How to Overcome the Fear of Moving From Apps to Meeting IRL
Apps make dating easier and more complicated, all at the same time. It’s nice to talk with single people from the comfort of your home, but it also creates new fears that didn't exist before.
Like meeting someone IRL.
Transitioning from talking to someone on an app to meeting them for dinner can be terrifying, especially when they're basically a stranger. What if they don’t look like their pictures? What if the chemistry isn’t there?
This fear is very real and can be frustrating, especially if you want to find love. So let’s talk about a few ways you can move from apps to IRL with more confidence.
Figure out what you’re scared of.
Are you worried about the date being awkward? Or is it a safety issue?
The fact is, your chemistry might not carry over to meeting in person. But, it’s better to find that out sooner rather than dragging things out.
If meeting a stranger makes you worry about your safety, then that’s something you can take action on. Let your friends know where you’re going for your dates and pick a public place. Don’t let your drink out of your eyesight once it leaves the bartender. Make choices that better ensure your safety.
My point is: by pinpointing your fear, you can work on changing things to feel less worried.
Make sure your profile accurately depicts who you are.
The point of your dating profile isn’t to make everyone like you; it’s to find someone who likes you for you. If you’re using highly filtered pictures or acting like you love hiking when really, you’d prefer staying home and binge-watching films, then it’s time to edit your profile.
When your profile accurately portrays who you are — via your photos and bio — you don’t have to worry about your dates being surprised when they meet you. You’ll have nothing to hide, which is how dating should be.
Remember that endless swiping and chatting isn’t dating.
Dating apps are just matching apps. The dating part happens once you meet up with someone. Endlessly talking with someone online is just that — talking.
You’re not meant to know someone’s entire life story, attachment style, love language, and dating history before going on an actual date with them. Finding out all those juicy details are meant to happen in-person. So don’t confuse the conversations you have after you match with actual IRL dating.
Ask questions that help you vet out a great person.
Asking good questions helps you determine whether your match is someone you want to meet. I understand that an in-person date is a big time commitment, but that’s not a reason to forever keep things online.
Here some are good questions that reveal a lot about someone’s character:
- What are you most passionate about?
- What matters most to you in life?
- What are you looking for from dating?
- What are your biggest goals?
Move to IRL as soon as possible.
The hard truth is that if the thought of meeting someone IRL fills you with anxiety, waiting will only make things worse. Use the tips we mentioned above to set yourself up for success. Then, once you find someone you think is great, plan a date with them as soon as possible.
The only way that dating will start to be less scary is with practice. But we promise it will get easier with time!