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How to Keep from Moving Too Fast in a New Relationship

moving too fast in a relationship

If you’re a creature of fast-paced habit but want to learn to take it slow, here are 7 tips to keep from moving too fast in a new relationship.

I am extremely guilty of moving way too fast in a new relationship. Sometimes I just can’t help it! I fall fast and I fall hard, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to let anyone stop me.

Well, until recently, that is. And I’ll tell you why.

Most of the guys I’ve dated have felt the same way I have and have been eager to jump right in. But those relationships have all gone down in flames because we skipped all of the important stuff and went right to being “in love,” which I now realize, we weren’t.

So why have I decided to stop myself from moving too fast in a new relationship?

Because relationships need to be built. They can’t just be thrown together and expected to last. And to be completely honest, I want to make it last with this guy. Not that I haven’t wanted that with previous boyfriends, but he is different. I want to take all the time I can and get to know who he really is as a person before deciding to invest all of my time in him.

Just like you would wade through the water at the bottom of a cliff to test the depth before jumping off into it, you should always take the time to “test the waters” with someone new before diving in.

Slow your roll

How do you go about preventing yourself from moving too fast in a new relationship? Here are a few ways to slow down the process.

#1 Go on dates. This may sound kind of silly—of course you’ll go on dates with someone new! But I mean real dates. Go out to a restaurant, go out in public, walk the streets, just do anything but sit in your apartment and “watch movies,” because we all know where that leads.

When you actually go out on dates with people in public, you are forced to talk to each other and get to know one another’s quirks. You have the opportunity to talk about your passions and interests instead of ignoring what’s on Netflix and finding interest in each other’s mouths.

Go on dates, and go on a lot of them. Avoid spending too much time alone that can lead to things that are too advanced for your liking. [Read: Top 50 amazing first date ideas to wow your date!]

#2 Don’t see them too often. I used to want to see a new guy *as in, we just started talking a few weeks ago* every day. Anytime I got the chance, I would be running to his door. Trust me, don’t do it. Seeing him too frequently will lead to both of you feeling like you have to engage in things prematurely.

There’s nothing that will speed up a relationship more than too much time spent together too soon. Slowly progress into seeing each other more and more. Start with one date a week, then work up to seeing each other more frequently from there.

#3 Set your boundaries ahead of time. Not only should you make boundaries for yourself, but you should also make the other person aware of them in the best way you can.

When things seem to be getting too close for comfort, subtly let them know that you’re not there yet. It will help the both of you slow things down if everyone is aware of the boundaries that are in place.

This will not only stop yourself from pursuing anything more, but it will also help your partner not to pressure you into too much. [Read: 10 tips for setting boundaries with difficult people]

#4 Be open about your intentions. Far too many times, I have been rushed into a relationship purely to see how much they like me. I would basically test the limits, because I was unsure of whether or not they would go there and whether or not they liked me enough to actually date me.

Just be open about it. A simple conversation about how you are feeling will clear the air and put you both at ease. It’s also a great way to find out just how far the relationship will go. Do you feel the same? Is there an uneven amount of feelings between you two?

This will help you realize that you don’t have to rush into things if both of you are feeling the same way about one another. It will also help you set yourself back a bit if you realize that maybe they aren’t at the same level as you are, so you shouldn’t push anything. [Read: A guide on effective communication in a relationship]

#5 Reflect on how you really feel about them. It’s one thing to talk to each other about how you’re feeling, but it’s another to talk to yourself—and yes, I am giving you permission to talk to yourself without feeling like a schizophrenic.

How do you really feel about them? Do you really find them to be compatible with you, or do you just think they’re really hot and want to strip them down for a good time?

