We are living in 2021, where we are in a global pandemic and social awkwardness, dating is unheard of. You have so many options from swiping left to swiping right, video call, should I text first or not. So many unspoken rules, and unwanted conversations. One thing we all know is there must be some way to get through the madness of online dating.
What once started out as an unspoken forbidden encounter, has now dominated the dating industry. That is right, online dating. You cannot go to any social media platform without some source of advertising for dating apps. They have dating apps for people over 50 years old. From the newest on the block, #Bumble to OG's like the not so Christian, Christian Mingle (whatever happened to them anyway). I am not so sure if they are still around. However, you have 100 dating apps to choose from. The major question is why are you still #single, if everyone and their grandmother is looking to mingle? Besides the fishermen just looking for plenty of fish to catch, someone must be truly out there looking for #love. Everyone cannot be broken and abused, lonely and confused, right? So, the biggest question may not be why, but how? Not, why am I still single? Instead, rather, how should I date?
Avoid Fantasy Land
I know your hoping to walk into a grocery store, and this handsome gentleman or gorgeous woman walks over to you and sparks up a conversation. That conversation eventually leads to them asking you on a date and Boom! magic happens, right? Well, that is something that happened to me before, however magic did not happen. He stayed in the friendzone. The conversation was always cool. Nevertheless, true love does not magically drop out of the sky. It takes vulnerability, openness, and compromise. Yes, compromise (I know, we do not like that word). Dating is not like Build-A-Bear. You are not in a workshop, waiting to put together the perfect mate. In the mean-time of building the one. Try exploring what is out there with these few steps in mind.
Top 6 Keys To Dating Online
So here are 6 easy steps to dating online:
1. BE CLEAR - State what it is you are looking for and what you want. Avoid #profile lines such as, "my friends set me up on here", or "I don't know what I am looking for". How is it that you are on a dating site, but not sure what you are looking for? Avoid the #shy role of "someone else set me up on here", No one can force you to do anything you do not want to do. So just be clear. No games, no gimmicks. Be clear about what you are looking for. If you just want to smash, put that in your bio. Do not put looking for a relationship if you are just looking for a quick piece of meat. Trust me, you will #match with someone looking for the same. Vice versa, if you are looking for a relationship, do not reach out to someone #looking for a fling. Hoping that you can somehow persuade them to change their mind. NO, take it for what it is. It does not matter how cute they are, just keep swiping. It will save you a #peace of mind in the end.
2. Be Cool - Dating #online is a ball of anxiety within itself. Do not be too hard on yourself. You are unable to know if someone is your potential spouse by a picture. Just give it time, try to relax. Texting does not typically happen all day-every day, at first. These things take time to build as you get to know one another. The person on the other end is just as #nervous as you are. They are probably hoping that you like them as well. No need to over analyze every word that was said or not. Let her open in her own time and allow him the space to figure out where things are headed. If it is meant to be, it will be. If not, keep scrolling. #Life goes on.
3. #Flirting 101- Be mindful of the emoji and its meaning. You most definitely do not want to send an eggplant emoji within the first 3 weeks of talking. Like seriously, especially if you are looking for a relationship. A simple smile, quote, or #funny gesture is a good place to start. Pay attention to their bio, see what it is they like and make a play on it. If they are into Star Wars, start a conversation off with a Star Wars catch phrase. Allow room for a little mystery. Be subtle, yet intriguing. Use open ended text messages. Say something that warrants a response. If their bio says they love to hike. Instead of the typical, "Hey, how are you?" Say something like. "Hey, not running from any bears right now, are ya?” It adds personality, shows you are attentive, and it moves the conversation forward. Flirtatious is not always sexual. It is just a level of showing interest.
4. Watch Your Mouth - It is so easy to play victim. With a simple question like, what brings you to this site?, it can be easy it to dive deep in your past. In the beginning stages of getting to know someone, it is not good to talk about your past. It is a huge red flag. If you have children, and you begin to ramble off on how that person is an annoying co-parent, or lingering around ex, then you are setting a tone for disaster. No one should bond over past toxicity. You typically meet at the level of your current #emotional state, which means if you are not healed and you rambling about the past, whomever you connect with, would have unhealed wounds too. Which poses a problem when you try to elevate your life. You will find you two no longer have anything in common. There is an old term, “save the drama for your momma.” That still rings true to this day. Save the drama for your #friends and your momma. Leave it out of a relationship. It scares people away, and it is a huge turn off. As things get more serious and you want to give them some history on your life, then cool. But void that when beginning to know someone.
5. Be Casual- #Dating is meant to be fun. Until it gets serious. Feel free to explore options. Engage in multiple conversations. You don't have to put your eggs in one basket at a time. Once things become more serious, then convert to being more exclusive. Text and allow time for a response. Responding to a text within a 3-hour frame is considerate. Anything outside of that can come off as rude. Avoid starting off conversations pertaining to sex. Though it is important. If you lead with sex, then that is what the basis of the #relationship will be.
Set Boundaries- While getting to know people can be exciting and fun. Learn to set boundaries. Avoid anything that would put you in a place of compromise or un-comfortability. House visits are off limits until you are comfortable with it. Dates need to be in a neutral setting. Enjoy the art of going on dates again, opening doors and sharing an intimate #conversations over #coffee. Mid-pandemic all of that seem like a fairy tale. However, there are ways to make it happen. Keep your zone safe.
I am Bertette Renee, your down to earth Behavior Health Coach.
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