Taking the step from sending a few messages on a dating site to meeting up face-to-face is a huge jump. First dates are nerve-wracking, and you spend most of the time before it worrying about whether you’re going to make a fool of yourself or how the date itself is going to go. To take some worries off your hands, we’ve made a list of Do’s and Don’ts that you can use to guide you through that initial date and hopefully bag you a second!
Keep it casual
Ensuring you keep the date casual and not over the top or extremely romantic takes the pressure off you both. It allows you to freely choose a setting where you can both relax and solely get to know each other more to see if there’s a spark. Meeting up for a coffee or casual drinks is perfect.
Tell someone you’re going to meet a date
First rule in meeting an internet date, is to always share your location with someone you trust. It doesn’t mean you have to tell them the ins and outs of your date if you don’t want to. But simple details of where and when the date is happening is important for your safety. You could even set up this person as a scape goat if you’re not really feeling your date and want to get out of there.
Show up on time
There’s nothing worse than standing around waiting outside a venue for your date – who you’ve never met before – to arrive. Your mind starts thinking they’re not going to turn up and you convince yourself that this wasn’t a good idea. Being fashionably late can wait, you need to show that you respect your date and their time.
Respect your boundaries
Setting boundaries makes many people feel uncomfortable, but they’re so important especially when first establishing a relationship with someone. If you don’t feel comfortable doing something, then don’t. Whether that’s having another drink, going to their place after the date or even them being too handsy.
Drink too much alcohol
When you’re nervous you may feel like grabbing a drink – or two – for some Dutch courage. But it’s important not get too blotted. It’s not a nice experience when your date gets totally drunk and you wouldn’t want them to remember you for all the wrong reasons, so set a limit and stick to it.
Have high expectations
When going out on a date your lofty expectations need to stay at home with your Pinterest boards. Ultimately, high expectations tend to lead to some degree of disappointment so check in with yourself before a date. Whilst standard expectations like practicing good hygiene are normal, it’s best to focus on getting to know them. It’s perfectly fine if you realise they’re not the one, but it doesn’t mean you have to miss out on what could be a great evening because they are blonde rather than brunette.
Bring up your ex
Most likely you and your date have been chatting for weeks over the phone and the chances are your ex hasn’t appeared in many conversations. That’s a good thing. Trust us when we say that, that conversation can wait a few weeks more. Leave the past in the past and focus on the present. The first date is not the time to talk heartbreak or disappointments, this is the time to focus on possibilities!
Go over the date 100 times in your head afterwards
It’s easy to run over the date and what was said afterwards, but try not to get too caught up in it. Thinking can easily turn into over-analysing and before you know it you’ve convinced yourself that your date had an awful time, and they don’t really like you and your second date is never going to happen. Trust how things felt at the time and go with that feeling and if you don’t hear from them again, then what have you really lost? Not a lot. It wasn’t meant to be and that’s okay.
Are you looking for a fellow single to find a spark with? Head over to Plentymorefish.
Whilst dating is a fun experience; you’re meeting new people and trying out restaurants you probably would never go to on your own, it can be tiring seeing the notifications of a ‘new match’ or ‘….wants to talk to you’. It can become overwhelming and exhausting and what was once fun about it doesn’t seem to be as exciting. We’ve been doing a bit of research to see what could be causing this and we’ve put together a few reasons why you could be experiencing this.
1. You think there just isn’t anyone out there for you anymore.
If you’re willing to throw in the towel because you believe there’s no one else out there for you to find, then you’re heading for a dating burnout. But is giving up on dating what you really want or are you simply having a bad streak? It’s time to get real about what you want. Are you willing to see this rough patch through and come out on the other side? If the answer is no, then give yourself a break and focus on ‘self-partnering’ as actor Emma Watson calls it.
2. You’re struggling with rejection.
Rejection can be difficult to deal with, particularly when you’re having it repeatedly happen to you for things out of your control or if you’ve got rejected by someone who you really cared for. Even if you’re usually the type of person to shrug off a comment made by one of your unsuccessful dates, there can be a point where it can impact your self-esteem and you start to take it more personally.
