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Love and Relationships

Intentional Dating | How To Find Your Perfect Match

Stop wasting time on the wrong people. Intentional Dating is all about making the right moves to get exactly what you're looking for in your perfect relationship.


Kenneth Erickson


Feb 25, 2023

Intentional Dating

  • Explaining intentional dating
  • Tips for successful intentional dating
  • Intentional dating for serious relationships
  • Intentional dating for casual relationships

What Is Intentional Dating?

Intentional dating is the concept of dating with a clear purpose or intention by ensuring your actions and goals align with those of the people you’re connecting with. This intention could be a desire for a long-term relationship, marriage, or even just something casual or discreet. 

In intentional dating, both parties need to be transparent and upfront about their expectations, desires, and boundaries, in order to avoid wasting time and becoming frustrated. They actively communicate and are mindful of their actions and decisions to help stay on the same page and ensure their needs and expectations are being met.

The specifics of intentional dating can vary greatly between individuals, as everyone's goals, values, and expectations for a relationship can be different. However, the common thread is the focus on purposeful, thoughtful action in the dating process.

Intentional Dating Is Not Just For Serious Relationships

While intentional dating is often associated with seeking a serious, long-term relationship, the core principle is simply about having clarity and purpose in your dating behaviors, regardless of what those goals may be.

You might enter the dating scene with the intention of finding a serious partner, but you could also be intentionally seeking casual dating experiences, friendships, or opportunities to explore and learn more about your own relationship needs and desires.

In all these scenarios, being "intentional" means you're clear about your goals, you communicate them openly, and your actions align with them.

For example, if you're intentionally dating for fun and not looking for a serious commitment, you'd be upfront about that to potential partners, ensuring everyone involved has the same understanding and nobody gets misled or hurt.

Tips For Successful Intentional Dating

Intentional dating requires clarity, communication, and understanding. Here are some tips for successful intentional dating:

1. Know Yourself

Understanding your own needs, desires, and boundaries is the first step to successful intentional dating. Be clear about what you want in a relationship and what you're looking for in a partner.

2. Set Clear Intentions

Once you know what you want, be upfront about it. If you're dating with the intention of finding a long-term partner, it's okay to communicate that. It's important to let the other person know what your intentions are from the beginning.

3. Communication is Key

Regularly discuss your expectations, feelings, and any concerns you may have. Open, honest communication builds trust and understanding in a relationship.

4. Listen

Pay attention to your partner's needs and desires. Ensure that you're not only communicating your own intentions but also understanding theirs.

5. Be Consistent

Make sure your actions match your intentions. It's not enough to say you're looking for a serious relationship if your actions suggest otherwise.

6. Healthy Boundaries

Set and respect personal boundaries. These can range from emotional boundaries to physical ones. Boundaries help to create a sense of security and trust.

7. Patience

Remember that good relationships take time to build. It might take several dates or even longer to determine if someone is right for you.

8. Stay True to Yourself

Don't compromise your own needs and desires to make a relationship work. A healthy relationship should allow both partners to be themselves.

9. Look for Alignment

You don't have to share every interest or agree on everything, but your fundamental values and life goals should align to some degree. This alignment can contribute to long-term compatibility.

10. Evaluate Regularly

Keep checking in with yourself and your partner. Are your needs being met? Is the relationship progressing in a way that matches your initial intentions?

Remember, intentional dating doesn't mean you need to rush into a serious relationship. It's more about being honest about what you're looking for and taking steps to achieve it. It's a continuous process of learning, growing, and refining what you want and need.

Intentional Dating Takes Some Extra Effort - But It's Worth It!

Because you’re being so thoughtful and more narrowly focused while dating with a specific intention, you may not be casting as wide a net as you would normally.  This means things may take a bit longer to find the right connection or match. The following are useful acknowledgements when dating with intention:

Date Selection is Important

Intentional dating involves being mindful about who you date. Rather than dating anyone who shows interest, consider whether a potential partner aligns with your intentions and values. This means you may not immediately find exactly what you’re looking for, but your goal is to find the right connection for you.

Rejection and Failure Happens

Rejection and failed relationships can be disappointing, but they're often a part of the dating process. It's important to handle these situations with grace and view them as opportunities for learning and growth.

