“Find a date,” your friends say. “Join us for dinner, and bring a date!” This alone is enough to cause many single people to immediately start to panic. The reality is that, if you’re looking for dates, you probably just want to find someone special to spend time with, without regard for your pushy friends and their need for additional couples to complete their circle. It’s important to think of looking for dates as part of life, part of your everyday routine. You never know — one of these days it may well turn into something more than just a date.
Finding a date is never easy, but it can be relatively painless, depending on your attitude.
Maybe have a hard time meeting people. Maybe you have a hard time meeting people who are suitable for dating. Maybe you’re a single parent with responsibilities at home, or someone who works from home. Perhaps you work strange hours and that’s why you never meet anyone to date. Maybe you work with people much younger or older, or perhaps you really don’t have finely honed social skills. It could be that you’re shy, private, quiet in groups or just unwilling to make the first move.
Whatever the situation, you need to take action! The first thing to do is make sure you exude self confidence. You want to find a date you’ll have a great time with, so it helps to make him or her feel special by looking good. Here are some tips on how to accomplish this:
- Give yourself a makeover
- Buy some new clothes and update your image
- Get a new haircut or hairstyle
- Get a full beauty treatment and makeover
- Visit your dentist and get those teeth pearly white
- Get a tan and freshen your skin
- Try out the latest styles and fashions
- Treat yourself to a rejuvenating vacation or break
- Read some new magazines and go shopping
- Join a health club and get into a new workout routine
- Go on a diet and lose a few pounds, if needed
- Take martial arts or self defense classes
- Improve your attitude
The next thing you need to do to find a date is think long and hard about what you really want to achieve and what your expectations are. Get clear about what kind of person you’re looking for, although don’t be too specific. Keeping your aim as broad as you can will make finding a date easier. You also need to be realistic. Don’t make it your goal to date a Hollywood movie star if it’s not likely to happen. Keep your feet on the ground and take a long, hard look at your own life before walking into someone else’s.
Once you’ve got that part down, here are a few ways to get started:
Dating Close to Home
Begin by looking in your own neighborhood. Is there anyone in your neighborhood or friend group who is single and awesome? Often, people stay single simply because they aren’t being asked out by anyone, not because they themselves are lonely. It’s time to do the asking. And yes, that includes the good-looking people in this world. There are lots of local clubs and activity centers where singles are likely to congregate. These are often the best place to introduce yourself to people of the opposite sex in your community. Try to choose something that involves both sexes.
Dating at Work
Some sources claim that 87% of couples first met through work or began dating at work. In general, dating at work or dating someone within your own office environment is generally not a good idea due to the possibilities for problems and the negative implications it can have on your career. Relationship tensions within an office can cause issues with other workers and antagonize work-related disputes.
However, the good news is, most organizations also work with other firms. If your office gets together to socialize with business partners or groups of people you don’t work with directly, start going to these events. Try going with coworkers to happy hour or attending after-work social events, too, from bowling to trips to bars and comedy clubs. It’s as much about making new friends as it is about finding a date.
If you really don’t like your coworkers (or don’t have any because, for example, you work from home), you’ll need to look for other ways to extend your social circle.
That’s right, join a gym. To find a date, you should look your best. After all, if you’ve set your sights high, doesn’t your potential date deserve the best, too? Good, so get down to the local health club and look into a regular workout routine. If already do this, expand your horizons and make sure you’re not going to a unisex gym. Try other sports and activities — from yachting to running to baseball to anything else you haven’t tried before. You will make fabulous new friends, as well as possibly finding a date, not to mention feeling and looking much better than if you just sat on the couch munching on potato chips.
Ask Your Friends
The most common complaint among people in their late ’20s and ’30s is that all their friends are married. If this is true for you, it’s time to adapt. As awesome as they might be, your married friends probably will not help you find a date. They tell you they’ll try, and they probably mean it, but like attracts like, and there’s a good chance most of their friends are married, too. In general, you should not look to any friends to help you find a date, though, because your friends don’t necessarily know what kind of person you’re looking for. The best advice is to take control and find a date yourself.
This is why you need some single friends. Newsflash: Dating is easier if you hang out with other singles who are also playing the dating game. Even if your married friends are your best buddies in the whole wide world, you need support from other people who know what you’re going through. Also, there is safety in large groups. This can also open up new places and venues for you to visit and look for potential dates. You will probably see your confidence level jump as well.
You can find new single friends everywhere: at work, in your neighborhood, at clubs, in your gym … You simply need to make some new friends, then join in. It’s not nearly as hard as you think. One thing’s for sure: Neither your fantastic new friends, nor your super hot new girlfriend or boyfriend is hiding out in your closet. If you sit at home, you will not find them — you have to go out and put yourself out there in order to do it. In fact, get started right now. When was the last time you called up your old friends to catch up? Do it now.
Join a Club
Activities really do bring people together and help you make new friends. If you’re involved in something like a craft, hobby or sport, then you’ve already taken the first step toward hanging out with (and possibly dating) like-minded individuals. You have something in common, and it’s a great icebreaker. If you’re not a member of any club, figure out what you’re interested in and decide whether joining a group of some sort centered around this activity might introduce you to others. (Hint: It will!) Always remember: Statistically, there is a good chance that many people just like you are also looking for dates and are joining clubs like these for this very same reason.
Signing up for a Dating Agency
Dating agencies were once associated with embarrassing social stigmas, but not anymore. These days, it’s extremely trendy to use an agency to find dates. Dating and finding a date is fun and enjoyable. After all, dating is really just about meeting new people and searching for a special connection. Dating agencies fall into two categories: traditional and Web-based. The first are those traditional dating agencies that help you find a date but charge hundreds of dollars to offer you the chance to meet a few people in their database they have matched you with. They then offer you the chance to meet, if both parties are interested. It’s slow and long-winded, but it can work sometimes, although rarely are there guarantees of any kind. The main thing about such dating agencies is that they often specialize in a certain area — maybe profession or financial, etc. Some may concentrate on the medical or legal profession; others may focus on, say, executives in a certain region.
Internet Dating Sites
The second kind of agency is the professional Internet dating and friendship sites accessible from your home computer. Most often, they are free to sign up for, so you can set up a profile and see who’s in their database to find out if you’re interested in that kind of people. The beauty of Internet dating is that it makes everyone on any given site instantly accessible, and you can search for people you match with in comfort of your own home without spending a dime. Sniff around, check out people’s pics and profiles and take your time finding a date.
It’s super important when you’re looking for a date to choose a reputable Internet dating site that will provide you with not only personal ads but also a safe and secure environment, as well as advice and articles to help you get ahead. These sites let you communicate anonymously with your matches when you’re ready to make contact via on-site email, chat rooms and private instant messaging. Some companies even include voice mail services so you can listen to your prospective date’s voice before meeting them.
After paying a small fee, you can communicate with as many members as you like, safely and securely — and, very soon, you may find that you have arranged not just one but many dates. It’s up to you. No more standing in singles bars, being hit on by obnoxious strangers or brainstorming opening lines — just convenient and relaxed dating, whenever you want!
If you’re looking for dates, you should start immediately. It’s not always easy to take a step like this if you’ve been out of the dating arena for years. Think through these tips on meeting dates and start taking initiative. Life is meant for living, but even more importantly, it’s meant for sharing with someone special. Start focusing on finding a date, but more importantly, focus on feeling good about yourself and the rest will follow.