Healthy dating is knowing you’ll come across rejections along the way but being able to handle them. Taking time out to regain that confidence and hone in on what you want is perfectly normal. You want to be the best version of you that you’re putting out there.
3. Dating isn’t fun.
Remember the excitement you felt when you were first setting up your profile and received your first match? You should still get those feelings a year down the line! If you find yourself rolling your eyes at your message notifications and responding feels like a chore then it might be time to take a break. You can come back with a fresh set of eyes, and during that time away you may even learn more about what you’re looking for.
Remember that there is no timeline on meeting ‘the one’ and taking that well-earned break from dating may just be the exact thing you need to reboot your dating life.
When you are ready to return to the dating world or maybe you want to try something new, then we have singles waiting for you over at Plentymorefish.
You may go through phases where you feel like you’re repeatedly picking the wrong type of person, or you may have a string of dates that haven’t worked out. For some, they can find it easy to walk away from these relationships, but for others it can be more difficult, and they can find themselves stuck and unhappy. Regardless of what type of person you are, it can be frustrating feeling like you keep picking the wrong people. So, we’ve put together a list of things to go over next time you’re feeling fed up or frustrated with another failed date.
Identify your pattern
We tend to find that there is a pattern in the people we are attracted to. We go for people who believe fit us all round, meaning that their positive qualities complement our own but this can also apply to their negative traits.
Pay close attention to those patterns – are there any negative traits that seem to crop up time and time again and drive you mad? Do you seem to go for the same types of people, with the same ‘quirks’ that turn out to be intolerable?
Once you look back at your dating history and start to identify these patterns, you will know what to do to break this cycle. You’ll know what to avoid when approaching each date and with every choice you make, you’ll be more conscious as to what’s attracting you to make that decision about that person.
Speak to friends
Most of the time we think we know what’s best for us and what we ‘need’, when in all honesty we don’t. Talking to your friends and close family can help you get a better idea about who should be on your dating line-up. One benefit about talking with your best friend is that they will be honest with you, so if they know you go for a certain type of person who isn’t good for you then you will know about it. It’s also great to have a gossip with your bestie about dating, right?
Now you may be thinking, “but I take chances all the time going on dates”, but do you really? If you’re going out with the same type of people, are you really scoping the dating field, or are you simply casting your net in the same ‘pond’ expecting different results?
You can decide to be more open to the possibility of being with someone who may not be on your list of potential dates, yet you’re still attracted to. When you choose to break a pattern, you are allowing yourself to experience something different and you might even find you get a better outcome. If you give it a real chance, you never know who you could come across, and you could learn more about yourself in the process.
Figure out what you want
You might find that you’re repeatedly picking the wrong types of people because you’re not clear on what you want yet. You might be going on dates with people who are wildly different, but you get the same outcome. This is because you need to get clear on what you’d like from the relationship.
When you’re looking at what you want to get from a relationship, steer clear on focusing on physical attributes or minute details like where they’re from/grew up etc. These things become insignificant in the long run; you want to focus on a person’s outlook, goals and dreams.
If you’re wanting to break the cycle and meet new singles, head over to Plentymorefish.
Falling in love is such a special feeling and when you realise you’re in deep, it can be the most incredible feeling to experience with your partner. But sometimes, lust and excitement can be mistaken for love, and we find ourselves quickly falling out of ‘love’ with this person weeks later. So, next time you’re sat at home wondering whether it’s real or just pheromones, remember some of these key clues.
You want them to be part of your whole world
You want them to be part of your everyday life, meeting your family and friends on every occasion. You want to share every detail about your day, and soon enough you’ve realised you’ve been on the phone for three hours. Having them in your life fills you with happiness and contentment – a key indicator that you’re falling in love.
