If we think of the dating field as a vast market from which we, as consumers, get to choose what we want, we need to remember that we too, are commodities, to be packaged and marketed accordingly. If we are seeking a high-end commodity, then we must have something equally appealing with which to barter! Here are a few key pointers to give ourselves an upgrade, rather then putting ourselves on sale.
1. Appearance counts
We’ve all heard that first impressions matter and that is never truer than in the dating game. Since our physical appearance comprises a great deal of that first impression, we want to advertise ourselves in the best possible light … which means careful personal grooming and extra self love. The basics are obvious — looking neat and clean versus dirty wrinkled clothes are not sexy. Beyond that, putting in adequate grooming time — hair, makeup, nails — will enhance that enticing overall appearance that draws the flock to you. Knowing what colors and styles of clothing look best is key, and let us not forget that regular physical exercise and a healthy diet is crucial to looking and feeling your best!
2. Honesty: Still the best policy
When we meet someone we want to impress, it can be tempting to ’embellish’ facts about ourselves. This only works if you are in the market for a one night stand, since the truth will come out as you get to know each other better. Trust is one of the biggest factors in a successful relationship, and if you start your connection off with lies and gross exaggerations, you might never succeed in creating trust again. Why take that risk over a few tall tales?
3. Get out there
It’s a big world out there, with plenty o’ fish in the sea, as they say. But if we are not willing to do the work to make ourselves available, we will not reap the rewards. Being open and friendly will make us seem more approachable and available. Socializing with friends opens us up to meeting more people, and therefore, more dating opportunities. Getting involved in group organizations and activities — such as biking, hiking, snorkeling — puts us in the pool for meeting others, makes us more interesting as a person, and offers common ground between you and your potential Romeo or Juliet.
4. Listen with an open mind
The key to any good conversationalist is being a good listener — this is true for every relationship, romantic or otherwise. We already know about our own lives, so why not learn about our date sitting across from us. We all have the need to be heard, and understood … all it takes is listening well with an open mind. If your date feels that you are too self- involved to be interested in what he has to say, or are too judgmental in your views of them once they open up, let’s face it, the date is over. The same holds true if the roles are reversed … we don’t need to waste our precious time on critical, egocentric dopes either!
5. Be confident
Confidence is extremely attractive. It says, ‘I’ve got it together’ and it shows self-respect. We must first love and respect ourselves before anyone else can. It is exhausting for one individual to feel like they have to keep complimenting and validating the other person due to their low self-esteem, and is very unappealing to a date! We must come from a place of confidence and security if want to stay a float in the dating market.
6. Know what you’re looking for
Dating takes time and energy, so we should know before hand what we are really looking for in a person. We need to be realistic about what we have to offer, and know what we want. Do we ultimately want commitment and marriage? If so, we need to know what qualities we desire most in a mate, and not waste our time on dates that don’t fit the bill.
7. Upgrade yourself
Being happy with who we are, automatically attracts others to us, but it’s comforting to know that we can always work on ourselves (and change the things we don’t like). Perhaps we’d like to take more classes, to learn new skills or to change jobs. Or maybe we’ve been thinking about that makeover that we never seem to get around to. Whatever it takes to make ourselves more confident and happy inside, will prove quite valuable in the “date mart” … have fun shopping!