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Love is something that we all ultimately want and deserve, but if you’re committed to finding it this year there are certain things you need to do to make it happen. You can’t be ready for love to enter your life if you’re not actively going through the process required to open yourself up to it.

Yes, there is necessary work that needs to be done before you’re ready to officially open yourself up to give and receive love. Most of us assume we’re ready-made but if you don’t work through some of the emotional hurdles you’re harboring, you can easily push love away when it arrives and not even realize it. With the start of a new year, there’s no better time to set yourself on the path to love in hopes of finding your “happily ever after.” Here are some steps to open yourself up to the possibility.

Young couple embraces and kisses outside

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Let Go Of Past Relationship Baggage

This is probably the biggest piece of advice to follow. If you want to receive love, you must let go of all past relationship baggage, regardless of how difficult it may be.

Carrying over all the hurt, pain and mistrust from your previous relationship(s) into a new one, is almost guaranteed to end in disaster. Before you even decide to start dating again, you need to ensure that you’ve unloaded all of your baggage permanently. Not only is it unfair to you, but it’s incredibly unfair to anyone you choose to date because they are being punished for the actions of others.


Happy African American couple lying down and in park and having conversation.

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Spend Time With/Take Advice From Successful Couples

Successful couples can give advice before you start to get serious about finding love, but, hopefully, they will also give you an honest picture of what it takes to make a relationship work. Silently observe the couples around you and take notes for the future. How do they communicate? How do the resolve disagreements? What is their level of respect for each other? These are important things to take from the successful couples in your life.

Black couple cheerful portrait

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Don’t Be Afraid To Step Outside Your Comfort Zone

A lot of times women block their blessings when it comes to love because they are afraid to step outside their comfort zone. Dating the same type of man repeatedly when none of the relationships have worked will only lead you to the same disappointing results.

If you always ignore the shy, quiet guy or never give the corporate dude a second thought, try to give them a fighting chance this time around. You may be surprised to find out that what’s outside your comfort zone is where your true love lies.

I have found the one

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Love Yourself First

Before you can truly receive love from someone else, you have to love yourself first. Loving yourself means that you love, understand and accept the person you are, flaws and all.

Leading with self-love makes you an even better person to be in a relationship with because you’ve done the introspection necessary to achieve overall happiness. If there are things in your life that are keeping you from loving yourself, don’t be afraid to seek professional help to find out why.

Intimate young couple in bathroom

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Allow Yourself To Be Vulnerable

When you are so used to putting up a wall to protect yourself from hurt, you may not realize that you’re also blocking yourself off from finding love as well.

If you are truly ready to receive love, you have to be willing to be vulnerable. Allow your potential mate to see the real you, let them into who you really are and you’ll set the stage for a future healthy relationship. It’s scary at first, but there is no reward without risk.


Happy tourist couple

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Don’t Compare Yourself To Others

As hard as we may try, at some point we’ve all compared ourselves to others; however, once you recognize unhealthy behavior you also have the ability to change it.

You may have friends, family, and co-workers who appear to have the perfect relationship and you compare yourself to them, while you feel depressed about the lack of love in your own life. The funny thing is you don’t know what they had to go through before they found their happy ending, so give yourself a break. The only person you should compare yourself to is you.

They're chilling in bed today

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Be Confident In What You Have To Offer

Listen, you’re a catch, ok?! Understand that what you have to offer as a woman is unique to you and no one else has that magic. Lead with confidence in what you bring to the table in a relationship at all times.

This doesn’t mean that you should be arrogant, it just means that you know your worth and you refuse to settle. Confidence is one of the most important tools of life and it can take you a long way…even straight into the arms of true love.

Happy tourist couple

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Don’t Take Dating Too Seriously

Craving love will have you going to the extreme to find it. This usually manifests itself by taking the whole dating scenario too seriously.

Don’t treat every date like they’re your future husband or if you’ve started exclusively dating, don’t rush the relationship beyond what it’s supposed to be at the moment. Take your time to really get to know someone and have fun! Let the chemistry lead the way and you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the outcome.

Attractive African American Couple Walk and Kiss on Urban Street

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Focus On Quality Not Quantity

It’s not how many people you date, it’s who you date that matters. Don’t get so caught up on the number of people you’re dating because it means nothing if they are not what you need or deserve.

Focus on dating one (no more than two) person at a time so that you can really form a bond and a connection to see where it leads. If you spread yourself too thin, you’re essentially wasting your time because you’re not really devoting your attention to anyone.

Love is in the air, popcorn time

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Lead With Positivity

Positive thinking goes a long way. In order to open yourself up to love, you have to have a positive outlook on the process.

Regardless of the pasts dramas and traumas you’ve been through, try to keep a positive attitude on your new love journey. This is also helpful if you’ve been dating for awhile and haven’t seen the results you want. Just continue to drown out all the setbacks with positivity.

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