Forging a deep connection, Mr. Moore believed, would likely mean sharing “Covid baggage.”
“I personally have had a monumental shift in the way that I see the world and the person that I want to be in it,” Mr. Moore, 32, said. Amid all that soul-searching, he doesn’t feel it’s the right time to meet someone new and hear “their Covid war stories.”
While he always considered himself to be selfless and pleasing of others, there were many moments during the pandemic when Mr. Moore thought, “I can’t consider this person’s needs over my own because I need to keep myself healthy, sane and alive.”
“I don’t think I will lose that,” he added.
After a tough year, more people are focusing on themselves.
Jenny Taitz, a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles and the author of “How to Be Single and Happy,” said that newfound assertiveness and self-compassion is a positive change.
“After spending a year with life on hold, I think people are increasingly clear on what matters to them and what they’re willing to put up with,” she said.
In a recent report on the future of dating, the app Tinder said its users have become more truthful and transparent about personal boundaries. It also predicts that daters will continue to be more honest and authentic when the pandemic ends.
Ms. Goldstein, of Three Day Rule, said many of her clients have become less superficial. In the past, their criteria often mentioned height or wealth. Now more people are prioritizing inner qualities, like humor or a “growth mind-set.” And, with the flexibility of remote work, dating is not as localized as it once was.
“We’re matching people who are now hopping on planes to visit each other in person,” Ms. Goldstein said.