One of the most highly researched things in the field of psychology is why and…
Asking yourself, “When will I find love?” is the wrong question. Here are all the secrets to finding love, and the mistakes you need to avoid.
When you’re single, wondering about finding love comes with the territory. Whether you’re trying to plan your future or are just feeling lonely in the moment, it is comforting if you could peep into your future and have the accurate answer to “when will I find love”.
The thing is, unless you’re a psychic, there really is no way to know for sure.
And that is alright because it isn’t about knowing when you’ll find love, but who you will find love with, how you’ll find love, and how you’ll know when you’ve found love.
Finding love isn’t about simply finding it, but finding the right love. You can find love in all the wrong places and with all the wrong people. But finding true love and going about it in the healthiest way is most important.
When will I find love?
For years, I was single and looking for love. All I wanted was the comfort and safety of a solid relationship. I looked at my friends who were coupled up and envied them.
I wondered when my time would finally come. And because I was so focused on finding love, my methods of dating weren’t the smartest.
I would force myself to like someone more than I did because I wanted love more than the right love for me. I would then only go on dates with guys who wanted something serious right off the bat.
I would date around looking for my true love. I even told myself I wouldn’t kiss anyone I couldn’t see myself in a long-term relationship with.
I was focused so intensely on finding love that I was blind to everything else that came my way.
Where most people go wrong while trying to find love
Before I tell you the secrets to finding love, remember why finding love, especially true love is so hard. So many of us want a relationship so badly that we overlook red flags to get it. We settle or convince ourselves we’re happy so we’re not alone, so we are closer to our end goal of marriage, a family, or stability.
Focusing on the end result instead of enjoying the ride is what gets us in trouble. It prevents us from finding true love. It pushes us into being ashamed of being single or into unhealthy relationships.
Wanting the end result of love more than wanting to experience true love is where things go wrong.
How to find love – The first step you MUST take
So, how do you find love? How do you find a guy or girl who wants something more than a casual hookup? Well, I hate to say this because I heard it all the time when I was single, but stop looking.
And I don’t mean that in an annoying way. You don’t have to stop wanting a relationship or marriage. But what you have to do is stop searching for it. Stop looking everywhere for a relationship.
Be open to finding friendships. Be open to meeting new people even if it may not work out. You don’t need to rush into something to find true love. It isn’t like the movies.
Accepting all outcomes and just enjoying the experience is what really lets you get to know someone and feel your feelings instead of letting your desires fuel your feelings.
My own experience with finding love
I was wondering “when will I find love” for a long time too.
When I met my boyfriend, I had been single for more than six years. I had gone about dating the wrong way for so long. I was either too picky or not picky enough and was only looking for a relationship.
By the time I met him, I had decided meeting a guy didn’t mean I had to like him that much. I decided that I could go on a date with him and enjoy that time without expecting any outcome.
I was able to enjoy our first date without wondering if we’d have another. I was able to keep seeing him without worrying if we were taking things too fast or slow. When we talked about what we were looking for, we agreed we didn’t want to jump into anything but were open to wherever things went.
I was able to focus on our connection and our chemistry without letting my fears of not finding love taint the experience. And from that, I found love.
We have now been together for almost a year and a half and have plans to move in together next year. I have never felt so comfortable or confident in a relationship before. I went into it being open to anything but not expecting anything and that let me actually trust myself and him. It put our relationship ahead of craving a label or validation.
Change the way you think about dating
I know it seems impossible to change the way you think about dating. I know that when you want to find love, letting that desire go can seem fake. I know this because it took me a hell of a long time to get there, but I can tell you that it is worth the struggle.
Instead of focusing on what you’re doing wrong, what is stopping you from finding love, or when you’ll find love, follow this guideline to find love the right way.
Secrets to find love
Even though I’m calling these secrets to find love, they aren’t all that hidden. These are things people told me for years before I accepted them and actually lived them.
So, although you may want to roll your eyes at this list and think it won’t help you find love, I urge you to take a moment and really consider it.
Instead of saying you can’t let go of wanting a relationship, just try to focus on these things and see if love finds you because that is usually how it happens. Love finds you when you aren’t expecting it, not the other way around.