You are kind of freaking out
It’s easy to over-analyse text messages you’ve sent to each other and replay interactions you’ve had over and over in your head. It’s standard for when you’ve just start dating someone you’re excited about. But it’s said that if you’re still notice slight changes in stress or anxiety after a few dates, it could be a sign that you’ve caught real feelings. It’s mostly anxiety over the small things, you spend time worrying about what you’re going to wear, even though they’re only coming round for a takeaway and movie date. You find yourself running to the bathroom to brush your teeth before they wake up in the morning. It should be a freak out for a positive reason.
You find yourself picking up their traits
It won’t be long until you find yourself picking up the same phrases and mannerisms your partner has. When they said that “two becomes one”, they weren’t lying. All of a sudden, you’re both becoming very similar, but that’s not such a bad thing.
You want to say the big ‘L’ word
You’ll find yourself wanting to say the three important words to your partner. You know it’s love and not just lust when you’re intrigued in what makes them tick and what their interests are. If you all you suddenly want to do is to listen to what’s on their mind and look forward to having conversations with them about the future, you are already well on your way to ‘Luuurve Town’.
‘We’ is starting to become the new ‘I’
It doesn’t feel weird to RSVP to your Aunt Sarah’s wedding that’s next year, because you know they’ll still be in your life. This is a huge sign of commitment, that you’re so sure they’ll be around for the long run. They start to become part of your life in every way, friends invite you and your partner out rather than you. Your parents address the Christmas card to you and them. Immersing them into your life in the small ways which are personal to you is a huge sign you’re falling in love and that you see a future with them.
If you’re ready to fall head over heels for your person, then head over to Plentymorefish where you can find fellow loving singles.
A new relationship is exciting and it’s so easy to get wrapped up in your little bubble of love you and your partner have created. Whilst this is lovely and the feeling of contentment washes over you over time some people struggle with losing their sense of self. Most of the time, it’s innocent and we don’t even realise that it’s happening to us. So, what does losing yourself look like?
You probably aren’t changing into an entirely different person (although this can happen), losing yourself is more subtle than that. It’s the small things that were once so important to you that you couldn’t live without, like doing the pub quiz with your best friends, that you no longer care about doing. Or you suddenly put your personal or career goals aside in favour of your other half’s. Those small details are what make up your identity, which set you apart from others and which made your partner fall for you in the first place.
If you’ve noticed creeping into your relationship, then you have a few things you need to figure out. Boundaries and balance are vital in a healthy relationship. A true partnership is the sum of two halves, having your own identity and life outside your relationship will ultimately make you more attractive and a happier human being.
Learning to say no when your partner dominates every decision or demands your complete attention and devotion, will prevent you from losing yourself. By taking a respectful stand against a decision your partner has made or simply saying no to doing something you don’t want to do sets healthy boundaries.
So how do you not lose yourself in a relationship?
See loved ones regularly on your own
Immersing your partner into your social circle and introducing them to the important people in your life is an exciting time, but make sure that you’re still having time on your own with them too. These people are important in keeping you in touch with yourself.
Stop replacing ‘I’ with ‘We’
Whilst becoming a ‘we’ in a new relationship seems tempting for every scenario, it’s easy to fall into unhealthy relationship terrain by doing so. You need to remind yourself you are your own person, so stop saying ‘we’ when you really mean I.
Don’t compromise on the things that make you
It’s okay to compromise on what you’re having for dinner tonight, or what film you’re going to watch on date night. But don’t compromise on the things that make you, well, you. These could be career development opportunities, going to see family/friends, time you spend at gym or yoga, the list is endless.
Maintain your interests
Remember it was your individuality that bagged you your partner in the first place, so maintain those interests you’re passionate about. It’s not just about what you do, it’s who you do it with which is also important. If you and your friends have a monthly quiz session down your local pub, don’t replace them and go with your partner instead. Remember that you both should be supportive of the things which are important to each other prior to even knowing each other. Make sure you continue having ‘me’ time, as it is those things that make you a more interesting and rounded person.
