Don't heat up a relationship too soon.

How to Take It Slow but Still Show Interest

by Elise Wile

Take a relationship too fast, and you're likely to become emeshed with someone who isn't the right person for a long-term relationship after all. Take it too slow without indicating desire, and the individual you like might think you're simply not interested. Finding the correct balance is key to entering a relationship wisely while not allowing it to fall by the wayside from lack of attention or perceived interest.

1. Fill Your Life

It's hard to take a promising new relationship slow if you spend your evenings at home dreaming about your brand-new beau. This scenario makes it entirely too likely that you'll give in to the urge to invite your love interest over for drinks, even though you just saw each other two nights ago. If taking things slow is difficult for you, fill your time with activities you enjoy, such as an exercise class, dinner dates with friends or simply quality park time with your dog. If you're busy, you'll be less tempted to speed up the relationship.

2. Watch Your Words

Don't let romantic declarations leave your lips too soon, advises the National Healthy Marriage Resource Center. Instead, hold off on phrases such as "I never thought I'd meet anyone as perfect as you" as well as any sentences containing the word "love." You won't need such words to hold this person's attention. Simply laughing at your date's jokes and expressing enjoyment for your time together is affirmation enough for the early stages of a relationship.

3. Short and Sweet

Indicate your interest by sending an occasional card or text message -- just keep it brief. For example, after a busy week, you might send the object of your interest a text asking how the week went or saying that you're looking forward to your upcoming date. This helps you to keep in touch without engaging in lengthy telephone calls that could put your relationship on the fast track. If you do pick up the phone to call, set a limit of five or 10 minutes and then excuse yourself from the call.

4. Hold the Sex

Putting sex on hold can help you keep a clear enough mind to evaluate the relationship on its own merits rather than on how many sparks fly in the bedroom. What's more, should you decide to pursue a relationship, it will likely be more satisfying, according to Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D., in the "Psychology Today" article "Take It Slow If You Want Your Relationship to Last." Waiting to have sex needn't mean you give your love interest the cold shoulder, however. Show your affection by holding hands, giving hugs and engaging in other caring gestures.

About the Author

Elise Wile has been a writer since 2003. Holding a master's degree in curriculum and Instruction, she has written training materials for three school districts. Her expertise includes mentoring, serving at-risk students and corporate training.

Photo Credits

  • BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images