So, I have a theory about dating new people.
To begin with, its based on the conservation of time and energy. Its about being selective enough to be excited about each first date—which is a rarity for most in the modern day dating world. More common? People going on first dates with people they never spoke to and know nothing about. Sometimes multiple first dates in one day, in fact.
Thanks to the array of online dating sites and mobile apps, many singles-especially those in big cities-are completely overwhelmed by the sheer volume of potential suitors they attract. On apps like Tinder and sites like Match.com, they just don’t know who they should or shouldn’t pay attention to. It seems like a terribly impersonal process that singles struggle to personalize and have success with. They wonder about the best protocol for finding a relationship. Because isn’t the goal of the process actually finding someone to make you delete your silly apps?
Singles trying to figure out these dating mediums ask me questions like: How many messages should you exchange online before you take the communication offline? Do you send someone your list of deal breakers before you send your phone number? How do you know who to meet and my take?
Decisions. Decisions. Decisions.
One thing is for sure that I would shout to the rooftops for any single to hear:
You don’t know ANYTHING about anyone or your potential compatibility with them until you do your homework! By the way, don’t fool yourself into thinking you don’t have to do some “research” if your friend or even a professional matchmaker has made the introduction. It can’t hurt to look at things a little more deeply. If you want to increase your chances of a successful first date, you need to develop a process for screening candidates. If you think this sounds unromantic, think about how unromantic a first date with someone you have absolutely no romantic attraction would be.
If you are on board, here’s a simple three-step process I’ve found useful:
1. Talk to your potential date. On the phone. The actual phone. Have a conversation to make sure you don’t hate his/her voice and/or are bored to tears. It’s also a good idea to find a casual way to text or talk about your deal breakers before you even agree to a date. If you know there are things that won’t work for you and your potential date is all about those things, why waste your time?
2. Play detective. It’s called Google. But it doesn’t have to stop there. While some people think that ignorance is bliss, I (and many people I know) prefer to know the truth upfront. To discover the truth about a stranger, you have to dig a little deeper. If you don’t want to do a full on background check, there are other options. But if you do want to do a background check, may I suggest www.Instantcheckmate.com? (It’s amazing what you can find out in minutes!)
Ladies, you can take it a step further, and use LuLu, the gem of a mobile app that actually allows you to research guys by reading anonymous reviews from other women who’ve dated them. (So you can stop dating guys who have #TemperTantrums!) Another option? Look up your potential date on Facebook, check out the mutual friends you have, and contact them to get the scoop!
3.Just say no. Realize that although people often say that “sometimes ya never know” in regard to who you’ll fall in love with, sometimes you do know who you won’t fall in love with. If your research has proven that the latter applies to the person who just asked you out, politely decline the date. If it’s not a match, it’s not a match.
Want to stop dating the wrong people and start dating the right people? Email me at Rachel@RachelRusso.com. I have personalized solutions for you.