Dating Tips and Advice

Dating Tips for Men

Selecting people to date

Some men are inclined to view finding a partner a bit like one of those shopping expeditions. We decide exactly what we want beforehand and then cruise the shops until we find it, dismissing everything else along the way. This is partly down to our sequential mindest - we find it easier to complete one task before starting another, rather than keep several tasks on the go in parallel. It's also partly down to our visual preference: 'I'll know it when I see it'. It therefore follows that we tend to choose our potential partners by how well they match the visual specification we had in mind.

Yet, where has that specification come from? Your previous partner? Someone from the big screen or big brother? How important really is it?

Escalator Girl
Dating Couple
Country Walk
Women tend to have curves

1. Let's take figure size, often part of a man's specification. The average figure size for UK women is 16. So, if you exclude, say, all people over size 16, that's half the population you've just eliminated. Have a look at your own reasons for specifying a figure size and be sure you really intend the consequences. After all, who would turn away the curves of Kelly Brook?

2. How about hair colour? Whilst you might have a preference for a certain colour, can it really be that important? Many women change their hair colour with the seasons, so the brunette you dismissed in the autumn might be a blonde for the summer.

3. And, before you get too obssessive about the physical specification of your potential mate, buy a good mirror. Just as we men might have expectations about dress size, etc, women also have their requirements. And we need to be realistic about our attractiveness. For example, most women prefer men who:

  • Are tall
  • Have hair
  • Are slim
  • Are clean-shaven
  • Have good, own, clean teeth

So, if you're short, bald, overweight and have a beard, be realistic about the kind and number of ladies you're likely to attract.

4. Whilst there are exceptions to all rules, in general, women prefer to date men of their own age. And in recent years, women have become less interested in men much older than them. So, whilst you might think it fun to date someone young enough to be your daughter, you won't find many takers. Doubtless you'd say that you look very young for your age; sadly, almost everyone says that.

So, in general, try to forget the specification. You'll meet a lot more people and have a more enjoyable dating time if you assess each person you meet by asking yourself: 'how much have I enjoyed the company of this lady?' - a question with multiple possible answers and next steps - rather than 'does this person meet my specification?' - to which the answer can only be 'yes' or 'no' and the consequences will be determined accordingly.

Girl in braces
Wine bars
Meet for coffee
Attractive blonde professional

Going on the date

Most women like men who are kind and trustworthy. By agreeing to meet a man on a date, they are taking a leap of faith that they won't be meeting a rapist or an axe-murderer. So, as a responsible dater, you should be looking to reassure your date and set her mind at rest. That means:

1. Agreeing to meet in a public venue, midway between where you both live or work, easy to find, and where your date won't have to walk a long way on her own in the dark. Pubs are not great, because they're not easy places for a woman to sit on her own; better a hotel, wine bar, coffee shop, cafe or similar.

2. On the first occasion, meeting for a short time - maybe a drink or a coffee - so neither of you have too much invested in the outcome. Don't go for a three course meal on your first date.

3. Arriving early (it's no fun for a woman sitting on her own in a public place).

4. Making an effort on your appearance and arriving and leaving sober. Research by professionals' dating agency RSVP shows that, in dressing for a date, women prefer men to:

  • be smart/smart casual in their choice of clothing
  • have clean shoes
  • be clean
  • be clean shaven
  • not overpower them with aftershave

5. Being certain to greet your date in warm and friendly (though not over-friendly) way, regardless of your initial impression. Our body language can give so much away; steel yourself against that.

6. Having a fund of things to talk about. These shouldn't be too deep; although dating is an accelerated process, there's no need to discuss whether you want children at the first meeting. Try to establish a light-hearted, fun atmosphere, with plenty of laughter. Virtually all women agree that men who make them laugh are much more likely to win their heart.

7. Finding some common ground - interests, work, holidays, music, film - so you can focus on building some shared experience.

8. Don't drone on about previous relationships. No-one wants to hear a blow-by-blow of your messy divorce.

9. Pay half.

10. To close, agree what you'll do next. Don't lie. If you like her and want to see her again, tell her what you will do to set up the next meeting - or agree it there and then. If you don't want to see her again: 'I've had a lovely time and thanks very much for meeting me. But I don't feel I want to take it further at this stage'. Some agencies organise events (see RSVP's singles events) and this offers a great (and somehow less final) exit if you don't want to see her again: 'I'll look forward to seeing you at an event very soon'.

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