Learn to embrace healthy conflict
Get better at having healthy disagreements. It doesn’t mean you have to be harsh or mean about it, or intentionally start arguments or disagree for the fun of it. But if you have a differing view, then it’s important to speak up about it. Not only will this help build the relationship it also teaches you how to not people-please and develop the courage to stand up and respectfully voice your opinion. There should never be issues about what is said in the relationship, it’s only the way things are said. So, be careful with your tone and make sure you also take the time to listen to your partner.
If you’re looking for love, head over to Plentymorefish. Find fellow singles who are ready for healthy commitment.
We all experience jealousy one way or another. Whether that’s in a relationship, between our friends or maybe even towards a co-worker. Jealousy is a normal feeling but unless it is understood for what it is and dealt with in a healthy way, it can have a destructive effect on our relationships. So, we’ve put together a list of tips to help you deal with the green-eyed monster in a healthy and mature way.
Be supportive of each other’s feelings
As with most things, communication is key. Letting your partner know what situations make you feel uncomfortable and insecure can help you feel more secure and understood. Express how it makes you feel without the need for jealous fits or drama. Get your point across factually and speak from your perspective rather than accusing them of something for which you have no proof. Your partner may think nothing of it when they are texting that co-worker so go easy on them and give them the benefit of the doubt. And if the roles are reversed, it’s time to listen to your partner and try to understand their perspective. Could you be more sensitive to how your behaviour makes them feel?
Know that jealousy in small doses is normal
No matter how full of love and loyalty your partner is, it is still ok to communicate when we feel that jealous twinge. It isn’t a bad signs but shows that you still care about the relationship and that the thought of your partner being with somebody else makes you feel a bit queasy.
Check your expectations
We all have expectations of a relationship; loyalty and honesty are top of the list for many. Sometimes though, our expectations are unhealthy and set you up for bouts of jealousy. Not allowing your partner to see their friend, because he/she is of the opposite sex, is one of those. The key with expectations and rules is that they are communicated clearly and fully.
Look at your toxic habits
Sometimes we set ourselves up to experience these negative emotions, maybe it’s because we believe it’s too good to be true or maybe we simply don’t trust them for some other reason. So, we get ourselves into toxic habits of checking their phone whilst they’re in the shower, or sneakily checking out their ex on social media. These things aren’t going to help you, no matter how much you try to convince yourself that you’ll ‘feel better’ after. You might get a feeling of relief which will last half hour, but you’ll soon find yourself doing it more often and feeling more anxious and jealous. Ultimately, these ways of dealing with jealousy will only push your partner away.
Recognise that if something was to happen, you will be okay
Heartbreak and jealousy can be hard to deal with and no matter how jealous you are in a relationship, know that it will not prevent your partner from doing anything silly or disloyal like sliding into someone else’s dm’s or going for drinks with a co-worker. Trust is a huge part of any relationship but getting comfortable with the fact that a broken heart will not end you, is the first step to dealing with jealousy.
Communicating with your partner about your worries and making sure that this feeling doesn’t take over is so important for a healthy relationship. The more you communicate, the more likely your partner will be able to look out for things that may trigger your feelings jealousy at times and the more reassured you will feel.
If you’re ready to find love, check out fellow singles on Plentymorefish.
Let’s be honest, rejecting someone is awkward. You’re not sure what to say without causing offence and you don’t want to leave them confused or thinking something is wrong with them. Being rejected isn’t a nice feeling, so it’s important that we do it properly with as much damage control as possible. We’ve put together a list of tips when it comes to how to reject someone nicely, so next time you’re being approached by someone who doesn’t tickle your fancy just remember these tips.
Focus on your needs
Let them know that you don’t think that your needs are being met. Being open and honest about it allows them to realise that the issue isn’t necessarily anything to do with them but about compatibility. Mention that you hope they find someone more fitting to what they’d want.
