Too busy for love – let speed dating help
In our ever busier world, meeting that special someone can be a challenge all of its own. In generations gone by, people often met their mates through friends, study, work, or mutual interests. And although there are still many cases of romance over the cubicle walls or the easels at the local art class, speed dating offers a thoroughly modern and time-efficient way to at the very least have a fun night out and maybe even meet your soul mate.
Keep an open mind
Even in our enlightened computer age, where online dating is common, a confession that you’re off speed dating will sometimes meet with raised eyebrows or an amused grin; but you’re equally likely to meet a new partner via speed dating. As with any new experience, the key is to be open-minded and relaxed. Don’t go into the event with preconceptions. A wide variety of people turn up to speed-dating events, from business-people to nurses to farmers to teachers to students. Some just want a slightly different evening out. Some want to make new friends. And many genuinely want to meet pleasant people in a safe, chaperoned environment – and who knows, one just might turn out to be Mr, or Ms, Right.
Selling yourself at speed dating
At most speed-dating events, you get just a few minutes to sell yourself, in the nicest possible way – usually somewhere between three and five minutes, not long enough to reveal your deepest soul, but long enough to make an impression. In effect, the event is a series of mini-dates. So this is no time to be modest or shy. You need to present yourself as well as possible. Dress smartly but not too over the top – go for colours that suit you and classic styles that highlight your best features. Don’t go over the top with make-up or scent. When you’re chatting, smile, and make eye contact, but don’t make it too intense. Be confident, interested in, and focused on, the person you’re talking to – and whether you’re male or female, listening attentively is an incredibly attractive personality trait.
Keep the conversation flowing
Have some questions ready to ask your potential dates to keep the conversation flowing. You need to establish quickly how compatible you might be, so starting with some general questions can help break the ice. Some speed-dating organisers offer a list of questions to help you, but depending on the environment, you might want to add questions to make it more interesting for both of you. Which superhero would you like to be, perhaps, and why; or if you were a cocktail, what would you be? Or make use of the “choices” game: salmon or steak? Country or coast? Motorbike or air balloon?
How do you know if they’re interested?
Look for signs of interest in the person you’re talking to. Classic signs include body language that’s mirrored; a gentle brush of the hand on the lower arm; signs of grooming, such as fiddling with hair, mouth or collars; moistening of lips; and nodding. Many speed dating events offer sheets to help you remember who you’ve spoken to and how compatible you found them – often either as a friend or as a potential partner, or as a “sorry, you’re not my type”. If there is the slightest spark of interest or chemistry between you – follow it up. You never know where it might lead.
Article written by a USA dating expert