Let’s face it. Approaching and dating can be nerve-wracking. They can especially be so if you’re in your mid to late 20s and have little to no experience with dating and relationships, which seems to be pretty common these days. Whatever the reasons for this, I’ve decided to share a bit of my experience and what I’ve learned about how to approach dating for this week's #BATTLEROYALE.
I wasn’t very social in high school, didn’t go out much on weekends, and didn’t have many close friends. I only talked to girls once or twice a week at my church youth group. When I got to college, it was total culture shock. I went from almost never seeing girls to being surrounded. Add onto that that I was extremely shy and socially awkward – and was the dictionary definition of a “white knight” suffering from “nice guy syndrome” – I didn’t know what to do.
The first girl I liked in college was the cutest thing I’d ever seen (to that point). She was intelligent, bubbly, and outgoing. I wanted some kind of certainty or “approval” before ask her out. I had a feeling that she liked me, but couldn’t tell. I was often switched between excited and frustrated and lonely. I was getting nowhere way too quickly with her. Finally though, I manned up and asked her out. She accepted and we went out for pizza a few nights later.
Now that I've shared about where I came from in this regard, I'll share a few simple points that I've picked up on over the years.
Get comfortable with uncertainty
Okay, so she’s nice to you, she’s excited to see you, she smiles at you and jokes around with you…great. She’s probably the same way with her friends. Don’t project what you think she feels on her and don’t look for indicators that she likes you. You’ll have too much to overanalyze and, like I was in college, end up frustrated and lonely. Additionally, it takes away from the fun – yes, FUN – of asking her out. Think of it like the first time you went zip-lining, white-water rafting, or off the high dive.
Think about it like a game. You don’t know if you’ll win or not, but doesn’t it feel great if you do? Wouldn’t it feel great if you win her over? Know what you want, know what you have to offer, and then go after it!
Getting her alone
The “how-do-I-get-her-alone” part? This situation is not fun, but there are ways around it! I found myself in that exact situation once. We had already been acquainted with each other. We had a large group of friends that met at a bar one night. As the night started to wrap up, I spotted her at a table with some of her friends. I started chatting with one of my friends who was standing near her table so that I could get her on her way out.
As she got up to leave (along with everyone else at her table, mind you) and walked right by me, I acted surprised to see her. We caught up for a few minutes. As the conversation went on, I turned my gaze and my posture every few minutes so that I could slowly rotate her away from the group and get their attention off her. Once I saw that, I asked her out and she accepted.
Don’t ask her to “hang out”
You are specifically asking her to spend time with you specifically. You want her to go out with YOU, to spend time with YOU. Don’t ask her to “hang out”. Friends “hang out”. We’ve all heard of the dreaded “friend zone”, right? If you want to stay out of it, then you won’t “hang out” with her. This leads to my next point…
Be bold and decisive!
I sometimes see guys asking how they can subtly ask a girl out, how they can drop hints of interest, or other things like that. I’m not sure how common it is to try this, but you don’t want to do that. Hints and subtlety won’t get you what you want. She’ll either be confused or won’t pick up on them. Plus, even if she does, when will you have dropped enough hints? What will be enough?
If you ask, you pay.
The Moment of Truth
Like I said earlier, asking a girl out can be intimidating. You’ll feel like your heart is about leap out of your chest. You know, kind of like the creature in the movie Alien. So what do you do? Tell yourself a joke. Before you walk up to her, say to yourself “I am not in the movie Alien. I am NOT in the movie Alien…I am NOT an alien!” Humor is a great way to break up tension and help resolve situations, or at least make them less stressful.
After you’ve asked her, you’ll think to yourself “Oh, what have I done?!?” If she says “yes”, then you’ll feel indestructible. Unless you get attacked by a xenomorph, that is.
Eh…those are the creatures from the Alien franchise.
You’ll feel like…well, like this…
Dating isn't as complicated or intimidating as it may seem! That's not to say it's the easiest thing in the world, and I know it may seem intimidating at first, especially if you're inexperienced, but once you get your mind in the right place, it's not that hard to get through feelings if nervousness and insecurity.