The past 18 months have been tough, we’ve been through some confusing times and it’s no surprise that many of us have struggled throughout it. Some of us have been lucky, having family and housemates to keep us company through the madness, but some of us have been on our own making it difficult to re-emerge into this new world trying to navigate the world of dating at the same time.
Take things slow
You should know that it’s completely normal to feel nervous about dating again, we all only just got used to getting half dressed for a date over a Zoom call, but now we actually have to match the bottoms to the top we’re wearing! But before this, you need to ask yourself whether you’re ready to step back into the dating world again. Is it important for you to be dating or are you putting too much pressure on yourself?
Don’t be tricked into thinking that time is “running out” and start rushing into relationships in the hope that they’re the ‘one’. Yes, time has passed whilst we’ve been lockdown, but your priorities may have changed, you may want to do different things with your life after experiencing so little in so long. So, now might be a good time to re-evaluate what you want from a relationship before searching for your dream man/woman.
Prepare for dating
Whilst the dating world is not the hunger games, it’s still best to prepare before joining the arena again. Remember, you’re not the only one who is hesitant about getting back out there. You might be eager and anxious all at once – worrying not only about the date itself but also about any restrictions that are in place. Do I need my mask? Has my date taken a test?
To stop these nerves, it’s best to establish boundaries as much as you can with your date and with yourself. If you’re worried about testing and masks, research the date location to check out any restrictions which they may still have in place (it’s always handy to keep a mask with you anyway), discuss any concerns with your date before the date. Getting these worries out of the way will ease your mind and will only leave room for the ‘normal’ pre-date jitters we all get.
Make sure you feel like your best self
Why not treat yourself to a new outfit or a new fragrance you’ve been wanting to try? Dating is all about finding someone who matches your best self, so be the best version of you by being comfortable and confident. We’re not saying you have to change your appearance or become a whole different person but do what makes you feel good. Whether that’s a new outfit or a self-care ritual.
Above all, it’s important you feel comfortable going back into the world of dating, so if, for now, meeting up with a date seems a little daunting for you then try something a bit more laid back and more your style. Virtual dating worked for a while during lockdown, there’s no harm in it sticking round a while longer.
If you’re ready to venture into the world of dating Plentymorefish to help you along the way. Join now to find fellow singles looking for love.
Turn offs are a typical question we get asked when we start dating someone, but the trouble is for some it’s difficult to answer until they experience something that gives them ‘the ick’. Sometimes things happen that makes our nose scrunch or just send a signal to our body which makes us want to run. Here’s a list of some turn offs that we can think of.
Have you ever been out on a date with someone who is rude to the waiter or bartender? There’s something about the lack of manners that screams red flag to me and makes me want to run out of the first door I see. Someone who tries to belittle another in an attempt to make someone else laugh. It does not play out in your favour and it’s just embarrassing for your date.
Lack of ambition.
At the start of dating, women want to be wrapped up in deep conversation to connect on an intellectual level. They want to hear about your passions and ambitions, and where you want to go in life. You’re dating to look for a partner, someone to grow with and celebrate your successes with.
A few as a joke is fine, but if you’re using pick-up lines proudly, I’ve got to tell you they will not work and more than likely will cringe out your date. Not what you want, is it? She will roll her eyes and ultimately find you a bit cringey.
Insulting your exes.
No, we don’t want to hear about your ex and how great the relationship was and how you’re so sad it’s over. But we also don’t want to hear how every ex you’ve been with is crazy; there’s a common denominator in that equation and it most certainly is not the women you’re dating.
Putting all women in the same box.
There’s nothing worse than someone being surprised because you’re not like the conceptual idea of a woman they have in their head. Men who don’t see women as individual’s and put every woman in the same box can be a serious turn off.
Eyeing up another woman.
Trust me when I tell you women see EVERYTHING. So, that woman that just walked past that you were giving the side eyes to? Yes, we saw that. We get it, you’re single and free and you can do as you please, but when on a date with a woman, she wants to feel special. Eyeing up every woman that walks into the restaurant makes her feel like she’s already in competition for your attention which is not the way a relationship should start.
