How to Date the Old Fashioned Way

Thanks to social media, the advent of text messaging, and time-saving everything, dating isn’t what it used to be.

Though it allows for seemingly limitless options, we’re not suggesting it’s changed for the better… especially among overly committed young professionals in cities where our stimulus is already on overdrive.

You’ll likely remember your first boyfriend or girlfriend developing in a more organic way than your relationships start now. We’re talking about a time when people were more mysterious and our choices weren’t affected by our electronic devices and perfectly executed profile pictures. As a matter of fact, that high school sweetheart could be more real than anything you’ve had recently.

Here’s how to start a relationship in the good, old-fashioned way…

Agree to a date without extensively researching the other person first.

These days, it’s rare not to crack open the laptop the next day after meeting someone (once the hangover wears off) to find out, well, everything you can about them. We don’t have to tell you that this includes an inevitable Google search, an anonymous LinkedIn search, and Twitter, Instagram and Facebook search. The problem? You already have a pre-conceived notion of how you think they are, will end up asking questions you already know the answers to on the first date, and, frankly, it takes much of the organic appeal out of it.

Talk on the phone all night.

Remember monopolizing your parents’ landline back in the day with marathon conversations with the boy or girl you liked? Sometimes you’d even wake up with the receiver beside you (yeah, we’ve been there). A good, old-fashioned phone call is rare (almost weird) these days in the initial days of dating someone. But you get to know each other minus the distracting bells and whistles of a fancy restaurant. And it’s cheaper.

Turn off devices while at dinner.

Ever notice when you’re at dinner and the person across from you pulls out their phone, that you automatically do too? Then you become that odd table in the restaurant who sits there staring at their phones the whole time? Try turning it off and (gasp) actually enjoy the moment and the company. At the end of the day, it will save you time deciding whether you like them or not.

Go on an alcohol-free date.

When most of us date these days, the dates seem to involve alcohol. It’s easy, after all, to just “meet for a quick drink.” But after that initial drink, try to choose date activities that don’t involve booze. Think rock climbing, rollerblading or skating… or simply going for a walk and getting ice cream. This way you’ll know how the other is without the crutch and confidence offered by a martini glass.

Write hand-written letters.

If you clean out your old boxes from your parents’ basement, no doubt you’ll come across stacks of old letters from boyfriends and girlfriends past. We’re not suggesting to go overboard, but letters stand the test of time more than an email that’s only going to get lost in your inbox or deleted. Plus, when there’s no backspace or delete button, you can be sure that the other person has put thought and effort into it. Its rarity will be appreciated.


If a relationship is really what you want, wait until you make up your mind about them to sleep with them. Your mom has told you this since day 1.

Get off Tinder.

Fine, you’ve got options. We get it. You will never give the person in front of you the consideration they need if you are distracted by more options than at an overcrowded candy store.

Turn off your head.

Don’t over-analyze when it comes to the details of your potential relationship. We all do it and it’s easier than ever thanks to social media and a perpetual “grass is greener” mentality of most urban professionals. Go with the flow; if it feels right, it probably is.


Cover image from:

Want more updates on the most Notable things happening so you know before your colleagues do? Get our exclusive newsletter here and follow us on Twitter for all the latest.