Over the past few years, a lot of attention has been given to Internet dating, but what about real world/real time meeting? Although 16 million people are now using online dating, "real world" dating is still the way most of us meet. When you think dating, your thoughts may range from "its no big deal" to "its a daunting task that should be avoided if possible." Like any other experience in life, what you expect is what you often get. Dating is done best by those who see it as a positive and expect it will help them meet their personal goals (e.g., companionship, marriage and/or children).
Its not just about having a date, but finding the best ways to date who you want to date. Dating can be fun and rewarding, but it takes effort on your part.
While your pondering this, consider the old adage that nothing worth having is easy to get."
If you can begin to see yourself as a prize or someone special who can offer the right man a great partner, you are likely to raise the bar for potential suitors. While dating has changed during the last 20 years, there will continue to be certain truths on which you can build a successful dating life and possibly find Mr. Right.
Twelve Steps for Bringing your "A-Game"
- Be prepared for dating. Youre going to meet new people every place you go Therefore you want to feel good about the way you look and feel at all times
- Know your dating goals. If you dont know what you want, how can you ever get it? Describe what you hope to achieve by dating. If you cant do this yet, take the time to consider what your goals are before you date.
- Know yourself. Your dating decisions are personal decision and dont always make sense to others. Dont apologize, but know yourself! If you dont want to date someone who is short, or thin or who smokes, DONT. Make a list of characteristics you would like in a man. Include personality, behaviors and looks. Remember if you are too picky, you may find yourself alone (thats not always bad). Remember men also have a choice. Avoid being angry when you discover that a man you find attractive only dates blondes (and you happen to be brunette).
- Look your best. You only make a first impression once. This starts with good grooming and continues with managing exercise, your diet, your choice in clothing and your attitude.
- Dress for success. Getting a new wardrobe or even borrowing something from a friend that feels new can improve your mood and your look. What you wear tells a lot about you. If you wear revealing clothing to a first meeting, you may give him a message that you didn't necessarily intend on sending.
- Be attentive and interesting. If you like this man, you want to have the second date. Be well-read and know something about sports. Men dont care if there is a sale at Sax!
- Maintain your values. When you date, behave in a way that is consistent with who you are. If you dont, a man may get the wrong message. If you have to correct a misperception you add to the normal discomfort of initial dating.
- Avoid being negative. Critics never accomplish anything and negative people have trouble building bridges that connect with healthy partners.
- Understand that dating is a process and not an event. Dont share too much at first and avoid physical intimacy and sharing your deepest secrets until the relationship is ready. Dating is about connection and collaboration that leads to a commitment. Premature intimacy can hurt the process by creating false intimacy or an imbalance between people.
- Enjoy what you are doing when you date. Avoid doing things just to be cooperative. Find things to do that you both enjoy.
- Dont be too easy! When you first read this you may have thought that I am only referring to sex. Im not! This is about being too available. Continue to be involved in activities that you like to do even if they interfere with a new relationship. There will be plenty of opportunity to spend time with that new someone.
- Be kind and honest with a date. Be willing to tell someone if you arent interested in seeing them again. Also be willing to tell a person that you enjoyed your time together.
Your "A-Game" works when you use this 12 step program. Start the New Year with an understanding of how you can have the dating life you want and make dating great in 08.