To be ready for love is to be ready for a relationship. That’s really the trick to it all.
If you want to love someone the way he or she deserves to be loved, then you need to be capable of being in a relationship the both of you always dreamed of.
It will never be perfect, true, but unless you can make each other happy, what’s the point of even trying?
The question is: How do you know when you’re ready to be in a relationship? How do you know when you’re ready for love?
It’s never too early to start preparing yourself and never too late to adjust your ways – but if you want to love and live the life that only true love is capable of building, then you’re going to need to be ready for it.
Here’s how you know you’re ready:
1. You love yourself.
That’s where it all starts. If you can’t love you, then how can you expect someone else to love you?
We’re all capable of loving ourselves, and until we figure out how, bringing someone else into our lives is setting up for failure.
2. You understand where you're heading in life.
Even if it’s only a general direction, but you know. Being in a relationship is taking someone along for the ride on your personal journey.
If you don’t know where you’re headed, then you’ll likely only get the both of you lost.
3. You’re willing to make compromises.
If you think you’re going to have everything your way, then you are sorely mistaken. Relationships are all about tradeoffs and compromises.
If you aren’t willing to be a little uncomfortable for the person you love, then you’re not ready to love.
4. You are comfortable with pushing yourself outside your comfort zone.
Well, as comfortable as one can be. I mean, it is called a “comfort” zone after all. A better way to put it would probably be that you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone.
The reason I say this is because stepping out of your comfort zone is the only way to grow.
And if you aren’t ready to grow yourself personally, then neither will your love for your partner.
5. You understand the emotions you are feeling aren’t a reliable definition of your love for this person.
Our emotions can be both our best friends and worst enemies – and not because of the large range of emotions we’re capable of experiencing, but because of the fact that the emotions we are experiencing can often be far removed from reality.
6. You understand you’re egocentric.
You understand you can never be fully and entirely selfless. Not understanding this leads to much confusion, too many arguments and too many unnecessarily failed relationships.
7. You understand your partner is his or her own person.
And you respect that fact. You understand there will be times when he or she needs space, when he or she needs to deal with his or her own demons or take a step back in order to get a better grip on life.
8. You understand you aren’t entitled to anyone’s love; you have to work for it.
Falling in love is not the end of the story; it’s only the beginning.
The very beginning. Making the relationship work and allowing the love to survive and grow is no simple matter. It takes attention and maintenance.
9. You’re ready to commit.
You’d think falling in love, and then even loving someone, would make commitment seamless – but it doesn’t.
Sooner than later, you’re going to have to make a decision: Are you ready to dedicate a large part of your life – of you – to this person?
10. You are capable of trusting the person you love, no matter what comes up in the relationship.
Keep in mind that there will be times when it’s going to be difficult to trust your partner. It won’t always be easy.
There will be times when you have to have faith in his or her love for you and in the relationship the two of you have, ignoring how wrong things may very well go.
11. You’re not scared by the thought of spending your life with someone.
It’s OK to be nervous or worried, but you can’t be afraid. Being afraid of spending your life with someone is a clear sign you’re not ready.
Be sure you understand the reality ahead of you and are prepared to live it.
12. You understand being attracted to other people doesn’t mean you love your partner any less.
You’re a human being, an animal. Animals are born to breed – you’re going to be turned on by other people.
If you aren’t, then you may need to see a doctor, or at the very least, rethink your diet and exercise regimen.
13. If your partner expects you to keep it in your pants, you will.
You can look, but you can’t touch. Unless, of course, that’s part of the deal. Personally, monogamy is my life choice, but hey… do you. But only as long as you both understand what the other expects of you.
14. You’re not going to abandon your partner at the first sign of trouble.
The problem many seem to encounter when in love is the urge to believe you’re falling out of love when the seas start to get a little rough.
Let me make something clear: Things will always get a little rough. That doesn’t mean it has to be rough forever. It’s up to the two of you to figure things out and make things work.
15. You’re willing to forgive, but you understand your limits.
People make mistakes – that doesn’t change when we’re in love. If anything, all the emotions flowing through us make it more likely for us to make mistakes; however, not all mistakes are mistakes.
And no one can be forgiven indefinitely. If you need to continuously be forgiving someone, then he or she most likely doesn’t deserve forgiveness.
16. You don’t mind sharing your fries.
Seriously. You know your partner isn’t going to order his or her own, but he or she will eat yours. And you need to be OK with it.
Same goes for everything else you own; your partner is going to most likely use it.
Your partner will share it, but he or she may take the bigger half. For the love to last, however, your partner also needs to be the kind of person who is willing to give you the bigger half.
17. You understand there is no such thing as forever, so you’re going to enjoy every second you can, while you still can.
Sometimes we get so comfortable and “used to” the relationships we have with people that we don’t understand how much they mean to us. Not until, of course, we lose them.
What most people fail to comprehend is regardless of what happens, regardless of whether or not you walk out on your partner or you drive him or her out of your life, you will one day lose that person.
Your loss is already guaranteed; there’s absolutely no way around it.
You will lose the love of your life one day, and that day is going to come a lot sooner than you think.
If that doesn’t make you want to spend what little time you have with your partner, then don’t pretend like you’re capable of loving him or her – because you’re not.