Are you sabotaging your own dating success without even realizing it?
You might not think you have a dating ritual, but you do. Even if you don’t date often, you likely have some habits (good and bad) that you use each and every date.
If you’re ready to find your relationship, start by eliminating these 2 toxic dating thoughts:
- They’re not right for me: at some point on every date – sometimes before it even starts – you start thinking about why someone is not a good fit for you. You may not even realize you’re doing it, but subconsciously you probably are.
- What to do instead: don’t try and overcompensate by forcing yourself to think why they ARE a good fit for you – your best bet is to not even think about whether they are a good fit or not. Work on being present in the moment and enjoying each other’s company without regard for the future prospects.
- I’m not right for them: this thought tends to come right after the first – particularly if your date turns out to be very attractive or appealing to you. Again, you may not even be aware you’re doing this at a subconscious level.
- What to do instead: try not to think of your date as a meaningful moment that has life-changing ramifications – look at it simply as a chance to meet someone new and interesting. Not worrying about whether you’re a good match or not will actually increase the chance of a successful date; one that leads to another date – and this is the only objective of a first or second date.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in dating is to judge someone too quickly on a first date. The reality is this: you’ll likely not know if someone is your perfect match on a first meeting.
The key to successful dating is focusing more on a second (or third) date with someone to determine whether they are a good match for you or not. But how do you know if your date is interested in you, and open to going on a second date? Look for these 5 signs:
- It’s in the smile: a smile is a person’s most basic way of showing their interest in you… if your date is smiling easily and often consider it a very good sign. On the other hand, if your date is frowning consider it a sign that you need to change topics.
- Doesn’t feel like a date: when conversation is flowing freely its typically a sign that the date is going well… avoid turning the date into an ‘interview’; keeps things casual, and you’ll increase the chances of a second date.
- Body language: as important as words, a person’s body language can often tell you how the date is going… if your date’s body language is open, warm and inviting its a sign that they are enjoying your company. If they are exhibiting ‘closed’ body language (arms crossed, body pointing away from you, tense, etc.) its likely a sign that the date isn’t going well.
- Fun times: if you are having fun on your date, it likely means your date is having fun as well. Focus on enjoying yourself and being positive on your date and your chances of a second date will be good.
- When in doubt, ask: the single biggest mistake singles make on a first date is not asking for a second date. There’s no need or reason to wait for days before contacting someone again. If things are going well on your first date, ask for a second date (something casual, a coffee, movie or an upcoming event that interests you and them, etc.). You’ll never have a better chance to ask for a second date, then at the end of a good first date.
You’re ready to find a lasting relationship & tired of dating – but how?
The key is to change your dating approach from ‘checklist dating’ to ‘values-based dating’. This doesn’t mean dating more – in fact it may mean dating less, but smarter.
This may sound complicated, but its not. It’s easy, and you can start today. Here’s how:
- Leave the checklist at home: you probably have a mental list of things you’re looking for in someone – and that’s normal – but don’t take the list with you. There’ll be a time to go through your list, but a first or second date isn’t that time.
- Beyond the surface: getting to know the real person takes time, and won’t always be apparent when you first meet them. Chemistry’s a good start, but commit to spending some quality time with someone before deciding if they’re the right fit for you.
- The important stuff: looks and personality are important when you first meet someone, but they won’t necessarily lead you to a lasting relationship. Being on the same page with someone about important values – health, education, career, relationship goals, plans for a family, world view – can help develop your initial chemistry into something that can last – and even grow – over the long term.
- Communicate, openly: communication is the key to any successful relationship. Once you’ve moved beyond the initial ‘dating’ phase with your special someone, talk about the things that matter most to both of you – even (and especially) when you disagree.
- Relationship success is a journey, not a destination: no-one – and no relationship – is perfect. Expecting your partner to be perfect is not only unrealistic, it may be setting your relationship up for failure. Work on staying focused on the present, being ready to forgive or apologize & knowing when to take a break.
You walk away from a date feeling great – things couldn’t have gone better! But when you contact them the next day & suggest a 2nd date, they’re not interested. “What happened?!”, you ask yourself.
When you’re on a date, its the questions you’re not asked that are the most important.
Learn them – and how to overcome them – and you’ll rejuvenate your love life:
- Why are you still single?: most singles know this is a lousy question to ask on a date (and if they don’t – they should!), so its most often not asked – but that doesn’t mean your dates not thinking about it. Don’t address it directly – which can sound defensive – do this instead: be positive, fun, funny & amazing on your date. Make them ask themselves this instead – “How lucky am I that you’re still single!”
- Are you serious?: in today’s casual dating app world, its easy to assume your date’s not seriously looking for a relationship. But if you are, then show it. Be considerate, be totally engaged with your date when you’re together, put away your phone! Most importantly, see them again (and again) – it may not lead you immediately to a relationship but it’ll become something real, and that’s a great start.
- Do you care?: everyone’s on their best behavior when you first meet them – so if your date notices some bad tendencies (ie. you argue with the restaurant staff; talk only about yourself; trash talk your exes, etc.), they’ll naturally assume things will only get worse over time. Be kind and friendly to everyone on your date – including the wait staff & that noisy table beside you – if you find this challenging, maybe you need to work on that if you want someone to truly care about you?
- Can I trust you?: the foundation of every successful relationship is trust – and this begins on your very first date. Be on time, make an effort & do everything you can to make your date feel special. Then, be true to your word – if you say you’ll call them – do!