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Alright here is the much anticipated relationship advice from yours truly, Davia King! I mean lets get real here, most of us in our twenties (all ages really) are in the pursuit for love! It doesn’t matter what phase of a relationship you are at, these tips will help everyone, even the already married for 50 years couple! I want to help you all out here, so from all the learnings I have taken from my 26 awesome years of existence, and all the great books I’ve read, added with a little common sense, I have come up with the following list. This list is going to be ongoing as more wisdom comes to me. Please, if you have anything to add, comment below or if you have a particular question ask away and I will find an answer for you!

1. Be the person you want to date

You can’t expect to get your ideal partner unless you yourself are that as well. Like attracts like so if you like a certain quality of person start to be that person. Make the necessary changes to get there and see who becomes more attracted to you.

2. Be Honest

Be honest in your communication and honest in showing who you really are. Don’t be afraid to show your true colors, the real you has to come out sooner or later so you might as well start off from the get go “being you”, and they can take it or leave it. For more on integrity read this http://quarterlifeprocess.com/be-who-you-say-you-are-there-is-no-truth-except-in-action.

3. Be yourself

If you don’t feel comfortable showing who you really are this is a signal there is something wrong. You can not act for the rest of your life, so you might as well get out now.

4. Date yourself first

Be okay with being alone. Do things by yourself, spend time, and do kind things for yourself. Treat yourself how you want to be treated, or treat yourself how you would treat your lover. Be extra kind to yourself.

5. Expose your secrets

Or better yet don’t have any secrets to begin with! You cannot have an intimate relationship if there are things you keep secret and hidden. If there are parts of yourself that you are ashamed to show then begin to let those things go.  A real and lasting relationship requires transparency.

6. Practice  empathy

Relationships require a lot of compassion. You need to put yourself in their shoes and consider their point of view especially with disagreements or arguments.

7. Throw your selfishness out the window

If you want a love you can’t put yourself first. You need to be considerate and each put in 100%. One of you can’t be a giver and the other the receiver. Both need to be givers.

8. Be faithful

If you cheat you will destroy what you have already established and all the work to get to where you are. Even if your partner never find out, it will affect your feelings for them. You will feel less in love and will not be able to get to the same level of intimacy as before. If they do find out it will be very difficult to restore the trust. For more on sex and being faithful read thishttp://quarterlifeprocess.com/sex-sex-sex.

9. Show and express appreciation

Tell them how grateful you are that they are in your life, tell them how much you love who they are, and acknowledge their qualities and talents.

10. Be vulnerable

You need to be real and not hide your emotions. Let them see how you really feel and be honest. It may seem scary but it will be impossible to have a good relationship if you keep up walls. Plus once you let them in, your partner will feel more comfortable to do the same. One person needs to be courageous enough to start it, might as well be you!

11. Don’t play games!

Games are for players and insecure people! Like I said above in #10 you need to be vulnerable! Games are a waste of time!! If you like someone call them, tell them you are interested.  We are adults so act like it!

12. Rejection is nothing to fear

Rejection is going to happen at some point along the ride so get ready. Everyone goes through it so don’t be surprised when it is your turn. There is nothing to be afraid of the word “no”. If they say “no” just look at it like this, they just did you a favor in not wasting any more of your time! There are many facets to dating and people have different preferences. If one person isn’t into you it doesn’t mean that’s how everyone feels! So get out there and do your thang! Also read http://quarterlifeprocess.com/im-too-afraid-to-ask.

13. Do the small things

The small little acts of service go a long way. Girls really pay attention if a guy is a gentleman and gets the door, or offers to pay. Chivalry is a great quality, don’t let it die! And to the ladies same thing, make them dinner or cookies, a nice back rub can mean all the difference!

14. Give compliments generously

If they look good for Heaven’s sake tell them!

15. Quit all vices

If you are addicted to something you will not be able to have a healthy relationship because you will always love that thing more than your partner, especially pornography. This is the number one destroyer of relationships. It ruins all chance of intimacy because reduces one’s ability to feel and empathize with others.  It also one of the leading causes of divorce. http://quarterlifeprocess.com/xxx

16. Do little surprises of kindness

Leave a love note on their car, or send flowers. It doesn’t take much but this shows you are thinking of them when they are not around.

