You’re single, sexy and clued up. Why isn’t dating turning out like in the movies? Georgia Clark susses some common traps you might be falling into.
Just because you’re acing uni or kicking goals at work doesn’t mean your heart is smart. We all make mistakes – just be sure not to make these ones more than once! Your dating future depends on it…
1. Overlooking Red Flags: Has he rescheduled more than twice? Did he start to talk a lot about his ex? Was he rude to your waiter? Sometimes we’re so willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt because, okay, he’s so freakin’ hot, we overlook small but extremely telling red flags. Balancing benefit of the doubt with an overly critical stance is hard. Is the fact he says ‘pasketti’ instead of ‘spaghetti’ a deal breaker? That’s your call (but we’re leaning towards ‘hell yeah’).
“I went on a date with a co-worker who downed five rum and cokes, then revealed he only dated strippers and lived with his mum. Why? He was so cute it was unreal and everyone in the office wanted him. What can I say, I’m a shallow idiot.” Sarah DiMunro, actor/ writer and former columnist for JANE magazine.
2. Showing Your Hand Too Early: We’ll stop being coy: this means letting him take home your goody basket way too soon! Even if the sight of him is inspiring you to take life-drawing classes, your lips should remain sealed. Apart from a quick goodnight kiss to let him know you’re keen, keep that sexual tension simmering, not boiling over after just a few hours together. If two martinis turn you into Little Miss Frisky, consider iced tea and a walk in the park.
3. Forgetting to Have Fun: You’ve spray-tanned and scrubbed, plucked and peeled. The outfit is magazine-worthy, the hair TDF and you’ve even browsed smh.com for a few “Hey, did you hear about-” conversation starters. Now you have to remember to not talk about your bastard ex-boyfriend, be mysterious, stay sober(ish) – arrrrgggggh! Slow down sister. It’s a date. You’re there to have fun! Crack that goofy joke and tell him about your weird obsessions – remember, no one likes a Stepford Wife [or ‘remember – quirky is cute’].
4. Playing the Game: Whether you’re certain that he is, or you just don’t want to get hurt, game playing is a classic mistake smart girls make. That doesn’t mean you have to ‘fess up about the enormous crush you have on him because that’s being honest, it just means to balance out interest and composure. If you try and play hard to get, you’ll probably come across as simply disinterested. And that’s a game where no one’s a winner.
5. Too Great Expectations: You’re going to the bar by the water right? You’ll probably end up going for a moonlit walk. He’s got a house up north? He’ll probably invite you up there over the holidays. He’ll call the next day. He’ll bring flowers. He’ll… Yay for having an active imagination. Boo for those crazy expectations. As a smart girl with an awesome imagination, you’ve no doubt spent some time – okay, a few days – thinking about your honey and the most romantic or raunchy date of all time. That’s fine – fantasizing is fun. The trick is to recognize it as such: a game, a playful way to while away a boring afternoon. When the date begins, make sure you’re back in reality and not still over the rainbow.