The Cheat Codes to Dating Apps

In an age where dating is as accessible as online shopping, it is not surprising to have unconventional changes in how relationships, “situationships” and friendships develop. You can virtually match with someone, and the result is a hook up delivered to your door sometimes even faster than your Uber Eats order.

When Tinder became increasingly popular, I was in a relationship. Once the relationship ended, I had no idea what these new apps were (Bumble, for example), and navigating the apps became overwhelming.

The stigmas surrounding online dating tend to come from internalized and overt misogyny. Opinions about dating apps vary from seeing the apps as a way to date around, sleep around and even a vehicle for infidelity.

The first issue to tackle is the negative connotation surrounding serial dating. Dating is arguably one of the most transformative and eye-opening experiences of a person’s coming of age, and yet it is consistently boiled down to someone’s body count or a seemingly aloof emotional character.

I constantly advocate for people to experience at least one healthy dating frenzy in their life. A healthy dating frenzy allows for self-discovery, your likes and dislikes regarding emotional and sexual intimacy and what type of person truly attracts you. You can also discover new hobbies, restaurants and even in those rare, sometimes weird occurrences, you can find, if nothing else, a friend.

White smartphone with heartsThe uncertainty of some people who want to enter the online dating world stems from a fear of judgment. My 2017 self was afraid to tell people about my more-than-busy dating life, but I realized that there were people dating just like I was. And if people were not dating like me, my dating life did not matter to them anyway. I would allow myself to go out seven nights a week if I wanted, if I was being safe, and of course, if I was having fun.

Obviously, everyone is wired differently, and you should not push yourself outside of your comfort zone when it comes to dating. Simply downloading the apps and messaging people does not mean you have to meet each person. Messaging can become a tool that aids you in communication skills and encourages your flirtatious side.

Even just swiping through profiles and never matching with anyone can give you an idea of what you’ll be faced with should you choose to brave the IRL dating scene. There are endless ways to use these platforms to your advantage, and there is absolutely no shame in figuring out who you are as a romantic being.