With the advent and growth of online dating, it may appear easy to meet the lady of your dreams. The reality however is often very different with many men disillusioned and finding themselves still alone. It is not that common for men to openly talk about their feelings or to seek dating advice, but how effective is that?
Seriously, if you are genuinely interested in a real relationship with a woman and just haven't cracked it, shouldn't a woman be your greatest source of information?
If you want to ace the dating game without falling at the first hurdle here is some advice from the fairer sex.
DATING ADVICE FOR MEN IN NORTHERN IREAND - MADE SIMPLE:
1 Stop wasting time texting and emailing – Arrange the Date!
Dating is about meeting up and getting to know one another, so loads of texts/emails before meeting can tend to get you nowhere fast. Because text messaging cannot accurately convey tone, emotion, or facial expressions it is likely that messages will be misinterpreted or misunderstood, so the real meaning of your message can get lost in translation. Pick up the courage to pick up the phone.
As soon as you have both indicated you are interested in meeting we suggest that you a text or email along the lines of 'Hi this is……………(first name). When is a good time to phone you?' (Use proper words and spelling rather than abbreviated ‘text language’).
We discourage long telephone calls. Some people are great on the phone, but let's face it most of us are not, especially with someone we've never met before.
The purpose of the phone call is to agree when and where to meet and to decide what you would like to do.
You might think you are being a gentleman to let your date decide where you go on the first date, but most women like a man to be assertive. So instead, say you were thinking of going to X (a convenient good venue) for drinks/lunch/dinner if she would like that? (Did her profile suggest where she likes to go/what she likes to do? – if so suggest that and you are likely to be off to a good start). Choose a venue where you both will feel comfortable and one which is busy enough to have a good atmosphere but still allow you to hear each other without shouting.
Keep the telephone call friendly but short and sweet and leave the fact-finding and discussions until the date. Tell her you look forward to meeting her.
The most successful dates tend to be where people make an effort and meet for drinks/ lunch or dinner - it gives more time to get to know someone, talk about the menu and food likes/dislikes and to dispel the nerves (and believe me when we say that most people do be nervous!).
This does not need to break the bank. Many restaurants offer good value lunch and early bird menus which are very suitable for first dates. However this is only a guide and both should choose and agree what they feel most comfortable with.
Most people like their partners to take pride in their appearance and to make an effort. Whilst not pretending to be someone you aren't, you need to put your best foot forward. This doesn't mean you have to wear a suit but things like having your hair cut/restyled; being freshly showered and shaved or facial hair trimmed & tidy, using aftershave and dressing suitably and appropriately will help make you feel more confident, impress your date and get things off to a good start.
The safe bet is to dress smart casual - you cannot go wrong with a trendy shirt, smart chinos or designer jeans, jacket and good shoes. Women tend to like shoes and just not on themselves!
3 Be Courteous
A little bit of courtesy goes a long way, especially in the world of dating. Simple gestures like holding the door and thanking a date for their time are unfortunately not that common in today's world. The more courteous you are, the more you will stand out from the crowd. Also, this should not be a temporary thing that is used to attract someone; you should be this way consistently.
4 Be Confident & Ask questions (The Right Ones)
Women value confidence in a man. That doesn't mean that if you are shy or reserved that you cannot be confident. One of the things which helps confidence and can keep conversations positive and upbeat is to remember that to be interesting you have to be interested in the other person.
Put mobile phones away to give each other full attention. Don't just put it on silent or vibrate as you can still be distracted. Turn it off completely as she will appreciate you taking the time to engage fully with her.
You would be surprised at the number of men who believe that it is perfectly normal to date a woman without taking the time to really get to know her. The best way to familiarise yourself with her would be to ask questions. Something which can work really well is to tell her what impressed you with her profile – perhaps her interests and hobbies and ask her to tell you more about them and her lifestyle. This is a great way to impress someone and increase your chances of having more follow-up dates.
When you are talking about yourself, pick a subject that you are enthusiastic about such as your hobbies/interests, as being passionate about something tends to make you come across more confident.
Don't do all the talking as you don't want to bore your date. If the date goes well there will be follow up dates and more opportunity to share your stories in the future.
Keep in mind that you should be mindful of the things you are asking since prying too soon is a big no-no and you don't want your discussion to come across as an interrogation.
Keep the conversation fun and light-hearted. Don't talk about things that are negative or that you don’t enjoy or money. Women like a guy that can make them laugh - so in the early stages of dating have some fun, and instead talk about things you enjoy - perhaps holidays - places you have been to or would like to visit, food & restaurants, pets, family, work and your interests and hobbies especially if they are mutual.
5 Avoid ‘the Ex’ Conversation
Refrain from talking about your ex- partners or previous relationships on your first few dates as it can be intrusive and awkward. The objective of dating is to create a new future so it's often more positive to talk about the present and the future rather than the past until you really get to know someone. If your date does bring it up, keep the answers short without it creating any suspicion and reassure her that the past is history and that you want to spend the time getting to know her instead.
6 Offer to Pay
Whilst many women support equality of the sexes and may expect to pay their way, most women appreciate chivalry and gentlemanly qualities, so on your first date, insist on treating her (although
don't be forceful). If she still wants to pay, perhaps suggest she gets the drinks after the meal or suggest she can pay on the next date.
7 The Date & Follow Up
Even if you don't feel there is any connection when you meet, at this stage you are on the date so you might as well make your mind up to enjoy the experience no matter the outcome.
It can be difficult to get to know someone on a first date so we do encourage second dates. Do try to remain as open-minded as possible to increase your chances of success. If you are open to meeting again, make sure the person knows and try not to give confusing signals. The sooner you tell her you had a great time and ask her out again the better.
On the other hand if you don't want a second date, don't say you will call her and then do nothing. You will end up feeling bad and she will feel more hurt by that rather than being told honestly. Just be honest on the date and say you enjoyed meeting up but don’t feel there is the necessary spark/enough in common to see it being a lasting relationship.
In any event, do text when you get home to check they got home safely and to thank them for the date. If you want to see her again let her know and ask if she would like to arrange another date, and if so get it arranged as soon as possible. If she declines another date, try not to take it personally, learn from the experience, and move on.
8 Be Open to Possibility
So many people reject the opportunity of a date with someone because 'they are just not my type'. A type is often based on looks alone or a profession. That is perfectly fine but choosing people based on looks or profession alone often doesn't stand the test of time. If you have dated several of one type without long-term success then it may be time to expand your horizons and start to think more
about values and qualities. Consider people who you know that are happily married - what is it that makes them happy – is it physical looks/profession or shared values?
9 Be Realistic
Whilst you may want to find someone that meets all of your desired criteria you should not be so stringent that you decline potential compatible partners if they don’t tick all of your boxes. This is not like ordering a new car with all the extras – people are not products and don’t always come to order! It is nice to find a common ground, but do not eliminate great women based on trivial factors.
These days, many women have come to the conclusion that there are no viable men out there to date as their experiences have left a lot to be desired. You can make them think differently if you adopt these practices. Considering that all of this advice came from the mind of a woman, you should feel confident knowing you will be on the right track.
All of this assumes that you have a date to look forward to. If that isn't the case, let Soirée Society Matchmaking Agency help you find the partner you seek. Text your name to Rhoda on 07814 079514 or complete the contact form on our website www.soireesocietyni.co.uk/contact and we will be in touch.