It’s happened to all of us: we meet a guy who sweeps us off our feet and it seems like a perfect fit – if only he was fit for a relationship. You can see yourself falling for him, but a little voice tells you to approach with caution. The connection might feel right but the timing may not be, and you want to take your time to decipher this before you let yourself fall head-over-heels in love. It goes without saying, an incredible connection and amazing chemistry go to waste if he’s not actually ready for a relationship. That being said, here are some ways to decipher whether or not this Mr. Right is ready for the role:

1. He’s sick of the weekly bar scene

Going to the bar on a Friday night with friends can be a great time, but it’s possibly a bad sign if he still lives for these weekly nights out to the bar, to the point where he’d prioritize them over you every single time. While nights out checking out the bar scene, on occasion, is fine – spending too much time looking forward to partying the night away can be a sign that he isn’t relationship ready. In other words, being sick of the bar scene is code for being sick of the single scene.

He may value his trips to the bar so much that he’d have trouble giving up the time necessary to forge a meaningful relationship with you. Maybe he still wants to meet new people and be the life of the party – and perhaps a party of two simply doesn’t sound as exciting to him. Drinking, partying, checking out the scene and “owning the night” so to speak – that’s a phase every man eventually grows out of once a certain level of maturity is reached. Many of the men who have grown out of that phase still enjoy it from time-to-time, but they don’t place such a high value on it anymore. This is the type of man you want to find. A desire to hit up the local bars with the boys may never completely dissipate, but many would agree that it does get old after awhile and other things begin to take priority such as love, intimacy and more genuine connections.

2. You don’t have to ‘compete’ for his attention

Is he ready for any relationship or ready for one with you? If you feel you must vie for his attention alongside other women, he’s not relationship material. A man who is relationship ready focuses on one woman at a time, in order to see where it can go. He doesn’t have a wandering eye, he doesn’t still have a Bumble account and he doesn’t have one foot out the door while letting other options distract him. He gives you a real shot, and knows he can always download Bumble again if it doesn’t work out.

3. He doesn’t play games or leave you hanging

As we get older and mature, we tend to lose our patience when it comes to nonsense, guesswork and head games. If he doesn’t seem to follow through on things he says (for example, says he wants to see you but bails last minute or changes the plan) that’s a game you’ll never want to engage in. And, if you routinely notice that he’s online on Facebook or Whatsapp, yet has forgotten to text you back for hours on end, that’s flaky and inconsiderate. Relationships require common courtesy (which comes naturally to a decent guy) and consideration of the other person. Someone who is ready to commit is already committed to the idea of being in the relationship. They will be considerate of your feelings and they’ll also want to call or text you often – they won’t leave you hanging. He won’t play games with your heart, he’ll instead call you and give every fight a real shot at being resolved.

4. He always wants to see you and initiates contact

Life is busy and we could all use more hours in the day. Between work, family, friends and a need for down-time, one thing’s for sure: people make time for what is truly important to them. Regardless of how busy we are, those of us determined to be in a relationship will make time for one. If it feels like a struggle just to get some alone time with him, or just to catch him on the phone, he’s not relationship ready. If, however, he makes it easy by consistently initiating contact and putting the effort in to make plans, he’s likely ready for (and wants) a relationship and would be happy to put in the time and energy to make it progress.

5. He isn’t on the rebound

Rebound relationships can succeed just as well as any other relationship, however, beware as he may not be ready to jump into anything too fast or commit to another person after discovering his new-found singlehood. Break-ups can be very difficult and everyone deals with them in their own way, so if he’s new to the single scene, it may be best to give him a chance to gain his bearings before jumping at the chance to be his new boo. Take this time to form a friendship, take things slow and allow the relationship to happen organically as opposed to thinking you need to get him before someone else does. This allows the relationship to form on a foundation of friendship rather than impatience as well as reassuring both sides that there are no unresolved feelings for previous partners.

In the end, good judgment is key when approaching the idea of entering a relationship. Trust your instincts and listen to the other person but always remember: Actions speak louder than words.

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