What if you could take the pitfalls of the millennial dating world and turn them into strategy?
I’ve compiled a list of six modern dating rules for millennials to help you break through the confusion, improve your self-esteem and find healthier relationships.
#1 MegaDate But Don’t Ghost
But even when you are casually seeing someone, keep in mind that respect should always be at the forefront of your mind.
And — above all else — never, EVER ghost someone.
The advent of text messaging and dating apps has made it easier than ever to avoid closure when you’re no longer “feeling it.”
More than 80% of single millennials reported that they have been ghosted. Ghosting occurs when you are dating someone and you or that person devolve into radio silence without an explanation. Calls, texts and any other type of communication stops.
Letting someone know you’re not interested in pursuing a romantic relationship — or continuing one — is gonna suck for that person, regardless of how gently you let them down. BUT, simply pulling a disappearing act with no explanation is going to suck WAY HARDER and can lead to detrimental side effects.
And with social media and dating apps, it’s not likely people will be able to write off your sudden absence as your phone dying or you needing be to enter the witness protection program.
You don’t have to reject a person in a way that is crushing or depends on a cliched “it’s not you, it’s me” breakup. Be kind, but also me honest. Don’t tell someone you’re not looking for a relationship if you are, or that you “want to be friends” if you don’t.
Let the person know that you enjoyed their company, but that the chemistry just isn’t right, and it would be a bad idea for both of you to move forward romantically. This provides closure to the person and can put your conscience at ease.
#2 Don’t Ask The Girl to Split the First 3 Date Bills
The moment that the check is delivered in the center of the table can make a date go from incredible to painfully awkward.
It has become more common nowadays for men to ask to split the check on a first date. My take on that?
There are a few important reasons men should pay for the first three dates, including the amount a woman spends on dating prep, as well as the fact that (despite changing times) there still tends to be a major pay gap between men and women.
Look, I’m not trying to mess up your credit score or drain your bank account. Here is a strategy that is most successful and won’t leave you with a sore wallet!
Choose something casual like a happy hour or coffee that won’t cost more than $15. Limit the date time to no more than an hour. This allows you enough time to see if there’s chemistry without putting on too much pressure, which can be stressful for you and your date.
You’ve broken the ice and now you want to get to know more about this person. The second date should include something that is active and free.
You may be wondering how to make a second date memorable without spending a dime. Most local tourism websites and newspapers will have a calendar of free events that are unique to your area. If you’re on social media, platforms like Facebook have local event listings as well.
For more ideas, check out my top 18 physical second date ideas plus 13 other second date ideas that’ll knock your dates socks off. But to help you get started, here are a few free date ideas that don’t require wealth to woo a lady.
- Go hiking
- Visit a museum
- Have a picnic at the beach or a local park
- Go on a brewery tour
- Find a free concert
- Sample foods at a farmers market
By the third date, it’s time to get a little more intimate. Plan a romantic dinner for the two of you and — if you play your cards right — this date is a prime time to seal the deal with that special lady.
You can read a complete breakdown of how to get your date in the mood by clicking here.
#3 Be Happy with Yourself
When it comes to dating and relationships, I don’t subscribe to the whole “it happens when it happens” adage.
It’s natural to want a teammate in your life and you shouldn’t shy away from putting yourself out there.
Romantic relationships offer an intimacy that you can’t get anywhere else. At the same time, dating and relationships put you in a state of vulnerability, potential rejection (it happens to all of us), and can force you address any emotional baggage you may have.
With that being said, don’t let finding “the one” be the focal point of your day-to-day. Find ways to be confident and happy with yourself whether or not you are romantically linked to someone.
Of course, confidence isn’t something that is always easy to come by, but there are a few things you can do to naturally increase your self-esteem. This, in turn, projects a more attractive energy to those around you.
One way to boost your confidence quickly? Get moving. According to the Mayo Clinic, exercising is a great way to build your self-esteem.
Exercising releases feel-good hormones known as endorphins, which give you a natural high. Working out can also give you a body that you feel more comfortable in and that potential mates find more appealing.
And you don’t have to run a ton of laps or lift weights until you’re ready to collapse. As little as 20 minutes of activity per day can improve mood and decrease depression.
Here are a few other quick ways to feel confident and appear more attractive:
- Practice power posing. According to social psychologist Amy Cuddy, practicing confident, powerful stances can actually improve self-esteem.
- Smile. Research shows that smiling — even when it’s forced — can reduce stress.
- Speak to yourself in the third person. For example, instead of saying “I can’t do this. I’ll never be successful,” say something like, “Brian, you can do this. You can be successful.” A study found that practicing this form of self-talk increases confidence.
#4 Don’t Get Aggressive with Texting and Emojis
I love emojis.
You love emojis.
We can all agree that emojis are wonderful, yes? But when it comes to dating, be sure you don’t get too aggressive with emojis or text messaging.
A study published in Edmonton Journal found that online dating profiles that were peppered with emojis made women think the men were less intelligent.
To me, too many emojis can come off as aggressive in the same way that sending too many texts too soon can be aggressive.
Speaking of which, DON’T overdo it with texting, particularly in the early phases of dating. Learn more about how to strategize your texting after a first date by clicking here.
#5 Avoid Internet Stalking
The digital age has proven to be a bit of a double-edged sword when it comes to millennial dating.
Thanks to the internet and social media platforms, we can now connect with people that we may never have crossed paths with otherwise.
However, this ease of access isn’t always a good thing.
Even before a first date has taken place, you potentially have access to a buffet of information about someone. You can browse their Instagram, Facebook and more, seeing a plethora of photos they’ve taken — many that could be with attractive men.
These men could be platonic friends or even relatives, but when you don’t have that insider knowledge, viewing your date’s social media can induce stress and anxiety.
How do you avoid this stress?
Just say NO to googling and internet stalking the person (or people) you are dating.
It takes time to get to know if someone is right for you. Allow your personal interactions to define where the relationship will go, rather than the world wide web.
#6 Get an Unbiased Opinion
We love our friends and family, but when it comes to dating, the advice we get can be very biased.
Friends and family know you, not the person you’re dating. They’ve seen you get hurt, and their protectiveness may color their advice to you in a way that is — while well-intentioned — potentially detrimental.
I’d love to offer you an unbiased ear to help you on your dating journey. Break through the barriers of the modern dating world by booking a one-on-one Skype session with me today.
I can’t wait to learn more about you and help you rock it in the dating world!