How do you tell if someone online is worth investing your time in? Especially given that it might be a while before you can really put your feelings to the test together?
Dating in 2020 has been, er, interesting to say the least.
Even though I am all about the IRL connection and forging deeply intimate partnerships (that work in and out of the bedroom), this year has forced single Londoners into the online dating game.
It’s not all bad (hello virtual sex) given that so much uncertainty and weirdness has forced many singles to go deeper in their online communication.
If you’re currently navigating online dating, here are 5 signs you may be onto a winner:
1. There’s room to grow
The biggest sign that you’re talking to someone you could genuinely create a longlasting relationship with is your mutual willingness to learn and grow. This is essential during personal and global crises like we’ve seen this year, as there’s an acceptance you can work through hard things.
This is known as a growth mindset, which means you are invested in your personal development and can allow your partner to evolve as well.
A good indicator that the person you’re dating has a growth mindset is that they choose to explore their issues, expand their thinking and evolve their actions. They give evidence that they’ve turned struggles into personal growth. They don’t see a relationship as something that will “fix” them, but are committed to fully expressing themselves. This shows up in both of you as honesty, self-reflection, curiosity and a commitment to relationship evolution. If they’re all present, you are on to a winner!
2. You don’t have to mask your quirks
There’s so much bogus dating advice out there that encourages people to fit themselves into neat little boxes if they want to find love. I call BS! I’m all about throwing out the rule book and focusing instead on helping people forge true, deep connections. Connections that change your life and have you falling madly, truly in love with your person.
And for that to happen, you have to feel free to be your true self. If you struggle to let your freak flag fly, you’re not alone, and this is something I help my coaching clients with all the time.
You know you’re onto a winner when you don’t feel you have to pretend to like stuff you actually have zero interest in. You feel free to be honest and sincere about what you’re into – otherwise you’re pretending to be someone you’re not, and that’s never going to mean lasting love.
3. You talk open about what you like and dislike sexually
My whole mission as a dating coach and matchmaker is to help people find partners they are compatible with – in and out of the bedroom.
It’s about time sexual desires are spoken about, just as openly as overall compatibility in our dating lives. Sexual desires are just as important as all other aspects of dating when trying to find your perfect match. In fact they are just as important as many other aspects of our lives in general!
When dating (whether digitally or IRL), we spend so much time on chit-chat that doesn’t really tell us whether we’re truly compatible or not.
Mix it up and instead of only asking, “which countries would you like to explore?” be up-front about posing a way more relevant question like, “how many times per month do you think is enough sex” or “what do you consider sex to be?”
If you want to explore talking points around sexual compatibility perhaps consider: definition of sex; frequency and duration of desired sex; preferred “environment” for sex; turn ons and turn offs; relationship orientation.
The time is over for keeping quiet about what you like and hoping for the best. With extended time to get to know someone properly before meeting IRL, I suggest introducing the topic of sexual compatibility fairly early on in your conversations.
And if something is a deal-breaker for you, e.g. No sex before marriage or non-monogamy is your bag – consider putting it up front and centre on your profile. That way you don’t need to waste time with people who are never going to give you what you want
4. You feel seen, heard, understood and safe
If there’s a genuine connection between two people, there’s no game-playing.
There’s no long waits before replying or confusing communication.
You want to talk to each other and so you do.
There’s an open line that feels really good.
You listen to and prioritise each other.
You make an effort to understand each other.
Notice that this isn’t rocket-science? We tend to massively over-complicate dating and allow old stories and patterns (often from childhood and our own upbringings) to dictate what’s happening today.
If something feels good, genuine, connected and safe, that’s a great sign.
Learning to trust yourself, your judgement, feelings and desires isn’t always easy and it’s ok if you struggle with this. That’s what people like me are here for, so reach out if you want support to find someone who makes you feel the way you deserve to.
Asa Baav is a dating coach, relationship coach and matchmaker on a mission to help single Londoners over thirty to find love and sexual compatibility. Get in touch to schedule a free call to find out how our coaching and dating services can help you do just that.