Are you overwhelmed by trying to work out how to go about finding love for the new post lockdown you? Chemistry, as a way of identifying who we are attracted to, is lost to us in the virtual world, so we have to get smart, adapt and accept that a little thought beforehand will go a long way. So before you embark on that virtual date, here’s my advice:
Identify how you feel and think about love now –
1. Your new priorities – it can help to review past relationships and see if there is a previous pattern (there usually is) to compare to what’s important to you now
2. Your deal breakers then and now
Using these as a guide, prepare questions to ask your virtual date at two levels: surface and deep. You’ll need both, because whilst the former gets the conversation going and helps it flow, the latter will give you insight into values, feelings, character and communication skills. What you’ll see in the form of body language will add another layer and will also assist you in deciding whether or not this person or that has relationship potential.
Examples of surface questions to move the conversation along include:
How’s your week been?/ Have you ordered your food yet?/ Do you have any flatmates/housemates?
Better surface questions share some information and feel less like interrogation:
I’ve been really busy with work since Monday – how’s your week been?
I’ve ordered sushi – have you ordered your food yet?
I share with my best friend Jess – do you have any flatmates/housemates?
Examples of deep questions that will help you connect at a more meaningful level include:
What have been the best things for you about lockdown? (optimism)
What do you feel is most important to you now in life? (values and judgement)
How’s your work/life balance? (adaptability)
Did you have any disasters during lockdown? (resilience)
How do you feel about dating now? (level of commitment and intentions)
As you have no doubt gathered, you can identify what it is you want to know and ask a relevant question – you’re bound to get some information. If anyone is unable or unwilling to answer however, don’t be too quick to write them off: nerves play havoc with our communication skills. As the questioner it’s your responsibility to put the other person at their ease so that they can give of their best. It’s possible that your question might be framed in such a way that your date can’t answer it! Body language will tell you how your date is feeling.
Do be prepared to respond in kind and don’t expect to get answers to everything, or what you will have had is an interview, not a date!