You’ve come this far: You and your guy connected online, emailed a few times, spoke on the phone and now it’s time for your “meet date.” You are compatible in the virtual world. So far, so good. Now it’s time to see how it goes in the real world.
The purpose of the meet date is not to learn a ton about each other or make any decisions about whether you might have any kind of future. It simply serves as a quick way to determine if you want to want to get to know each other better. If you do, you go on a real date.
As a Dating and Relationship Coach for Women over 40, I encourage, and sometimes practically shove my clients online because I know this is the best place for singles to meet. It’s where I met my husband, after all. Before our meet date here is what he said to me: Let’s meet and if we don’t gross each other out we’ll go out again. Yah…it’s kinda like that. (After more than seven years I still can’t find anything gross about him.)
I know the ups and downs and ins and outs of internet dating. I know what works and what doesn’t. Here are some of the tips, reminders and techniques I give my coaching clients when they go on a meet date with their online match. These tips help you assess whether you want a “real date,” and, if you do, how to increase the chances that it will happen.
#1 Have realistic expectations.
Stay positive in the belief that you will find your special man who will rock your world. But also be realistic by remembering that the majority of the men you meet won’t be The One. That means lots of “nos” until you get to your final “yes.” When you manage your expectations this way your level of disappointment drops dramatically. That means you can have more fun and continue to get practice so you’re ready for The One when you do meet him.
#2 Put your best foot forward.
Everyone has negative attributes and secrets; and everyone worries about when to share them. The answer may be complex and depend on the situation, but the sure thing is NOT to share them on the meet date or often even the first date.
Divorce, family problems, jobs you hate, friends or other men who have betrayed or disappointed you are off limits. If he asks or brings it up himself, respond with one or two sentences of a positive nature and sway the topic elsewhere. For example: “It was difficult at times, but I learned a lot from that experience” or “Wow, we could talk about that for hours! Let’s put that in the queue for next time…I’d rather talk about your [travels; favorite movies, bands, or plays; preferences in food; or cats vs. dogs...]”
#3 Talk about yourself.
Contrary to many women’s beliefs, it’s not his job to ask you a bunch of questions. It’s up to you to help him learn about you. Be sure to squeeze in what I call your “nuggets.” Nuggets are important bits of information about you. What’s important to you, what is great about you and what do you like to do in your life? Tell him who you are by showing him your best self.
#4 Remember that you are strangers.
Until you spend time with him, you cannot know his character, his values or how he would make you feel in a relationship. Intuition and chemistry are real, but they’re not reliable indicators of the important elements of a long-lasting, adult relationship: trust, respect, loving-kindness, etc. Keep your “reaction to attraction” and intuition in check and lead with your intellect. It will lead you to better decisions.
#5 Keep your eyes on the prize.
You’re looking for a good man with whom you can share a deep connection, unconditional trust, mutual adoration and a lifetime of happiness. Everything you do should be toward that end. That means choosing long-term happiness over momentary pleasure. Don’t be intimate too soon, and do give him the time and attention needed to make a good and grownup choice.
Next time, in part two, I’ll tell you the #1 thing men look for in a woman and how you can show him you’ve got it, along with the rest of my juicy tips on how to turn your coffee date into a date-date.
There are thousands of quality men who want to date a woman just like you…and they are online! Bobbi will give you the tools, tips and support you need to get out of your rut, attract the right men and ultimately meet the man who will love and adore you forever. Click here to learn about her Find Love Online webinar.