The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on professional and personal lives. It has affected businesses and individuals. It has affected the search for love. Now that the world is opening up again, what does post-pandemic dating look like?
Re-entering the dating scene
The requirement to keep a physical distance apart to lower the spread of coronavirus was obviously a challenge for those who wanted to meet someone new. You might have chosen to take a break from dating to avoid contracting the virus or being a carrier who spreads it to others. And you took a break during the lockdown.
While being alone might have brought comfort in terms of health and safety, over time, it might have created a sense of loneliness. If so, you might be ready to date again now that COVID-19 restrictions are lifting. Are you looking for a romantic connection?
Dating apps are still popular
The apps are popular now. They were getting a lot of use before the pandemic, and their user bases continue to grow in 2022. If the projection from Statistica’s Digital Market Outlook is correct, online dating services could reach 413 million active users worldwide by the time January 1, 2023 rolls around. Dating services are particularly popular in the US, with about 53 million users (15.7% of the population).
Here’s the forecast for post-pandemic dating in other countries:
You will find more infographics at Statista
Post-pandemic dating: Changes to what people looking for
It might not surprise anyone that the pandemic has changed what people are looking for in a relationship. Just as it disrupted business life, the virus also impacted people in a very personal way. You may have gotten sick or seen a loved one get ill. You may have lost someone close to you to the deadly virus.
As a result of your experiences, what you look for in a relationship, may have drastically altered from pre-pandemic. Among the life lessons that the coronavirus has taught me, for example, is that life is short. You never know what tomorrow will bring. So, I hold those who are important to me a bit closer than before the COVID-19 outbreak. I value relationships more.
If you also have seen lessons through the pandemic, perhaps you are looking for a more serious relationship than a casual one. You might want to invest in a partner. You might see the value of a strong connection after going through hard times in the last few years.
Thinking about time and happiness
A sense of lost time is also something that you might feel following the time in lockdown. Psychologist and relationship expert Dr. Carmen Harra recently talked with me about that. She is a well-known authority in dating, love relationships, and self-help.
The challenge is finding love without compromise. Dr. Herra explains, “If the pandemic changed the dating scene in any way, it is that it made us pickier about whom we allow into our lives and choose as our partner.
“Many of us have realized how precious time is, and we don’t want to waste it on a person who won’t fulfill us. After the pandemic, I’ve noticed that more people are likely to leave relationships earlier if they feel their partner isn’t making them happy or living up to their expectations. This is both a good and bad thing, as people might also be putting less effort into relationships but are quicker to recognize a negative situation.”
In her book Committed: Finding Love and Loyalty Through the Seven Archetypes, Dr. Carmen Harra explains the seven main archetypes people come across and how they benefit and challenge relationships.
She also helps couples to find the tools to “help you to heal your past, use your free will wisely, attract the right relationships and create a more joyful future.” Yes, you deserve real and authentic love.
Coping with anxiety in post-pandemic dating
After time away from dating, you might struggle with getting social again. Spending so much time indoors in lockdown will do that.
Re-entering the dating scene may cause anxiety in some folks. With practice, patience, and the right person across the table from you, though, that anxiety hopefully start to dissipate.
Being open about how you’re feeling can also help ease anxiety. Simply saying, “I’m a little nervous” at the start of the date is a good way to start to settle the jitters. Try to stay present, too, rather than getting into your head about what the other person might or might not be thinking.
Dating in post-pandemic times provides an opportunity to experience social situations again, which can boost self-confidence and create new relationships. Being able to connect with another person, in-person, can be fun, especially after laying low for a few years during the pandemic.