#1 Be open. Finding love isn’t about finding something serious after one date. It isn’t about being in a labeled relationship. Finding love is about the experience of respect, trust, and communication with this person.
Be open to the possibilities. Maybe, someone, you least expect is right for you. Maybe someone who moves slower than you want to is just what you need. I’m not saying you need to be in an open relationship if you’re uncomfortable about it or wait for someone to be on the same page as you, but I do think you should be open to taking your time.
Accept that things could work out but not the exact way you pictured it.
#2 Be yourself. You may think being yourself and being open are opposites, but hear me out. You want to find love, so being open to other things seems like you’re being fake. In reality, you wanting to find love isn’t who you are, it is what you want.
And you can have it. It is just a matter of focusing on authenticity over your expectations. I once dated a guy for six months because he wanted a relationship and told me he loved me. We were far from right for each other and I wasn’t happy with him. But I had what I believed was a relationship based on love at the time.
I let wanting a relationship and to be in love cloud who I was. Once I was able to let go of the idea of being in love being more important than being myself, I was able to let go of that and move forward.
#3 Accept when things don’t work out. Something that prevents us from finding love is hanging onto rejection. We let our egos drive our actions. We are hurt that someone turned us down, so we dwell on that and can’t get them out of our heads which stops us from finding our true love.
Accepting that not everyone we date will be the right match is so important. Not everyone will like you as you don’t like everyone. Let go of the idea that someone who seemed to like you no longer does. Accepting rejection and unsuccessful relationships helps you move on.
#4 Respect yourself. Love isn’t about becoming one together. It isn’t about finding your other half. It is about finding someone that you respect and who respects you. Knowing what you deserve is so important.
That doesn’t mean you need to have a list of characteristics for your soul mate or have to be picky. It means you need to know you deserve someone who will treat you as an equal and respect your opinions. It means you deserve someone who knows your time is important, and won’t waste it.
I was in a relationship for a long time where I was being cheated on and used and waited for him to call me all the time because I thought I deserved that. I thought that if I deserved to be treated better I would have found something better. But just because I didn’t have it then didn’t mean I was unworthy of a healthy relationship.
I had to put myself first and realize I deserved to be respected not walked all over.
#5 Be vulnerable. This is one of the hardest parts of finding love but it is so important. You may feel like you love someone after a few weeks of fun but in reality, life includes hardships, and knowing you can handle them together is important.
Letting this person into your fears and worries is important. If you can’t let down your walls that have been built up due to your past, you won’t be able to truly be in love.
#6 Let go of your timeline. So many of us live like we’re running out of time to find love. Maybe you wanted to be married or pregnant by a certain age. Maybe you wanted to be with someone for a certain period of time before being engaged or you wanted to travel for a year.
Let go of that. There is no perfect age to get married. The pressure you feel to find love now or soon is being put on you by yourself and society. No matter how lonely you are, wanting to find love this very month or year isn’t going to make it happen. You cannot force it or will it to be.
Your love will come when it is meant to. I know it sucks to hear but being patient is key.
#7 Try something new. Do you know how the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result? Well, how’s dating going? If you keep downloading the same dating app and talking to people about the same things and going on the same dates with the same mindset, what do you think will happen?
Try a different app. Try a different location for your date. Meet someone who isn’t your type. Talk about something else. And think about dating in a different way. It isn’t a means to an end but its own experience to get something out of.
#8 Accept responsibility. For a long time, I blamed every guy I dated for why things didn’t work out. I knew I was a good person and would be a great girlfriend so it couldn’t have been me.
And yes, maybe I didn’t actively do anything wrong. But I needed to take responsibility for myself. I needed to admit that I wasn’t perfect either and that I could make changes to my dating life.
If it was always the guys’ fault, why was I always picking guys who would do something bad? Accepting that I had the power to change things was an important step to finding love.
#9 Trust yourself. If it feels too good to be true, you’re probably right. After being cheated on, I really struggled with trusting my gut. I didn’t know how to figure out if a guy was a good guy or not.
Because of this, I fell into a pattern. I trusted what I knew, which was cheaters and ghosters. I would go back to the same types of guys because I was used to them and let my nerves get the best of me with decent guys who could hurt me.
I let my fears overrun my trust in myself.
