2. Join a dance class. Salsa and ballroom dancing classes are an especially good way to meet people. When you get moving, you naturally are in a better mood. Dancing is also a great way to connect with your body and your sensuality. A metaphor for relationships, dancing teaches men how to take the lead and it helps women feel more comfortable letting a man take the lead. Dancing will also get you out of your head and help you flow with the moment, a skill that comes in handy when you're on an actual date.
3. Go for a hike. You can join a group like Sierra Club Singles or go alone and see if you can engage other people on the trail. Hiking is a great way to combine exercising with meeting other people. For some people, parties and meet-up groups can feel too sterile. Doing an activity can create an environment where meeting people feels more natural. Start by just smiling and saying hello to people. Eventually, you might say, "Mind if I walk with you awhile?" If you like someone, you might ask if they would like to meet again for another hike.
4. Go to a networking meeting. Networking meetings give you a built in excuse to walk up to someone attractive in the room and strike up a conversation. Check Meetup.com for singles-related networking groups. Wear something that stands out — a piece of jewelry, a colorful scarf or a striking pair of glasses — or notice something someone else is wearing that you can comment on. "I love those retro eyeglasses you're wearing … " Ask what kinds of clients they are looking for so you can refer to them. If you're bold, suggest getting together for lunch or a drink to discuss how you can help each other.
5. Sit in a coffee shop. Grab a cup of coffee and a chair by the door. Don't read a book or the paper. Instead, smile at people as they walk in. See if you can get someone to stop and talk to you. Maybe comment on something someone is wearing or on the weather, anything to strike up a conversation.
6. Go to a supermarket. Go at the busiest time of the day and see if you can engage people at the vegetable department or in deli section. Be playful and flirtatious. Try challenging yourself to talk to the cutest person you can find. Ask for help getting something off the top shelf or inquire if that person has ever tried a certain product. Get comfortable talking to everyone, especially people you find attractive.
7. Go to a park or a dog park. Nothing attracts attention like a dog. A friend of mine was having a terrible time getting dates. Then, she got a dog. The dog got her to get out and about and lo and behold she met a guy. A really cute guy. Now she has a dog and a boyfriend. Talk about a happy camper. If you meet another dog owner you like, suggest a "doggie" play date.
Lisa Shield, MA, CPCC
Transformational Dating and Relationship Coach