Since we’re all sitting on our couches watching The Bachelor each week, we might as well learn something from the experience. Here are our top 5 takeaways from Australia’s favourite sporting event.
1. Don't waste precious time talking about past relationships
Hopefully, in the real world, you’re not having to share your crush with twenty other people, or trying to pack three months worth of dates into six hours. As far as this show is from reality, we can still learn something from the way these dates go down: leave negativity at the door. That doesn’t mean making your life seem #blessed – you’ve got to be honest, too – but banging on about your ex or your frenemy isn’t going to set your relationship off on a good course. Every new relationship is a clean slate and a fresh start, so make the most of this chance. Focus on getting to know the person sitting across from you, and help them learn what makes you awesome.
2. The person you're going on a date with probably isn't 'The One’
The contestants on The Bachelor very quickly assume that the one handing out the roses is ‘The One’ for them. Maybe this will be the case – but it’s equally likely that they’re not. Don’t go into a date believing a relationship will just magically happen over garlic bread. Sometimes you meet a really excellent human, you hang out with them for a bit and then you go your separate ways. It may not be the epic love story you’d hoped for, but it’s still worth experiencing.
3. Share what brings you joy or where your passion lies
One of the great things about The Honeybadger is that he’s enthusiastic about pretty much everything. It’s easy to like him because he’s like the heart–eyes emoji, all about joy and excitement. The dates that seem to go the best are the ones where conversation focuses on the little, everyday things that bring each person joy. There’s nothing more attractive than listening to someone talk about something that excites them.
4. Consent, consent, consent
The whole of Bach-obsessed Australia cringed when Romy and Cat forced Nick to kiss them on their solo dates. It’s important to remember that any kind of physical contact requires consent, so make sure you always have an enthusiastic ‘yes’ from your partner. Clearly communicating your boundaries, and making sure you know what will and won’t work for your partner, are the most important parts of a new relationship. Rhiannon had an awkward moment on her date when she asked Nick if he wanted to kiss and he wasn’t keen. But a few awkward minutes is way better than forcing someone to do something they’re not comfortable with.
5. Grab every opportunity you can (but don't jump into the pool at a cocktail party)
While real-world dating isn’t as *fancy* as The Bachelor – you’re probably not arriving for lunch on a private island by yacht – it’s still important to grab every opportunity that comes along. Fear and insecurity are big factors in the early stages of relationships, and sometimes they can get the better of us. Remember that you are awesome. This person wants to go on a date with you for a reason, so it’s time to leave self-doubts behind. As long as you feel safe and comfortable, say ‘yes’ to everything you can. But if something doesn’t sit right, or if it’s just a way to get attention, then don’t do it. Jumping into the pool at a cocktail party to get noticed isn’t cute. Be yourself, be confident, and be willing to try new things – even if it’s playing netball on moon hoppers.
Still a bit in the dark about the best ways to navigate dating? Why not check out some of our handy resources to get you fully up to speed.