Inhibitions are down, energy is up, you’re strutting in less clothes, feeling natural and free, and the heat is on… which can lead to quick and easy flings. But just because it’s a “Summer love,” doesn’t mean it has to end in the Fall. Turn a hot beachy romance into an enduring relationship by getting raw, dropping the pretense and being true to yourself. Tear down those walls and let true love in! How?
1. GET REAL
The heat is on! You’re stripping off your clothes, and you’re also starting to feel more comfortable being vulnerable and getting raw- in the emotional sense. You are feeling free’er, you aren’t as stressed, some of your walls have come down- melted down in the heat, especially if you are on vacation or if you are taking a little mental vacation by going to the beach. That’s the perfect opportunity to meet someone and be yourself- your real self. No facade, no walls, no front.
2. GO DOWN BEFORE YOU GO UP
You’re open and real. The trick is to find someone else who is also open and real so that you can get to know them in that stripped down state. Relationships that end up ending quickly are often built on superficial grounds: He’s so hot, I love his car, look at her body!, he’s hysterical, she’s so much fun. You fall in love with that, not them. If you want to build a love that lasts, think about a skyscraper. If you build a building and just goes from the ground up, without digging down and creating a foundation first, it is more likely to fall down. Same goes for relationships. Go down before you go up. Sure, he looks hot in a bathing suit, but that’s not enough of a reason to hook up. What else is there to him? Who is he really? Can you have a conversation of substance? Try to understand who they are as a human being. What are their core values? Do their core values align with your core values? When you expose and express your true self, when you open yourself up and you are vulnerable, often times the other person mirrors the same vulnerability back.
3. I’LL SHOW YOU MINE. THEN YOU SHOW ME YOURS.
So how do you go down before you go up? I’ll show you mine if you show me yours! You are setting the standard, establishing the expectation, and creating a safe space for honesty. Lead by example and model your desired outcome. Share something about yourself first, maybe something you’re not so proud of but you learned a lesson and you’re better and wiser now because of it. When you are vulnerable, they will be too. Your conversation will be more layered and interesting. If you go deep, they will go deep. They will tell you a story that is equally substantive. Then you are creating a connection that is deep, not superficial. And that’s how to create a stronger foundation.
4. REVEAL YOUR NON-STARTERS.
If you see real potential, have conversations about real topics- like how you see your future. For example, if you want to have children and that’s very important to you- bring it up! But you don’t do it in a demanding way- “I want to have kids and if you don’t want to, then screw you.” Instead, talk about it through a story: “It’s so fun watching those kids at the beach. I am excited about when I get to have children. I think I am going to be an amazing mom. Have you ever thought about having kids (or more kids)?”
5. ASK PRE-QUALIFYING QUESTIONS.
Just because it’s a summer love doesn’t mean it’s ok to date whoever and do whatever. Ask pre-qualifying questions that reveal who this guy or girl is. You want to make sure that your core values align and that you are on the same page when it comes to your purpose.
6. HAVE SUBSTANTIVE CONVERSATIONS.
Don’t just talk about how beautiful the beach is and what party you should go to tonight. Enrich your vacation by talking about things that matter to you.
7. DANGER RADAR- You might feel free but you still have to have your Danger Radar on alert. If you find yourself in a situation that you don’t want to be in or that you are uncomfortable in, be honest. You can be sweet and still strong and unwavering.
8. STAY AWAY FROM TOXIC, BORING, & UNHEALTHY– Summer love may be fun, but if it’s an unhealthy, boring, or toxic romance it couldn’t actually put a damper on your carefree energy. Keep it light, honest, and real. If it doesn’t feel right, end it.
Because a summer love can last a lifetime.