Talking about yourself.
If the topic of conversation always resorts back to you and your date can’t get a word in edgeways, then I wouldn’t bet on a second date. A conversation works two ways and if it appears to be one person talking and another listening the whole time, then it can become frustrating.
Are you ready to find someone who ticks all your boxes? Head over to plentymorefish.com.
The million-dollar question when you’re in the early stages of a relationship; ‘Does he love me’. To help you solve the mystery behind men, we’ve compiled a list of indicators that he’s in it for the long run.
He’s always in communication with you
Even when you’re not together he wants to talk to you. Whether that’s simply sending you a message settling the previous night’s debate on whether chocolate belongs in the fridge or not, or whether they’re simply updating you on their day.
He compromises for you
Maybe he hates that TV series you’re begging him to watch, but he’ll say yes to make you happy. Or maybe you want to order in a Chinese, but he can’t stand it. Either way he’s compromising which is a big sign he’s falling for you. Love softens the heart and selflessness is an important sign of healthy relationship.
‘We’ or ‘Us’ replaces ‘I’
When you become part of his plans it’s a very good indicator that he’s feeling the love. Does he talk about taking you to his friend’s wedding? Or maybe even jokes about how good looking your future children together will be? He’s no longer thinking of himself as a bachelor, you’re now a big part of his life.
He leans on you for support
You’re his best friend. You listen to him and give him a shoulder to lean on when he needs it. If you’re his go-to for advice or to vent, then it’s a good chance he trusts you the most.
You both laugh together
If you find that you’re both typically in fits of giggles when you’re around each other, it’s undeniable you have fun and act silly together, which is a solid foundation for a relationship. A study completed by college students found that the more a couple laughed together, the stronger the chemistry between them both.
He’s being more optimistic lately
If you find that your guy is seeing more of the brighter side of life, it’s probably because he’s felling more comfortable and confident in a future with you.
He treats you like you’re the only person in the room
Maybe you’re at a party with other people but he can’t take his eyes off you or he’s trying to get you involved in conversations. It’s a good sign that he’s in love with you. His attentive side has started to show.
He cares about your friends and family
The most important people in your life suddenly also become his most important people. If he loves you, he’ll make the effort with these people in your life. He takes notes of group dynamics and pays attention to what your parents say.
Not found Mr Right yet? Sign up to Plentymorefish.com and start flirting with singles looking for love.
Love languages were a foreign concept until the 90’s. We all had an idea of what made us look at our partner with puppy dog eyes or made our stomach flutter. But understanding these aspects in order to make a relationship work didn’t occur until Gary Chapman wrote a book on the five love languages in 1992.
So, what are they?
The five love languages are as follows:
1. Acts of Service
This is a non-verbal form of love. It is the idea that you complete a task for your partner that you know they would like. Maybe your partner needs their car cleaned or you cook their favourite food. The acts are often selfless and encourage you to listen to your partner’s needs.
It’s the most common amongst all of the other love languages. It is often mis-construed however, as people mistake it for being about the items you give, and the price attached to it. Whereas those whose love language is gift-giving focus more on the thought behind the gift, which shows your partner that you’re thinking about them and that you actively listen to them. The true meaning behind gift-gifting is the sentimentality of the gift itself.
3. Physical Touch
As it says on the tin, it’s a physical form of love. It communicates compassion, joy and sympathy towards your partner, it’s more about desiring the physical touch like holding hands and feeling close to them through affectionate acts, rather than desiring sex and fulfilling your sensual needs.
4. Quality Time
Connections built around this love language are often strong relationships. For people who thrive from this love language, their priority is spending meaningful time with their partner. This means no distractions, just one-to-one undivided attention. For example, watching a film together on the sofa is not an example of quality time. But if you were to turn the TV off and start a conversation, it can become a significant act to those who enjoy quality time.
