During my dating life, I’ve discovered there are two types of people: those who have a Love Life and those with a Social Life.
This is when someone values having a love life above all else. You know at least one person in your life that subscribes to the Love Life concept. The Love Life person gets into relationships quickly and then nestles into a little “love cocoon” with their new significant other. They rarely have time for their friends and often give up activities or hobbies they used to enjoy. The sole reason for their life is now being there for their partner.
This person truly has it all. This person finds a way to fit everything into their life. They have a close group of friends but also have individual interests of their own. Like an expert puzzler, the Social Life person knows how to fit all the pieces of their life together so they get to have all the experiences they want and need to feel fulfilled. When a love interest comes into their life, the Social Life person knows how to shuffle things around so that new person is an addition to everything they have going on. Rather than giving something up, there is balance in this person’s life.
There is nothing wrong with being in love and wanting to be with your significant other. But there is something wrong with sacrificing parts of yourself to make that happen. It’s all about balance.
I was once told by a date that he would give up things – and would want his girlfriend to give up things – in order to make time for each other. I knew in that moment I certainly wasn’t the girl for him. I will absolutely make time for a boyfriend – but that doesn’t need to come at the cost of giving up something else I like.
How do you find balance?
- Include your partner in activities. Not every activity needs to be a shared one. But during the dating stage you probably found a few things that you both liked to do. Continue doing that together. This way you’re not giving something you like up – but rather you’re adding something to make it better.
- Set friend dates on a regular basis. Do your best to make the friend date on the same day as your partner. You can have a girls’ night and he gets a guys’ night. Having time away from each other is good. There’s that whole “absence makes the heart grow fonder thing.” Plus, it’s good for you both to spend time talking with other people. When you come back together you’ll have new stories to share.
- Prioritize the things most important to you. Really think about the things that make you YOU. Find a way to make all the puzzle pieces that are the components of your life fit together. They do fit. You just need to look at the pieces and start rearranging them to build something new.
I’m a firm believer that having a Social Life is more rewarding than merely having a Love Life. I may be single now, but I’m assuming/hoping/wishing that’s not true forever. When I do find someone I want to be with, I won’t be giving up my skee ball league for them.* I will invite them to join me or designate a different day of the week to spend time together. It’s possible to have it all. Just be creative in blending all the parts of your life together.
*I’m not in a skee ball league. I really want to be though. If you hear anything about one, let me know!