One of the things that makes dating tricky is that first impressions can be misleading. Just about anyone can be reasonably polite and sociable over a fancy dinner or cup of coffee, so often it’s not until much later that deal-breaker-level compatibility issues rear their heads.
However, Japanese Twitter user @paya_paya_kun claims to have found a shortcut to finding out what a potential romantic partner’s true personality is like, and said shortcut is a hiking trail.
“I’ve heard that if there’s someone you’re thinking about getting into a romantic relationship with, you should go hiking with them,” @paya_paya_kun tweets. “When people get tired, their true nature starts to show, and some of them will get openly irritable or leave their companion behind if they feel like they’re not walking fast enough. On the mountain trails, you can see whether or not someone is capable of controlling their negative emotions even if they’re uncomfortable.”
The mention of mountains doesn’t mean you need to do full-on mountain climbing, and is really just there because Japan’s mountainous geography means almost all of its hiking trails involve elevation changes. @paya_paya_kun isn’t saying you and your potential boyfriend/girlfriend have to march to exhaustion, either. What’s important is simply to engage in an activity that’s physically, and by extension, mentally tiring, to see if the other person can still be pleasant and nice to be around in a situation less cushy than sitting in a comfy restaurant chair while someone cooks their dinner.
That might sound a little like the dubious logic of the old saying “If you can’t handle me at my worst, then you don’t deserve me at my best,” but what the @paya_paya_kun plan is really supposed to do is to find out if maybe even the “bad” side of someone’s personality isn’t all that bad. If your hiking partner is someone who can still be kind and considerate when their feet start to hurt and the coziest place to sit down is on top of a rock, there’s a good chance they’ll be kind and considerate in a lot of life’s other less-than-perfect situations too.
Other Twitter users saw a lot of logic in @paya_paya_kun’s advice, and even added a few suggestions of their own:
“I think that’s why some matchmaking services organize singles’ hiking events.”
“You’ll find out even more about their personality if it starts raining during the hike.”
“Or if you run into a traffic jam on the way back home after.”
“I think spending a full day with someone at Disneyland will also get you this kind of look at a person’s real personality.”
There is, however, one thing to be cautious about with @paya_paya_kun’s plan. As several commenters pointed out, the hike isn’t just going to show your potential partner’s personality to you, but also yours to them, so you’ll also want to make sure you don’t get crabby or whiny either during the hike if you want to leave a good impression.
Source: Twitter/@paya_paya_kun via Otakomu
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