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How To Slow Down A Relationship: A Pause When Things Go Fast (7 Insightful Ways)

by Sonya Schwartz

Relationships come in different shapes and forms, some people are so into each other that they are inseparable. They don’t mind being together for only a week before hitting Vegas for a wedding. On the other hand, a handful of people like to take it slow, which is actually the present ‘normal’. 

If you belong to the latter school of thought, it does not matter how much you like a person, once they push too hard, you are done. The thing is, if you’d rather slow things down than break it off, there is a right and wrong way to do it.  So, if you want to know how to gradually press the brakes on the relationship, here’s what you should do.

7 Ways To Pull the Brakes On A Relationship That’s Moving Too Fast

1. Don’t be passive-aggressive

When you think that things are moving a tad bit too fast, it's very easy to fall into a passive-aggressive state of mind. What you need to realize is that speed in a relationship is quite relative. So, what you consider moving at the speed of light could be normal for the other person. 

If you read this, you’ll be shocked at the effects passive-aggressiveness can have on both you and your partner. Here’s a hint, the word ‘destructive’ was used. So, this is never the route to take, especially if you care deeply for your partner. 

So, if you catch yourself, sulking, ghosting, avoiding him, canceling dates among so many other things, it's time to stop. Even if you want to end the relationship altogether, it's better to be upfront about this. Exes don’t have to be enemies or frenemies, simply part on a mutual and cordial note.

2. Try to understand ‘why’

Before you even confront your partner, it's a good idea to do some soul searching. Why do you feel like taking it slow? Is it because of past experience? Did he say ‘I love you’ after one week? Did you sleep together the first time you met? Are you spending too much time together?

The truth is that there is always something making you feel like things are getting way out of hand too fast. You need to figure this out before you confront your partner. Don’t just sit someone down just to tell him you need to pace yourselves without one or more reasons.

Try to understand ‘why’

Having something to back up your claims will help him see things your way. It’ll further ensure that you both get to a point where the relationship is moving at a pace you are both comfortable with.

3. Talk to the other person

This may sound like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised about how often one partner tries to manipulate the other. This article points to the fact that though manipulation may seem like the most natural route to take to get your way, it’s never worth it. When caught in the act, you will always end up being the bad guy even if you had good intentions. 

Also, it's really not a long term plan, you’ll always need a refill here and there. So, instead of putting yourself through that ordeal, have a simple conversation.

Be gentle because no one, especially someone who is head over heels in love with you, wants to hear that they are a bit too much. 

Take things easy and reassure them that you are in it with them. But let them know that you both need to take a step back for the good of the relationship. Again, make sure you help them understand where you are coming from so they do not feel like it's solely their fault.

4. Try to agree on a strategy

No two people come into a relationship with the same expectations. Sure, they may be similar, but you can never want exactly the same things your partner wants. If the plan is to salvage the relationship then you really need to make sure you get on the same page. 

It may not look like it, especially if you’re passive-aggressive, but your partner is probably oblivious to the fact that you’re uncomfortable. To him, he’s doing exactly what he should be doing to build a healthy relationship.

So, talking is not enough, you need to ensure that you and the other person are completely on the same page. That’s why it is so important to make them understand where you are coming from. It is equally important to understand where they are coming from. 

A relationship comprises two individuals and so, you should both get to say something. Once you both understand each other, you can move on to some more proactive solutions.

5. Have some ‘me time’

Especially if this is not a break-up, you need to make sure your partner knows that this is not a break-up. In the case that you’ve practically been spending every second together, this is going to feel a lot like a split. But there are some cases where it is needed to reset things and get you on the right path.  

So, cone to a consensus and take at least a week apart to really give things some perspective. It's a tried and tested method and relationship experts can swear by it. 

Once you get back from your pseudo-hiatus, the relationship will fall into a healthy pace. 

If one or both of you do not know how you are going to manage spending time apart, there are ways to go about this. Try making plans with friends, taking yourself away, or simply occupying yourself with something you enjoy doing. 

6. Go on group dates

When you first meet someone, it's easy to get lost in them and vice-versa. This is what often makes it look like the relationship is on a fast track. One very proactive method to nip this in the bud is to spend more time in group settings. 

Sure, you may not classify yourself as someone who enjoys the company of others. But if you want to take things down a notch, this is something you need to do. 

Go on group dates

Being the kind of person that does not really like to hang out in groups, I can see how this may seem problematic. But, give it a chance, it will really take some stress off your shoulders. It’ll make things seem a lot less serious and you’ll be able to enjoy yourself.

7. Explore hobbies outside each other

It's incredibly easy to start dating someone and suddenly start doing everything together. This floats some people’s boats, but for others, it's too much. If it's too much for you, it's time to explore hobbies outside of each other. Both of you obviously led lives before you met, think back, what did you do back then?

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Try to take up some of those hobbies and do them individually. A little time apart, even if it's a handful of hours is healthy for you guys as opposed to spending every waking moment together.

Even better, learn new skills, rack up new experiences, and it’ll make you both better. You’ll even find yourselves a lot more interesting since your experiences will no longer be collective.

FAQs

What does it mean to slow down a relationship?

Think of it this way, some people like to pace themselves and really get to know the person they are getting involved with. Especially if you’ve been in a relationship that did not end too well, it's natural to want to bide time to be sure that your new beau is genuine. But it's also a way to stall in case you are not too sure.

What is considered moving too fast in a relationship?

For the most part, it's relative due to the different experiences everyone encounters. But there is a general understanding when you think about a relationship moving too fast. Your relationship is moving too fast if compared to your speed, your partner is going a bit too fast. He’s already introducing you to everyone and perhaps even saying the ‘L’ word before you think it's appropriate.

How do you tell a guy to slow down?

Start by explaining your stance; give him some background information so that he can understand why you think things are moving too speedily. From there, go on to map out a shared game plan so that you can both be comfortable with the direction and speed things are going in. 

How do you know if you're moving too fast in a relationship?

The first sign is the fact that you just got out of a relationship. Everyone needs some time to heal and become more healthy before moving on. Even more, when it comes to relationships moving too fast, you’re probably crowding the other person. Basically, if you are not pacing yourself, you need to slow things down.

Why does he want to slow things down?

He’s probably not had the best experience in committed relationships and needs to ease back in. Or, it could be that he’s actually not had much experience at all having just one significant other. On the flip side, he could be wasting your time and simply getting what he wants out of the relationship till he’s ready to back out.

In Conclusion

Moving at a slower pace is a concept not everyone understands, but if you are caught in a relationship where it's a prerequisite, you need to know how to navigate. With the points above, I hope you’ll be able to manage that perfectly. Don’t put too much thought into it though, it's a flow you need to learn how to go with. This is not a one-sided conversation, feel free to drop a comment below, and invite others to join in by sharing this article.

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Sonya Schwartz
A hopeless romantic that struggled for many years to find her Mr "Right" and made all the mistakes you could think of while dating. Known for always choosing the wrong guys or messing up relationships, Sonya was finally able to change her approach and mindset when it came to dating which helped her eventually find the man of her dreams and become happily married. You can read more about me here...

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