Whether you are dating again for the first time in years, or for the first time in months, it could feel like a long time when you look at how quickly pop culture changes today. How often have you looked at your dating life and wondered if you were doing it all wrong because things have changed SO much? Between Facebook relationship statuses and texting and poking and Tweeting, oh my! How can you manage to keep it all straight?
It seems that the slightest infraction with any digital device could send an otherwise perfectly happy relationship into a downward spiral faster than you can even say the word “Like,” never mind “Like” the wrong thing online. So how do you navigate all of these new changes in the game of love? Just follow these five rules of dating in the new world:
- Be prepared to be checked out. Sex therapist Ian Kerner and author of She Comes First says that this is the new day and age of dating where women are not hiding their intentions. Women are just as much CEOs as their male counterparts, and they value their time just as much as men. They will give you the once over and not apologize for it. If they don’t have time for you, they don’t. And no, this does not give you the get-out-of–jail-free card to return the favor. Do it in your head, but you have to still be a gentleman and not let her notice. If she is checking you out though, consider this a green light. This is one part of dating in the 21st century where things are actually easier for men.
- Online dating has gone mobile. What used to be the new big thing, online dating is now the old new thing. The new big thing is mobile dating, the old new thing is online dating. Gone are the days where you would have to wait for days for a response from one of your matches. This is both good and bad news. The good news is that if she likes you, you will know quickly. The bad news is that if she doesn’t, well, unfortunately that Band-Aid will get ripped off pretty fast too, but that simply streamlines the process for you, no? All you need to manage it well are some good online dating apps to keep you organized, and it will also keep your dating fun.
- Things happen last-minute more. In a world where instant gratification has become the norm, so too has dating. Be prepared for last-minute texts for dates, plans and hangouts.
Sometimes they mean something, and sometimes they don’t. Women have been reading articles on going from day to night in five minutes for decades; now it’s time for you to think that way too. Keep a fresh change of clothes in the office or car with a splash of your cologne always handy, and you will always be good to go.
- Women are talking dirty more. This probably comes as no surprise to you now, as much as it did the first time you realized this. This, too, will make your job a little bit easier.
Even if she hasn’t yet with you, now you know it is not nearly as taboo as it once used to be. You also need to know the old new thing was just women talking dirty more. The new thing on this one is talking dirty via text message in what has become the social norm of “sexting.”
- You actually CAN date more than one woman at a time. The new social norm when it comes to dating is that exclusivity must be officially requested, also colloquially known as having “the talk” in the world of women. This actually isn’t an old new thing or a new thing; it’s just a thing that has been in place since the beginning of time when it comes to relationships. If you expect exclusivity, you need to ask for it. If you don’t, it’s all fair in love and war. Just remember that it works both ways.
The Bottom Line:
When it comes to dating in the new world, technology has definitely added to the change of pace of things. In a world where instant gratification is the norm, this can make dating both exciting and frustrating at the same time if you don’t know the rules.
Although today’s woman is more empowered and confident in the dating game than she ever has been before, you still need to be the man’s man. In the new world of dating, that means following your common sense and letting her be her. Most importantly, remembering how high her own standards are today, when you want to stand apart from the rest of the fish in her sea, be the bigger person and always, always be a gentleman.
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