How To Create Your Own Meet Cute In The Age Of Cell Phones
If you’re a hopeless romantic who consumes rom-coms like air, then you’re probably familiar with the “meet cute.” This foundational plot point involves the two romantic leads meeting in the most unexpected way, and even if they’re not initially charmed by each other, their fate is set.
Whether you smile every time Miles tells Iris about the Santa Ana winds in The Holiday, Lara Jean almost hits Peter with her car in To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, or Harper and Charlie fight over takeout in Set It Up, one thing is for sure: we’re dreaming of our own!Life might not be as picture perfect as your go-to comfort film, but we talked to Pippa Murphy, the sex & relationship expert at condoms.uk, about how you can orchestrate our own meet cutes. Her take? Relationships in the real world take a little more time.
“[Meet cutes] can still happen in real life – they’re just extremely rare, especially since the rise of dating apps,” Murphy says. “Dating apps allow people to connect much faster and more easily than in the past, which means there are fewer opportunities for meet-cute chance encounters.”
You might choose to swipe rather than venture out into the IRL dating pool (so are we, if we’re honest). But dating apps do have their perks, like meeting people you would never encounter otherwise.
But dating apps have also altered our expectations when it comes to meeting partners. “People used to go on blind dates or meet in a bar and have no idea what each other looked like until they met,” Murphy says. “Now, people are more likely to know what their date looks like before they even meet them face-to-face and will have made presumptions about the person.”
Even if it’s unintentional, studies show that we judge others based on their appearances (like dating app photos) — even though those judgements can often be incorrect.
If you’re looking to pull back on the apps and orchestrate your own romantic run-in, there are a few ways you can lay the groundwork à la Taylor Swift’s “Mastermind.” Consider spending time at your favorite local hang, especially if it attracts the kind of person you’re looking for.
Image via Leeloo Thefirst/Pexels
“If there is one place that everyone knows is great for meeting people, it’s a coffee shop,” Murphy says. “They’re great for people-watching, and tend to have a slower pace of living inside, therefore, making it easy for you to spark up a conversation with someone else.”
Just imagine sipping your matcha latte while you read Emily Henry’s latest novel, when suddenly you look up and lock eyes with the most attractive person you’ve ever seen. Yep, we’re swooning.
Another one of Murphy’s recommendations? Going to the grocery store. “As people tend to shop alone, this makes it more likely for two people to interact with each other, plus everyone has to go food shopping so it’s full of people with different types of personalities.”
There’s nothing like falling in love surrounded by produce. Romance on aisle 3!
As fun as these ideas sound, they’re definitely easier said than done. If you’re an introvert, or you’re still new to the dating pool, it can be hard to work up the confidence to talk to a new person — especially when you find that person attractive.
“Consider building your confidence by studying the body language of people who seem naturally at ease and how they influence those around them,” Murphy says. “If you need some extra help, you can even ask for advice from friends, family, or coworkers who are more outgoing than you are—they'll be able to tell you what works and what doesn't when it comes to talking to strangers.”
It’s also important to remember that, just like every other area of life, it gets easier with time. I just wrote about crafting my first dating profile, and finally found the courage to send someone a message this week. I was trying to be funny and flirty, but I think it just came across as super awkward. But it happened, I lived through it, and knowing myself, something awkward will most definitely happen again. However, it’s essential to remember that even embarrassing moments aren’t the last word in your romantic fate.
“Chances are, everyone will appreciate being approached if it's an authentic interaction that's coming from a place of curiosity rather than one with ulterior motives (as long as their safety isn't compromised),” Murphy says. “And if they don't respond the way you want them to? Don’t take it personally at all. They weren’t meant to be your person.”
Have you ever had your own meet cute? Let us know on Twitter and check out our relationships page for more dating advice.
Lead image via cottonbro studio/Pexels
Chloe Williams serves as B+C’s Assistant Editor, entertainment lead, and resident Taylor Swift expert. Whether she’s writing a movie review or interviewing the stars of the latest hit show, Chloe loves exploring why stories inspire us. You can see her work published in BuzzFeed, Coastal Review, and North Beach Sun. When she’s not writing, Chloe’s probably watching a Marvel movie with a cherry coke or texting her sister about the latest celebrity news. Say hi at @thechloewilliams on Insta and @afangirlfirst on Twitter!