5 Relationship Green Flags To Look Out For In The Early Stages Of Dating
As the term itself suggests, getting into a relationship is finding a sense of relatability with a person in terms of life goals, personal interests, or needs – depending on the kind we are looking for. An intimate relationship such as having a lover or a spouse can be a practically and psychologically impactful affair to pursue. Hence, acknowledging how to make the right decision with relevant relationship green flags right from the start is one of the best favours we could do for ourselves, and sometimes, the other person as well.
These five tried-and-tested indicators are handpicked from observing many of my dearest who have been in a relationship. If you’ve just planned to make your first move, you’re in luck here!
1. There is an even flow of communication.
“Ask them questions, let them be loose” is often popular dating advice, especially if one of you happens to be hesitant about opening up. With all the feelings loosening up, the early stages of dating can potentially induce an awkward sense of communication. Hence this is indeed a great technique, and someone who can make things comfortable is definitely likeable. However, it should be happening in a give and take fashion. If you observed that you’re the one always on the answering end, you’ll soon notice that your date holds more information of yours than you have of theirs. They could be potentially hiding from you.
Meanwhile, if you happened to be the one always asking them out without them attempting to reciprocate, it’s a clear signal that the interest is going one-sided. In a healthy relationship, you can always be more comfortable being a starter or the finisher when you both communicate. However, a healthy relationship green flag is when you should be evenly getting the opportunity to be both.
2. There is respect for boundaries.
Each intimate relationship is made between two distinct individuals, previously having two separate lifestyles and experiences. Hence, it is fairly common for both of you to be uncomfortable with the opinions and pace of one another. Your date can even hail from an entirely different atmosphere than yours, growing up with different parenting styles, economic needs, cultural and religious backgrounds. This influences their relationship goals, just as much as how yours do to you.
A healthy relationship has the both of you to be considerate of one another, being able to understand the need to have different boundaries while being together. Another relationship green flag is when each of you doesn’t try to suck each other into excessively blending with one of your pathways, by being condescending or dismissive. Instead, you both acknowledge the fact that your relationship is an additional element in both of your lifestyles.
3. Both of you are inclusive of one another.
Every relationship begins with an interest to pursue a long-lasting companionship. That’s exactly what the both of you should have in mind while building it. Yet, that doesn’t happen overnight. It’s what you get from a persistent effort to be inclusive of one another by making your relationship the most accepting place for the both of you, and that would mean embracing happiness and healing from traumatic trigger factors. Both of you should feel belonged with one another. In a healthy relationship, one of the good relationship green flags is to look forward to being prioritised alongside their dearest friends and kin when they are aiming for a collaborative experience. Be it when cooking a meal, a road trip, or a friend’s surprise party, including you in their day-to-day experiences is the first step of being accepting of your presence and needs in their life.
Also, both of you will get to know how it’s like to live with one another, as well as your networks of family, friends and acquaintances, gradually evolving together.
4. There is a sense of gratefulness among you both.
With each passing day, we all acknowledge the mighty fact that no one is flawless with their behaviours and personality. Admittedly, we all have been that person we never wanted to be with, from time to time. Two such individuals being together can easily be a double whammy, but if that’s the case, then no two people can ever connect. A relationship is a conscious effort made by both you and your partner, in choosing to contribute for ‘us both’ over ‘you and me’. Both of you have every right to be appreciated and grateful to one another, for putting up with one another.
If you realise that both of you give compliments to each other even as you win small without feeling frail ourselves? When you both take steps to alleviate each other’s bad times instead of seeing it as a liability, and don’t unnecessarily count on the times each one of you took the longer road to save the relationship? Then you’ll know you have a grateful and appreciative partner with you.
5. Both of you are as similar as you are different.
Nothing more, nothing less. Period. I acknowledge how magical the descriptions of “twin flames” or ‘opposites attract’ could be, but practically, it’s better to be 50-50. Your sense of similarity helps with putting yourselves in each other’s shoes, while the differences work when your partner can bring up an alternative contribution to the relationship when you can’t, and vice versa. This way, you will be complementing instead of competing with one another either because you’re too similar or too different.
Every relationship is built on a different basis. However, these relationship indicators are definitely green flags we can all relate to and keep up with. Always remember that it’s better to be safe than sorry with major life choices, such as deciding on a life partner. Each of us is more entitled than anyone else around us to make the wisest choices for our lives, so why not?