Dating in a pandemic is no walk in the park. Well, actually, often it is literally a walk in the park — but that doesn't mean it's easy. For over 15 years as a dating coach, people have come to me in a state of panic that their moment to find a match may have already passed.
I always try to convey to my clients that dating is a learned skill, with a step-by-step process — and if you follow the plan, you will meet your future partner. Logan Ury has a plan and walks readers through every step of that process in her new book, How to Not Die Alone.
Not only is Ury a behavioral scientist for the dating app Hinge, she also has over a decade of experience studying human behavior at various technology companies, including Google.
In her book, Ury categorizes frustrated daters into three primary categories, and they each have unique challenges.
- The Romanticizer: If you are caught up in the fairytale about how you want your love story to play out, this could be you.
- The Maximizer: If you are a swipe addict with a checklist of qualities for the next best match, you fall into this category.
- The Hesitator: If you have trouble getting started dating or have a million reasons for why this isn't your time to find love, this is definitely you.
Each of these types has unique challenges and recommendations — but some of Logan's advice is universal, regardless of your dating style. Here are three things you can do today to shift your love life for good:
- Develop a growth mindset: If you look at dating as a set of learned skills and see the process as a learning opportunity, you'll be less stressed about each individual interaction.
- Create a pre-date ritual: Figure out what gets you into a good dating mood. Maybe it's a specific playlist or outfit you like to wear, or perhaps it's a call to your best friend to hype you up. Make sure you enter each date from a place of optimism and possibility.
- F*** the spark: This is actually one of the chapter titles in How to Not Die Alone. Chasing the spark based off of initial chemistry alone is a losing battle — and I have witnessed this too, among my clients and podcast listeners. Instead of prioritizing butterflies, look for deeper elements of connection and a window into your date's values. Go on that second date and see what unfolds.
Understanding your dating pitfalls and developing a strategy can help you move into the relationship you want. It might not come in the exact package that you envision, but a deep connection and relationship that can blossom over time is worth more than a million dead-end dates.
Damona Hoffman is a Certified Dating Coach and host of The Dates & Mates Podcast.
The podcast version of this story was produced by Meghan Keane.
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