"Want to know why your mother and I can get into it and still be okay after 28 years of marriage? Because she's my best friend and we know how to communicate with one another!" Just a little gushy moment from my father to me a few months ago. He has a point! Try and follow me if you will...
I used to wonder why my, what I refer to as, situation-ships(because they hadn't crossed over to a real relationship), would not last or always ended up with us not being able to communicate after we stopped dealing with each other. That's because we didn't have a solid foundation. We rushed into things, like so many in my generation do. I have a tendency to let my mind start running faster than things are happening. I will start to overthink and think back to things that happened in the past to me, and to avoid those things from happening in the present, I start creating these unrealistic expectations for this new person and basically set it up for failure. Doom from the start! All because I am moving too fast and did not take the time to communicate.
But, fear not, I have found a solution to my "RoadRunner" like tendencies: This phrase," It's a marathon not a sprint" has been used in my writing previously, and in everything I have been doing lately; in work, in life, and in love. This means to slow down and actually take time to think through things and be very thorough, so that there are no mistakes or hiccups along the way that could have been avoided.
What does slowing down look like? Stop worrying about the pressure that, people around you, put on you about them meeting this person. Stop setting unrealistic timelines; people move at their own pace and you should too, to make sure that this is the right person for you. Also, taking time to ask this person what he/she wants from this current situation; Do they want to make it a relationship? Do they want to be married? Do they want kids?, to ensure that you are not wasting your time with someone who ultimately does not want the same things that you do.
I also, with the help of a friend, stopped setting these unrealistic expectations based on past mistakes and actually communicated those fears, wants, and needs in the present. I'll put it to you like this, because this is the way it was told to me: "Drop the expectation. Communicate what you actually want. Then hold that person accountable." Because when you think about it, this person can't know what you want or what you don't want if you don't communicate it to them.
You can't hold them accountable and continue to intensify an expectation based on what someone has done to you in the past. For example, you love surprises, flowers, and to go on dates but your ex/friend in the past did not do those things. To make sure that these things happen in your current situation, communicate that with them and come to some type of understanding. If you do not feel comfortable enough to have that conversation with that person, then maybe you should check your foundation.
Remember: A relationship is nothing without a friendship first.