How to Start a Relationship: Steps and Dos and Don’ts

starting a relationship

Steven Parker is a final-year college student with various achievements. However, there was one thing lacking in his life. He didn’t know what it was like to have a partner, spend time alone with a girlfriend, or even go on a romantic trip. Because he had been busy studying a lot, he did not have time to get close to someone he liked.

Steven also feels jealous of seeing his friends hang out with their love interests. However, Steven himself does not know how to start a romantic relationship with the opposite sex, because he simply has no experience.

Maybe some of you feel what Steven experienced, want to have a date, but don’t know how to do it. Therefore, this article will discuss the stages that a person must go through in a relationship, the steps that need to be taken to enter into a romantic relationship, and what can and cannot be done when starting a romantic relationship.

Stages of a relationship

It would be best to first grasp the stages of a relationship before talking more about how to start one. As a result, several steps must be taken before a relationship can begin, including:


One of the most crucial phases of dating is this one. An attraction to someone, whether it be physical, intellectual, or any other kind of attraction, typically marks the beginning of a relationship. 

Because attraction has the potential to turn into something romantic, this stage can determine how a relationship develops. The honeymoon phase is another name for this period because everything is fresh and exciting. In this stage, everything is great. 

You may spend a few months in this phase when beginning a relationship. Before determining where to take this relationship, you and your partner will frequently text, call, and go on dates to get to know one another better. 


The second stage, which is reality, marks the end of the honeymoon period you previously experienced. At this point, your partner and you start noticing each other’s flaws, and some traits that you dislike about your relationship will start to show. 

However, just because you and your partner are beginning to realize each other’s flaws doesn’t indicate that you two don’t like one another or that your feelings of love are waning. But this is only the beginning of a phase where you and your partner are getting to know one another better. 

Unfortunately, many relationships end at this point. Most couples eventually opt to quit their relationships because they are unable to tolerate one another’s shortcomings. Nevertheless, the likelihood that your relationship will improve increases if you and your partner can get through this phase. 


You and your lover ultimately decide to have an exclusive relationship during this commitment stage. You and your lover can now at last accept each other’s positives and negatives.

Being in the commitment stage additionally demonstrates that you and your partner have an understanding of the nature of your relationship. Be it in terms of objectives, passions, or even your potential in the partnership.


Intimacy is the subsequent level. Despite the name “closeness,” this stage also places a greater emphasis on emotional intimacy than just physical intimacy. You and your partner will continue to show each other love during this phase of the relationship.

The beginning of your true love for your partner will happen during this phase. You and your partner can be more honest with one another, accept one another’s flaws without trying to hide them, draw on one another’s past experiences, and comprehend one another’s personalities.


The final stage of a relationship is engagement. In this stage, you will decide to make a lifelong commitment to your partner by taking your relationship to a more serious level.

The level of commitment that you and your partner have is very influential at this stage, because there will be ups and downs in a relationship, and the possibility of conflict also increases. However, with commitment, you and your partner can get through it all while both of you are learning about the relationship that you are living in.

Dos and don’ts of starting a relationship

The next thing you need to know is what to do and what not to do while you are in a relationship. Of course, it is important to take into account whether you two can continue to live together and progress in your relationship.

Dos when starting a relationship

For a relationship to endure, you must be aware of exactly what you are permitted to do while in it. You should do the following actions, such as:

Removing gender bias

One thing you need to remember, it doesn’t matter if you are a man or a woman, you can both be the party that starts a relationship. Perhaps, many people have thought that men should initiate a relationship, make the first move, and so on. This causes many women to think they can only wait for the man’s side, so often relationships fail because there is no initiative from the man’s side.

This is also supported by Jon Birger, author of the book Make Your Move: The New Science of Dating and Why Women Are in Charge, where Birger reveals that women who initiate a relationship are more likely to have a successful relationship than women who are waiting for someone to find them.

A 2005 study from the Journal of Sex Research also revealed that 72% of men said they preferred it when a woman made the first move in a relationship.

Through this, of course, men and women have the same opportunity to start a relationship, not just wait for someone to come.

