You bring your new girlfriend to a party with your closest friends. They all ask you where you guys met and why it was possible that they didn't notice you guys dating at all. They're on the edge of their seats waiting to hear some epic tale of forbidden love that challenges cultural boundaries and social norms but all you have to say is "Ay, nilandi ko lang siya sa Facebook."
(Hi, I'm Chise, FHM's current editorial assistant. I met my girlfriend the week before I had to go on a three week trip to Europe with my parents and when I came back home we were essentially together. And all it took was three weeks of non-stop landi from a hopeless romantic.)
First few days: As cliche as it sounds, be your awesome self
"Authenticity is important. Social media really activates a certain amount of skepticism in people, so even a tinge of non-authenticity can easily turn someone off," says Arvin Boller, social psychologist.
We've all encountered or are currently friends with fake people on social media. A few people think that the way to a girl's heart is to impress her with all the amazing things you can do or stuff that you have, but the way to stand out is to be yourself because no one is exactly like you. The more you conform to social norms, the less you are seen as an individual.
Your Move: Be passionate about the things you love because those are the things that make you the special snowflake you truly are.
Late first week: Facebook is your friend, a friend who knows you way too much, but nonetheless, a friend
"If you are looking for a potential partner, studies in social psych tends to favor similarity over complementarity," says Boller.
Everyone knows that because of its creepy algorithms, Facebook already knows what you like and dislike based on what you post, like, and follow. But what's important about this is that it also shows you people who like the same stuff as you so use this to your advantage.
Your move: Pusuan mo na yan. Like or put a heart on a lot of her recent posts and once she comments, you'll finally have a reason to talk to her!
Second week: Be consistent
"There is this concept of propinquity, or the 'distance' between people. This distance can be either the typical geographical distance, or psychological. If there is consistency in interaction, it can definitely help develop a relationship because the goal is to be a constant part of the life of the other person. In the case of social media, it's possible that being constantly within each other's internet presence can increase your chances of being liked, just by mere exposure," says Boller.
The key is to always be there when she wants to talk. Slowly but surely, she'll start associating you with things you've talked about. Sharing memories and inside jokes makes all the difference and will make you the person she wants to share things with.
Your Move: Always be open to hearing what she wants to say and genuinely listen and understand her. Not only will you be able to talk to her and feel all kilig inside, but you'll actually get to know a different side of her she doesn't show to other people.
Third week: Let her know you're human
"The virtual sphere allows a certain level of detachment from one's social interaction because of social media's innate characteristic of being asynchronistic (having a delayed response), which offers initial comfort but ultimately alienates the people involved," says Boller.
Anyone can deliver pick-up lines like they're Boy Pick-up incarnate when you're copy-pasting corny things you find on some sketchy website. Sure, you're making her laugh, but that doesn't really make you any better than a dank meme generator.
Your move: Why not show her that you're a real person by actually showing your face once in a while. Send her a silly selfie or two, or maybe even a video of you doing fun stuff. Maybe she'll end up sending a little something-something your way. And everyone knows, it all starts there.
The rest of your lives: Be cool no matter what happens
Carl Rogers came up with a concept called Unconditional Positive Regard, which essentially means to treat people positively, just because they deserve to be treated that way. If you're just being friendly just to get into a relationship with her without letter her know your intentions, then you're being dishonest. "The goal of Rogers' concept is to be less controlling of the relationship you have and to just let it unfold the way it is supposed to," explains Boller.
People sense it when you're not being completely honest with them, especially if it's obvious that you are kinikilig whenever you talk to her. Simply saying that you like her and are interested in getting to know her more sets both of you up for a better relationship with less heartbreak. It's to remind yourself that whether the other person will reciprocate your feelings or not, it's no longer in your control.
Your move: Tell her how you feel at the right time. Knowing when the right time is harder than you think, but you'll know. And if she only likes you as a friend, don't let it get you down, another three weeks will go by just as fast.