Looking for a more considered dating experience? Give ‘hesidating’ a go

Written by Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and women’s issues. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time. You can find her on Twitter at @laurenjanegeall.

The new trend applies the idea of slow living to the world of dating, allowing for a more considered approach to finding a partner.

Name: hesidating

Meaning: taking an ultra-slow and cautious approach to dating, in order to make sure your time is spent on people you’re genuinely interested in.

Origin: hesidating is a term that was coined by the dating platform Match as part of its 2023 dating trend predictions. It’s reflective of our growing interest in slow living in other areas of our lives: when the outside world feels too fast and overwhelming, more people are feeling the need to consciously slow down and take their time.  

So, what does hesidating actually entail? It’s really simple. To practise hesidating, all you need to do is give yourself time to breathe. Forget the days when you schedule three dates in one week or scheduled a second date before the first one was even over. Hesidating is all about dating with patience and giving yourself time to really think and feel.

That sounds nice – but it’s not exactly the most efficient way to meet people. You might not meet as many people this way, but you might just give yourself a better chance to really connect with the person in front of you.

Someone’s been watching too many romcoms… Modern dating can be such a drag – let me find my kicks where I want to, OK?

Sure thing. But won’t the people you’re dating get annoyed by you taking ages to reply? I think you’ve misunderstood me. Hesidating isn’t about taking big gaps between dates or being super slow to reply – it’s about being slow in your approach. For example, before you agree to go on a date, you might give yourself a moment to step back and really think about how you’re feeling, or be more cautious about how much information you reveal on the first date. That way, the process as a whole becomes a little more considered, but you’re still able to keep things moving. Think of it as taking a nice, deep breath.  

OK, that makes a bit more sense. I guess hesidating could also help you sniff out any red flags before things get serious, too. Exactly! When you get carried away by the rush of dating (we’ve all been there), it’s sometimes all too easy to ignore or completely miss red flags because you’re distracted by everything that’s going on. Hesidating doesn’t get in the way of that initial fun, but it does make sure you have room to think. And that’s important, especially when it comes to something as personal as a relationship.

You know, you’re actually really good at explaining this stuff. I think that’s the first time you’ve ever paid me a compliment – but I’ll take it.  

Image: Getty; Stylist Design Team

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