Don’t leave them in the unknown
The last thing you want to do is leave the other person confused about why you’re not responding or you’re pushing back the date for the 3rd time. Make it easier on them and let them know where you’re at and why you’re no longer interested.
Be clear with them, if you don’t think they’re the right person for you then make sure they know that so that you’re not giving off the message to wait around until you’re ready for a relationship etc.
Talk about your chemistry
When we meet somebody, we all want to experience that ‘spark’ or ‘click’. Knowing we have both emotional and sexual chemistry with the other person makes for a great relationship, but when one or both are missing it can make it difficult to want to say yes to the next date without fearing you’re leading the other one on. So be honest, tell them you’re great but I don’t feel like we have chemistry and that’s important to me. It’s a swift and kind way of doing it, and they can’t argue about the things that you don’t feel.
Accept that it’ll probably hurt them
Let’s be honest, being rejected by a crush feels painful, especially if you’ve been on a date with them and you feel like there is potential. Unfortunately, you cannot help this happening, it’s best to be kind and clear. Picture it as if you’re the one that’s being rejected and tell them as nicely as you’d like to be told.
Although our tips have generally talk about being open and honest with the other person about your needs and why you’re not interested, remember that you don’t owe anyone a detailed justification. Just let them know you’re not interested, and you don’t want to take it any further. It’s not harsh, it’s just direct and clear.
If you’re in search of some fellow singles ready for commitment, then head over to Plentymorefish.
Setting boundaries can be difficult, it can be a bit of a struggle to know where to start or even what classes as a ‘boundary’. Often, we think if we say “no” then we risk losing part of the relationship or even friendship. But putting boundaries into place is a way normal and healthy way of protecting ourselves mentally, physically, and emotionally.
Having that discussion about boundaries can feel awkward or you may not know what to say, particularly if the relationship game is new to you, here are a few pointers to think about when starting a new relationship.
Be honest about what you need
In a new relationship everything is rosy, and you probably think you don’t need much from your partner because you just enjoy the time you spend with them. But you need to think further down the line, if this relationship has the potential to be serious then you need to think about what you want from your partner. From being open about their feelings to not leaving towels on the bathroom floor.
You need to get clear with yourself what you’re comfortable and not comfortable with, and then be able to communicate that to your partner, so they know exactly what to expect and how to meet your needs and expectations.
Listen to what your partner needs
After you’ve had your say about what you want from the relationship, listen to what your partner needs and we don’t mean just listen to respond, or to shake it off. But really listen. Listen and then think what you can do to meet those needs.
Designate when you need space
In the beginning of a relationship, you may want to be around your person as much as you can. Even trips to Tesco are fun when your partner is coming along. But if you’re finding that spending a lot of time together is getting a bit too much for you, then ask for space. The last thing you want to happen is you getting irritated because you feel like you see no one but your partner, so be honest and take time away from each other.
Communicate what you can tolerate
Knowing what you can tolerate is particularly important to prevent those arguments which can crop up. When talking about what you can tolerate, we mean not just those times your partner walks past the dirty plates and doesn’t wash them up. But particularly emotionally, we all get affected differently by actions and as a result how we react may differ. So, it’s important to let your partner know if you’re sensitive to being lied to, shouted at, silenced etc.
You should be able to communicate anything in your relationship but it’s also the way it’s communicated which is important. Try to remember to not expect a person to simply know what you need or can tolerate, it’s always best to be up front.
Communication is vital in a relationship and for it to work you need to remember that, however much we’d like them to read our minds, they just can’t.
If you’re ready to venture into the world of dating, Plentymorefish can help you along the way. Join now to find fellow singles looking for love.
We’ve all experienced the grey area of a relationship one way or another. Your date isn’t being totally communicative about what page they’re on, or maybe they have, and they’ve made it pretty clear they’re not ready for commitment but are still putting dates in the diary for dinners at your favourite restaurant. It can be confusing; do you stay in hopes they’ll change their mind a few more months down the line? Or do you hop off that train to find someone who is heading in towards the same destination as you – commitment.
