When You Need a Timeout and a Face Mask

Doesn’t it always seem to work out so that one week the apps are completely silent and then the next you have 5 date invitations for the same evening? Managing your profiles across apps is no small feat, especially when you have to deal with distractions like working and feeding yourself. But no matter how organized and systematic you try and make your online dating life, there will always be points where you just feel like you need a pause button.

This week was that point for me. In the span of 4 days I somehow ended up connecting with two people I’m legitimately interested in, got pulled into my first ever he-said-something-inappropriate-so-I-responded-by being-super-weird-but-he-didn’t-get-it-was-a-joke situation (see my insta story if you’re interested, it was pretty entertaining), felt obligated to keep chatting with a few Nice Guys even though I know I probably don’t want to date them, and had a stellar date that also kept me up way too late for a school night (whoops). So entertaining? Yes. But completely overwhelming? Also yes.

So all of this led me to the decision to just embrace my millennialism to the fullest and declare today a self-care day. I know it sounds silly and we all love to make fun of this buzz term that is understandably hilarious – but sometimes you need a time out. And since I have yet to realize my full potential as a Charmed sister so I can freeze time like Piper, a hot bath with a Lush bath bomb and a Korean face mask will have to do (face masks fix everything, right?).

As a stereotypical overscheduled Washingtonian workaholic, having the time to do nothing and recharge means canceling plans. I hate canceling plans. I hate coming off as flaky, or feeling like I’m letting people down, or feeling like I’m missing out (if any of y’all have figured out the cure for FOMO, please let me know). But I am actively trying to get better at it because I really think that it is a necessary part of enjoying dating and allowing it to continue to be fun, rather than feeling like a chore or something you should be doing.

I’ve hit my low points. I’ve had streaks where I go on 5 or 6 dates in a row that are just total duds and it’s exhausting! As a people-pleasing extravert, I always work way too hard on those dates. I will keep the conversation semi-flowing if it takes every ounce of energy I have, because I hate awkward silences. But then you have one stellar date – like last night – and suddenly it all feels worth it. Until the sleep deprivation kicks that is :).

Some people say that online dating is a numbers game. You have to have a lot of so-so dates to get to the few great ones. I don’t know if I really believe that – mostly because there’s a lot of filtering that goes on before you even go on a date – but I do know that I would not have the stamina to keep going if I didn’t learn how to take a timeout. So I will continue my face mask, silk pajamas, and Gilmore Girls nights and try to keep my sanity in the crazy world of Dating in the District.

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