May 9, 2015

The Traveling Dating Paradigm—How to Create Meaningful Experiences with the “fling” Mentality.

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After a long winter, you can feel travel season in the air.

There is something magical about meeting someone when you travel and instantly connect. Hours feel like days or weeks. If you have ever traveled and experienced it, you will know exactly what I am talking about.

Most travelers I spoke to explained the feeling like living in some sort of romantic scene in a movie. So is it just a movie or can it be real?

We need to pinpoint why it is so much easier to create fun and exciting bonds while traveling. I shared this query with someone I met on a recent trip to Thailand and she told me that her mother asked her the very same question when she got back to New York:

“Why don’t you approach dating here in New York the same way you do when you travel, because you always come back with such good relationship memories?”

Here are five reasons why I think people are way more effective at meeting people while traveling and creating something meaningful and how we can apply it everyday:

1. Let down your emotional walls

We all have emotional baggage and some more significant than others. But you are still the person you are! I have met travelers who were divorced, recovered from illness or intense emotional challenges. Within a matter of a day, my new travel friends opened up and shared deep personal experiences.

Perhaps it was because each person realized that they may never see the other person again but it created an instant connection and sense of trust. No one was thinking or strategizing what to say or reveal. Everyone was an emotional open book.

2. Be ready for adventure and practice mindfulness

When you know your time is limited, you just want to maximize it. You want to see and do as much as you can in the restricted time. You are not thinking, “Is it worth it?” or, “Is a late night a good idea?” Sure, at home, we have more responsibilities, but when there is a sense of living in the moment, you are ready to explore and enjoy without too many calculations.

3. Don’t be shy or waste time

There is no time for games or being shy. If you don’t make an effort to meet people while traveling, you may end up alone. So you make an effort to speak to someone who peeks your interest. You don’t get bogged down with insecurities. It may just start as an innocent conversation about your travel itinerary or simply, “Can you please take a picture for me,” but if it develops, you may end up spending the day or week together, which will enhance your traveling experience.

4. Don’t judge

Don’t overthink! “Is this person for me in the long-term?” or, “I am not sure I like her style?” or, “Is his job secure?” Be open-minded. If you feel an attraction or some sort of connection, go for it! You may meet someone that you thought could never be compatible and still have an amazing time.

5. Don’t bombard with questions and tests

No one wants to be bogged down with a hundred questions when they first meet you. Get to know the person and not their resume! It is not all about you. Listen to your new friend and try to stop thinking in terms of a potential marriage partner or an investment. This may sound obvious to you, but if you have dated in New York, you most probably can relate well!

Is it easier to implement these steps when traveling? Sure. But I am not convinced it should be. It is a mindset, which you can apply to everyday life. This doesn’t mean that you should meet or hook-up with just anyone, but you should definitely be more open-minded, confident and less distant when meeting new people.

Try to live in the moment with fewer calculations. You never know, it may develop into something significant or special, and if it doesn’t, well at least you met someone interesting, learned new things about life and possibly had a wonderful experience.




5 Essential Yoga Practices for Traveling Yogis.


Author: David Zulberg

Editor: Travis May

Photo: Author’s Own

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