Finding the right partner after the end of a long-term relationship can be difficult and you may find yourself wondering how to spot ‘the one’ for you. Zoe Coetzee, relationship psychologist at premium online dating platform EliteSingles, explains how you can get back into dating after a long relationship, especially if you have a family to consider.

Are you at the same stage in life?

Are you at the same stage in life?

After being in the comfort zone of a long term partner, putting yourself back out there into the dating world can be intimidating for even the most confident woman. It’s natural to feel insecure about yourself and feel a little overwhelmed finding the perfect person for you. Combined with limited time resources at your disposal – work, family and friends are a large part of everyday life – making time can also be a challenge.

You are not alone. According to EliteSingles’ research, nearly two in every five women over 35 (37%) take between six and 12 months before they start dating again after the end of a long-term relationship. The reasons range from taking time to heal to a lack of self-confidence and uncertainty of how to get meet a new man.

After having spent a defining period of your life with one partner – which often involves having children or purchasing property together – it is only natural to question if you ever will find another person again. You might doubt not only how to meet a new partner, but also your own ability to identify a suitable partner. There are, however; a few prudent questions and practical signs to look out for, which can ease your worry and help you figure out the new man in your life. 

Stage of Life

One of the first things to evaluate is whether you and your date are at the same life stage. You may ‘click’ with a person but find yourself wanting entirely different things from a relationship. If you’re looking for a stable and loving relationship, but your new man is currently facing a mid-life crisis and is looking for fun and adventure, things are unlikely to work out.

His social circle

The people a person surrounds themself with reveal a great deal about one’s personality – and you can indirectly learn a lot about your date through his social circle. Take an active interest in your new man’s circle of friends: What do they like to do in their spare time? How long has he known them? How did they meet? This way, you’re subtly uncovering your potential partner’s character and can evaluate if you’re a good match.

His leisure time

You may have found what you think is the perfect new partner – but how much do you actually get to see him? Making time for yourself is hugely important; however, pay attention to how much time he is willing to make for you. After all, you’re seeking someone to come home to after a long day and enjoy fun activities together. There should be space for shared leisure time - not trying to fit into conflicting schedules and experiencing your relationship on messages.

Non-verbal communication

So, you are on a date and everything seems to be going well – but is it? One vital clue is the secret signs your opposite is sending through their body language. Is he smiling, mirroring your body language and leaning towards you? If you are receiving these positive signs, you can safely assume your date is going well. But if his eyes are wandering off, does he keep checking his watch and is he nervously tapping his legs? You may want to let him go, as he is not giving you his full attention – which you deserve.

Your gut instinct

It can be difficult to trust your heart and rely on your gut feeling; often, it can be tempting to evaluate a situation rationally instead of emotionally. However, relationships are, after all, a matter of the heart so you should allow yours to play a role in the process of finding a new partner. Because even if everything adds up on paper, you are unlikely to find happiness with a new date if your heart’s not in it. If you’re feeling a twinge of warning, your gut is usually right.

If you’re feeling shy and are unsure of where to meet your new man, online dating platforms are becoming increasingly popular. Online dating allows you to filter potential dates before committing to meeting in person. This makes it easier to meet like-minded people, which you may not encounter in your day-to-day life, saving you valuable time and emotional energy in the process.

Remember, there is no need to feel overwhelmed. Approach the situation with confidence, keep the above tips in mind and you’re well on your way to meeting your match. .

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