It’s the month of romance, so I have to do a post about love, relationships, and dating. Recently I’ve noticed a lot of dating apps in my feed, and I felt pretty awesome when I realized I had zero desire to join a dating app. That’s growth. A year ago the only thing I had on my mind was dating; it was a pathetic time in my life.
My relationship with love is rocky. I shared how I’ve never been in love despite me being engaged. I’ve never experienced love and last year I was on a mission to fall in love, find my dream partner and have my best life ever.
I got sucked in.
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That experience made me realize dating, relationships, love – it’s all a sham. Don’t get me wrong, love is real and beautiful but people do scammy things in the name of love. eHarmony owes me money and I want a refund on my Oyster card for all those dates.
Pssst…if you’re single on Valentine’s Day, here are 14 fun Valentine’s Day ideas to help you enjoy the day of love with a solo vibe.
My general thoughts on dating
Let me clear the air, dating is essential if you’re going to get to know someone, but the act of dating is so…ugh. Going out on dates is tiring, meeting new people is exhausting, having to do the routine of small chat is repetitive, sharing what you’re looking for makes me question what am I looking for?
I wish we could have our perfect someone presented to us with a shiny bow and a bottle of wine. Hell, give me the wine and add some waffles. I’m good.
It was during a recent chat with myself (don’t act like you don’t talk to yourself) that I admitted dating is an unpaid job, and I am not comfortable working for free.
Why dating is an unpaid job
Dating is time, energy, the good makeup, travel – it is work. When I work, I like to know something is coming out of hustle. Before you interrupt me with, “Olli if we date we’ll get a relationship,” let me stop you.
You might get a relationship. Truthfully you’re more likely to get a headache than a relationship or even another date. Allow me to break down the numbers of “dating”.
APP TIME – up to 3 hours a day. Swiping is time-consuming. Even if you’re just swiping right on everyone and then sorting through matches later, you still have to factor in talking to your match to see if you’re a good match.
When you’ve connected with a few matches it’s time to go on the date. Let’s look at those numbers:
GETTING READY: It takes about an hour to get ready, kudos to you if it takes ten minutes but I like to enjoy getting dressed.
GETTING THERE: It takes another hour to get anywhere in London. Seriously, from my flat to the front of my building is an hour. That’s an hour going and coming.
DATE TIME: A somewhat decent date is about 3 hours but I’ll average it out to 2 hours, just for the sake of this post.
Do you see how the time is adding up? If you go on one date a week that’s about 5 hours of your week you cannot get back just from that date alone. If you’re swiping and conversing every day (which many of us do when we’re on dating apps), at 2 hours a day over seven days that’s 14 hours just swiping and chatting.
Last year I once went on a date every weeknight for a week all in the hopes that I would meet my dream person. So I spent 25 hours playing a dating game with no guarantees of an outcome. A year later, I’m not in contact with any of those people and they’ve made no significant impact on my life. All of that, unpaid.
What do you mean by getting paid to date?
Payment in dating (in my opinion) is about getting a solid outcome. There is no guaranteed outcome when you date. Also, if payment means getting your monies from your boo that’s fine too. I am not against anyone donating to team Olli.
When you go to your jobby job, you know you’re getting paid, whether it’s in money or connections or investment – but that’s not the case with dating. If you’re putting in up to 25 hours a week on apps and going out, shouldn’t you get something for the work?
At the end of the date, you have no idea if the person likes you, if they will call again, if they’ll ghost you, if you’ll go on another date; you are in a realm of limbo.
Uncertainty is not payment for my soul or my time. When it cames to dating, in the words of Maxine Waters, I’m reclaiming my time.
Should we give up on dating or…?
I don’t think you should give up dating. If you don’t date and don’t put yourself out there you are cutting your chances of meeting someone who could potentially be the “payment” for your love hustle.
However, I do think if you are adding up the numbers and you realize you’re spending a lot of time chasing relationships and maybes when you could be doing something more constructive at this particular point in your life, well maybe that’s when you shouldn’t date.
Here are a few constructive things you could do that put you front and center (and are 99% guaranteed to pay off)
- Grow your blog or business
- Develop into an even more beautiful human being
- Try new food
- Limber up for when zombies take over the world – gotta limber up
When the time is right and when you’re ready to volunteer your time again to dating, you will. The apps will be there; trust me, they’re not going anywhere.
But I wanna swipe on my dating app
If you’re okay with spending hours every week working for uncertainty, then date. There’s nothing wrong with it, download your app and enjoy spending hours swiping!
Some people don’t care and they love living in that element of the unknown, they don’t get tired, and they live to swim in “appiness.” That’s cool.
It’s about doing what’s right for you. This post was about breaking down the numbers and opening eyes to the reality of the dating game. When you’re in it, it’s hard to see how much of an investment dating is without any certainty that anything will come of it.
We are obssesed with FOMO, but are we missing anything? Don’t let the world of love and relationships fool you – upgrading to premium services doesn’t mean you’ll find love. It does give you a premium dose of reality.
If you’re going to date this year try these tips to get the most out of your dating experiences:
- Have a goal – it doesn’t matter if you want to have fun or if you’re dating with the intent of marriage, knowing your purpose in this journey saves you (and your potential dates) time.
- Don’t get distracted by the swipe – swiping is fun but if you’re swiping when you should be working…well remember, dating is an unpaid job. That’s all I’m going to say.
- Stick to your standards – people will try to guilt you out of your standards but stick to who you are and what you believe in. It means you’ll ultimately end up with right person for you.
- Premium is rarely worth it – don’t upgrade for all the bells and whistles unless you’re really investing in this dating game. Those extras add up!
- Use protection – anytime I talk about sex I always remind you to wrap it up. So here it is again – wrap it up. Get tested. Stay safe and be smart.
- You are worth love – this game will have you doubting your self-worth. Honey, you are a bright ember in cold world and there is someone who will realize they were meant to nurture that fire. I can’t wait to see you fully glow. Don’t let this love game fool ya.
Are you going to date this year or are you okay with putting dating off (for a bit). Let me know in the comments below!