We are social beings. We love to connect with people by nature and seek the company of others because it brings us joy and contentment. Jennifer Berman, MD, MS states that: “We are hard wired to connect with other people. It is in our DNA to connect. Research has shown that the single most important factor for people who live the longest was connections to other people, families, friends and community.” Two new meta-analyses from Brigham Young University reveal that loneliness and social isolation may increase the risk of premature death by up to 50 percent.
This is the tragedy of the social distancing era. We have lost faith in meeting new people because who knows where they’ve been and what their behaviors are during the lockdown. As such, the pandemic has made it extremely difficult to meet a significant other.
Here are the most popular ways to meet singles:
Tinder. Match. Bumble. Hinge… The most popular way to meet someone currently. There are many, many dating apps and every few months, a new one pops up. However, these apps can feel overwhelming. We make judgments based on a couple of photos and one-line bios, or the awkwardness of sending direct messages to strangers only to be ghosted. The sheer number of apps and users can make simple swiping seem like a daunting task. Then you have the hurdle of matching with only a handful of users and having conversations with even fewer. Conversations are forced because of the pressure of appearing cool and standing out amongst the competition.
Facebook. Instagram. TikTok. Does this work? Yes it has. This is actually how I connected with my wife. I met her in passing at a convention, snapped a photo with a group of friends and we went our own ways. After the convention, I messaged her on Facebook (along with several other women that I met at the convention) and we connected really well. That was our first conversation. We just celebrated our 4 year marriage anniversary, so yes it does work! Conversations are more organic contrasting with dating apps.
The traditional method for Desis to meet singles – through family and friends.
“Varun, you should meet Sonia, who’s the second daughter of my neighbor’s (in India) sister….” Have you heard this before?
There’s a long history in this method of connecting singles. Our parents generation were hitched through this way. However the pressure from parents for meeting the person is extremely high and we are placed in an unnecessarily uncomfortable position. Does this work? Yes, it does for some people.
Virtual Singles Mixer
Video chat has become the go-to for singles connecting with each other. Keeping this in mind, my wife and I designed and created this 2-hour program that combines the strengths of the above ways to meet singles.
We utilize Zoom to establish a fun and comfortable environment where singles organically meet each other through guided conversations and games. This event is not your typical speed dating with forced and awkward conversations. We play games, we ask questions, we break out in smaller groups of 4 – 8 people and through having fun, you’ll meet other singles in your age group.
You’ll actively participate in conversations through which you’ll get to know people, understand their values, how they perceive life and what they’ve experienced. You’ll learn whether someone enjoys adventures, or a low-key weekend at home with a book and a blanket.
Additionally, when you come across someone interesting, you will have the opportunity to share contact info with each other at the end of the session. We’ve conducted several sessions thus far and in total, they have been attended by 500 people with several success stories.