The Importance of Pacing a New Relationship

At Kelleher International, we believe pacing a new relationship is critical.

If you’ve ever run a long-distance race or marathon, you deeply understand the importance of pacing. Those same principles apply when considering a long-term romantic partner in your life.

“It’s common to get too caught up in the desire of being in a relationship and forget to examine the connection,” says Director of Matchmaking, Kimberly Colgate. “This is why you have to take relationships slowly. I always encourage clients and friends to leave a little mystery. Let it build. And certainly, don’t play all your cards on the first date.”

Modern dating typically ignores the traditional markers of commitment our parents told us about – fancying someone, courting them, asking them to go steady, the promise ring, engagement, wedding bells, kids… and they all live happily ever after.

The modern love storyline rarely follows that construct anymore. And anxious singles looking for love either get bogged down over-analyzing everything or they throw caution entirely to the wind. At Kelleher International, we encourage you to find a happy medium.

Spoiler alert: It requires a healthy dose of patience and perspective.

Anyone who’s ever felt intense chemistry with someone new can attest that pacing a new relationship can be challenging. But sprinting out of the gate rather than taking it slow doesn’t build the sort of foundation necessary for relationship success.

“Pacing a new relationship is like building a skyscraper,” explains Kelleher matchmaker Lizzy Solomon. “To construct a strong relationship you have to dig deep and spend time building the foundation. It takes a mix of discipline, mindfulness, and an openness to let things naturally build.”

Pacing your relationship is an intentional action, and the Kelleher Matchmaking team has some tips for helping you maintain a slow and steady progression.

One key to pacing a new relationship is not to date exclusively too soon. But don’t overwhelm your dance card either.

“By exploring multiple connections you’re not seeing any one person too often,” says Amber Kelleher-Andrews, Kelleher’s CEO. “Keeping your options open slows the pace and makes room to explore the potential match’s personality, feelings, and intentions before diving into something physical. Making time to understand who is naturally the best fit for you is a gift that will keep on giving.”

Dating a few people can keep you from getting too physical too soon which is imperative to pacing a new relationship.

But when is it time to narrow down the dating pool to focus on the one with the most potential?

Matchmaker Nahla Grafer stresses the importance of transparency, “When you’re connecting with someone and feel the potential of the match, I encourage you to be vulnerable. Let the person know that you like them and you’re interested in taking time to explore the connection and get to know them better. And then ask them how they feel in return.”

Be honest with your feelings. If you want to explore the relationship at a snail’s pace, then say that and explain your reasoning. Showing vulnerability is the most human thing we can do. And if you want a potential relationship with this person, then you get a chance to see how gently they handle your heart. How’s that for a time saver?

Those who avoid transparency tend to communicate through needy, negative, or “naughty” behavior. “There are ways to show someone you want more without putting it all out there, explains Kimberly. “The most attractive qualities in a mate are happiness and confidence. Drop the needy, negative, and naughty vibes – they won’t create a loving relationship that lasts.”

Make yourself available but don’t always be available.

Traveling for work or play, visiting family, nights out with the buddies – these are natural roadblocks that help the pacing of a new relationship. Don’t get frustrated when you can’t see your new love often enough. Instead, shift your perspective so that you savor the waiting.

Proper pacing requires mastery of your emotions and actions.

Don’t sabotage a potential relationship by not being comfortable with the pace. Even NASCAR needs a pace car to set the speed and protect the drivers on the long race ahead.

Going fast and furious into a relationship doesn’t give you proper time to get a sense of the person in their day-to-day life. Stay involved in your life and encourage them to stay engaged in theirs – especially if the pace and intensity begins to quicken. Don’t neglect your friends and family. Maintain personal commitments and weekly activities.

If you and your life stay attractive to you, then the person you’re dating will remain interested in the relationship – if they’re your match.

As humans, we’re perpetually telling stories – many of which are scary stories we tell ourselves about our relationships. The stories wake up fear, insecurity, and anxiety and drown out logic and love.

If you find yourself always rushing into romance and then staying way too long when it’s not working out, we hope you’re inspired to give pacing in your next relationship a try.

If you’re ready to take it slow but need help finding your perfect match, our Kelleher team is here to help. Contact us in whatever way works for you – options are here. To get to know our team of matchmakers, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.