Our popular culture has no shortage of advice for men who date women. It’s critical for every man to sift through the multitude of messages and find confidence approaching dating in his own way. But there are a few behaviors that will, more often than not, slow or prevent you from making quality connections.
1) Checking your phone.
What you think you’re doing: Showing her how busy, important, and socially connected you are.
What you’re actually doing: Revealing your short attention span. Demonstrating that she doesn’t deserve your full attention. Making awkward silences even more awkward.
What to do instead: Silence your phone and put it away. If you’re not enjoying the date, then end it. Otherwise give yourself a time out from the rest of your life and give your date some flattering attention.
2) Talking too much.
What you think you’re doing: Wowing her with your intellect, humor, charisma, or fascinating life story.
What you’re actually doing: Boring her. Showing her you’re more interested in yourself than in her. Spilling out your spiel instead of building rapport.
What to do instead: Pay attention to her reactions while you speak. Wrap up what you’re saying, conclude your point, or get to the punch line in a timely manner. Turn the conversation back to her and show that you’re paying attention when she talks. Let moments of silence happen.
3) Getting too physical.
What you think you’re doing: Showing your confidence. Sweeping her off her feet. Getting some action.
What you’re actually doing: Groping her. Scaring her. Disgusting her.
What to do instead: Give her time to get comfortable in your presence. Ask for her preference and permission before attempting any kind of touch, and honor what she says. Take a few dates to feel more comfortable together, because then the physical part will be way more natural and pleasurable.
As with all rules, these are meant to be broken now and then. You won’t lose your soul mate just because you glanced at your phone once, rambled a bit while you were nervous, or went in for a hug to find she’d prefer a handshake. But keep in mind the common themes of being present, paying attention, and taking your time to find true connections.
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