5. Words of Affirmation
You might find some people are naturally more inclined to be open about their feelings whilst dating, this could be because their love language is words of affirmation. Verbal expression of love is what is important to them. Supportive and appreciative words are an expression of their love and gratitude. It doesn’t always have to be verbal; it could be written notes on the fridge or love letters left on your bedside table.
Why are love languages actually important?
Although we may think that most of the love languages appeal to us, some stand out without us realising. This is why it’s important to understand which love language we hold at a higher value in a relationship. You and your partner may not always share the same love language and that’s perfectly fine but knowing what makes your partner swoon can be really important for preserving that romance you had to begin with. Once we begin to understand how each of us work in a relationship, you notice that it begins to blossom and grows stronger.
Communication plays a significant role in this. It allows you to explain what is most important to you and how you can both meet each other’s emotional needs. No person is the same in a relationship, everyone expresses their love differently and by communicating between each other you’re avoiding that risk of disappointment.
If these things aren’t communicated, a relationship can become difficult as you may find yourself trying to give love in different ways as to what your partner may desire. The conversation shouldn’t stop, it should be on-going throughout the relationship. As people grow and change, their love languages may also shift with it so communication should be easy and comfortable. Saying this, if you find yourself drained trying to put effort into a relationship where your partner is critical or isn’t satisfied, it could be a red flag.
Essentially, understanding each other’s love language is how relationships become stronger and play a fundamental part in making a relationship a success. Are you ready to find someone to talk your language in love? Head over to Plentymorefish.com.
We’ve all been there, sat wondering why we’re finding ourselves on the search for our Mr/Mrs Right, once again. There’s only so many times we can convince ourselves that it’s our date who isn’t ready for the world of romance. If you still find yourself single and wonder why your dates never take the next step, then it might be time to start looking inward. Could you be in your own way to finding love? We’ve given you a head start with a few reasons why your mindset might be failing you.
You Have Low Self Esteem…
I’m sure you’ve heard it all before “love yourself before you love anyone else”. If you lack appreciation for yourself and you don’t learn to love your flaws, looking for someone else’s love to fill the void is not a healthy position to be in. The feelings of not being good enough for other people can lead to issues like jealousy and neediness in relationships.
Next time you find yourself blaming your low self-esteem for your failed dating life, try writing a list of all your positives – the things you like about yourself – and then read them aloud. Make it a part of your daily routine to learn to love yourself, reminding yourself you deserve to have a healthy love life. You will find yourself in a much more positive mindset.
You Have High Expectations…
Now we’re not saying you should settle by any means. But when you start dating adjust your mindset so that your high expectations don’t come in between you and your date. Chivalry is a big green tick, and we all want it, but don’t get used to it. A few dates down when people start to get comfortable, bringing you flowers may become a thing of the past. But by showing appreciation for the things your partner does, it can work in your favour. Just saying ‘thank you’ can be a form of encouragement for many people who seek that gratification, it could be a win-win for both parties. You get the flowers, and they get the appreciation. Every now and again, surprise them. Try and plan a fun date to treat them. Show them that dating you isn’t a one-sided experience but that you can also be fun and romantic.
You Are Too Independent…
In this new generation, we are all force-fed the idea that we (particularly women) should all be self-sufficient and independent. However, true this may be, it can also hinder our dating experiences. Being too independent means, you become too engrossed in your own needs and happiness – and whilst this is important to do – it means you stop focusing on others.
The truth is, is that no matter how much you crave independence, we need other people. Forming a connection with someone is healthy, we can learn from others and they can love us and as a result we grow as individuals. So next time you’re thinking of not going out on that date because the thought of forming a connection gives you the shivers, listen to your heart and give it a go. It’s craving love.