If you realize that you really care about them and can see a future together, then what’s the rush? Let things happen naturally and slowly. Rushing into things before thinking about them can lead to regret and, ultimately, heartache. If you want to be with this person long-term, you’ve got all the time you need for everything else. [Read: 50 relationship questions to test your compatibility]

#6 Take some time away. Nothing will slow the progression of a relationship faster than being apart. Not only will you halt any forward motion, but you will also have time to reflect on how you feel about the other person.

Always being around someone you’re attracted to can cloud your mind and judgement, making it easier to slip into a relationship—or their bed sheets. With time apart, you can also get a feel for how they behave when you’re not around, something that is very important when heading into a new relationship. [Read: Does absence make the heart grow fonder or wander?]

#7 Make sure the relationship is something you want. Even though you really like someone and want to jump into their arms and have them carry you off into the sunset, you should always be sure that a new relationship is something you want and/or have time for.

The only way to test this out is to move slowly. Ease your way into things and feel out if it’s the right thing for you. They may require more of your attention than you can give. Plunging into a new relationship before knowing that can lead to arguments and pain on both sides.

[Read: 18 tips to fall in love slowly like you’re in a fairytale]

Overall, the best way to stop yourself from moving too fast in a new relationship is to simply get to know the other person as best you can before confirming that you officially want to be with them. Moving too fast can cause unwanted heartache and pain, so keep these things in mind when you find your next crush!

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Bella Pope
Bella Pope
Bella is a lifestyle writer, cheese enthusiast (Wisconsin native over here) and fantasy adventure author-in-progress who enjoys all things love, dog, p...

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One thought on “How to Keep from Moving Too Fast in a New Relationship”

  1. tre says:

