Another week, another screen time alert telling me I've spent 10 hours+ on my phone a day.
What do you want from me Apple? I'm just trying to survive, stop attacking me like this.
Last week we had the rather stressy-depressy convo about how to keep your long-distance relationship alive. This week, I'm sorry to say, but we're going to have to sit tight for another hot minute, which is both terrible and fantastic news because it means you have more time to perfect your flirting skills … via text.
And then we will both be in the same boat of 10 hours+ screen time a day. "Yass," I say, wiping my tears.
Millennial and Gen Z babies have spent more time on their phones than not on their phones and are therefore blessed with the almost, natural ability to flirt in the online ecosystem. High school was the very first place we became fluent – remember the winky faces that implied some R16 behaviour was about to go down at the next all-school social?
Anyway, we learned how to flirt better over text than in person and now with the pandemic in full swing, it's time we refresh those skills again.
After all, what is more fun than a serotonin boost from an easy breezy flirt sesh?
In recent years it seems we've lost our spark, we've lost the sass, the (un)natural ability to flirt effortlessly over text and it's resulting in some very dry replies that frankly anyone self-respecting, has no time for.
So get your handy dandy notebook out and get ready to sharpen up your act.
Texting and sexting are both incredibly fun and terrifying at the same time. You're never really sure if your partner is picking up what you're putting down and it can lead to some overthinking – and dry replies. So before you get too in your head, please for the love of god, remind yourself, it is literally a conversation. It's meant to be warm, funny, lighthearted, and result in a smiley Miley situation.
And if it goes really bad, chances are you never have to see that person again, unless it's your friend, flatmate, or colleague in which case, good luck. Reason one million why you shouldn't screw the crew.
Tip one: never, ever start the convo dry
Unless it's 2am and you're nocturnal trust me when I say, your text rendezvous and potential boo never wants to open a message that is either 'hey', 'hi', or "what's up?" It's just not fun and definitely not appetizing. Don't be lazy if you want a text back.
Start with a bit of banter. Maybe an inside joke, maybe play some texting roulette and be so straightforward it's almost insulting but also funny. Keep it short and sweet – no paragraphs or novels at this point and whatever you do, make it a message someone genuinely wants to reply to.
Tip two: It goes down in the DM
The best spicy chats with your friends usually start with "OMG guess who slipped in my DMs", and then everyone begs to see his profile but you can't show them because he only has two pictures, one is of an avocado, weird, and the other is him holding a fish, gross.
All jokes aside, the direct messages are the perfect place to flirt because the Millennial /Gen Z crowd has decided it's way less formal and way more fun than actual texting - side note: does anyone even text anymore?
DM-ing doesn't need the introduction of "hi, I would like to flirt with you," because it's already been dubbed as a space reserved for sending your friend's memes and flirting with people you kinda-sorta-maybe know.
So next time your crush or the person you're interested in posts a story, it's as simple as reacting to the story and following it up with a compliment, pick-up line, or sorta funny, sort of insulting joke. Obvs that last one depends on how well you know them though.
Tip three: Nudey or rudey?
I think everyone knows by now not to send, ah hem, those kinds of pictures but let us rehash it unless it's hell yeah, it's a hell no (like the pic below).
If you're lucky enough to get the hell yeah and the all-clear, remember anyone who has dabbled in the steamy, sexy world of flirting knows that the build-up is way better than the event. Keep a little allure, make them want more. Do you know why Megan Fox's near-naked dress was such a hit at the VMA's this year? Because she gave a lot, but not quite all of it.
It's all about mystery baby.
And the mystery can correspond with your words. Remember when you were 18, messaging your crush and you both had so much sexual chemistry the saucy comments you would probably be too shy to say in person felt like they typed themselves? But there was always a spot where you drew the line? Channel that energy baby.
So when it comes to flirting via text, messenger or DM's, it's all about confidence, engagement and saucy replies and if I catch any of you sending dry replies I'm asking Instagram to deactivate your account on the grounds of being a yawnfest.