For some, dating can be a scary experience, but with the advent of new dating app technology, it's getting progressively easier to find your perfect match. So why not make dating a priority in 2018? With help from Philly matchmakers Phil Tschepik and Erika Kaplan, and dating app Chappy, we're hoping finding "the one" is a resolution you're sure to keep.
Make a commitment in 2018 to stay open-minded. Go on dates with guys you wouldn’t normally meet, swipe right on guys who don’t fit your general type, and give guys you’re unsure of a second chance. Try different avenues of meeting people as well - if apps are usually your thing, put yourself out there in a new way. Ask your friends who they know, or even do something as easy as—gasp—making eye contact with new people as you walk down the street.
Making sure that you are emotionally ready for a relationship, and dating in general, is key. If you are still hung up on an ex or feeling like you're not good enough, you probably aren't going to be able to give yourself 100% emotionally to the relationship. Once you move on or realize how much you have to offer, you can be prepared for a relationship. As Rupaul says, "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?" and it is so true! Think about what you need in a partner. Focus on things that matter. A sense of humor will last longer than a good head of hair or a set of abs. A supportive and caring partner beats an unavailable partner with an Ivy League education any day. The nice-to-haves, (i.e., having a nice body, being tall, having a high income, etc.) should not be what draws you to a person, it should be the cherry on top.
For a first date, the best way to prepare is to relax. Dates can become stressful and awkward very quickly if either one of you is too nervous. Don't think of it as an interview where the goal is to assess within five questions if he is the one. Have a few awesome stories or anecdotes in your back pocket that you can work into stories that highlight who you are, what your values are, and what’s important to you. And don’t forget to make this reciprocal—ask questions!
The first interaction is what separates an online conversation that goes nowhere and one that becomes a first date. It sets the tone and if it doesn't go well, you'll likely be ghosted or blocked. Be respectful when reaching out but focus on driving the conversation to meeting in person. A connection is hard to judge over an app but if you have an inkling this is someone you'd like to be around, propose a casual, low-pressure date. This has a time limit and doesn't set any expectations. Don't propose a meet-up three messages in, but if you go two weeks without actually meeting, the momentum will likely fade and he's onto the next. When meeting in person, the same is true: a bad interaction can sour an entire date. Try to stay away from topics like exes, previous sexual partners, and income.
"Type" is something that is spoken about so often with guys and is incredibly limiting. Here’s the rule: if you are absolutely not attracted to them, then don't push yourself. If you are not interested because they fall outside of what you usually go for, shake that off and talk to him! Most people end up with a guy who was not their exact "type" but they still have loving, fulfilling relationships. Broadening your field of vision will allow you to see all the great catches you may have missed before.
Never change yourself to make someone else happy. If you have to do that, it's not going to be a healthy or happy relationship. You deserve to be loved for who you are and understanding that will ensure that you don't buckle or bend for a guy who wants you to be something else.
To find your perfect match in 2018, download Chappy, a gay dating app that can help you start your search for Mr. Right.