17. Do not expect anything from your partner

Expectations and agendas throw a hard challenge into relationships. No one is going to be perfect, or mind readers. If certain traits are crucial for you and your partner doesn’t naturally possess them, then they may not be the right partner for you. Make it clear what you anticipate by being in a relationship so you are on the same page. We all come from different backgrounds which mean different expectations on how things “should be”. By being honest in what you desire the better chance you will have at enduring for the long haul.

18. You are nobody’s savior

Do not think you can save your partner. No one can save another, they can only do that for themselves, and YOU can only save YOURSELF. If your partner has some serious issues you will not be able to save them with your love. This is a common misconception that leaves many heartbroken.

19. Don’t kiss on the first date

Wait as long as you can before you get physical. Make sure you are compatible on an emotional level and have a friendship as a foundation first. Too often our emotions get clouded and we think we are in love because of all the fire we feel when we are getting down! If your attraction is real it will remain real for a bit longer, why you get to know one another better. If it fades, then you know you really were not that into them.

20. Guys: don’t be cheap

Pay for the date… even if she offers don’t let her pay. If you don’t have the money then don’t go on expensive dates! Be more creative in where you go. Yogurt or going for a hot chocolate or coffee is very inexpensive and gives you the opportunity to get to know one another better.

21. No one wants to hear about your ex

Don’t talk about your past crappy relationships. If you must, you can talk about qualities you are looking for in a partner that you realized were important to you from your last failed relationship, but you don’t need to go into any details or mention specifics of bad things your ex did. This is what friends are for, not future potential lovers.

22. No one else’s love is going to fulfill you

Many people think if I had someone then I would be happy. If you are not happy with yourself then no one else can do that for you. If you do not love yourself then you will not be able to receive the love of others. Be okay with yourself first and then you will be able to share the love of someone else. http://quarterlifeprocess.com/love-explained

23. Observe how they are with children

This person could very well turn into your future wife or husband and the co-parent of your children. Kids are a huge responsibility and you need someone who is going to help you pull all that weight. If they can’t make the cut then you may need to look for another teammate!

24. Observe them with their family

This will help you understand them more and how they were brought up and the relationship they have with their siblings and parents will show what they view as normal or how they will eventually begin to treat you as the romantic honeymoon phase wears off. If you don’t like what you see, you may want to reconsider.

25. Hang out with their friends

Many people have different sides to who they are. They may be showing you one side of themselves to try and please you, but if you get them with their friends you will get to see more of who they are. If they don’t ever want to bring you around their friends this may be a red flag. They could be hiding something, or be ashamed to be seen with you, meaning they don’t have pure motives to be with you.

26. Have similar beliefs/ points of views

If something is really important to you such as your religion or political position, or some other moral or value, you want to make sure your partner shares in your viewpoint. It may not seem too important while you are single but if you marry that person, you need to take into consideration what they will want to teach your children. Or at some point in the future they may try to change you to be more like them and this could create major conflict.

27. Take a break between relationships

Don’t go jumping from one relationship to the next. Give yourself a minute to regroup and catch your breath. There are a lot of learnings to be made after a relationship ends. This is a great time to reflect on areas you can improve in and what you want your future relationship to be like. If you don’t make any personal changes do you really think the next relationship will be any different? Here is more breaking up advice http://quarterlifeprocess.com/breaking-up-101-the-do%E2%80%99s-and-don%E2%80%99ts

28. Your passive aggressive behavior hurts you!

People are not psychic or mind readers, if you are hurt or mad about something you need to communicate about it. Don’t play stupid games, this will only perpetuate the problem. Be honest and direct.

29. Girls: Don’t put out so quickly

The longer you hold out the more intrigued he will be with you… Respect yourself and he will respect you too.

30. Don’t put all your cards on the table in the first few dates

Keep each other guessing. Don’t brag about all you have done in your life. In fact get the other one talking. Ask them questions about themselves, people love to talk about themselves and they will walk away really liking you because they think you actually cared to learn about them.

31. Your words and actions need to coincide

If you meet a guy and you are acting like a hoochie-mama then he will assume you are one. If you talk about getting crazy with him then he will think that is exactly what he is going to get. Don’t then be surprised if he is mad at you for not putting out after giving him that thought. So act accordingly to how you want to be treated.

