Master Class: The Future of Dating
WE’VE MADE IT TO 300 EPISODES!
It’s my job to stay ahead of the pulse in dating, so you can focus on being present.
This special 300th episode Master Class is a list of tips based on my predictions for the future of dating.
Did you know that there was a 52% increase in revenue for meditation and mindfulness apps in the last year?
I know what you’re thinking: What does that have to do with dating and relationships?
It means that technology may not be ruining our connection to other human beings.
I always talk to my clients about staying present in the moment. One way to do this is to practice mindfulness outside of dating. Another way is to put your freakin’ phone away. (I’ll tell you how to do this in this week’s episode)
The fact that so many people are investing in mindfulness means that there is hope for the future of dating.
This special 300th episode Master Class covers:
- How to survive the disappearance of dating apps
- The ONE THING you must do before you start a relationship
- The gender roles of tomorrow and how to prepare for this shift
- How to diversify your dating pool now
- and so much more!
Here are a few Master Classes that might also help you on your journey:
ARE YOU LOOKING FOR LOVE IN THE RIGHT PLACES?
This is a way for us to connect on a deeper level and for you to get more personalized support from me on your love life.
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Patreon is a platform that allows you to support creators like me to keep making helpful content that you want to hear and allow you to get amazing listener benefits by participating
Our page is Patreon.com/datesandmates
What will you get if you sign up?
There are three different tiers. One for our loyal listeners who want to connect with others and keep this show going strong for another 7 seasons.
Sign up at patreon.com/datesandmates for:
- an opportunity to work with Damona directly
- to get quality advice that is tailored to your dating challenges
- and to become part of a community that will help you find the healthiest, most loving relationships this year
WANT TO GO EVEN DEEPER? HERE IS A TRANSCRIPT OF THE SHOW IF YOU WANT TO FOLLOW ALONG!
Hello lovers and welcome to the 300th episode of dates and mates. kind of amazing that this little idea that I had seven and a half years ago, has turned into a movement towards happier, healthier modern relationships. We have seen a lot in the last 300 episodes. Here’s a snapshot at some of the things that were different when the show originally launched. The phrase swipe right meant nothing to you. Matt Lauer was still the host of the today show. Megan Markel was married to a guy named Trevor Trump wasn’t president and party affiliation wasn’t a deal breaker for daters. Caitlyn Jenner was still Bruce. And the transgender conversation had barely begun. The IUD was 900% less common to get as a birth control method. And online dating wasn’t the most popular way to meet. Actually, it was far from it. I could go on and on. But I think you get the point. Modern dating has changed at the speed of light, and it’s going to keep changing. My goal on dates and mates is to keep you up to speed with the changes and create an army of people who love love, and spread more of it in the world. So for the 300th episode today, I’m going to play Nostradamus a little. I’m going to be the Nostradamus of love, and I’m going to Muse about where we are headed in dating and relationships. And then I’ll share my tips and my stories along the way. And at the rate we’re going the future is going to become the Present, unbelievably soon, the maybe we’ll look back at this episode one day and say, Wow damona was so right, that was amazing. Or we’ll laugh and we’ll say, Boy damona was so wrong. Either way, we’re going to have fun along the way. This show today is broken up into three topics that I think are crucial to the future of love. First, technology, the ways in which technology is going to start changing our biology. Second feminism, women are at the forefront of change in all major societal shifts of the last century. And they will be at the center of this next wave of dating and relationship changes as well. Third, connection as humans, our drive for community sex and partnership, rules, everything. And as technology changes and feminism evolves, the way we connect and who we connect with is going to evolve right along with it. And now, part one, technology. Let’s take a look at the timeline of technology and love. computers were first used for dating in 1959. When two Stanford students tried their hand in matchmaking while conducting a class project for the happy families planning services, using a punch card questionnaire and an IBM 650 mainframe computer, they matched 49 men and 49 women. Then in 1965, Harvard students further the idea