Luke and I absolutely CHERISH our unique love, spiritual connection and insanely similar sense of humor. It feels like a once in a lifetime- poetry and love songs- kind of love. But we didn’t just jump into a relationship right off the bat.
Because of my travel schedule (and majorly in part of not wanting to waste our time) Luke and I “courted” for 6 weeks after we first met. For those of you unfamiliar with the term courting– this is where a couple takes their time to get to know one another, in hopes that they’d like to begin dating. Kind of like a fun pre-screening process. 😋 We did almost all of this over the phone (via conversations NOT texting) so that the physical relationship did not mature more quickly than our mental and spiritual one
Did I mention that we met after our own separate failed relationships and post-kids… in our 30’s? Our 30’s! But whatever popular culture, social media or the movies may say about dating in your 30’s- there are some great tools you can use in order to make it a more enjoyable, honest experience. We don’t have to limit ourselves to dating apps or hide behind a wall of emojis… Having used these tips ourselves and wanting to spread the love, Luke and I have narrowed down our dating/courtship experience into 10 Tips for Dating in Your 30’s. We wish you the same joy and freedom that we experienced when utilizing these guidelines and have hope that you’ll find your true match too!
*Note that Luke and I are both Christian, but these tips apply to people of all beliefs and practices.
TOP 5 TIPS FROM LUKE
1) Respect old fashion ideals. Court her with romance like opening doors, going to a movie, walks, picnics, or star gazing.
2) Know and set clear expectations from the beginning. It helps to know (close to) exactly what you want in a partner as well as what you don’t want.
3) Ask ALL the qualifying questions. A relationship is one of the most life altering impacts we can allow in our lives. Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions at the beginning (kids, marriage, living together, etc).
4) Maintain transparent communication from the beginning. It’s more likely that we will run into potential partners with kids, which adds another layer of mutual responsibility. We need have a lot of transparency around the topics of career and kids in order to be fair to ourselves and our potential partner.
5) Remain open to being swept off your feet. Don’t let our own insecurities of failed relationships or romance diminish the possibility of love at first sight.
TOP 5 TIPS FROM LAVENDA
6) Identify the things that feel off. This seems to be a difficult one for women in particular and unfortunately, a lot of women wait till way down the road to bring things up that should be addressed in the beginning. You- my lovely lady readers- are absolutely worth a few uncomfortable conversations. Any man worth his salt will rise to the occasion and explain themselves and their past. Plus, this will create bonds of trust that you’ll benefit from for years to come.
7) Be honest about exactly what you want and who you are. Don’t try and be someone other than exactly who you are to attract someone in the beginning. It’s unfair to your potential partner and will cause issues later. Instead, spend time discovering things that you LOVE together. (Did I mention that I hate camping? And Luke brought up going RVing within the first two weeks of dating?)
8) Pay attention to your own emotional hang ups. This is really important, because going into any new relationship the greatest gift you can offer is honesty about who you are. This is true for the good and the bad qualities. Don’t hide them, but rather identify them to your partner so you both know what’s going on from the beginning.
9) Embrace the love. This one I’m adding in for people out there like myself, who may be a bit reserved, guarded or skeptical of good things when they come into your life. We all deserve to be loved. We are ALL worthy of great, epic LOVE.
10) Don’t text so much. Seriously. This one seems like a no-brainer to me because I grew up pre- cell phone’s but you’d be surprised how much unnecessary anxiety stems from limiting most communication to text messages. If you’re serious about getting to know someone and them about you- both of you should be able to carve out time to get to know one other in real time conversations.
BONUS TIPS FROM LUKE:
- When you find someone worthy, let them into all aspects of your life with no reservations. (This is a personal mantra of ours).
- Be careful with dating apps! We have a responsibility to approach someone in genuine conversation and be interesting. Using courage to approach someone out of the blue paves the way for emotional trust and respect.
PHOTOS BY BROOKLYN C PHOTOGRAPHY