Could your dating patterns be sabotaging your efforts to get off the singles’ bench? If you never make the first move or always date the wrong men, your dating style may need an overhaul. Here are 20 habits to ditch if you want to find love.
1. You always expect him to make the first move
Men know that they’re supposed to do the running, and they hate it. Being born male does not gift them with unassailable self-confidence. If you want a date, go and chat him up. He’ll be too delighted to reject you.
2. You think that eye contact is 'making a move.' No, it isn’t
'Go and chat him up,' we said. Not: 'stand there glancing at him every 20 minutes.' Eye contact, no matter how flirtatious you think it is, will not get you off the singles’ bench unless you accompany it with 'hello,' at the very least.
3. You play hard to get
If you want a man to be interested in you, be interested in him. It works, because all human beings are egomaniacs at heart. Treating ‘em mean only makes ‘em go and find someone else.
4. You don’t get it when you’re being asked out
If a handsome stranger asks, 'are you alright for a drink?', he is trying to ask you out. Don’t just nod, blush, and run away. If you find him attractive, accept his offer and strike up a conversation.
5. You’re still waiting for love at first sight
Lust at first sight happens all the time, but it ain’t love until you’ve shared a bathroom. Don’t wait around for that thunderbolt of first-glance love, because you’ll be waiting – and single – for a very long time indeed.
6. You’re too busy
All work and no play makes Jane a dull singleton. It may be tricky to find time for socialising and relationships, but your happiness (and health) will benefit if you strike a balance. Life is too short not to.
7. You stay in because you’ve got a zit
A zit that no man would ever notice, by the way.Stop allowing minor skin mess-ups to dictate your social life.
8. You wear too much make-up
9. You keep mentioning your ex
Perhaps you were with them for years and they play a walk-on part in all your anecdotes, but you must break the ex-namecheck habit if you’re to impress a potential lover. Even a passing mention of your ex suggests that you haven’t moved on.
10. You keep interrupting
What women see as conversation, men often see as interruption. If you’re trying to impress a guy, bite your tongue. Indulge him. Let him finish his train of thought. You can teach him to converse properly once you know him better.
11. You talk about yourself too much
Prompt him to talk about himself. Make him feel like the most interesting man you’ve ever met. The more interesting you find him, the more interesting he’ll find you.
12. You moan about stuff that men couldn’t give a stuff about
You’ve had the day from hell in the office, where you hate your boss and your boss hates you. Moan about it to your mates in the pub after work, not to the guy you’ve met for a first date. If you do, you’ll end the date just as single as you started it.
13. You don’t want to break your diet
A tasty dessert shared with your date could seal the deal on your evening, and it’s unlikely to make a difference to your waistline unless you have a date every night this week. Don’t be a party pooper. You can make it up with a quick run tomorrow… or some other form of vigorous exercise.
14. You always expect him to pay
If he asks to split the bill, it doesn’t mean he’s not interested. Maybe he’s short of funds, or thinks it’s only fair that you go halves (in which case, he’s absolutely correct). If you throw a wobbler, you’re a high-street version of a gold-digger.
15. You ring him too soon after the first date
Calling a man on the way home from your first date will make you seem needy and clingy, and you will find yourself back at singlehood square one. A text message to say 'I had a great evening' is plenty to keep the ball rolling.
16. You don’t ring at all after the first date
Refusing to ring him at all is just playing hard to get. Once 24 hours have passed since the start of your date, ring him. If you get a brush-off, you can move on to the next guy.
17. You don’t return calls
Whoever told you to wait for five days (or whatever random number of days) before returning a phone call is an idiot. No man wants a stalker, but letting him know you’re interested is the way to win his heart.
18. You waste time with men you don’t fancy
Fear of being single often drives you to accept dates – and more dates – with men you don’t really fancy. Trouble is, while you’re wasting precious time with Mr OK-I-Suppose, you could be out finding Mr Right.
19. You waste time with toxic men
These are the men who pull you one minute and break your heart the next, leaving you feeling more single than ever. There’s the serial online dating addict who never takes his profile down; the self-esteem leech who can’t stop criticising; the rebounder who uses you as a cushion after his break-up… they’re out there in their millions. Avoid.
20. You’re too picky
If you have a very narrow idea of your 'ideal man', you may never find someone who lives up to your fantasy. Here’s a revolutionary idea: try a man who’s completely different from your ideal. You may end up surprised – and a lot less single.
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