Understand the purpose of keeping your options open.
Dating is about getting to know all different types of people so that you can be certain when you finally decide to settle down. If you close your options too early in a relationship, you limit the chances for dating a variety of people.
Don't rush around the bases. Hell, don't even rush to a first kiss. Stare in each other's eyes. Hold hands. Trace your finger down his leg. Gently play with her hair. Let the romantic tension build. Have sex only when you feel really ready.
Keep your friendships in tact.
Never, never, never, NEVER cancel, postpone or avoid making plans with friends because you are devoting all your time to your new special somebody.
Keep your goals in tact.
Similarly, do not change your plans, alter your vision or stop striving for your dreams. In the early stages of a relationship it can be tempting to change your lifestyle and personality to seem more perfectly matched to that of your new love interest. These little lies and changes are certain to resurface down the road, so you might as well be honest from the start. Stay true to your course. If your new crush is meant to be your lifelong partner, then he or she will be supportive of you reaching your dreams.
Everywhere you go, keep smiling at, flirting with and talking to the opposite sex. Don't avoid other romantic possibilities simply because you've got a new crush.
Say it straight.
From the start, make it clear that you are not interested in jumping into a relationship right off the bat. It is fine to date multiple people at once, just as long as you are not lying about it.
Approach dating as an exploratory journey, not as a predetermined destination.
The more you appreciate the unexpected element of dating, the more likely you will be to keep your heart open to the different options for love that cross your path.
See "failed" relationships as important learning experiences.
Learning what qualities you don't want in a partner or date is an essential part of discovering what you do want.
Remember: it takes time to really get to know somebody.
In my experience a person's true nature doesn't show up for 6 months or more. Up until that point the other person seems ideal. I say, don't commit to somebody until you've seen his or her dark sides.
Remember also: trust takes time to earn.
You must earn trust of the person you are dating and, perhaps most importantly, you must make the person you are dating earn your trust. I'm not saying that you should be suspicious of people you date, but you shouldn't throw your total trust into somebody you just met. Trust wisely.