Last week I wrote about dating from a woman’s perspective. But what about men? It takes two to tango, and men find dating these days just as daunting as women do. Maybe more. Here are some tips:
“Know thyself” is always good advice, and especially when dating. If you are a workaholic and you’re looking for a relationship, face facts. You need to find a partner who is independent and self-reliant. Someone who won’t resent your working late and who won’t expect you to go to the farmer’s market every weekend. You can’t, because you’ll be at the office. And she should have her own life.
Or if you love sports and can’t fathom missing the Mets, then she should either be a fan too, or be happy doing her own thing. You need to think about what you need in a relationship, and be practical. You don’t want someone who will want you to abandon your Mets, and you don’t want someone who will be miserable when you don’t.
But be your best self. You know, the boy your mom taught you to be. Polite. Well groomed with clean clothes and good manners. Make an effort for your date. When you do, you show your date that you respect her. That doesn’t mean you need to go off the deep end and pretend to be someone you’re not. That kind of behavior isn’t sustainable, and it will only serve to disappoint her in the end.
But it doesn’t hurt to show some interest in her life. Take some time to court her and flirt a little. And above all, listen when she talks. Don’t be formulating your answer while she speaks. Let her finish before your brain moves on to what you’re going to say. Soak it all in. After all, that’s what dating is about-getting to know the other person while she gets to know you.
Be comfortable in your own skin. Have an easy air that says you know who you are and you are okay. This takes practice to get the right balance. You don’t want to go overboard into egotist territory, a true turn-off for most women. But a man who is self-aware, a man who has the confidence to be vulnerable at times and strong at times, is alluring.
There are certain red flags that tell you to take extra care before you get mired in a relationship with the wrong person. Crazy can be charming at first, especially if she’s beautiful, but it seldom wears well over time. Likewise, if you sense she has issues that are not compatible with your values, beware.
For example, if she gossips with a streak of meanness, you will always have to wonder what she says about you when she’s not with you. Or if she’s loose with the truth, you will have to wonder if you can rely on what she says to you. And there are those women who are hung up on money, for whatever reason. They seldom make good companions no matter how wealthy you are.
Don’t Say You’ll Call If You Won’t
Dating is all about finding out about another person. There will be plenty of times when you won’t want to pursue a relationship. That’s just fine. At the end of the date, you can say you had a nice time. Or it was good to meet you. Or something else that’s reasonably polite. Just don’t say you’ll call if you won’t. It’s not true, and you’re above that.
Of course if you do want to pursue a relationship, good luck and have fun.
Nancy Travers is an Orange County Counseling professional.Â If you need safe, effective counseling services, please get in touch.Â You can reach her here:Â http://www.nancyscounselingcorner.com/contact-us.