Situationships Who? Intentional Dating Is What You Need To Embrace If You Want To Get Out Of A Dating Rut

Intentional dating

We’ve all complained about how dating in this generation takes the life out of us. I had been trying to navigate the murky waters of dating for the longest time. Ghosting, talking stages, terrible first dates—I’ve done it all, repeatedly. Despite being a romantic girlie at heart, all I seemed to attract was an incessant number of talking stages that ended up with some casual sex and went nowhere. When all I wanted at the end of the day was to have one person waiting for me, one person to go out on dates with, one person to speak to incessantly. Luckily, I found that one person and I have intentional dating to thank for that.

We’re all smack in the middle of the situationship era. Everyone’s been a victim of the so-called situationship, even Taylor Swift herself! I mean, Fortnight from The Tortured Poets Department is certainly about a short-lived situationship. The ambiguity of these relationships and the accessibility of people due to an increase in the number of dating apps has led us to not value the sanctity of relationships. Intentional dating pushes you to take a slower approach and makes you emphasize the feelings your relationship should have.

What is intentional dating?

I was completely oblivious to the phenomenon that is intentional dating. After years of being perpetually confused about what I was looking for romantically, I made up my mind about wanting a healthy and fulfilling relationship. “Intentional dating represents being extremely mindful and conscious about your dating choices keeping in mind your values, clarity, expectations, purpose and depth of the romantic encounters,” elaborates Ruchi Ruuh, a relationship counsellor. She strongly believes that mutual respect, clear respect and shared values are prioritized over spontaneity and fleeting moments that provide a dopamine hit.

After years of using various dating apps and going on first dates where I’d say, “I’m not sure of what I’m looking for, but I want something romantic and not casual,” I finally decided to do the opposite. I decided that it was time to be more reflective of my dating choices and be aligned on what I was looking for in a relationship. By changing my ‘looking for’ status on dating apps from “Don’t know yet” to “Committed long-term relationship” and telling all of my friends that I was finally looking for a partner who wants the same things from a relationship I embraced intentional dating.

If you’re looking to intentionally date, Ruchi advises that you need to have extreme clarity about your dating intentions. “Ask yourself these questions—What am I seeking in a partner? What are my own values of honesty, commitment and exclusivity,” she explains. By unknowingly following these and being authentic in my interactions with my current partner about the kind of romantic relationship I’m looking for, I found myself in the healthiest relationship instead of being stuck in a vicious cycle of ambiguity.

Where the problem lies


While dating apps have made the process of meeting people easier, they’ve also made it a little difficult. Hear me out, you match with someone and then go on to have a good conversation with them for a few days. But both of you aren’t sure about what you’re looking for and decide to ‘go with the flow’. You’re talking almost all the time, going on dinner and movie dates all whilst realising that you’re unsure of what you want but you really like the other individual. Until one of you asks for something more than the other dynamic and all hell breaks loose.

Being unsure of what we’re looking for coupled with the fear of commitment and constant need for instant gratification are deep-rooted causes of dating being difficult to manoeuvre these days. These three elements are intertwined with each other and always end up pushing individuals into a neverending vicious cycle. We’re afraid of committing ourselves to one person because we’re not clear about what we’re expecting from a relationship. On top of that, we’re thriving in a culture that gives us easy access to meeting people all the time. So at the back of our minds, we know that if a certain dynamic doesn’t work out with one person, there’s going to be another option. Whereas, intentional dating allows you to prioritise depth and forge meaningful connections over superficial ones by focusing on quality over quantity.

How does intentional dating benefit your dating life?


Ruchi explains that this offers deeper, more emotionally fulfilling relationships via shared experiences, meaningful conversations and emotional intimacy, which can have a profound impact on an individual’s emotional well-being. Since intentional dating ensures you are aligned with values that matter the most to you, you’re going to be more self-assured and have a positive outlook towards life.

- Beauty Writer


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