What do you want from this situation?
Commitment is a big deal. It shouldn’t be something you just settle for because it’s the easiest option or because you feel better having someone in your life. By choosing that one person, the other opportunities to bump into someone at bars or whilst you’re commuting to work disappear. No, it’s not a commitment to walk down the aisle but you should take the time to figure out what you’re committing to before making the jump.
If you only want to date one person at a time, then be clear with yourself (and the other person) and establish that boundary before you step into the dating world. Don’t feel pressured to extend your dating circle because your date’s style includes a few more people than you’re used to. Compromising on the type of relationship you want is the last thing you want to be doing, inevitably it will bring up feelings of jealousy, insecurity, and instability within the relationship.
If you want more, don’t assume you can change what they want and can convince them that commitment is the way forward. Take their word for it, and don’t believe they just need a ‘gentle push’. Same goes for those that avoid the ‘what are we?’ questions after a few months of dating, their inability to communicate is probably a sign the relationship status isn’t going to level up.
From here, you need to switch the focus to you. Decide what is right for you and will make you happy. Whether that’s taking a complete step back to honour what you want and to find one person who wants the same things and give it your all. Or you could give your date 50% instead of 100%. This means the focus switches from them and onto to other factors in your life that make you feel fulfilled and happy, and most importantly give you value. It could be as simple as going out with friends, doing activities you enjoy, gaining some independence or even venturing out into the world of dating some more and increasing your dating circle.
The real answer to the question ‘What do I do?’ is that no one can tell you, there’s no rule book or guide to dating. It’s about being honest with yourself and your feelings. You can still date and have a bit of fun without commitment, just make sure you’re both on the same page first.
If you’re wanting to explore the world of dating, then join Plentymorefish and get connecting with like-minded singles looking for love.
Rejection. We’ve all felt it, whether that’s from a relationship, a job or a friend. We’ve all been there. But rejection in love hurts, it can be ruthless in destroying self-confidence and sometimes hard to bounce back from. Even the likes of Brad Pitt and Zac Efron have probably felt rejection in their life. Some people get up and bounce back and some it consumes. So to help you bounce back, we’ve put together 4 ways of getting over rejection.
First, let’s scratch the word ‘rejection’
It’s important to remember that the person who rejected made a choice against you and not because of you. 90% of the time, it’s actually because of their own state of mind and desires rather than you personally. When you think of it as them and not you, you realise it’s not your burden to deal with and you shouldn’t have to cope with it. Essentially, view it as happening for you, not to you. As many people say, ‘It’s a blessing in disguise’.
Surround yourself with people who make you feel valued
Being rejected can be a bit of a dampener on the ego and may have us doubting our own self-worth. Rejection ultimately unsettles our need to belong. That’s why it’s important to spend time with people who make you feel loved and valued, whether that’s simply going for a walk or grabbing a bite to eat. Hanging out with a friend who accepts and values you will remind you that you’re valued. Opening up actually really helps with coping with rejection and can be a saving grace, whether that’s simply to vent about the situation or having a reassuring pep talk.
As Ariana Grande once said, “Thank You, Next” and this is exactly the attitude you want to have. Those that reject you are helping you figure out more information about what you want and don’t want from a partner and are even helping you learn more about yourself, whether that’s how to be more resilient or develop the sensitive side of yourself, every partner is there to teach you a lesson.
A good way to look at it is that every rejection is just you being freed up for the right person. It’s true when they say, ‘you have to kiss some frogs before finding your person’.
Make a list of everything that makes you great
For those that struggle, try giving yourself a compliment. If this is too hard for you to do right now, ask a friend to tell you what they love about you so they can remind you how great you are. By making a list of things that make you a great person, you’re helping to boost your self-esteem and in turn curb any negative self-talk. It’s essentially a way of affirming our own worth and not letting rejection dampen our confidence.
If you’re finding yourself wanting to get back out there and delve into the world of dating, check out Plentymorefish to find your match.