Who should I date?
This question is fair but useless. You should date someone compatible, but that is a slippy metric that changes over time. Imagine a restaurant where they will craft your ideal sandwich, but you have to specify the ingredients and preparation. You might stutter out a workable combination, but you would be filled with doubt, and the dread of missed opportunity would haunt your meal. But if the waiter asked if he should spit in your water, or fart in your dates face, your answer would be immediate and authoritative. We understand the generalities of the things that we like, and the specifics of the things that we do not. People are more complicated than sandwiches, so it helps to lay out a few disqualifying factors to weed the undateables out of the field early.
Do they need a job? What level of hygiene is acceptable? Will they correct peoples grammar at parties? Do they have ferrets? The specifics of the undateables are going to vary from person to person, but there are some red flags you should at least consider.
Are they bartenders, actors, or lead guitarists/singers in a band?
Do they Roll their eyes and sigh when they disagree with people?
Have they recently exited a serious relationship?
Are they are currently in a serious relationship?
Are they indecisive, yet consistently critical of other peoples decisions?
Do they only have friends of the opposite gender?
Do they only have friends of the same gender?
Do they have friends?
Do they frequently complain of “Drama” that they cannot escape, yet have no culpability in creating?
When they are upset does it become everyone else’s problem?
Yeah, but seriously…who should I date?
Fine. I will lay out the bare bones essentials of someone that you could date. It’s not interesting, but this is going to read fairly negative if I don’t take a shot at it. A few green flags to consider
Are they are single and open to a relationship?
Are they are happy and do they find their life engaging?
When you see them do you experience physical arousal?
Do their friends speak well of them and enjoy their company?
Is there is significant overlap in your interests and hobbies?
Are they are smart and cool?
Are they kind to animals and vulnerable humans?
These are not hot takes. We all know the broad traits that make a person desirable, what we have difficulty with is discerning our specific tastes to the point that we can predict who we will have chemistry with. The only way to improve that discernment is to try a variety of things, pay attention to your response, and to not talk yourself out of a good thing that you didn’t see coming. The only hard rule is: do not have people in your life that bring more suffering than joy, and that ratio should be heavily slanted towards joy.
I am bad at flirting is this going to be a problem?
It more important to pick up on flirting than it is to be an effective flirt…though I say this as someone who is good at flirting and terrible at picking up on it. Masterful meet-cutes make great wedding speech material, but all you need is a willingness to openly express interest, and a capacity to absorb rejection gracefully. “You seem like a neat person, would you like to go on a date sometime” is going to get you to the same end point as a killer pickup line more often than not. The goal is not to trick someone into liking you, the goal is to find someone that you like. Your personality and appearance as a whole are doing the heavy lifting, calm down, be curious, and have an actual conversation.
“Everyone in the PUA (pick up artist) community is laughing at you right now, bro. Get Redpilled and the bitches will be lined up for you”
Yeah, I read The Game. There are some Neuro-linguistic programming tricks that you can use to hustle a drunk girl into talking to you. If you are good at finding the vulnerable ones you might even shame neg one into a one night stand, so you can write about it in your field journal. But this is a guide to romance, not a date rape starter kit, so I figured I’d lean into the non-sociopathic ways of going about things.
The people I want to date, don’t want to date me!
Yes, confidence is attractive, and you miss a 100% of the shots that you don’t take, but if you are missing 100% of the shots that you do take, stop firing and sort out your aim. Realistic self assessment is not settling, it is calibrating. If the person you think you deserve never wants you back you need to ask yourself a tough question “Do I come close to meeting the high standard that I am demanding of a future partner?”. That is a hard pill to choke down, and you might need a ruthless friend or observant stranger to help you out. If the answer is “No, not remotely”, and the outcome consistently reflects that, put aside what you think you are entitled to, and figure out what you need to be happy.
Now, if after honest, corroborated, assessment you decide that you do indeed meet the high standard that you require of others, you need to ask yourself an even tougher question: “Why do I want people that do not want me?“. Because when it happens that consistently it is not a circumstance, it is a preference. Are you chasing an ideal that wouldn’t survive close inspection? Do you only want to play with other peoples toys? Is romantic comprise the problem, or just compromise in general? Only you know the reason, but if you constantly find your self in this situation the answer is not outside of you.