You’re Coming on Too Strong…
Do you find yourself buckling at the knees to anyone who looks your way? You crave that attention a partner can give you and when someone gives you the slightest hint of that, you hold onto it too tightly. You’re coming on too strong. As we get older, a natural reaction is to panic that we’re running out of time in the world of dating. So, you settle for the person who buys you a drink at the bar, or calls you beautiful, even if your gut is telling you they’re not the one. The fears and doubts of never finding someone can manifest into desperation. In some cases, it convinces you to settle for way less than you deserve. To overcome this, we need to believe that someone better awaits us. That all these dates we go on with hopeless men/women are merely just setting us up for what is yet to come.
You Have Trust Issues…
Toxic situations from the past can leave a lasting mark on you. It tends to project past issues into the present, making you think you’re stuck in the same situation as before. Mistrust can manifest itself into jealousy and anxiety and most often, it can be the reason why making it past the dating stage is so difficult. For some, it can even grow into developing toxic controlling behaviours. Before you launch yourself back into the world of dating, it’s so important to address and deal with past baggage. Start by finding the root of the mistrust and ask yourself whether the associations you make between dating and trust, are actually facts or just an opinion you have formed based on past experiences.
Whatever you do, don’t lose hope or give up on finding love! Sometimes it takes a little longer to find the person that’s just right for you.
Find likeminded singles over on Plentymorefish.com.
Navigating the dating field can be difficult, no matter how old we get and the knowledge we gain, no one can prepare us for the surprises that lay ahead for us. There comes a time -maybe after the first date or a month down the line – where we may wonder if there’s a future with this person. So, we’ve lay down a few basic signs to identify if it has any potential or whether they’re simply the “wrong person”.
1. You can’t be yourself around them
One of the key signs you’re dating the wrong person is that you’re not comfortable around them. It’s natural on the first few dates to want to impress someone and typically you may choose not to show your quirky traits. Saying this, you shouldn’t be putting on a song and dance to prove yourself to them, you should have a pretty good idea whether you could get comfortable in their presence after the first date or two.
2. They don’t listen to you
If you find they’re trying to control the conversation this could be a good indication that they’re not listening to you, particularly if they don’t seem to ask any questions aimed at getting to know you better. If they’re always waiting for their turn to speak and diverting conversation away from your topic, the truth is they’re more than likely uninterested in anything you have to say. So, spare your precious time and start planning your exit strategy.
3. They’re Non-Committal
If they keep meaning to introduce you to friends or family but yet they forgot to invite you to their Aunt Margaret’s 60th after they’ve been persistent with their promises to do so, this is a big red flag that screams non-committal.
We don’t mean just in terms of not taking it to the next stage in a relationship, but more so committing to simple things. If they’re flaky on dates or they keep meaning to “plan” this so-called date and they never seem to find the time to do so, then you’re looking at a non-committing dater.
4. Communicates often with their ex
Do you often find them bringing up their ex in conversation spontaneously? Or maybe you feel them subconsciously making comparisons? If he/she has mixed thoughts going into a relationship and potentially may still be clinging to their ex, these behaviours could be an indicator that there is still a lingering past relationship that hasn’t been dealt with. This can get difficult if they share children or maybe going through a divorce, so we recommend communicating your worries first. But if you find they’re still chatting to their ex after expressing your concerns, she/he’s just not the right person.
5. You’ll assume they’ll change
We all have set expectations we want our date to meet, but if you’re already thinking about what hairdressers you’re going to take them to next week, then they’re probably not the right person for you. If you’re following up on dates already hoping that they’re going to change their look or some of their habits for you, then it’s a big no-no. There will be someone out there that you can see past the looks and appreciate the actual person, even if they have some quirky habits.
Ultimately, if you feel that you’re the only one putting any effort into a relationship you are probably with the wrong person. Do yourself a favour and walk away, so the right person has a chance to enter your life. You know what we always say… there’s plenty more fish in the sea!
Looking for singles in your area? Find them on Plentymorefish.com.
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and for many there is little sense of romance in the air. Figuring out ways of making the day as romantic as possible whilst in Lockdown can be a struggle for most but we’ve got you covered. You don’t have to splash the cash to make Valentines special. Let us help you inspire your romantic side with some simple ideas to make the day just as memorable.
