Ah, summer lovin’. John Travolta and Olivia Newton John cavorting under the dock. Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey having the goddamned time of their lives. Someone surprise-wiping ice cream on someone else’s nose in every chick flick ever as if no one has pulled this move before and none of us saw it coming at all. There’s just something so timelessly sexy about it.
Summertime conjures a lawless magical dimension wherein social scripts are rewritten so that nothing really matters and also everything matters profoundly. Like the school breaks of yore, during these hot hazy months, the confines of standard routine are sloppy at best and all possibilities for reinvention are on the table: the guy from biology who used to leave his retainers out on his desk for all the world to see might pull a Shia LaBeouf and come back in September looking like he just stepped out of a magazine. Your next door neighbors might go on a trip to Mallorca and then start throwing dinner parties that last until 2am on their front lawn. You just might become the type of person who meets bespectacled babes in used book stores. Who knows! It’s summer!
If you’ve ever heard of cuffing season, you know that there are physiological, biological and social influencers that affect how we date season to season. The benefit of scouring the single seas in the wintertime is that during those cold, dark, snuggle-conducive months, the mindset at large is more relationship-oriented. The benefit of looking for love in the summertime is that everyone wants to have fun. And there is nothing more fun than summer love.
All of which is to say: now is best time of year to get the fuck off of Tinder and out into real world, where large swaths of singles are yearning to be swept off their feet (and into a mosquito-netted cabaña).
To give you that extra push, here are a few convincing reasons why:
Everyone’s in a good mood.
And there simply are no better conditions under which to spark a romance. When you’re feeling good, you’re more attractive, plain and simple. Of two hundred women that I polled for my dating coaching business, more than eighty percent listed “happy” as one of the most attractive character qualities. When you’re feeling good, you’re also more likely to move past any rejection without dwelling to the point where your friends need to tell you to get a grip, your brain is more likely to perceive possibility rather than limitation, and you’re more likely to accept invitations.
There’s a “fuck it” energy in the humid air.
Summer is the season of adventure, and the #vacaymode bleeds over from vacation into everyday life. With more relaxed attitudes, looser work schedules and temperatures that remove the proverbial stick from the communal ass of society, everyone’s a little more willing to take a risk. Whether this risk is trying a new outdoor sport, talking to a stranger, or agreeing to go on a date with someone who isn’t your usual type, the carefree feeling of the dog days make you more willing to agree to do something out of your comfort zone. As I tell my coaching clients, if you’re looking for something serious, one of the best things you can do for your love life is to stop taking the initial phase of courtship so seriously. Slap on a hat, say “fuck it” and stop rationalizing why someone is wrong for you before you’ve even spent time with them.
You’ll have way more opportunities to meet people.
As the pleasant days become longer, more and more people turn off their TVs and emerge from their dark lairs to do things like drink summer pale ales with their friends, and lay around on blankets in the park while contemplating going to Coachella next year. By sheer number, there are more people out in the world and more hours in the day in which to meet them. Crossing paths with more strangers means more opportunities to connect, which means the stakes for asking someone out are far lower, which means you have less of an excuse not to do it.
Physiologically, people are more aroused.
The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and it’s too hot to wear very much. Sunlight helps us secrete dopamine and serotonin, neurotransmitters that help us experience pleasure. We’re also more likely to exercise outside in the warmer months, which heightens libido. It’s no coincidence that the most sex-related Google searches occur in the summer: increased Vitamin D leads to increased Vitamin D. It’s just the circle of life. Or something.
Everyone else wants to fall in love too.
You won’t be barking up the wrong trees here. Summer has been the most romantic season since 1609, when Shakespeare compared his love to a summer’s day. Everyone else is feeling just as frisky and open as you are, just waiting for someone to make a move and turn this summer into one worthy of a Bryan Adams song. So stop swiping into oblivion, put your phone on airplane mode, and go be the one who makes the move. And don’t forget to wear sunscreen.