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An Expert's Guide to Building Romantic Connections During Lockdown

Get ready to swipe, set, go!

Just because the Coronavirus situation has unexpectedly forced the whole world into a lockdown doesn’t mean that your dating life needs to be ‘locked down’ as well. Thanks to the wonders of technology, we can now date from the comfort of our own homes. In fact, if you are looking to meet someone new, dating apps like Bumble provide you with the perfect opportunity to put yourself out there in just a few taps.

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Now that you are ready to swipe, set, go and explore the exciting new world of online dating, you might be wondering how you should go about it. We spoke to renowned psychologist and relationship therapist, Ann Philipose, who gave us her expert insights into dating during these unusual times. “To begin with, your approach to dating should be similar to when there isn’t a lockdown”, says Ann. “Don’t make your entire world about waiting for a match to message you back. Respect your commitments to work and self. Spend this time to figure what YOU want and what type of relationship you are looking for. This will help give you a lot more clarity during the dating process.” The more you personalise your online dating profile, the easier it is to match with someone who is just right for you. Bumble lets you add badges to your dating profile, and these let people know exactly who you are and what you are looking for.

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Once you get the conversation going with someone you match with, Ann advises that you shouldn’t shy away from asking questions that are important to you. “Women often don’t ask certain questions because they don't want to ‘scare the guy off’. Do discuss your core values and family, money, friendship, politics, etc. versus getting caught up in just interests. However, no one likes the third-degree, so keep it light and make it conversational!” 

We discovered that Bumble plays the perfect virtual wing-woman by providing you with fun and innovative conversation starters to get the chat flowing (Because come on, you are better than ‘hey’). 

Our favourite of Bumble’s conversation starters? — “Alright, I’m here. What are your other two wishes?” 

Ok, so you’ve broken the ice, but with real-life dates currently off the table, how can you start to build a meaningful relationship? According to Ann, the answer is one hundred percent yes. “For meaningful relationships, honesty is pertinent. Those rules don’t change online or offline. In this case, it's about an emotional connection driving the conversation versus a physical one. Not meeting might actually help keep the focus on talking and getting to know each other. A video date can be a wonderful way to build a connection. Or, you can try leaving each other voice notes, which feel a bit more personal than just sending a text.” 

Just because you can’t go on a real date, does not mean a virtual date can’t be fun. Set a time and connect using Bumble’s video chat feature. What’s cool  is that once you connect with someone, you can get to know them via voice and video chat features within the app, so there is no need to share your phone number till you feel are truly comfortable doing so.You can mutually decide if you are going to grab a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or a meal together (in your respective homes). Once you have your look sorted, just give them a call and enjoy your date-night-in!

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“Online dating is a great way to meet new people with whom you share similar interests”, sums up Ann. “It can alleviate the feeling of loneliness and also end up being an opportunity to build a meaningful relationship. I do advise people against ‘shopping’ endlessly for a date due to the sheer number of choices available. Once you do match with someone, it is important to engage purposefully to see if you can forge a connection.”

 As her parting words of advice, Ann shares, “Don’t feel forced into a date even if it's virtual. Be mindful of your boundaries and what feels comfortable for you. Anyone wanting to date you should respect the same.”

 Get started on your online dating adventure by downloading Bumble on the App Store or Google Play Store now.

Image Courtesy: Cosmopolitan.com