I matched with three guys I wanted to meet, but none of them have started a conversation!
I spend so much time on these apps and nothing ever comes from it!
Any of these thoughts sound familiar? If you have frequented any of the dating apps on the market today, it’s likely you can relate to all three of these statements. It’s almost proven that the overabundant online selection and quick-to-judge vetting process is more curse than blessing to females looking for something serious. Weeks, months, or years spent sorting, swiping, matching, and messaging often result in nothing but extreme dating fatigue, landing most women right back where they started when their membership expires.
Most clients who seek my help have nearly given up hope of making something online happen offline. It’s one of the main reasons I decided to change my coaching structure two years ago from single sessions to a six month program. As fast and easy as app dating may be, the process is anything but that. To play the new dating game, you not only have to understand the other team, but you have to really know the playing field, and it has become challenging, confusing, and all too time consuming.
I’ve been dating for over twenty years (ten years for myself, ten by proxy) and can confidently say I know the app game pretty well. There are ways to work the new system of dating so that the system doesn’t work you. I teach my clients how to do just that, and at times, I even do it for them by logging into their profiles. Today, I’m going to share a few of my app dating techniques right here so that you, too, can up your odds of making love happen.
As much as we’d like to use Tinder and the like to “cherry pick” our Prince Charming, doing so is a recipe for sitting home every night. If you want to find the right person for you, you have to ditch your list of physical must-haves and swipe right on almost anyone who fits your age range and location. Before you start posting the backlash comments to this, let me clarify that I’m not telling you to go out with everyone you swipe right on. I’m saying that in order to have enough of a dating pool to fish from you need to swipe right A LOT. From the guys who “SR” back on you and result in a match, you can then decide who you want to message and possibly meet. If you hate this idea, you will likely need to read my upcoming book, “Cursed: Why you are smart and savvy but bad at love and the 5 cures that can save you from heartbreak” because your problem likely runs deeper than your “swipe psychology”. (Sorry!)
I am a big fan of old school rules like never texting a man first, and not asking him on a date. However, those principles don’t apply before you meet! Pre-first date, throw all the rules out the window because they will only have you scratching your head asking yourself why you aren’t meeting anyone. It’s not only fine to start messaging a guy first, it is necessary at times. Remember that most men have a substantial online funnel going, too, and if you don’t initiate a icebreaker you could get pushed down the line by the five other aggressive females clamoring to have coffee with him. And speaking of coffee, I also encourage you to throw out the suggestion of grabbing a cup because some guys are slower to pull the trigger and ask than others. Again, you don’t want Aggressive Abby and Brave Betty to beat you to the punch… or to the latte.
<b>If He Bites, Reel Him In</b>
This might be the most important part of my app dating strategy and it’s one that I don’t see many people use. Listen carefully because this is the golden nugget! If you get a guy chatting through one of the apps, do not leave the conversation. Do not play hard-to-get by hopping offline for an hour or a day, and then come back and try to resume your chat. It won’t work. If someone starts messaging you, stop what you are doing and build a relationship with him right then and there! Spend the next 15-20 minutes getting to know that person and creating a connection. After you feel you’ve done a good job building a little rapport, close him for a coffee date like this, “Hey, it’s been great chatting with you but I have a pilates class at 7:30. Maybe we should grab coffee this weekend? Let me know and I’ll check back with you tomorrow.” By closing him but also leaving him at the height of impulse, you create what I call the “laid back close.” This strategy makes you seem somewhat indifferent (not overeager), but still allows you to take control and get yourself the date!
If you are having troubling with the last piece of advice and can’t figure out how to quickly and effectively build a relationship with a stranger, don’t be too hard on yourself. It’s actually hard to generate a good, meaningful conversation over “text” with someone you have never met. If you need help, you might want to reach out to me and find out more about my coaching program. Or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I read your book “You Lost Him At Hello” three years ago, when I was a sophomore in college, and it was eye opening for me. I have definitely fixed a lot of my mistakes, but the main problem I would say that I am still having is keeping guys interested and making them excited about me. I don’t think the problem is that I am too clingy because I definitely mirror their texting patterns. I feel like I have a lot to offer, but they are not seeing this or feeling like they “have” to be with me. I guess I would say that I am not good at “selling myself.” I sometimes find myself pointing out my flaws, downplaying my accomplishments, or being self deprecating because I am worried I will intimidate them. I don’t think I always used to do this and I’m not sure when it started.
Also, I thought that once I graduated college, people would be over the “hook up culture” (which has never been my thing) but that appears to not be the case. That being said, another problem I have is getting guys to ask me on dates instead of just asking me where I’m going out on a Friday night. There is one guy in particular who I think is interested in me, but I don’t know what I can do to pave the way for him to ask me on a date instead of how this usually goes. What can I do to make it very clear that I am interested, but also turn down “those” kinds of offers in the hopes of a date?
Thanks for your question and for reading my book. I’m so glad it helped. I think your recent situation with the guy who won’t “officially” ask you out also points to your overall problem of not getting guys overly excited to be with you. I have good and bad news for you. First, the bad…due to social media, texting, and everything in between that keeps people so easily and instantly connected at all times, the dating culture has drastically changed, and men have changed right along with it. In the past, it took real work to see a girl and get her to meet up with you. You had to get her number, call her on the phone, and actually make plans to do something together. But now, a guy can incorporate you into his already laid plans…and this is to his benefit for two reasons; one, he risks no sort of rejection by just seeing what you are up to and where you might be on a friday night, and two, he can up his odds of getting some sort of female interaction by asking multiple girls what they are doing on the same night. Depending on how many girls respond, and who is at the top of his list, he can then cancel (or just not follow through, most likely) with the others. This is what’s happening everywhere and to every female under the age of 30 (and some who are over.) There is little you can do about the way things have changed in respect to dating, but you do have control over how you respond to guys and that can make a big difference with the good ones (the bad ones will just move on to someone who’s easier).
Here is what you can do. There is absolutely nothing wrong with meeting a guy out with his friends when you first start talking with him. Whether you’ve met him in person, know him from school, or have only interacted online, you can accept an invitation to meet up with him and his buddies. Standing firm that he has to ask you out in a traditional sense in order to see you is risking him either not getting the hint, or losing out because he just doesn’t have the nerve or motivation (yet). What you should do is meet up, have fun, dance, laugh, flirt, and then LEAVE. If you have read my book, you know all about the height of impulse and that is a very powerful move that will help you in this situation. When you are leaving, and the guy is asking you to go back to his place, or trying to kiss you, you have the opportunity to say in a cute, flirty way, “Sorry, I haven’t even been on a date with you yet. I just don’t go around making out with guys at bars. But you have my number, so if you’re interested in going out, text me.” Give him your best “you-know-you-want-to” smile, and walk away. As I said, the good guys will respect the fact that you respect yourself. The bad ones will be annoyed that they aren’t getting laid that night. How your guy responds to this will tell you which category he falls in.
As for the problem of not selling yourself well…you definitely don’t want to point out your real flaws to a guy you just started having a thing with. You can downplay what you know is not a true flaw, though. Think Ariana Grande telling a guy, “I’m just kind of an average singer.” You don’t want to brag to a guy, of course, but you also don’t want to pick yourself apart in front of him. Neither is attractive. And here is some final good news for you. If you and all your friends decide not to allow guys to “get” you without any real work, you will actually help them learn how to be true gentleman. If all women require a proper date, all men will comply. So when you tell the guy at the bar, “You gotta date me” you aren’t only helping yourself, you’re helping other women, and the entire male population.
For more answers to questions like this, check out my Q&A book, “Was It Something I Said? The answer to all your dating dilemmas.”