One of my first male clients, Don, who is now 56, is back on the market after 7 years. Getting back out there, he has recently experienced some rather interesting first dates with women who could apparently use a few dating coaching sessions. So much of dating is really common sense and looking at what you do and say from the other person’s perspective. Unfortunately, not everyone recognizes this.
Here are some of the things women have said to or asked Don, whether on the phone or on their first date that he has found most troublesome. He wanted to share these with me to help build awareness among women on how these things sound from the other side of the “table.
“I would love to get together but I’m really busy with my job, and then I have my Pilates classes and the kids’ soccer games and I’m seeing my girlfriends on Friday and I have to drop the kid’s off at my ex’s on Sat. afternoon and my mom is coming to visit on Sunday…”
I understand that you’re busy. But when you go through the litany of your life verbally with a man, all he hears is that you are too busy for him. Or that dating is not you’re priority. Or that he’ll never be a priority. You want to appear available, even if you are crazy busy, so keep your calendar to yourself. If a man asks you out for a particular time and you are busy, just suggest a time when you are free and spare him what’s going to happen between your conversation and the time he sees you.
“This weekend? Sounds great. But I must warn you, I have strict dietary restrictions, I have to be home early because the sitter is so expensive, and if they have music at the restaurant I hate jazz, country and hard rock.”
OK, lots of people have dietary restrictions or health concerns, but how you share this with prospects really matters! Presentation is everything. You can ask what kind of food is served so you can get an idea, you can go on line and look at teh menu to make sure there is something you can eat. Many restaurants are willing to adapt a recipe to meet your needs – I do this all the time. The point is – don’t sound difficult or demanding. It’s so much better to say less and still get your needs met without making a big fuss about it because as you can see, that is a big turnoff.
Now let’s talk about music. For one date, can you roll with things? Most men will try to please you at the begining. And if you don’t like something, that’s OK. You can say, the music is too loud for me once you get there. But spelling out the list of what you don’t like is not a way to demonstrate how easy going or fun you are to be with. Relax please and try to go with the flow a bit.
Another point that is crucial to understand. Men will take it as a compliment if you like the restaurant or music. He’ll feel good about the choice he made and that he made you happy and pleased you.
On the other hand they can feel deflated just as quickly if you complain about the food and music. We all have preferences and they should be known, but give yourself a chance to get to know each other before you put all your preferences on the table for display.
“I would love to see you, but not this weekend. I’m meeting four guys from Match.com.”
For goodness sakes, please keep your dating schedule to yourself. If you’re busy, say you aren’t available then and suggest another time. But don’t throw it in his face that you are seeing other men. That is a given when meeting people from online dating – everyone is meeting multiple prospects. However, there’s no need to flaunt that fact, because no one likes to think how they are just part of a line up. You wouldn’t like it either if you think about it.
More comments from Don tomorow with first date no no’s…
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