Maintain Your Self-Care

Dating, especially when you're being very intentional and deliberate about it, can sometimes be emotionally draining. Be sure to take care of your mental and physical health during this process. This might include exercise, meditation, pursuing hobbies, or other activities that help you relax and decompress.

Finding the Right People and Making Connections

Finding someone who aligns with your intentions for dating can indeed be a challenge, but it's certainly not impossible. This process might take time, patience, and possibly a fair share of trial and error.

Remember, finding the right match isn't solely about aligning intentions. Mutual respect, shared interests, emotional compatibility, and a host of other factors play into the formation of a healthy and successful relationship.

Intentional Dating for Marriage or Serious Relationship

If you're looking to find a serious relationship or potentially marriage, there are various platforms and approaches you can use to meet like-minded individuals:

Online Dating Platforms

Certain dating apps and websites cater specifically to individuals looking for serious relationships or marriage. Sites like eHarmony,, and OkCupid often attract users interested in long-term commitments. You could also try newer platforms like Hinge, which is designed to be deleted, implying users are looking for serious relationships.

Matchmaking Services

Professional matchmakers and matchmaking services often focus on setting up individuals for serious relationships or marriage. These services typically take into account a variety of factors including personality, interests, and relationship goals.

Social Circles and Community Groups

Connections through friends, family, community groups, or religious institutions can often lead to serious relationships. People in these networks often share similar values and are likely to know others who do as well.

Volunteer Work and Clubs

Volunteering for causes you care about or joining clubs related to your interests can put you in touch with individuals who share similar values and passions.

Professional Networks

Networking events, industry conferences, or even your workplace (considering appropriate ethical boundaries) can be a good place to meet like-minded individuals.

Singles Events

Look for events in your local area specifically designed for singles. These events could be speed dating, singles mixers, or events centered around a particular interest or activity.

Hobby Classes

Joining classes or groups based on your interests (like cooking classes, dance classes, book clubs, etc.) can lead to meeting individuals who share your passions.

Intentional Dating for Something Casual or No Strings Attached Fun

While there are many dating apps and websites available, some platforms are more oriented towards casual dating and no-strings-attached relationships. Here are a few you might want to consider:


Known for its simple swipe left or right interface, Tinder is popular among individuals looking for casual dates and connections. Its large user base increases the chances of finding a match who shares your intentions.


On Bumble, women are required to make the first contact, which can lead to more meaningful and comfortable interactions. While many people use Bumble for serious relationships, it also has users interested in casual dating.


With its in-depth profile setup and questionnaires, OkCupid allows for a clear understanding of what a person is seeking. While it's used for both serious and casual dating, you can indicate what type of relationship you're looking for.


This app is geared towards individuals and couples seeking non-traditional relationships, including non-monogamous or polyamorous relationships.


This is a popular app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people. It's often used for casual connections, but like other apps, it can also be used for more serious dating.


This website is explicitly focused on no-strings-attached encounters. It also includes interactive elements like user videos and blogs.


Pure promotes itself as an anonymous hookup app, with speedy matches and casual experiences as its primary selling points.


This app shows you profiles of people you've crossed paths with in real life, which can be an interesting way to make casual connections.

Keep in mind that while these platforms cater to casual dating, they are used by a broad range of individuals with various relationship goals.

It's important to be upfront about your own intentions to ensure you and any potential partners are on the same page.

Additionally, no matter what your relationship intentions are, always prioritize consent, respect, and safety when using these platforms.


While intentional dating often involves a lot of seriousness and deliberation, it's also important to remember to have fun and enjoy the journey. After all, one of the most beautiful aspects of a relationship is the joy it brings to your life.

Related Articles:

Self Care After a Breakup -  Top 15 Tips For a Breakup Recovery

How To Get Over Your Ex | Make Winning Moves After a Breakup

6 Types of Breakups That Get Back Together - The Ultimate Guide

Disclosure: This article was not written by a medical professional, unless specifically stated otherwise. Advice or support content is not intended to be either professional medical or mental health advice or recommendations. All support and advice is from direct and/or anecdotal contributor/author experiences and topic research. If you are experiencing a physical or mental health emergency or mental or physical abuse, please seek professional support. Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to us, at no cost to you when you decide to purchase a reviewed product.



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