So, you made it past the first few dates! Now what?
How you go about getting to know this new person depends on what your purpose is in dating. The kind of person you want to just have fun with or have sex with may be very different from the kind of person who you want to have as a committed life partner and have a child with. The point of dating is to get clearer about whatever is important to you. You can see who they are by watching how they interact with the waitress at the restaurant on your first date.
Once you’ve gone out for a few dates, such as coffee or brunch, dinner, and a movie, try some new things and see how you click in real life. You see people differently when you are going roller skating or singing Karaoke versus sitting at a table while eating dinner and talking. This is a more natural strategy for getting to know your date instead of asking tons of questions, which can feel like an interrogation.
Fun date ideas can meet one or more of the following criteria:
- It’s fun. You laugh and relax.
- It gives you an opportunity to hang out and have different conversations. This is why a movie may not be the best thing to do since you are not interacting during the movie although it does give you a shared experience to discuss after the movie.
- It allows one of you to share something you enjoy with the other.
- It’s something one or both of you haven’t done so there is an opportunity to see how they operate outside their comfort zone.
- It involves physical activity.
- It lets you see how they interact with others in different situations.
- It shows you their emotional maturity.
Emotional Intelligence is the ability to be aware of, recognize, and manage your emotions, and recognize the emotions of others to create effective relationships. You may not value this when you are younger, but it is difficult to navigate relationships and life with someone who lacks emotional maturity and concern for others.
Here’s the list I came up with. What ideas do you have to add to the list?
- Start your date with coffee at the bookstore while you explore books you each enjoy and share your passions (in books, of course!)
- Take a walk or bike ride in the park and enjoy being outside (and maybe get ice cream!)
- Visit the botanical gardens and learn about flowers together
- Go to the zoo and feed the animals
- Go roller skating or ice skating (or both!)
- Play Ping pong, tennis or racquetball
- Shop at a farmer’s market and cook a meal together
- Take a class together – cooking or painting (including ones where you can drink wine) or pottery. Explore what would be fun to learn together.
- Workout together at the gym if you both exercise
- Go on a hike
- Go Horseback riding
- Try indoor skydiving (get a discount on Groupon) or climb a wall
- Skiing (if you live in driving distance of slopes)
- Go on a double date with friends (your or his) for a game night
- Go to a concert or musical performance – something one or both of you enjoy or something new to both of you,
- Sing Karaoke
- Have a picnic (and both of you bring foods to share)
- Go to a comedy club
- Attend a Meetup group on a topic you are both interested in
- Meditate together or with a group (silently or listening to a guided meditation) and share your experiences.
What new experiences and adventures can you create as an easy way to get to know someone better without having to ask 20 questions?
Remember, dating is a way to explore if a person is someone you want to get to know better, Don’t overlook things they say or do to you or others that makes you feel uncomfortable. Find a partner when you can be yourself and can relax with them. Have fun and don’t settle.
Are you single, looking for lasting love, and ready to take action? If your answer is “yes,” then reach out to me at my website contact form. We can explore your challenges and dreams and if/how I could support you in having your breakthrough to lasting love. (Yes, it is possible. I didn’t marry until I was 49 years old!)
Originally published here, this article also appears on YourTango.com.