Way back when, in a land before smart phones and Google, dating was supposedly very simple.
Now, let’s skip forward a few decades to today: my mom told me I should try to go on dates with at least three guys this year, and I looked at her like she was absolutely CRAZY. How was that even possible to achieve when I could barely get ONE date in a year?
Good news though! Fortunately, for people like me, the internet has come up with a “solution”!
Tinder. Bumble. Hinge. …And apparently Seeking Arrangement? It seems that online “dating” has taken over as the new norm. These days, it is so easy to hide behind an online profile to “meet” someone. (Now don’t get me wrong, I know some people who have literally found their true loves on these apps- this is NOT a hate post on online dating…)
But let’s face it, Tinder isn’t for everyone. Especially, when the one time you do try Tinder, you just end up getting messages like this:
So for the rest of us, we are going back to the basics. We’re here to help navigate dating IRL, because we’re all just living in a Tinder world.
However, there is an important preliminary thing you need to know before pursuing any of the advice we are about to give: be honest, and be yourself if you want to maintain anything. Seriously, we aren’t in high school anymore, so cut the crap. You cannot expect to find or attract your ideal match if you are not being yourself.
Now since we’ve made that clear, there are three main methods which have worked for people in relationships outside of using dating apps. FYI the advice and methods are tried and tested by our readers…so they DO work.
*SPOILER ALERT*: …you are going to have to be social and step out of your comfort zone…sorry.
1. Talk to each other…IRL
Crazy right? You actually have to talk to someone? Un-freaking-believable. But seriously, talking to someone is a great way to initiate something, whether it be talking with someone you know or don’t really know. If this scares you, just remember that people are shy, so instead of waiting for someone to talk to you, talk to them. We’ve broken this down into two steps:
Step 1: Make the initial interaction and connection
Okay, don’t start off with “I am in love with you I can’t stop thinking about you,” if that is not obvious- you don’t want to scare the other person. Instead, find a point of relevancy to the situation you are in to talk about, and go from there, whether that starting point be simple as “Hey! How’s it going!” or thinking a bit more to try and make a humorous statement.
Step 2: Ask the question
So after you have talked to this person for a bit, and have made a connection, take a deep breath, and ask one of these super “hard” questions:
- Hey! Would you mind helping me out with this assignment/course concept?
- Hey! My friend is having a party soon! Want to come?
- Hey! Would you want to get coffee sometime soon or catch up?
(Okay, I think you get my point.)
So there’s the super complex way to initiate something. Now, the “date” part is up to you, but it is important to be lighthearted and casual at this stage of the game- and remember that the worst thing someone can say to you is no.
2. Slide into the DMs
Yes I know what you’re thinking, but this CAN work… just DON’T BE WEIRD ABOUT IT. Again, pursuing this process properly can be broken down into a few steps:
Step 1: The initial DM
Look for a cue when sending the first message. It will not only make the DM seem “normal”, but will also give you something to talk about with the other person, especially if you don’t know them very well. This kind of “cue” can include the person posting a photo or sharing an update on social media.
Step 2: Build the connection
If they respond, keep talking to them! Find similarities between the two of you and build up a connection.
Step 3: Ask the question
Use lines such as those from dating IRL method #1- keep the first “date” casual, and don’t ask for them to come over at 2am… if you catch my drift.
3. Get a friend to set you up/introduce you to someone
If all else fails, remember that we probably all have at least 500 Facebook friends who all have at least 500 Facebook friends: Get a friend to introduce you to someone! Seriously. Utilizing your connections can help you get to know people who you otherwise wouldn’t have met or even considered! Don’t limit yourself to your own little social world.
Here’s the point in all this: a S.O. isn’t going to come magically floating down out of the clouds, with hair perfectly blowing in the wind, and the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah playing. If you want something to happen, it is going to take a bit of work to initiate something.
As a wise man once said:
So, go! Put yourself out there. Happy dating IRL.
Olivia & the Zillennials