Communicating consistently

You and your partner must have a mutual understanding before you can establish a relationship. This can be accomplished by consistent communication between the two of you. Additionally, by communicating frequently, you and your partner can strengthen your relationship.

Respecting yourself

You must respect yourself even though you make an effort to be your best in front of the person you admire. Being yourself even when you are with your partner is one of them. In addition, since you have other things to do, you shouldn’t exert too much effort to meet the other person.

Trying new things

By attempting new activities, you and your partner are attempting to step outside of your comfort zone, which is excellent for the relationship because it allows both of you to develop.

You will undoubtedly encounter challenges when trying new activities initially. On the other hand, you also have a great chance to grow personally, forge bonds with others, and gain knowledge for a stronger connection in the future.

Don’ts in starting a relationship

There are also some things you ought to avoid doing in a relationship. The objective is clear: to keep your relationship with your partner strong so that it can endure for a long period. Some of these include the following:

Making yourself too available

If you fall in love with someone and they make you feel at ease, you might become more devoted to them and even forget about all of your plans to spend more time with other people.

Because you become overly preoccupied with the person you adore, this is not a favorable practice for the relationship you will be in. You still need your personal life, interests, and other social relationships. If not, you may experience negative consequences, such as becoming a codependent partner, and your relationship will deteriorate.

Discussing the future too soon

It’s crucial to discuss your future plans with those closest to you. However, you should also think about the best time to bring it up.

Imagine that you are about to start dating someone, and they are already asking you a ton of questions about the future. Of course, this will make you feel awkward.

Before you and your partner eventually talk about this, though, you need to give it ample thought and time. At least until you both feel prepared for and assured about your future relationship.

Making comparisons

Nobody enjoys being compared. Imagine you are in the process of courting someone, then your partner suddenly makes comparisons to other former lovers. You will definitely feel uncomfortable because of this.

Comparing will give a bad outlook on the future of the relationship. In addition, you may wonder if your partner is ready to enter into a new relationship with you when you are compared to other people.

Steps to starting a relationship

Before going through a relationship, there are at least a few steps to go through. Anyone can take these steps, including people who may not have experience in a relationship.


You certainly need to consider the feasibility of the person you are going to make a partner with. Do they fit the criteria that you have or not? In addition, feasibility in this case relates to the attractiveness they have, so you become attracted to them and try to make them your partner.


The next step after you feel attracted to someone, you also need to make sure that the person is available or not for a relationship. Surely you don’t want to approach someone who already has a partner, do you? Because this will greatly affect the relationship later. How to clarify this is by finding out directly from the person in question.


The next step after making sure the person you want is available is to get their attention. Through attention, you can find out whether you are attractive enough or not for your crush. You can also see the potential for chemistry with him or her at this stage.

Maintaining Engagement

Once you’ve managed to get his or her attention, you need to maintain it. Not only that, you can pay attention to each other, so that you can grow intimate with each other. This will make the two of you even more connected with each other.


In this step, you need to present yourself at your best. By showing your best, you might succeed in getting the attention of the person you like and of course, this is a good thing for your future relationship prospects.

Follow Through

The last step to starting a relationship is to make sure the meeting that occurs is not the last, especially if both parties feel suitable for each other.

The effort you can make is to offer another meeting at another opportunity. This shows the interest you have and the initiative you take to try to get the next meeting so that the second date can be made.

In conclusion

In a romantic relationship, you need to understand in advance what kind of relationship you want and what your goals are for that relationship. Besides that, you also need to understand that, to start a relationship, what are the things you need to do and what you shouldn’t do. This will be closely related to whether your relationship will continue in the future or not.

You also need to learn what steps you need to take to start a relationship. In this case, you need to try to assess the feasibility of the person you want to make a partner, their availability to be a partner, the attention given, how to maintain your bond, your self-presentation, and the continuation of your relationship in the future.

If you would like to explore more learning materials on relationship initiation, visit the Relationships Science Labs. The lab uses research of the Institute for Life Management Science to produce courses, certifications, podcasts, videos, and other tools or resources. Check out the Relationships Science Labs today.

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