Video Call Cooking
If you’re currently not living with your partner, then this could be a fun activity to do together over a video call. Get in contact with local restaurants or simply search for a recipe you both enjoy and get cooking.
If you live close by, go on a socially distanced romantic walk, grab a coffee, put on your walking boots, and plan your route. No phones, just the two of you. This is a great way to get to know the person you’re dating better and to distract yourself from reality for a little while.
Bring the Bar to Your Home
Lots of companies are setting up virtual cocktail classes or wine tastings, you just buy a ticket and they send the kit out to you. The best thing about it is, you could participate in your dressing gown if you fancied it and it’s not too far to stumble to your bedroom.
Mr and Mrs Quiz
We’ve all heard of Mr and Mrs, the ultimate quiz to test your partner. There are plenty of similar games/quizzes out there to get to know your date better. For those who don’t do romance it can be a light-hearted game to see if your date really does listen to you.
It’s a simplistic idea which can be made much better with a bowl of your favourite treats, a bottle of wine and some blankets to cosy up with. Plan with enough time so both you and your partner get to pick a film each, it saves the endless scrolling trying to find something you both enjoy.
Spa Day at Home
There’s nothing better than a trip to the spa, you don’t have to have the massage table to make your home into a mini spa-day for you and your boo. Grab some face masks, light some candles, and pop some music on. Maybe even spice your spa day up a little and have a dip in the bath together.
Plan the future
Is there something you both really want to do after restrictions are lifted? Make a list together and have it as a unique bucket list for you both. If your priorities are travelling, search for places you both want to travel to, hotels you’d like to stay at etc. If your priorities are to do with your home, begin looking for your inspiration. Once you’ve completed your list, stick it somewhere you and your partner will always see it, so that you can be reminded, and it can be a form of motivation for you as a couple.
If you are still looking for that special someone check out Plentymorefish.com.
You have been dating for a few weeks now and things are going really well. Awesome! But Christmas is right around the corner and you are stuck with the decision on whether to buy your new love a prezzie or not, and if so, what.
Buying a gift this early on in a relationship could come across as moving too fast, whereas not giving one could portray you as Scrooge’s second cousin twice removed. But before you hop on the next power sleigh towards the North Pole, let us help you with 3 gift ideas which are guaranteed to spread festive cheer without screaming ‘I think you are the one!’ (unless he/she is, then I’d still advise you to wait a couple more weeks before you propose…but we digress). Here we go:
Gifts for her:
1. Spa Treatment
Women love to be pampered so a voucher to a nice spa weekend for the two of you is bang on. The best ones offer a choice of treatments such as a mani / pedi, back massage or facial. However, weekend packages can be expensive, so either shop around or simply book some treatments at a local beauty salon. Staff can advise you which package is best.
2. Day Out Voucher
Treat her to a trip somewhere she has not been before or a place she loves and take a look at the sights. Round it off with a nice dinner and remember to take the camera for plenty of piccies for your second gift, a photo book, which will make a thoughtful keepsake. Add some creativity and make it fun, but don’t spoil the second surprise. 😉
3. Spoil Her Night
You can create a magical evening by treating her like a queen all night. Run a bath with and pour in essential oils (like relaxing lavender) and light scented candles to set the mood. Treat her to her favourite meal, rent good movie, really go all out to spoil her and make her feel special. Use your creativity, she’s guaranteed to love it! Just remember, this is not about you, so no ulterior motives gents!
Gifts for him:
The classic, yet fail-proof option. Casually ask him about his favourite brands or better, check with friends. If you aren’t prepared to fork out £30 – £60 for an aftershave, just go for the body spray option of the same brand. Best bit, your man will smell edible and who knows where that might lead?
2. Magazine / Comic Subscription
I have yet to encounter a man without a passion for something, be it technology, economy, comic books, music or trains and you are guaranteed to find a matching magazine. Most publications offer subscriptions from 3 months up to a year. If you aren’t sure, what he is into, ask his best friend or a family member.
