02/13/2015 03:08 pm ET Updated Apr 14, 2015

The Most Common Factors Preventing a Serious Relationship

We've all been in that position at some point in our lives: no matter what you seem to do, you can't establish a serious, long-term relationship. Whether you have trouble finding potential partners on dates, or you find potential partners but just can't seem to make things work, there are a number of common factors that could be interfering with your success.

You're Trying Too Hard

For starters, if you're hell-bent on establishing a long-term relationship, you might scare off potential partners who simply aren't ready for one. Going into every date or every conversation with the idea that this interchange must turn into something more concrete and long-term will prevent you from having a natural relationship where the two of you learn more about each other and gradually form a bond. Even if you want a long-term relationship, try to prioritize enjoying yourself and getting to know someone first.

You're Sabotaging Yourself

It could also be that you subconsciously don't want to be in a long-term relationship. Have you ever found yourself with an ideal partner, almost ready to take the plunge into something more long-term, when you suddenly get the feeling that you need to break things off? This could be resulting from a fear of intimacy, even if you consciously tell yourself you want a long-term relationship. This can be hard to overcome, but first you have to identify what's making you afraid to move forward.

You Don't Love Yourself

You can't rely on a relationship to make your life complete, and you won't be able to love anybody unless you love yourself first. If you're just coming out of a marriage or serious relationship, take some time to get to know yourself and love yourself before you try to commit yourself to a relationship.

Take some time to look at yourself and what has prevented your previous potential relationships from developing. Keep an open mind, stay positive, and try not to overinflate the importance of being in a long-term relationship. If you can do this, you'll be more successful in dating, and when the time is right, you'll know.