I have a friend, Grace, who studied psychology in college and I find her to be one of the knowledgeable and informationally equipped specialists on dating and love advice. She’s wanted me to do a podcast with her on this multiple times, but I feel like she could single handedly do it since she’s much better.
I have begun dating more seriously this year. Though we’re only in April, I’ve found it hard for me to articulate what I’m feeling, how to filter out men well, and what biases I am holding onto so tightly that I need to let go in order for me to give opportunities to men who don’t fit my mold.
I asked her, “What are things you think I should be figuring out in the first couple of dates?”
She responded, “I think it’s a combination of trying to figure out if you guys align in terms of your vision for life while also seeing if you’re just having fun with them.”
She responded with the below, “These are the things I check for.”
– Love languages
– Similar hobbies or interests to some extent
– Similar values: how do they view family, willingness to grow, personal finance, etc.
– Quick screen for general alignment of lifestyle and life vision: no raves or hard drugs, being open to moving to Asia
– What our recurring issue is going to be. Sometimes this takes a while to appear, but I feel like within date 3-5 you’ll be able to figure it out what it most likely will be – What side of you do they bring. I think pay attention to this once you get more comfortable. I personally felt like this was a huge one for me—I have never heard of this one before, so glad Grace mentioned it to me.
– Emotional maturity: How do they respond when we talk about more serious life topics like friendships, etc.
After hearing all of these things, my own personal assessment was to figure out what I wanted, starting with the 7 love languages that I needed, which turned out to be words of affirmation and acts of service.