3. Experience Day
Whether he’s into sports, the outdoors or sampling a good ale down the pub, a day centred all around him and his interests is sure to impress and gives him an opportunity to show off in front of you.
Right then, better get ordering now folks!
Christmas kisses from us all at Plentymorefish.com!
Let’s be frank, dating is not all rainbows and puppy dogs. It takes time and patience and there can be disappointments and rejections along the way. And it’s those rejections we’d like to address to help you navigate them more easily.
Don’t take it personally
You have no idea what reasons the other person has for not getting back in touch, so fretting about it does more harm than good. We know it’s not always that simple, especially if you have dated the person for a while. Think about it this way, if they don’t share your feelings about the relationship, isn’t it best if you move on?
No one likes to be rejected and it’s perfectly normal to feel upset and hurt at first. And if you’ve been dropped without any explanation it can hit you especially hard. It’s important, however, to practice self-kindness, as blaming yourself will only hurt you further. Unless you’ve been given a very clear reason why it’s not worked out, avoid jumping to conclusions as to why it didn’t last. There may be many reasons why he/she decided to break it off and they don’t have to be your fault.
Avoid a victim mindset
On the flip side of blaming yourself is blaming the other party. After a rejection, it can be very easy to slip into a victim mentality by generalising behaviour (ie. all men/woman are…). This may feel good at first, and it certainly feels easier than looking in the mirror, but in the long-term, this mindset will sabotage any real chances at finding new love and keep you feeling stuck and powerless. Again, acknowledge your feelings but don’t dwell.
After a rejection, especially when we listen to our critical inner voice, it’s easy for self-doubt and insecurities to raise their ugly heads and can leave us feeling less sure of ourselves. When we’ve been left by someone, we may find ourselves feeling out of place. It may become difficult to visit certain places, see certain people, or partake in activities for a while. However, this situation presents an opportunity to really connect with our individuality, your own needs. What is it that you enjoy doing? Who are you outside of a relationship? Focussing on defining yourself anew again, can get you out of heartbreak-mode much faster. Realising that you have a whole life outside of whatever rejection you’ve experienced, and that life will go on.
Let’s be honest, the dating pond is a vast ocean of opportunities and potential matches. It makes sense that you cast your net wide to increase your chances for reeling in the best catch and dating several people at once is simply being efficient.
Even so, seeing more than one person at any one time is a bit of a juggling act and before we share our tips on how make that easier, it’s worth giving some context. When we refer to ‘dating’ we mean ‘looking for a long-term relationship’ not ‘hooking up’ (that’s what our naughty pond is for). 😈
#1 Be honest
Since we all agree that dating more than one person is a good thing, keeping it hidden from the people you are seeing is not. Telling your dates that you are meeting other people is the mature and decent thing to do. Some of you may protest that it might scare some potential dates away. Yes, that may happen, but if someone is put off by that, they are clearly not on the same page and are probably not a suitable match.
#2 Keep it small
As with other things in life, if we take on too much it becomes a struggle. It’s better to date 5 people than 10 for the simple reason that dating can be tiring. It’s also a good idea to spread out your date over several days and give yourself time to reflect and, you know, have a life. You’ll want to be your best self when looking for that special someone so make sure you don’t overdo the dating.
#3 No Ghosting
When you’ve started to realise that it’s not going to work out with one of your dates, please don’t just ghost them. Be fair and tell him/her that it’s not going to go anywhere and let them down gently. Likewise, if you’re getting serious with someone, it’s time to share that you’re off the market. We all deserve to be treated respectfully.
#4 Be Curious
Really push the boat out and increase your odds of finding love by dating a variety of people. Pick someone you wouldn’t normally go out with. Granted, it may be a bit out of your comfort zone but as the old saying goes, ‘opposites attract’. Or they surprise you and you’ll realise you have more in common than you thought. You won’t know until you’ve tried.
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