The  3 DATING TRENDS You Need To Know

The 3 DATING TRENDS You Need To Know

This year’s dating trends focus on taking things slow and really getting to know someone before getting physical. Each of the three trends we explore below captures this in their own unique way. 

And although we consider ourselves dating experts (qualifications: have dated in the current app-driven hellscape, and haven’t given up on love yet), we decided to tap a real expert in the field—Jeff Yoo, a License Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) at The Moment of Clarity Mental Health Center.

So without further ado, here are three dating trends to know about in 2024:

1. Slow Dating 

Definition: “Slow dating emphasizes quality over quantity. It involves taking your time to get to know someone deeply before rushing into a relationship,” Jeff says. “Rather than swiping through profiles rapidly, slow daters invest time in meaningful conversations, shared experiences, and emotional connections.”

Purpose: “Slow dating aims to build a strong foundation for lasting relationships by fostering genuine understanding and compatibility,” he says. 

Why try it: “There is no harm in trying this method of getting to know someone and discovering a deeper connection,” Jeff says. “It seems people of all ages could benefit from this practice.”

He adds that the positive aspects speak for themselves, as this approach builds on the characteristics of a quality relationship. “You’re getting to know a person by investing time in conversations that build a foundation of compatibility and genuine understanding,” he says. 

2. Micro-flirting

Definition: “Micro-flirting is a subtle, not-so-obvious form of flirting,” Jeff explains. “It’s about testing the waters and gauging if someone is interested.”

According to Jeff, micro-flirting could look like: 

– “Noticing small details that have changed (like a new haircut or different perfume). 
– Observing subtle changes in body language when the other person is around. 
– Becoming slightly defensive or protective of the other person.”

Purpose: “Micro-flirting helps assess mutual attraction without making bold moves,” he says. “This subtle form of flirting is excellent if you want to protect yourself from rejection. It’s like dropping breadcrumbs of interest and seeing if they’re picked up.” 

Why try it: “It seems that this method could be used to guard against misunderstandings,” he says. “Some immediately assume they are connecting, while the other person is just being polite.” (Umm, been there.) 

“Being aware of your surroundings and understanding communication is a basic tool in building a trusting relationship,” he adds. 

3. Contra-dating 

Definition: “Contra-dating involves broadening your horizons by going for someone you wouldn’t typically choose,” Jeff explains. 

Purpose: Actively not going after your “usual” type. “Having a specific ‘type’ can limit your dating pool,” Jeff says. “Contra-dating challenges those preferences.” 

Why try it: “It gives new meaning to being open-minded and willing to learn the importance of core values that matter more than physical attributes,” Jeff says. 

It also exposes you to different outlooks on life and relationships, like trying new activities, foods, or hobbies. And guess what? You just might realize that what you want isn’t always what you need. 

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