32. Looks are not everything

You obviously need to be physically attracted to them but to make a lasting relationship you need the three pillars or attraction. Physical attraction meaning you can see yourself having sex with them, or that urge is there. Emotional attraction meaning you are good friends and can talk and laugh together, enjoying one another’s company. Spiritual attraction meaning they inspire you to be a better person and you can see them being the father or mother of your children.

33. Actions speak louder than words

If you have a bad reputation and can’t seem to get the girl or guy you want you need to show them otherwise. A personal experience will override what others say. Also if you say you love someone and don’t show them through what you do, your words will not hold up.

34. Smile

Smiling makes everyone look more attractive and approachable so show them pearly whites!

35. Beware of Jealousy

If your partner is really jealous this may be a red flag, usually they act this way because they don’t trust you. If they don’t trust you it could mean that they themselves are not trustworthy or they have been hurt in the past and still have not healed from it. In either case it will be very difficult to have a relationship with this person.

36. Girls let the guy chase you

Men want to feel like they are the one in charge. They (usually) don’t like to be pursued. Don’t ask guys out! What you can do if you are interested in a guy is show him you are interested by subtle flirtations. Smile at him, initiate a conversation, or even go so far as organize a group social activity as a way to begin a friendship. From here though let him decide if he wants to pursue you or not. If he doesn’t show any interest by trying to see you again, he probably is not interested. Trust me, it doesn’t take much to show a guy you are interested. Make eye contact and smile or wave, he will know you are interested!

37. Selective flirting

Don’t flirt with everyone you see, especially if the person you like is in the room you need to show them a little extra attention than anyone else so they know you actually are interested and not misinterpret you as just being friendly with everyone.

38. Follow your gut

This is a tricky one, that comes with more experience, it may be hard to recongnize the first few times. If something seems off to you about your partner and you just can’t put your finger on it but something inside yourself says there is something wrong then there probably is. Don’t learn this the hard way and stay in the relationship, fall in love with this person only to find out with time they have some really serious issues. If your gut/intuition/ the Spirit says get out, then get out, even if you have no evidence. We don’t get those feelings for nothing, they are there to help us, so pay attention to how you feel.

39. Prepare for love rather than going out and trying to find it.

Take a look at your past behavior and where that has lead you. If the results are not what you want to experience again then you must make some changes. Make those changes within and then see what happens rather than going out and trying to find the next person to make the same mistake with.

40. Give love and you will receive love.

Notice where your focus lies. Are you more concerned about what you are getting or what you are creating with your lover? Take ownership in your actions and how your behavior contributes to the relationship.

41. Stop the blame game.

Do you want to be right or be happy? When we blame others we become victims. If there is a character flaw about the other person you can’t stand, this is an opportunity for you to see how you are doing the same thing. Take ownership in how you are also doing that to your own life in some way, it could be to him, someone else, your even yourself. Every time you point your finger at someone there is always three fingers pointing right back at you.

42. Develope and maintain  guidelines and ground rules.

This is especially good for dealing with moments of stress. If you have something already set up before you are in a stress moment you both know how to go about it smoothly.

43. Take responsibility for your own feelings.

Each one of us individually is responsibly for how we feel. When we are able to take ownership of that we are no longer victims to others.

44. Don’t try to control your partner.

This will erode your relationship. If they do not already possess the characteristics and behavior patterns you want or you cannot accept parts of who they are. Either you need to come into acceptance of them or end the relationship. When there is control or manipulation this is not a healthy relationship.

45. Be a good listener.

This is one of the biggest complaints of an unhappy relationship. “She/He doesn’t hear me!” Be more focused on hearing and understanding the other person’s viewpoint opposed to making sure your point was heard.

46. Keep your agreements.

For relationships to work there must be trust, one of the quickest ways to lose trust is to break an agreement or commitment. So by keeping your agreements you are showing them they can trust you.

47. Don’t complain about your partner to your friends.

Eventually your drama will be resolved but your friends may not know and still hold onto that information. It is better to not talk bad about them, like the old saying goes, “If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all.”

48. Love is more than a feeling.

Love is a choice. Something you can choose to do. It is an action one does and then continues to redue over and over again.

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