1. You don't get anxious. I once heard great philosopher Kourtney Kardashian say on Keeping Up With The Kardashians – and I'm paraphrasing here: When you're with the right person, you feel calm rather than anxious. Sure, you can have butterflies, but you shouldn't feel like a nervous wreck around your partner. Instead, they should make you feel safe and comfortable.
2. You don't question every little thing. You know that moment when you feel insecure in a new relationship, and you think to yourself, Am I a crazy person? The answer is usually no. It's just that when you're not in the right relationship, a partner can make you *feel* crazy by leading you to believe one thing and then flipping on a switch and acting totally differently. This typically leaves the other person questioning everything they do/say/think, which leads to more group SOS texts to your friends, or a quick call to your therapist. Been there.
3. It's effortless. AKA, you don't have to force a thing. In past relationships, I'd wonder when I was going to see a dude next after our first or second date, but then when I decided they were taking too long to ask me out again, my patience (WHO HAS IT?!) would run out. So, I'd text the guy and not-so-subtly hint at what I was up to to try and lead the conversation into a date (this is before I realized that not just saying what I meant can read desperate – my brother gave me the heads up, thanks, Tony). Even if this technique – which I don't recommend – actually worked, I'd be left with the feeling that I basically forced the date to happen. Then I'd hear that little voice in my head say, Would he really have asked you out if you didn't nudge this along? I hate that voice, BTW. Who knows the actual truth – and, frankly, who cares? When you're in the right relationship, the other person will be so busy pursuing you, you wont have time to listen to that inner voice, because they'll already be texting you/calling/and asking you out on a regular basis. Plus, you won't feel nervous to just come out and tell them what you want.
4. You're on the same page about all the big stuff: religion, politics, values, whether or not you want to get married and have kids, etc. I'm not saying you have to believe the same thing as your partner, but the other person definitely needs to support you having your own beliefs and vice versa when it comes to important issues. A guy I once dated had really different religious views from mine and just wasn't on board with where I was coming from. He said he'd rather cut things off now to avoid future fights for years to come. And that was that. In the end, I appreciated his transparency, but I'm now with someone who I see eye-to-eye with in that department and it makes a world of a difference.
5. They meet your standards. And you meet your standards. My good friend Sarah once told me to make a list of attributes I'd want in a partner and then make sure I meet all of my own standards. I thought that was so powerful, because you attract what you put out into the world. So, if you're secure, kind, honest, driven, funny, etc., you'll attract that kind of person too. IT WORKS. Call it manifesting or whatever you want, but it works.
6. THEY TEXT BACK. Hallelujah! This sounds so trivial, but when people don't text you back and leave you hanging, your brain turns on you and then somewhere down the line you enter the "crazy girl" state, drafting epically long texts you may or may not send. But this isn't because you're actually crazy; it's because someone can't bother to write, "Hey, how was your day?" or "Whatcha up to?" If someone wants to text you, they will. In the right relationship, with a person who IS into you, there's an open line of communication that's consistent and makes you feel safe and NOT CRAZY. Praise hands emoji.
7. Hell, they'll even CALL YOU. I know this sounds like an effing lot to ask here, especially in this tech-forward day and age when you can turn your face into a talking emoji head and shoot it over to your lover, but when someone likes you, they want to hear your voice. Communication isn't a problem when you're with the right person.
8. You can be your absolute self with them. If you've ever been in a relationship and have found yourself trying to be too cool around the other person, it's usually a tell-tale sign that you don't feel 100 percent comfortable with them. You should never feel like you need to put on an act to "win" them over. Whereas, when you're in the right relationship, you can act like a complete goofball and your partner will think it's the most adorable thing, which is amazing, because you're just being you.
9. You have complete trust in each other. You know that moment when someone you're dating is being shady and you ask to see their phone – even if it's to take an innocent picture together – and then they act all weird, sparking a zillion questions in your mind? Yeah, not a good feeling – it's also a pretty good indicator you're not the only person they're talking to or they have something to hide. Sorry to break the news. Anyway, when you're with someone who's committed, he won't flinch when you glance at his phone to give him a heads up he just got a text from mom. You might even know the pass code. Gasp! I know, but, seriously, it's not really a big deal when you're with (and trust!) the right person.
10. You don't pick fights intentionally. When you're in something that just isn't working, you can find yourself picking fights over the littlest of things – things you know deep down aren't really a big deal. But when you're in a relationship you want to last, you take time to have an internal dialog, asking yourself Is what I'm about to bring up worth it? Is it actually important, or will it just hurt my partner's feelings? Is it necessary to bring up right now, or could it be later when I'm not so heated? In past relationships, you might just call out whatever is annoying you at that very second, sending you into unnecessary fights. With the right person, you put it all into perspective and save the bickering for when it's actually constructive.