Five Ways to Get Ready for Love after the Coronavirus

by Ann Parnes, Match Made in NOLA


The Covid-19 pandemic has severely stifled our ability to live our lives in the ways we are accustomed in nearly every way. As limited as we currently are, however, there is no need to pause our lives entirely, particularly since time continues to march on. While it may not be the best time for dating, it is a good time for reflection and self-improvement.  If you want to maximize your time in quarantine to get relationship-ready for when this is all over, here are five suggestions.

  1. Exercise --One of the effects of being forced to stay at home is that many of us suddenly have more time on our hands. Prior to this, lots of people had lots of excuses about fitting fitness into their schedules. Now, the thirty minutes you used to spend getting to and from a single appointment can be put towards exercise.  Working out will not only boost your appearance and physical well-being, but will also do wonders for stress relief and your overall mental health. With at least several weeks left in isolation, you have an opportunity to create a healthy habit to carry forward into post-Covid life. There is a plethora of online resources at little to no cost, available 24/7, so find something you like and just get moving.

  2. Crack your own story --Whether we realize it or not, we all tell ourselves stories. Our experiences shape our thoughts, and our thoughts affect our behaviors and choices. The first step to changing our patterns is becoming aware of what we have been telling ourselves that causes us to choose the same type of partner or to act in the same destructive ways. Then, we can begin to unravel our story by understanding how it came about and poking holes in some of these self-limiting, underlying beliefs.  Once we gain that awareness, it becomes easier to make deliberate choices that lead us to the relationships we want, rather than the ones we have taught ourselves to expect.

  3. Improve your relationship skills --Do you know what your relationship challenges are?  Most of us can identify at least one area where we could stand to improve in some way. Be it communication, vulnerability or sensuality, there is so much material out there that is easily accessible. Take advantage of the extra time to educate yourself and work on whatever will make the most difference to your love life. 

  4. Create a relationship vision board --It’s extremely useful to create a  visual representation of the type of partner and relationship you want, so that you can be clear and intentional about who you invest your time and emotional energy in. The first step is to think about the qualities in a person that really matter to you and write them down.  Next, consider what you would like for your life together to look like in 5, 10, and 20 years. Then, find words and photos in magazines or online that reflect and represent your vision, and apply them to a poster or board. This vision board will serve as a great tool in guiding your decisions about who you should and should not be dating in the future.

  5. Create a dating plan --Once you are clear on your ideal partner, it’s time to make a plan to find them.  Write or type out the kinds of places (including virtual locations) where the person you envisioned might be. Then, commit to taking several action steps to engage in those areas each week.  Hopefully, your future partner shares some of your interests and passions, so this shouldn’t be unpleasant for you. We are currently limited in our ability to physically go places, but there are plenty of opportunities to engage online, including Meetup.com and various networking groups. If you are a dating app user, your plan could include brushing up your profile, photos and messaging skills. Many matchmakers, including myself, are beginning to host online singles events, so stay tuned for those as well.  Also, don’t forget to reach out to friends and tell them about the kind of person you would be interested in being connected with.

As with all things, this too shall pass. And when it does, people will be ready to resume their quest for love and connection. If you've got the time and energy, why not take advantage so you can put your best foot forward out of physical isolation?

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