We’ve all been there. Anything that requires intimate human interaction is destined to have some kind of confrontation. Let’s face it, communication and healthy interaction while maintaining a personal and professional life is difficult.
There are days when you know you’ve got this. You feel exquisite, and you’re operating at full capacity. Then there are the days when you wish you had a fairy godmother to give you encouraging advice on how to manage the chaos that is your dating life.
Flirting can be one of the most difficult and nerve wracking parts of the dating world.
Alice Holland is the director of student health and wellness at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania and nationally certified in sexuality education. She offers her five tips on intelligent dating and flirting.
Holland’s five tips:
1) Try a quasi-dangerous date, such as skydiving. “These activities activate stress hormones in the body,” says Holland.
Adrenaline activates the stress response and is directly linked to the hormones released in the early stages of a relationship. The effects are similar to those of cocaine on the body. They are your typical sweaty palms, racing heart and nervousness when around your significant other. The hormones can also be the culprits for constant thoughts about your significant other.
Here are some local hot spots for adrenaline seekers:
- Zip Nac
An East Texas Zipline located at 199 Brother John Rd., Nacogdoches, TX 75961. They are offering a Couple’s Special from Friday, Saturday, and Sunday Feb. 12-14 at 6 or 8 p.m.
- East Texas Gators & Wildlife Park
Open 7 days a week (Sunday – Thursday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday & Saturday 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.), the park has 43 alligators and a number of nonvenomous snakes, guinea pigs, chinchillas and other animals available for viewing, holding, and petting.
- Skydive East Texas
Skydive East Texas, located at 1 Airport Road, Gladewater, Texas 75647, is a full service skydiving center which teaches you how to safely skydive and have fun doing so.
2) Develop conversational muscles. “Just like working out your biceps at the gym, you need to develop conversation skills,” she says.
When interacting with someone new, you want to be yourself. However, it is really difficult to express yourself thoroughly without the proper skills. These skills are most easily developed by practice. Remember that you both are people, and even if the person across the table seems calm, cool, and collected, they are human, too.
3) Create an approachable you. “Have a relaxed posture, make eye contact, and smile.”
Insecurities plague most of the human race. It’s perfectly natural to dislike some of your features, but that is not what your admirer is focusing on, and it is not what you should focus on during your time together. Have. Fun.
4) Put out a positive vibe and relax.
Positivity and relaxation are two important parts of dating. If you want to be there, you should look like it! I know, relaxing sounds harder than it actually is. Start by avoiding thoughts of what is or could go wrong during your outing, and instead focus on the present and your companion.
5) Be yourself because everyone else is already taken.
There’s a reason you have made it this far in life. You have a unique take on the world around you. None of us have had the same experiences, and it’s always an adventure to discover another’s personality and world view. There’s a reason you and your date decided to try a night out together.
Just remember it is okay if the date falls through.
Holland’s advice: “This is the time to learn about what type of relationship works for you. Remember to be yourself and communicate effectively and clearly.”
Dating, along with many aspects of life, is a journey without a foolproof map for guidance. Use these tips and your personal experience to discover what kind of flirting and dating works best for you.