Dating nowadays can be stressful, especially as you grow older and don’t have time to waste. Before you start dating or move further along with the person you’re dating, you must know what is it that you want from that relationship. By knowing what you want and what you’re looking for in a partner you can avoid heartaches and other emotional distress. To know if it is worthwhile to begin or continue dating an individual, begin to have intellectual foreplay in your conversations.
The concept of intellectual foreplay was developed by Eve Eschner Hogan and Steven Hoganin their book Intellectual Foreplay: A Book of Questions for Lovers and Lovers-to-Be (Hunter House, 2000). The point of intellectual foreplay is asking the right questions to discover a person’s values and beliefs and see if you’re willing to keep moving forward in the relationship. There are multiple ways in which you can engage in intellectual foreplay and not make it seem like you’re directly judging a person.
One way in which you can begin to have meaningful conversations is by playing a simple card game. Games like ‘Table Topics’ can help you initiate conversations without forcing the issue. The game is simple, you pick a card and answer the question that is asked. You can play it between the two of you or with a small group of friends. The answers that you give will reveal your worldviews, such as what you think about family, relationships, and spirituality. First, you are able to see how they answer each question. Then you can gauge how they react to the answers you give as well.
Another way in which you can get involved in intellectual foreplay is by watching a movie with dramatic themes. Certain movies spark deep conversations that range from gender roles to race to the meaning of life. The next time that you go out on a date to the movies, be intentional. One simple movie ticket can save you future heartaches or give you a lifetime of love.
Demands and Expectations
Again, knowing who you are and what you are looking for in a person and in a relationship will keep your heart protected. The endpoint of intellectual foreplay is to see if you are willing to entrust yourself to the person you are interested in. As a final thought, don’t be so rigid in your demands and expectations. Identify areas in which you are willing to compromise and which you are not. You will find that you may also have characteristics that the person you’re dating may not be fond of. Learn if they are the type of person that is willing to grow together and join together in this journey of life. Cory Asbury, a songwriter once said, “Our depth of beauty, like the ocean, is immeasurable by the surface.”
Take time to find true beauty in a person.