with a social experiment called Operation match. Millions of daters use the service during the 1960s paying about $3 to fill out a questionnaire. Let’s fast forward a little bit to the mid 90s when AOL launched and they had these chat rooms that were then popularized as a possible place for dating. In the film, you’ve got mail and now Brought online love connections into the mainstream. After that, we had Yahoo personals, Craigslist, personals, and match.com, soon followed. In 2003, after several years of using online dating sites, I met my husband online and became a dating coach. And I really started tracking this stuff. So here’s the deal, not much changed for many years. In fact, in February 2013, I released my book, spin your web, how to brand yourself for successful online dating, because I saw that profiles and the free to join pay to communicate model was about to change. I didn’t know what was coming next, but I sensed it was something big. Then later that year, something major happened. I call it
the Tinder effect on April 1 2013. For our very longtime listeners. You may remember I did a story on this very show about a little app that was taking Brigham Young University by storm. And it gave us a whole new way of dating. It was a free app. It had free communication. And it had the right swipe that did for online dating, which Uber did for transportation. It made it accessible to everyone, and extremely easy to use. The other thing it did, which was an important factor for the success of dating apps, is it leaned into authenticity? Instead of a nameless and sometimes faceless profile, you were a real person with a real name and a real age hopefully, and, and it took the fear away from this idea that you don’t know these people who you’re going to meet on the internet. You don’t know who they really are. Tinder was that game changer that I was anticipating. And it paved the way for the proliferation of dating apps. So here we are at today as many As a third of all relationships begin online. But here’s the thing that’s just looking at dating sites and dating apps. But the entire world of online dating is much, much bigger than that. Think of all the connections that you make online every day, from Twitter threads to Facebook groups, our entire lives have moved online, and so has much of our dating pool. Even when we’re out IRL looking for dates, many of us are still living in the virtual world being constantly connected to our phones. So how will this change in the next five years? Well, I believe in two ways. First, we are extremely close to a no stigma world for online dating. It’s not that long ago that clients of mine told me that they would never try online dating. In fact, I actually just did some new client consultations last week, and some of the things that I heard from Data is is that people still just want to meet in real life. But what we’re failing to realize is that online life is real life right now. And meaning IRL isn’t this romantic fantasy that we remember from the good old days, the world has changed. And you can either be nostalgic about it and get left out. Or you can accept it and get dates. So many people are mad at dating apps. And they’re saying that dating apps are the reason that they can’t date in today’s world. But the bigger issue is that the way that we communicate has changed. There’s a reason that I have a training on the texting trap that I did many years ago. And it’s because texting is at the core of our communication challenges. So much of what we say is conveyed through context and through intonation and body language and We are literally being forced to learn a new language right now to connect effectively with text tools. My tip is to check out my masterclass on how to communicate. If you really want to know how to text more effectively, and use emojis and mood modifiers and gifts as connectors and other tricks to improve your texting connection. I did a whole episode about it. It’s called How to communicate. We’ll put the link in the show notes. But in the meantime, we have to accept that this is for the foreseeable future, our primary mode of communication are you hearing me? This is really important. text based communication is now your primary mode of communication. Most people talk to other humans far more hours and speak to far more people today, through text through dm through email and other forms of written communication. So guess what lovers unless you have Cyrano de Bergerac in your corner, or me helping to write your messages, which you can do. By the way, if you’re interested in coaching, you have to learn this skill, specifically as it relates to dating and flirting. The number one question that I’m asked when people find out that I’m a dating coach is which dating app is best? They want to know what is that magic pill?
