So you’ve finally decided you’re ready to start dating after your divorce, you’ve signed up with an online dating service, you’re networking with your friends for introductions, and you’re excited about going out on some dates. You’ve even been stepping out of your comfort zone to go solo to some events because apparently that makes you more approachable.
The startling reality however is that dating the second time around is very different. One of the major differences is that it’s simply harder to meet singles because second-time around there are fewer singles available. That’s why this one very simple strategy could make all the difference.
You need to be in a dating state of mind.
What do I mean by that? Let me share a story with you.
Just recently I was invited to a violin recital at someone’s home. I was really excited to be going because it wasn’t just any violin recital. It was a performance by virtuoso Elizabeth Pitcairn on the Red Violin. Yes, that violin, the legendary 1720 ‘Red Mendelssohn’ Stradivarius. I don’t want you to get the wrong impression – invites to events like this are not a normal part of my social calendar and that was part of what made this evening so special.
It’s almost six years since my divorce and I’ve gotten used to going solo to events – more often than not I run into people I know and I’m pretty comfortable making small talk these days. So I went to my recital, and had a lovely evening.
The next day as I was thinking about with whom I’d been chatting, I realized that I’d spent the entire evening chatting with friends and had not so much as even surveyed the room for potential eligible singles.
How could that be? I really thought that with the help of my dating coach I’d opened up and was more confident. Yet, I’d completely missed a prime opportunity for meeting not just singles but singles with a shared love of classical music.
As I thought about the evening, I realized that once I was at the event I’d been looking for people I knew to talk to and as long as I was talking to someone, I was comfortable having gone solo. I’d had fun catching up with some friends and while this made for a enjoyable evening, I wasn't in a dating state of mind.
A dating state of mind would be to go to an event and look for the people you don’t know, to look for the people who appear to be single and to use your social skills to connect. And that mindset would be reflected in your body language which would also convey to others that you’re open and approachable.
But .. and there’s always a but, the trick is to use this mindset artfully. Barging up to someone or elbowing your way into a conversation awkwardly and bluntly asking if they’re single isn’t likely to lead to a date.
While others may appear to have a natural talent for this, I’m convinced it’s a skill and like all skills, the more you practice, the better you become. So next time I’m out at a social event or even at my local coffee shop, guess what I’ll be doing?
I’ll be glancing around to see who I don’t know.
Divorce coach, Mandy Walker is the founder of the divorce support blog Since My Divorce. Contact Mandy for a free 30-minute New Beginnings consultation to find out if divorce coaching is right for you. You can also download Mandy’s Visioning Your Life After Divorce workbook at no charge.