Social distancing guidelines have been put in place across municipalities, counties, states and even some countries due to the current coronavirus pandemic.
The quick and dangerous spreading of COVID-19 has impacted nearly every corner of the world, along with every industry, whether directly or indirectly.
The business of love is another one of the countless industries being forced to adapt its strategies to best acclimate to the ever-changing climate and spread of the virus. Dating apps, online dating sites as well as matchmaking companies have actually seen a sharp increase in usage in recent weeks.
While each, in their own way, have shared the World Health Organization’s mandates on social distancing, the business of love is still churning, albeit differently. Instead of connecting with someone in hopes to quickly meet in person, we as a society, are learning how to date while being socially distant. But how do we do that?
Learning from the past
Simply, we need to get back to the basics. We must look back to how our parents, grandparents and even past generations established connections and take lessons from them for how to create long-lasting relationships.
Daters need to feel comfortable moving from apps to the phone as people used to spend “hours at a time getting to know each other over the phone,” says Louie Felix, Founder & CEO of MatchmakingVIP. Felix goes on to suggest that a date via telephone, one where the user actually needs to listen and interact is, “more effective to conduct.”
Although we can all get a glimpse of someone from the photos on their profile, this conversational phone dating, “forces singles to get to know each other based on conversational connectability, rather than looks or physical attraction.”
Courting is more than swiping
From landlines to pagers to cell phones and now social media, “it is easy to forget how far we’ve come in such a short amount of time,” says Steven Ward, CEO of Master Matchmakers, when it comes to courting a significant other.
Historically it used to take time. Courtship was an art form, not just a ‘hey, drinks tonight’? Courtship “involved multiple steps and required patience,” says Ward which completely goes against the instant gratification on-demand society we live in. Echoing the current social distancing measures, it is these practices, those of patience, politeness and respect which will lead to smarter and more meaningful communication.
Realizing inside is more important than a persona
The quarantine is making us – actually forcing us for those who are following the local and government’s rules – to focus internally more than externally. We are going from a society for whom the outward appearance was crucial to one focused on bettering each and every individual. David Cruz, Dating Expert & Founder of Finding-Cupid.com, believes that this quarantine is actually a blessing in disguise as, “we are being forced to retrain ourselves to communicate, an important skill set that we have all but abandoned or avoided in the Dating App culture.”
Now it isn’t the volume of swipes that will get you instant gratification of meeting someone, it is the art of courting, conversing with someone until an eventual meeting.
None of us have ever had to deal with anything like this before and we need to get used to the new norm. We now are now investing the time to go a little deeper beneath the surface and ask questions that prior we didn’t care to entertain. As at the rate things are taking shape, no one can predict when that will be; again forcing both daters to invest time and energy to build from the ground up.