How does one ease back into the dating scene? A friend posed this question last week as we discussed what topics I should explore. I was working on a piece: Dating After Divorce, but after we talked, I wanted to expand the story since it’s not always after divorce that one is thrust into the dating world after a stretch of time.
One thing is paramount, however, and that is: you have to be ready to date or be in a relationship. There is a chance that the date will lead to another one and perhaps into a relationship. If you’re not ready for that, you may want to explore and identify why you want to date right now. Regardless, being ready to date means:
1. You’ve healed since your last relationship, even if it was five years ago
2. You’re heads over heels in love with yourself. Dating isn’t a medium used to build your self esteem. In fact, if you’re not okay with you, why will anyone else be?
3. You have the confidence to date again and face the good, bad, funny, ugly and wonderful that goes with it
4. You know without a doubt, the type of person you want to attract/date, and you share those same qualities (like attracts like)
5. You’re willing to try a dating site. Some of them offer you more control of the process, as they match you AFTER you complete a (lengthy…Eharmony) profile. This interview process will also allow you to hone in on the type of mate you want (extra points!)
6. You have to be ok with the outcome or at least be detached from it, especially if things aren’t immediately perfect (don’t expect perfection, as there’s no such thing…especially in the dating game). This is an opportunity to learn a bit more about yourself in the process
Talk to your friends about your desire to date again, does anyone know a potential perfect match (or more realistically, a great starter date)?
Start out COOL: Coffee, Or Over Lunch. Do something during the day and you pick the spot. Show up a little early so you’re not late and thus flustered when you get there. Get comfortable if you’re nervous. Oh, and don’t be nervous!
Don’t assume he will pay for the date, so have enough cash/credit/debit for yourself just in case (I’ve had this happen once or twice). Have enough cash for both of you just in case he bails, loses his wallet, or is just a jerk. I’ve not experienced this one, but I’ve heard about it.
Remember, it’s not a job (or marriage) interview, it’s a date, plain and simple. Lighten up. Share some of your likes and hobbies, something funny about yourself or a funny story that happened recently. Listen to his stories, and allow yourself to get a general impression about him so that you may evaluate it later, after the date.
Andrea Wright is a digital marketing guru with an unwavering vision and determination to help the world thrive, one word at a time, one person at a time through her novels and career/life coaching practice (The Wright Path). Discover Andrea at www.thewrightpath.net. Follow her on Twitter @AWrighter247
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