And I always laugh because there is no one answer to this question of what is the best dating app. Just as each one of you is different. The app that works best for you may not be the one that works best for your sister or your friend or for me or for any of my clients. I can’t prescribe the perfect app for you. You have to see how you like the functionality. You have to see how you like the matches and the results of each app to make a
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But here’s what I think. is next, the average number of apps that people are on is five. Even if you aren’t actively using five apps, most people have five apps or more on their phone, and five profiles that are circulating in cyberspace, potentially even getting matches that you may never see. So I believe that in the next five years, there will be a return to simplicity, with people choosing one or two apps to use, not five. Yes, I know a lot of you are breathing a sigh of relief right now. Just as we’ve seen a contraction in social media and people picking their one or two platforms to focus on dating apps will be the same way and people will choose their tribe. That being said, we are going to see a contraction in the world of dating apps. We’ve already seen, that match has bought up many of the independent players in this space. I know many of you don’t even know this. So I’ll lay it out. For you, in case you don’t know Matt owns, okay, keep it plenty of fish, hinge, and Tinder, among others. They tried to buy Bumble but Whitney Wolff is holding out. Maybe we’ll see in the next five years that Bumble will become one of their apps too. But my belief is that some of these apps are going to basically March, you’ll see the features that you love from hinge on match. Actually, they’re already doing this as they’ve added the hinge style of prompting questions, and allowing you to react to those prompts into match rather than the classic bio. But this will continue. And as those features begin to migrate to some of the bigger apps, the smaller ones will be absorbed, or made obsolete. Because this is a key factor of success for a dating app. You need critical mass for dating apps to work if there aren’t enough people there that you want to match with, no matter how great the function analogy of the app might be, no matter what great hook, they’re advertising. If the people aren’t there, it’s not going to work. So here’s my tip on what you can do to step into the future, hone in on the one to two apps that you like best, and become a master at those instead of hopping around to whatever app you hear is hot right now, or signing off of an app. Ahem, every three weeks when you start to get bored and new matches start to slow, go just a little further past the place where you usually quit, and see what happens. And I know you all like these free dating apps. Hmm. But don’t get too used to that. It’s one of the oldest marketing tricks in the book to give someone something for free and then you get them hooked on the product until they need that product or service so badly that they’ll pay for it. That free to communicate model is not simple. attainable for these businesses. And they are businesses. Yes, they want you to connect. And yes, they want to spread love. But essentially, they want to make money and they cannot do it on the free communication model. So eventually, we will see them changing over to a pay to join model like the old days of dating sites. Yes, this will result in a drop in users. But what you will get from it is a higher engagement so that you’ll have less ghosting and less of the, you know, those half committed daters that you’ve seen on dating apps up to this point that all of you are writing to me like how do you tell the people that are really there for serious business, from the people that are there to waste your time you slap a price tag on it, and the people that are not serious about it will melt away? In terms of features. Remember when I said that there’s been a move towards authenticity since Tinder made everyone use their real names instead of a made up handle or username. Well, the next evolution of authenticity in dating apps are you ready for this? It’s video. Now that I G stories have popularized peeking into people’s lives and now that the technology is there to support streaming video whether you are on Wi Fi or not, daters are going to start demanding that they see someone in person on video before a date. You know, I’ve been a longtime fan of the phone call. And I’ve been cautious. I’m the first to admit I’ve been cautious about the video call, because you never get a second chance to make that first impression. But I predict
that within one to two years, you will see me giving a training on how to ace the first video call date. And there will be a name for this date and I don’t know what the name will be. Probably bustle. We’ll call it The term in an article somebody will name this phase in the dating process. Maybe you’ll be the one to name it. If you have an idea of what to call the video date, DM me, and I’ll do a poll and I’ll write an article, maybe I’ll write an article for bustle about what this winning name should be. But it’s going to happen, it’s going to become crucial to the dating process. We’ve seen this video component already integrated into many dating apps. So you don’t have to give your number out or your skype name or download another app to video chat. And this is going to be the next big change in the dating process as it relates to tech. So get ready for it and catch your makeup on. Here’s the tip prep for a video call the same way you would for a regular date. And maybe that’ll hold you over until I do that next training one to two years from now. So who will be the leader in the world of dating apps though? Well, to answer that question, We have to move into part two of this masterclass feminism. Part Two feminism in 2016 when Kelly stackelberg was the head of Zoosk, I heard her speak at a conference. She said that online dating only worked when women were made to feel comfortable, and that women were the ones driving the dating process. All that time when you read the fairy tales and thought that the prince was the one taking the action, you misread the situation. The princess was inspiring the prince to take action, even though she wasn’t the one saving him. She was the one pulling the strings to make everything happen. And Kelly was exactly right. Bumble, which she was not a part of is now the second biggest dating app in the world behind Tinder. For those of you who don’t know, Bumble, the difference with this app is that you have to have a mutual match to communicate As you do on most apps, and then women have to initiate with the first message. Women were so tired of having their inboxes filled with guys that they hadn’t invited to their door, that Bumble put them back in the driver’s seat by allowing them to filter and choose who sends messages, but also, too, it asks them to drive the initial communication. This might sound familiar to some of my longtime listeners, who else said that women should initiate sending messages Hmm, who said that in her 2013 book, and for many years before that was even written that that was the process that we should follow. Yes, you got it. I have always known that women are doing the choosing, and that is when the best communication and connections happen. But what’s the real reason that feminism is driving dating today and in the near future? It’s not because of hashtag Me too. Although that is a factor. This may sound a little bit harsh, but stick with me. The real reason that feminism is driving dating today is because women don’t need men. There. I said it, but it’s true. For generations women have needed to partner off for their livelihood. They needed that for a roof over their head to have children to have a comfortable life. women had to have a partner. Even if a woman had the financial means to raise a child on her own. The stigma of having a baby out of wedlock was a strong deterrent. But this is 2020. Women don’t need to get married to have a child in the last year or four and 10 births were two women who were either solo mothers or mothers living with a non marital partner. And that’s according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 50 years ago, one in 10 births were to an unmarried woman and although women are still grossly underpaid in comparison to men. I will not get on my soapbox about that. Women
are now outpacing men in earning master’s degrees and doctoral degrees. And 10 and a half percent of women are now among the top earners in the workforce. And it’s growing. So watch out boys. So that explains a little bit about why feminism is driving manufacturers and dating, but it’s also driving relationships. A study came out a number of years ago that said men and women who shared domestic duties had 50% more sex than couples in which the women did most of the housework. Guys, I have your attention again, suddenly, as I’m talking about sex. Now keep in mind that most of these women who are doing the housework and maybe some of you listening right now, are also still going to work. So while we got ahead in the workplace, we were still living in our homes like it was 1950, which meant that women We’re getting caught in the middle and having to work everywhere that they went. And you know what that leads to tired women who don’t want to have sex. What else? women who are a boss in their position at work, but don’t feel fully appreciated at home. You know, what makes a woman feel like having sex being valued. It’s that simple. We have figured out the solution to this epidemic of married couples having significantly less sex than they did 20 years ago, which was reported on by a medical school in London that did a study of couples in relationships. This study also reported an increase in people wanting to have sex. So we’re not having less sex because we want to have less sex. We’re having less sex, because we just can’t. And leveling the playing field at home for women is the quickest way To get us out of this conundrum. So my tip, if you’re embarking on a new relationship, set the rules of the partnership early on, it’s much easier to do that than to try to change them once you’ve both fallen into the relationship routine, and equality is the name of the game. Now, I have to mention, as we’re talking about feminism, don’t tense up on me. What is feminism really mean? Well, if you Google it, you’ll see that it’s defined as the advocacy of women’s rights on the basis of equality of the sexes. It doesn’t say anything about man hating. There is no mention of traditional roles in the household. I sense nothing militant about it. Feminism simply means equality. And that is what we’re striving for equality partnership. But as we define partnerships in the new paradigm, they don’t necessarily look like they did 25 or 50 years ago. Which brings us to our third and final element of today’s show connection. Welcome to part three, where we’re talking about connection and how that impacts the future of dating and relationships. You may have heard me say on the show before that we are in the middle of a communication crisis. But it’s really deeper than that. It’s a crisis of connection. At a time when technology has allowed us to be always on always connected. We are more disconnected than ever, because we’re not running to our technology with a drive to connect right now. It’s our drive to disconnect from the reality that we’re in the need to escape the present moment that is sending us running to our phones. disconnection is driving connection. How backwards is that? But here’s the real problem. The problem moment is all that we have. One of the biggest things that I coach my clients on is staying in the present moment on a date is that that is where all of the interesting stuff is happening. That’s where you find out all the information that you need to know. That’s where you get all the fields. But we are so fixated on our past. And whatever story we’re telling ourselves about the past, or we’re busy romanticizing about the future and what this person might mean to our lives down the road that we’re missing what’s right in front of us in real time. And we are all desperately wanting that connection in the present moment. We are aware of the connection crisis. Why else would there be a 52% increase in meditation and mindfulness app