    My ex and I broke up about a year ago and initiated no contact about 9 or 10 months ago. We tried to stay friends but obviously that didn’t work, particularly when she started seeing someone else. We were together for nine years, started dating in high school. So over the course of that time, I’ve been pretty depressed and lonely, haven’t really had friends of my own or anything.. I mostly work and chat online with online friends I know in a chatroom. I’m no stranger to feelings of depression and anxiety, I live with my parents, I ended up dropping out of college and now I’m feeling like I have no direction in life. A week ago I would have been giving this sob story about how no one could ever love me and that I’m just too messed up or whatever, but then, a week ago, I met this girl on OKC and sparks flew pretty much immediately. All of that being said, I have no idea how this dating thing works. I know what I’ve seen from others and what I’ve seen on TV/movies, but aside from that, this is all confusing. All of the following takes place over the course of the last week. She was the first girl to ever seriously engaged me on OKC. Other girls would just kind of lazily answer my questions and then not ask me anything, so honestly I was at a point where I was ready to give up. Then I saw this girl visited my prof, thought I’d shoot her a message and before I knew it we were hitting it off really well, had a lot in common, Etc. Turns out she is also dealing with having recently broken up with an ex and having trouble with figuring her life out and all this, so I could really relate. She thought I was really sweet and said she was also getting tired of OKC because all the men just wanted to proposition her for sex, and that she is ok with sex but only with someone she connects with deeply. I was okay with this because, while I definitely like sex it’s not my end game, I want someone to spend time with first and foremost. We stayed up all night chatting on FB and decided to meet the next day, and I went to bed feeling like I was on cloud 9. The next day we met, and things were awkward at first because I’m socially anxious, but after about an hour things started to cool down and I could really be myself around her.. or more of myself anyway. I liked her a lot, we had a lot in common and I just remember feeling like I finally had someone to spend time with. I ended up making the first move and putting my arm around her on a couch in the cafe where we ended up just talking. She seemed fine with this. She was sweet and funny and has this intoxicating smile and I could tell I was falling hard already, but tried to pace myself because I know I’ve been single and alone for so long and don’t want to rush anything. Later that night we went to her place where we watched a movie and we cuddled with each other and held hands, and at the end of the night I kissed her before I left. I got nervous and asked if we’re moving too fast and she shook her head no and said she didn’t think so, so I left it at that. The next night we watched another movie together and did the same – held each other, held hands, kissed a little – and then when it was over we talked for an hour or so and I felt really connected to her, even more so than before because of our shared experiences. We’re both from sort of broken homes and have family issues, we’ve both battled with feeling lonely and depressed and had relationship troubles, which is a new feeling for me because my ex really just didn’t understand any of that. Her family was more or less in-tact and she just didn’t have a lot of experience with depression/anxiety related things and really didn’t know how to deal with it most the time. Talking with someone who could relate to me on that front felt awesome, and even aside from all that our personalities just clicked. It’s not often I feel comfortable with someone new so quickly.. I always imagined myself going on a number of dates before I connected with someone this well, or maybe going on dates and not connecting at all and falling out.. but I’d seen this girl for two nights and I already almost felt like I’d known her all my life. So, we talked and decided that we wanted to be exclusive with each other and disable our OKCs and be boyfriend and girlfriend. We talked about if we’re ready for that and decided we thought we were. After that we fooled around a little and I found that on top of everything else she was incredibly sexy. We didn’t quite go all the way because I experienced a bit of stage-fright having not been sexually active in 9 months and all. She was incredibly sweet about it and said it didn’t matter and that she still had fun, and that was a huge relief. We both kind of agreed that we had plenty of time to figure the sex out, but right now we just really liked being together, whatever we ended up doing. For our next date I wanted to plan out something for us to do that wasn’t just us watching movies or whatever, so we had a picnic in the park and talked and then walked/jogged around the lake and talked some more. It was a really nice evening and I enjoyed it a lot. Then we went home and decided to smoke weed, which is also something I haven’t done in a very long time. I made the decision to only smoke a little because I still had to come home to my dad who would very much not approve and didn’t want to be obviously high. Anyway, we got high and listened to tunes and fooled around a little more, and this time it was even sexier than before.. but we still didn’t quite make it to home base because I kept getting interrupted by paranoia about my dad finding out I was smoking with this girl. But I got the sense it just didn’t matter to her all that much, that she really just enjoyed my company either way, so again I felt relieved because I feel the same way. It will happen eventually, and neither of us are really in any hurry I don’t think. And that brings us to yesterday, where really we just went to the lake to walk around again, sat in my car and listened to music, and then I met her mom briefly and went home. Nothing too eventful, but still a good time overall. So, anyway.. this all happened over the course of the last week. Like I said.. maybe I didn’t need to post this. I’m just so worried that I’m doing something wrong. For all intents and purposes I’ve never dated in the traditional sense. My ex and I started in high school and it was just soo different. We didn’t even fuck until two or three years into the relationship because I was a goody-two-shoes and wanted to wait until marriage and all that. Of course that’s different now.. I just feel like I didn’t get the chance to learn all of this stuff and now I’m just doing whatever and hoping it’s the right thing, or at least an ok thing to do. I really dig this girl – and just writing this all out has helped me realize that – and I think we’d both feel pretty heartbroken if it ended for some stupid reason that could have easily been avoided. And I’ve just gotten into the habit of believing that good things just don’t happen to me.. and if they do it’s so they can be ripped away abruptly and leave me worse off than before. Maybe I’m a little fucked up in that sense.. This really awesome thing is happening and I just keep wondering “why?”

  2. too fast not too furious says:

    I went to an all boys high school. Most of the guys there had spent most of their teenage years without knowing any girl. The school became coed on senior year, and the guys were really thirsty at this point (and keep in mind that the ratio was of 3 boys for one girl). Many of the introverts had developed a weird syndrome we called “eye contact trigger” among friends. Basically they’d instantly fall for a girl if she talked to them for more than a minute. This is the usual development: G: Hey have you done your homework? May I take a look at it? Umm… Sure… (One week later) B: I love you. Some cases were so extreme that it only took a shoulder tap to have the boys fall. Those were the days lol. Also, I also got the syndrome for a bit, though I never had the balls to confess to anyone.

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