Ira Trivedi is a best-selling author of India in Love. When not contemplating modern love, she can be found practicing yoga at Namami Yoga.
This article is written as part of a series called A Dummies Guide to Dating.
Gone are the days when being sweet, charming, well-spoken, and well dressed was enough to make your dating life successful.
Now you have to be a good writer too or at least a good text-er. Texting is your first point of contact to your potential date, and yes, like anything else in life, there are rules.
A disaster at this step will lead to no date, so control those fingers and text with caution. So brace yourselves for the finest guide on the art of texting.
– Don’t text like a maniac.
I know we are all compelled to write one line SEND, one line SEND, one line SEND, but instead of doing this, write one line or two if you must and then wait for her/him to reply. If he/she is taking time to reply, don’t freak out; just try to divert your attention as much as possible (I know it’s hard but try candy crush, FB stalking, Twitter scrolling). Messaging like a maniac will only make you look desperate.
– Write out whole words.
One of the best texting tips that we can give you is to write in full form. The one thing that annoys me the most is when guys don’t spell out whole words. And it’s not just because I’m a writer. Say “Are you there?” instead of “u der.” Say Am instead of M. Most certainly don’t write texts like. “M here r u der 4 me” or “Dnt B l8” Don’t write texts like gibberish. Be coherent. A couple of extra A’s and O’s won’t take up that much extra time.
-Don’t use too many emoticons
Ruining the art of texting. How many is too many? So emojis are cute, we all love them, and yes, a picture can tell 1000 words, but an emoji simply cannot. You can get your point across by sending one smiley; you don’t need a whole line of them. If you’re sending more emojis than writing out text, there is a problem. Take this texting tip and refrain from sending too many emojis or emoticons.
-Don’t use multiple platforms to send the same text.
She/he is not going to respond any faster if she/he gets the same message on multiple platforms simultaneously– SMS, WhatsApp, Viber, Facebook, or whatever else. If your love interest hasn’t replied, sorry to say, but they’re just not that into you. Figure out what the best platform for communication is and stick to it.
-Don’t overdo it with the pictures, especially with the SELFIEs
It’s endearing to send a picture or two. But leave something for real life. There is no need to bombard him/her with your baby pictures, pictures of your best friend, mother, father, sister, and dog. Multiple selfies will make him/her think you’re an egomaniac.
– Don’t substitute messaging for actual conversation.
It’s sometimes easier and less nerve-wracking to message, but it is a good idea to limit the messaging and take time to talk, maybe even meet. Too much messaging can build up expectations (or TEXTPECTATIONS), but it is nice to exchange a little and then wait to meet. Distance makes the heart grow fonder.
The key to sexting lies in subtlety and grace. Boys, keep it in your pants. No one wants to open their phone and see an anatomical display. Sending her overly sexualized texts will give her the wrong signal. Gently try to steer her in the right direction, but let her take the lead on this one.
Last word for girls and boys both. Grooming is not only for horses.
– Don’t overthink it
Keep the rules in mind, but also remember that texting is texting, it’s not rocket science. There is no need to spend hours on one text and discuss it with ALL your friends. A couple of minutes to make sure you follow these texting tips will do.
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