revenue in just the last year. We are so dissatisfied from trying to escape At the present moment that we are willing to pay to be brought back into it. And in relationships, it’s vital that we are connecting to each other in the now, not over text, which can be time shifted, not over technology, but through direct in person human connection. Here’s my tip, to create more real time connection. Make sure that you are putting your phone on silent during a date, and tell your date that you’re doing this, thereby focusing your mind on what’s in front of you, and essentially telling them the level of focus that will be expected of them throughout the date. As we look to the future, we will see an openness to finding human connection in different ways than we saw in the past. First, the binary is behind us. While the human race has been propagated on this idea of man and woman, and I No much of the advice that you hear on the show is delivered in more of a gender binary framework is that is still the point of view of the majority of my audience right now. Society is opening up to different possibilities that we weren’t even aware of in previous generations, as we are sought out to find this connection. I remember watching the movie Chasing Amy with Joey Lauren Adams and Ben Affleck. And in it, Joey Lauren Adams character declares herself to be bisexual because by defaulting to straight, she automatically cut out half of her potential dating options. Just seeing this one movie and hearing that thought, made me completely reframe my perception of sexuality. So the next week I declared the same thing about my own sexuality. Soon after I declared it I realized that I’m very, very low number on the Kinsey scale, which means I am super attracted to men. But I needed that moment of opening up to the possibility to really be able to explore my options, expand my mind, and go after connection to figure out really what was right for me. And that’s what’s happening right now. We are waking up to possibilities of different gender identities and definitions of sexuality. We are not even really locked into this idea of bisexuality, you can be pansexual, you can be omnisexual, you can choose not to choose a label at all. And that only amplifies your options and your possibility of finding a match who meets you on a deep emotional level. And Mark my words, someone listening to this podcast right now will be in a relationship in five years, with someone of a gender identity that you didn’t think you were attracted to. might be you. And when that happens, I want you to message me. And to acknowledge that this was the moment that you opened the door just enough to let in a deep connection. As we’re talking about people of different backgrounds, and you expect one of my favorite dating topics, interracial dating is going to go through a massive expansion in the next five years. Massive. Okay, I don’t know, for those of you who’ve been watching, love and love is blind. I’m not sure why it took Lauren and Cameron for us to all get the message, but I’m thankful that it put interracial dating on the map. And it allowed us to see what happens when you judge someone truly by the content of their character, not by the way they look, but by the way that you connect with them. Looking at the most recent data 17% of all US newlyweds had a spouse of a different race or ethnicity, marking on more than five fold increase since 1967, when only 3% of newlyweds were married. We have many more things in common than we have different about us. Plus, the only way to overcome our differences is by creating connection across race and across nationality. Oh, speaking of nationality, interracial dating will also be on the rise over the past 30 years k one fiance visa is issuances. That’s a tough word to say. International dating will also be on the rise. Over the past 30 years k one fiance visas have increased by 75% as dating apps and Skype and WhatsApp and
all of these tools have made connections possible from country to country. And we will continue to see more of that. I have so many of my clients that have met and married internationally over the last 15 airs. So if you’re listening to this, and you’re single, your best possible match may not even be in this country right now. Here’s my tip. See what happens if you drill down to the three must have values and qualities in your match the ones that really matter to long term connection, and then take away anything that is a would like to have quality, anything that would deal with location, ethnicity, age, height, maybe even gender, and then see what magic might happen. This is such an amazing time. Our dating pool has expanded so dramatically in recent years. A study of census data in the 1950s if any of you read that book that Aziz Ansari wrote called Modern Romance he, he cited this data that as many as possible Third of people married someone who lived within five blocks of their home. five blocks. You were marrying your neighbors just 70 years ago. And now your dating pool has expanded to anyone in the entire world. This gives us the ability to choose partners who are more ideally matched, but also who can help us expand our worldview. What a wonderful time to be single, and to have choice. Those are my predictions for the future of dating and relationships. I also predict the dates and mates and I will still be here dishing out your advice in five years. Your love advice I want to say I also predict the dates and mates and I will still be here dishing out your love advice in five years. I love hearing from you. So please share your reactions to this episode with me either through social media or throw a review on your favorite podcast platform. And if there’s something in this episode that you think could help a friend out if there’s some way you can expand their mind and possibilities for finding love, please do us both a favor and share this show with them or post about it on social media. So we can spread the love and we can heal more hearts. We will be back again next week with a regular episode but today, I just want to thank you for 300 episodes of doing what I truly love, sharing the love I feel in my heart. And I love that I know it’s possible for you to feel to Until next week, I wish you happy dating