#10 Never stop learning. You may think you’ve always been a perfect date or partner. And even though you’ve been loyal and respectful, you aren’t perfect. I’m sorry, but you aren’t. You can always do more and do better.
Every date gives you a chance to learn more about yourself. Learning to love myself for my strengths and weaknesses led me to realize that I could do better and make smarter choices.
#11 Enjoy alone time. Being happy with the single life isn’t always easy. And I’m not saying you have to love being single and stop wanting love to find it, but enjoying time spent with yourself is important.
Knowing that you can validate yourself and enjoy your own company helps you find love with confidence and prevents you from becoming codependent on a relationship.
#12 Question why you want to find love. I really advise you to take this seriously. You want to find love and be in love and feel love, but why? Is it because you truly crave that feeling and the closeness? Or is it because you feel like you should? Is it because you’re lonely and sick of explaining why you’re single?
Knowing why you want to find love is just as important as how you find it.
#13 Learn how to recognize love. This is hard to do and it took me a while to be able to do it, so I don’t blame you for questioning yourself. Recognizing love is difficult. Lust, admiration, attraction, and just a strong liking can all be confused with love.
I’ve thought I was in love only to realize months or even years later that it was infatuation. When you’re truly in love, you don’t want to change the other person. You accept them for who they are, flaws and all, and still want to share your life with them because they make you want to be your best.
#14 Stop forcing it. You cannot make someone love you. You can’t even make someone like you. Forcing a friendship into a relationship or a date into more is not how you find love.
Even if you think you’re in love and can’t go on without this person, if they don’t feel the same way you cannot force it upon them. You can’t woo someone into loving you. Love doesn’t have to be a natural process that you both feel at the same time, but it shouldn’t feel like pulling teeth either.
#15 Stop comparing yourself to others. This is one of the major reasons I hear people are looking for love. Their friends are all coupled up, they see constant engagement announcements on social media, and they question why they aren’t there yet.
Well, everyone has their own path. It may seem like everyone you went to high school with is married with a baby on the way but it only feels that way. Plus, just because someone posts a cute photo together as a couple doesn’t mean they are in the perfect relationship.
A friend of mine was in the worst, most controlling relationship of her life while posting the cutest couple photos that so many people were jealous of.
Remember that someone else’s success doesn’t leave less chance for you. Just because someone may be at a different point in their life than you doesn’t mean you’re falling behind or need to catch up.
#16 You can choose who you love. This is something so many people seem to forget. Love isn’t this uncontrollable thing that just happens to you. It isn’t crazed passion or endless heartbreak. Love is taught by your parents and family and friends.
You learn it and apply it to those you wish to. When people say they can’t help but love someone, it isn’t true. It may feel that overwhelming but love is something you can control.
#17 Consider the future. I hate to tell you to focus on the future, so I’ll tell you to consider it. If you know you want to move across the country for work in a year, take that into consideration when looking for love. It may feel less than romantic to think about practical things but practical things are what end most relationships.
Falling in love with someone who wants different things than you will not end well so consider that.
#18 Don’t apply your past to your future. Your past has made you who you are. It has taught you lessons and made you smarter, but it can also hold you back. Being cheated on can make you scared of it happening again, but you have to remember that not everyone is the same.
If I let my past with betrayal apply to my current boyfriend, I wouldn’t be able to trust him because of something someone else did. That only prevents you from finding love.
#19 Remember to enjoy the ride. Enjoy the bad dates. Enjoy the sloppy kisses and the funny pick-up lines. Enjoy the three dates that lead to a friendship. Enjoy the month of awkward dates that led to you finding a new friend, a new job, or a new accountant.
Enjoy the time it takes to fall in love because your life doesn’t begin when you fall in love, it is happening right now.
#20 Hold onto hope. Whether you’ve been searching for love for 6 months, 6 years, or longer holding out hope is important. I always say to have no expectations for the outcome of a date or a flirtation, but to always have hope.
Having hope that you’ll find love is what keeps you positive. It is what lets you break down your walls and get to know someone. It is what encourages you to take the risk of being hurt for something that is worth it.
Without hope, dating becomes an endless mind-numbing experience of meaningless dates without connection. In order to find love, you need hope.
So, if you’re still asking yourself, “when will I fall in love?” you may want to read this all over again.