You’re vaccinated and ready to meet new people, right!? Now that things are getting back to some semblance of “normal” I felt like it’s a good time to give you some quick reminders on how to socialize again so you don’t look like a total weirdo when you’re on a date – yay! (Don’t worry we’ve all been there.)

Figure out your own boundaries.

Ask yourself how you’re feeling about being social and what you want that to look like. Just because things are open again and mask mandates (for those who are vaccinated) are lifted in many places, doesn’t mean that you need to go back to what you used to do. If you feel more comfortable with an elbow bump rather than a hug, then know that, and stick to it. Ask yourself what groups you feel comfortable in and be with those people!

Give social cues to others.

As we all know, everyone feels different about the pandemic. When you meet a new person give them cues as to how you feel comfortable interacting. If you’re a hugger, then you can let someone know that with your body language as you approach someone. You can even ask, if that person is cool with a hug, I’ve totally done that! If you’re more comfortable with a handshake, then stick out your hand when you meet someone new to avoid that conversation.

Get the vaccine small talk out of the way.

Don’t you feel like you’ve had the same conversation over and over again!? What vaccine did you get? Did you have any reaction? You know the drill, and we’re all tired of talking about it. It’s just like the weather or baseball, touch on it and move onto something more interesting! Just add this to the list of topics to stay away from on a date: exes, politics, religion, and even how much you’re paying your matchmaker!

Remember eye contact.

While we’ve been communicating mainly online for over a year now (hello Zoom fatigue!), eye contact hasn’t really been a thing. We’ve all just been making eye contact with ourselves, and staring at our own faces. Hello, thinking we all need botox now! Here’s your reminder that eye contact is key to connecting with another human — whether that’s for friendship, business or love. It shows someone that you’re interested in what they’re saying and gives them the cue that they have your attention.

Take time for yourself – that self love!

We’ve all been cooped up inside for a while now, so no need to jump back into your usual busy social calendar. Take it slow and give yourself that alone time if you need! I know the pandemic has made me re-evaluate where my priorities are when it comes to social situations, so give yourself the space to do what you need to do to be happy!