As with the start of any new season, it’s always a great time to hit refresh and start over. If you’ve been feeling like your love life is stuck in a rut, don’t worry. We’re still in the early days of summer, why not try giving yourself a fresh start? After all, as science has proven, your sex drive does increase during the summertime when the weather’s hot and everyone’s out. So if you’re looking for casual fun, it’s a great time to do so. Whether you’re dealing with a summer breakup, looking to find summer love or even just a casual fling, there are many things to do this summer if you want a fresh start in the love department.
“Summer is a great time to start fresh because most of us are in a more relaxed state of mind,” Diane Passage, Empowerment Life Coach tells Bustle. “This means more focus on fun and joy when dating, as well as more openness to try new activities and meet new people.”
I talked to several experts to get their take on things to do this summer if you want a fresh start in your love life. Here’s what they had to say:
1. Identity What Type Of Relationship You Are Looking For
Are you looking for a summer fling? Maybe you’re looking for a long-term relationship or if you’re already in one, maybe you’re looking to bring back the spark.
“You need to know what you’re looking for before you start fresh,” certified sex therapist Kristie Overstreet told Bustle. “If you are unsure, try writing out what options you have, then identity the pros and cons of each.”
Barbara DiGangi, licensed master social worker and co-founder of Project Bond would agree. “Self-awareness is key when it comes to dating and relationships,” DiGangi told Bustle. DiGangi suggests doing the following self-assessment at the beginning of your personal summer fresh start project:
1. What is your current objective when it comes to dating and relationships? In order to find this out, what do you feel would make you the happiest—being single, casually dating (non-monogamous), or being in a relationship?
2. Make two columns. What patterns or behaviors in the past have HELPED you reach this objective? What patterns or behaviors in the past have NOT helped you reach this objective? Some ideas are - thinking patterns, activities, social circles, apps, etc.
3. Make a list of action steps you can take on a regular basis that align yourself with what you want.
4. Go get 'em!
2. If You’re Single & Looking, Try This
If you’re single and looking, and you feel like you’re a slave to dating apps, New York based relationship and etiquette expert, April Masini suggests calling up 12 friends and family members and telling them you want them to fix you up with someone great.
“Just because [your friends] know you’re single doesn’t mean they’ll do anything,” Masini says. “But when you go out of your way to make a personal phone call, and you have a conversation with them about how you trust their judgment and you’d really like their help, things will happen. People love to help, but if you don’t ask, you shouldn’t assume they know you want their help. Prepare for summer romance!”
3. Remember, Your Ex Does NOT Exist
“With the exception of co-parenting, I cannot think of a healthy reason to stay in contact with an ex,” Diane Passage, Empowerment Life Coach told Bustle. “Starting fresh means 'out with the old and in with the new.' Exes take up space, time and energy, so clear out that energy to make room for new relationships and happiness.”
4. Find New Places To Hang Out
Passage also suggests changing it up. If you constantly have a go-to place for meeting potential dates, go somewhere else. “Take into consideration the type of person you would like to go out with,” Passage said. “Athletic type? See who's working out at the park. Foodie? Visit restaurants that you like. Art enthusiast? Museums. An added bonus is that you already have something in common to kick off a conversation.”
5. Create A Vision Board
“It’s so life coach-y!” Passage says. “But create a collage of all of the new things you would like to see happen for you this summer.” Some ideas are to put together something that brings together all aspects of your life such as health, career, travel, etc. You can even get very specific with the type of dating or relationships you would like to attract this summer.
As Passage says, “It’s particularly helpful if you're a visual learner — just take a glance at you board everyday to 'program' your goals into your mind.”