What is zero date?

                             What is zero date?

What is zero date?_ ichhori.com


The 'zero date' is the most recent in a long line of dating trends that have gradually but steadily taken over our Hinge game.


It's difficult to keep up with the ever-changing dynamics of modern dating, from 'Oystering' (yes, that's a real thing) to kittenfishing (not as bad as it sounds). There is one constant, however: the talking stage.


The talking stage of dating someone is an encouraging – if ultimately unfulfilling – stage in which you chat semi-regularly, flirt a little, and usually fail to meet up. Most of us have scars from a few failed talking stages, and to be honest? It's enough to turn you off dating for good.


This is where the zero date enters the picture. It's essentially a pre-first date, face-to-face meeting in which you decide whether it's worthwhile to get to know each other properly.


Christina Wallace, a podcaster and entrepreneur, gave a TED Talk in 2018 about how she used her "MBA skill set to invent a "zero date" approach" to dating, which enabled her to stop using swipe-based apps.


Before agreeing to go on a date with someone, she specified that their opening message "be written in complete sentences with good grammar," "reference something in [her] dating profile," and "avoid all sexual content."


She went on to say that she wanted to meet the people who met the criteria in person as soon as possible because "the things [she] cared about, [she] couldn't see online."


Christina cites research indicating that you only need about 30 seconds with someone to see if you click with them. In 2020, Virgin Media commissioned a survey of 1,000 singles to investigate dating dynamics during the Covid-19 pandemic, claiming that "research indicates that online daters believe they can tell whether a match has potential within just 30 seconds of on-screen chit-chat."


Meanwhile, a 2010 study concluded that falling in love takes only one-fifth of a second. It stands to reason that people would want to improve the efficiency of their dating game.


"One drink, one hour," Christina says of the zero date. With a single goal in mind: "Would I like to have dinner with this person?"


"Not at all," Christina adds, "but are they 'The One?'"


If everything goes well, you can set up a first date; if not, you won't have to see them again. What's the best part? "Because it's only one hour," Christina says, "you can squeeze up to three in one evening, and then you only have to do your hair and pick out one great outfit a week."


The zero date also allows you to observe how potential dates react when you ask them out.


Christina told that the growing popularity of zero dates is due to two factors: "one is that people are more aware than ever that life is too short to waste time on bad dates." The zero date provides a name and a format (and thus, I believe, gives people "permission") to spend less than a full evening with someone they are just getting to know."


There's also the issue of the pandemic. "Many people have become much more conservative about who they want to swap germs with – even an unmasked indoor meal, let alone crowding into a bar or kissing a stranger – so the zero date offers a way to quickly vet who is worth spending a rapid test on and having to follow up with as a "close contact" if you end up needing to do contact tracing," Christina explains.


Select Personal Introductions (a leading matchmaking agency) dating expert Alex Mellor-Brook agrees that zero dates can be a great way to "filter out the people who are time wasters, fakes, and mistakes."


"[Zero dates are] a great way to call someone out and get them to communicate with you on a visual basis," he continues. Anyone caught catfishing will be expelled immediately. Do they resemble their image? Do the things they've said about themselves on their profile add up? You can learn more about them and then decide whether you want to leave your house to meet them."


"Swipe-based dating was almost gamified over lockdown with people swiping like they were playing Candy Crush," Alex explains, adding that "spending so much time swiping without much reward will definitely have an impact on this style of dating."


However, not everyone agrees with zero dating. According to James Preece, a celebrity dating coach and relationship expert, "creating chemistry requires a combination of effort, energy, and a desire to connect."


"If you try to rush the process, you are denying each other the opportunity to build on this." Preparing for a date can take time – hair, makeup, a new outfit, and so on. There has to be "something" that makes you feel butterflies in your stomach, and dates should be memorable. If you don't do this, you're just meeting a friend or having a business meeting."


If you want to try zero dating, Christina shared the following advice:


1. Be super clear of your expectations: one drink, one hour (or whatever time you've set). If you don't want to eat dinner, don't meet at dinner time.


2. Take care of your own transportation(drive yourself, take public transit, or take a car service, rather than having your date pick you up and drop you off). You want to have complete control over your exit strategy.


3. Treat each conversation with curiosity and truly be open to it working outSimultaneously, rather than filling in the blanks based on who you want them to be, wait for the person to show you who they are. You must be able to keep these opposing ideas in your head at the same time.


You never know, you might enjoy the zero date so much that you decide to go out to dinner right away. That's the brilliance of zero dating – it's up to you.

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