to dating to a relationship with this relationship guide
It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman, we’ve all been there. You’ve been seeing someone for a few months, everything is going well and you want to take the relationship to the next level. You need to go from casual dating to a relationship.
But you’re nervous. How do you know if your partner wants the same thing? Do you risk a good thing by getting too close for the hope of a stronger relationship?
Follow these tips to help make the decision whether you’re ready to go from dating to a relationship and how to take the leap.
What’s the Difference Between Dating and a Relationship?
Before talking about going from dating to a relationship, do you even know what it means?
For some people, the two words may have pretty much the same meaning. For others, they’re miles apart in intimacy and trust.
Dating is like window shopping. You go to the mall and check out some things but there is no requirement that you buy something. You can search around all day for something that is exactly what you want. Sure, some of the stores will be upset you didn’t buy from them, but in the end, you have to do what is best for you.
A relationship on the other hand is a lot more commitment. Maybe dating isn’t exactly like window shopping. There are levels of commitment in dating and going into it with the attitude that it’s all about you is just going to push a potential partner away. That said, there are undeniable differences when you’re in a relationship.
Being in a relationship means you are both making the commitment to build a stronger bond. It’s not all about the present but that you both are thinking about the future. You are giving up a little personal space and letting that person into a closer circle. Going from dating to a relationship means you are not going to be seeing other people romantically, you just can’t commit to being closer to someone while also seeing someone else.
This whole relationship transition has to start with open communication, hopefully developed when you went from talking to dating. You both have to be on the same page about the potential relationship. The biggest problem with new relationships is that one person just wasn’t there yet and feels forced into the commitment.
Still not sure if you’re ready? Check out these top relationship books for 2017 that will help you talk to your partner and get closer together.
Tips on Going From Dating To A Relationship
Now we get into the fun part of the discussion. What are some tips or signs that you should go from dating to a relationship? How do you know if you’re both ready to take the relationship to the next level or if you should give it more time?
You Want to Talk to Them First: They have gone beyond a casual date to someone with whom you want to share more and you think of them first when you have news. Your conversations go from superficial stuff like small talk and you start talking about long-term personal plans. Besides your desire to share more with them, you’ll know they want to go to the next level when they start sharing more with you.
If you offer up something personal but they never reciprocate with personal details then you might not be ready to move to a relationship. If you find that they are waiting to share the news of their day with you until you meet up rather than immediately on the phone, they may not feel the same way.
You aren’t Window Shopping as Much: We’ll all driven by some basic urges and its natural to notice a beautiful person across the room. They say love is blind though and there is some truth to it. Being really into someone will mean you don’t notice the physical appearances in other people quite as much.
This doesn’t mean someone won’t catch your eye but just that those personal traits you care about in your partner will start to mean more than other people’s physical beauty. Take a look around the room at the next party. Do you find yourself looking at attractive people and saying…”meh,” or do you still want to meet them?
You can’t be in a relationship and still wonder romantically about other people.
You Spend Weekends Together: If you find yourself spending the weekends together, then you know you are ready to go from dating to a relationship. On top of this, if it is “assumed” by either one of you that you are spending Saturday night together without officially having plans, then you are ready for a relationship.
This is part of the idea that you would rather be with them than anyone else. It’s also one of the easiest signals that you’re ready for a relationship.
You’ve Got More than a Toothbrush at Their Place: This is more than just accidently leaving clothes but more personal. It’s not really a sign in itself but part of the idea that you are spending a lot of time together and are comfortable with them having possession of your things.
One way to test this is to offer some type of furniture or artwork from your home. Don’t make it like a gift but something like, “I thought this would look better on your wall than on mine and that you might like it.” If they cringe at taking it then they may not be ready to share their personal space with you.
Using “We” Instead Of “Me”: This is another subtle sign that you are ready to move into a relationship with someone. Many times, we will start talking about “we” instead of just using “me”. For example, your friends might ask you what you are up to next weekend. If you respond “we”, as in you are your partner, then you are ready to go from dating to a relationship. But if you say “I”, then you aren’t thinking about the other person and should continue to date.
If you are dating someone and when the two of you leave messages on the phone for each other you say “it’s me” as opposed to your name, then you are ready to go from dating to a relationship. Again, this is a subtle thing. Many times you won’t consciously realize that you are doing it, which is why it is such a great sign to take note of.
How To Go From Dating To A Relationship
OK, so you’ve realized that you want to have a relationship with this person and you’re pretty sure they feel the same way.
The question is how do you get there?
If you’ve noticed quite a few of the clues above then it should be obvious that you’re ready to start a real relationship. If you aren’t sure then try giving them more of your attention and requiring more of theirs. If they back away from the attention then you might not be ready for a closer relationship.
The ultimate decider is meeting their family or taking them to meet your family. This is a great step to take before you come straight out and talk about taking it from casual dating to a relationship.
Of course, that’s where it all has to start. Don’t assume you are in a relationship without talking to your partner. You don’t have to use any of the lame buzzwords that can scare people but just let them know that you care about them and wonder if you’re ready for more than just dating.
While it can be awkward, it is the best way to make sure that you two are on the same page when it comes to your relationship. After all, communication is a huge part of a relationship, so you better learn how to have conversations with your partner.
As I mentioned above with all of the signs, if you are checking off those boxes, then odds are they feel the same way. Be confident in taking your relationship to the next level and be honest with your partner.
Final Thoughts on Taking Your Relationship to the Next Level
Going from dating to a relationship doesn’t have to be hard. As long as you see the signs that the two of you are ready to be in a committed relationship with each other and enjoy spending time with each other, most of the time it will all just happen naturally. Try giving them more of your time and ‘meet the parents’ and then be confident that you’re on the same page.
Once you go from dating to a relationship, a new door opens and you and your partner can further develop the bond that has already begun. The next step is trying to figure out when to say “I love you”.