By Robert Manni
Who would believe that explaining ‘how to go on a date‘ would ever be necessary in 2016? But it is.
With all the changes taking place in our hyper, fast-paced culture, sometimes the relationship and courtship fundamentals that we take for granted end up entirely overlooked or lost in the swirl of changes. With the long-overdue recognition for women and their awesome achievements, modern men’s role and subsequent dating behavior are in flux.
It begs the question—how do you act like a capable, attractive man when trying to date a woman without offending her?
It should seem so obvious, right? Yet any many who has attempted dating in this modern age knows it’s not always that easy. Expectations and social norms keep changing.
But one thing that never goes out of style is being a true gentleman when you’re dating. It’s time for guys to get back to basics.
So, please allow this Guy’s Guy to lay out a step-by-step guide for meeting a woman, making a connection, going on a date, getting her home safely, and following up up with success. You can take it from there. Here goes…
1. Decide what you want.
Between your job, your finances, your outside interests, and your fantasy football prep, you have a lot going on.
When it comes to dating, it’s important to take a breath now and determine what you really want out of dating. No judgments. You may only have time for hook-ups, or maybe you’re truly interested in finding a mate. Perhaps you simply want to meet new women while keeping an open mind about possible relationships.
The only thing that matters is that you know what you want before diving into the dating pool. Most young bucks I know aren’t necessarily up for grabs, but they are open to offers. So they date casually and play the game from there. There is nothing wrong with that. But, for the sake of this post, let’s work under the assumption that you are interested in legitimately dating andopen to finding and developing a relationship.
2. Make your move.
Nowadays, some women are more assertive when it comes to making first move. As a result, it’s easy for young bucks to sign up for a dating app, kick back, and wait for the matches to come their way. In fact, my wife winked at me first on Match — so this trend isn’t a bad thing.
But, most women I have spoken to want men to be the hunters when it comes to dating. That means making the first move and showing a woman that you’re interested in getting to know her. It’s called ‘the chase,’ and it can be fun and bring a sense of accomplishment when a guy pursues a new woman and scores that first date. And by first date, I don’t mean “hanging out” with a group of people. I mean a real, old-school date.
3. Meet in person.
Many of today’s singles meet online, and as a result, a flurry of texting ensues. But some fellas are studs when it comes to plinking the keypad on their phone, but duds when faced with engaging in a real conversation with a real, live woman.
Today’s women want to meet guys in person, not just by texting. They want to check you out — your eyes, your smile, your hair, your hands, your shoes, your whatever. And that’s a good thing, especially if you’re comfortable in your own skin and know how to handle yourself in social situations.
My advice? If you are interested in someone, however you first connect, meet up face-to-face ASAP. It will save you time and psychic energy.
4. Plan a real date.
So, you’ve me a young lady at a bar, online, through friends, however. And there is chemistry. Now comes the moment of truth.
By way of hints she has provided, it’s up to you to ascertain mutual interests and set up a real date. She likes tequila? First of all, you’re lucky. Now do your research and find the best high-end tequila bar in the city, a terrific Mexican restaurant, or one of those “secret” cool spots where hipsters sample tequilas and mescals.
Then, ask her out, telling her that you’d love to take her to one of those places. It’s that simple.
5. Dress for the part.
On date night, clean up as best you can. That means leaving the baseball cap, sloppy t-shirts and flip-flops at home. If you’re unsure how to dress, err on the more dressed-up side and make sure you sport some nice shoes and keep your fingernails clean.
Offer to pick her up. She might prefer to just meet you at the venue. No problem. You’ll score points just by offering.
6. Pay attention to your date.
So, it’s a sultry Thursday night in mid-summer. You take her to a cool restaurant where everyone is looking their best. And the women at the place are amazing. You’re a guy, so you’re visually stimulated. Want to win with this woman though? if so, remind yourself that you are on a date with her and keep your eyes on her alone. She is well aware of the other hotties inhabiting the space and will be clocking you to see how well you manage your inner horn dog.
Eyes front and listen actively. Make her feel comfortable. Stay relaxed and let the conversation flow. If it feels forced, try a fresh angle. It’s a first date. You might be a little awkward. She may be nervous, too. Whatever the case, enjoy the meal and keep things light.
7. Pick up the tab.
I realize that in 2016, most of the dating rules have been thrown out of the window. But for a Guy’s Guy, there are a few unbreakable rules. Like this one: If you ask her out, you pick up the tab— at least on the first date.
There is no middle ground, unless she insists on paying half, which might signal that she’s not that into you and does not want you to think that she owes you anything for picking up the check. In any case, offer to pay. Then, pull out your credit card and smile when the waiter drops the check on you. She’ll be watching how you handle this.
8. See her home (or to her car) safely without expectations.
Time for a nightcap? Good idea. Pick out a quiet, romantic place nearby beforehand. However, if she balks or says “no, thanks,” offer to call her a cab or Uber. It might cost you, but you will score mucho points, and in most cases she’ll find her own way home. That is, if she does not invite you to her place for that nightcap.
If she does, that’s a great sign, but do not push the envelope. She is showing you that she trusts you, so don’t betray that trust. Be a gentleman.
Whatever the scenario, I always go for a good night kiss. Her response is usually a good indicator of her interest. Whatever she does, respect her wishes and don’t be too disappointed if she only shares a peck on the cheek and a hug at the end of a first date. I’ve experienced this and having hung in there for a date or two, was repaid handsomely at the appropriate time. Good things come to those with patience.
9. Follow up with her.
You like texting? This is the perfect time to hit her up. If the date went well and you’re still interested in her, tell her you had fun and would like to see her again. That’s all.
If she’s agreeable, hit her up again within the next few days with a suggestion. And, use the phone when asking her out (not text).
By this point, you should have this routine on autopilot. Mission accomplished, amigo. Now, was that so hard?
This article originally appeared on YourTango. For more from YourTango, try: