I remember my first month home from university. I had just been around thousands of people my own age who shared many common interests, lived in the same couple of square miles, and interacted with each other on a regular basis. Getting dates in this environment wasn’t necessarily a breeze for everyone, but it made dating much easier.
Being out of university was definitely dating on “hard mode.” I was in a workplace with few single people, even fewer around my age, and the options for meeting new ones were pretty limited. This was before online dating became a big phenomenon. The frustration I felt was horrible.
If you’re single and not in a university or other closed setting, meeting people can be difficult. Likely, the only option to find lots of singles in a given area is a bar or club. And, as I explained in a previous article, that option has many problems if you’re looking for long term love.
But, rather than pointing out the flaws in a particular place to meet women and men, I started to think about “outside the box” methods to meet others. Here are a few ways to meet single people that don’t involve going to bars or clubs…
But, remember, that they still require you to be attractive, take the initiative to talk to others, build rapport, and move the conversation in a romantic direction.
Are you involved in a religious organization? Do you believe in God or embrace spirituality? If so, religious functions can be a great way to meet single people.
First, there are religious services that are sacred in nature. Obviously, these aren’t ideal places to ask someone out, since this would be considered rude or even blasphemous.
But, if you attend religious services, you can, if it’s appropriate, talk to people and build rapport afterwards, especially if the organization in question has a coffee hour or other social event following the service itself.
Second, many religious organizations have events and clubs for singles. These can be good chances to meet like-minded men and women who are looking for love. Usually, they involve social activities, so you can meet someone in a fairly low pressure environment that isn’t strongly religious in nature.
If your church, synagogue, mosque, etc. only has people who aren’t your age, you might want to consider shopping around to find one that skews closer to your age. If you aren’t willing to do that, maybe you can attend your regular place for actual worship then join a singles group at another location.
But, be warned: religious people have the same attraction preferences as everybody else. I’ve known plenty of people who have tried religious singles groups thinking that the men and women there will be more open to less attractive people due to their religiosity. Sorry, but even religious people have standards. The command to “love your neighbor” doesn’t mean you’re owed a date.
Also, don’t assume a man or woman at a religious event is automatically a good person. Because most churches, etc. are welcoming, sadly, some people use religious events to prey on others. Be on your guard like you would anywhere else and don’t let the sacred environment blind you to the realities of the people you meet.
Through Family and Friends
A good friend of mine was perpetually single when he was in high school. His mom had a large circle of friends and was always trying to set him up with someone. He hated the idea of it and always refused her help. I can’t recall him ever having a girlfriend until several years later.
Although it might seem weak to get help from others, not utilizing your network of family and friends to find dates is dating in “hard mode.” While it is weak to rely solely on others to set you up, there’s nothing wrong with accepting opportunities your family and friends present.
So, if you are having a hard time meeting people, you might want to see if your family and friends know anyone single you could meet. They don’t have to set up a date for you. Simply an introduction and chance to meet someone might be all it will take. Use your network!
Large Group Events
I love an event called the Tough Mudder. It’s an obstacle course/mud run that is a test of fitness. However, it’s also a gathering of about ten thousand people who share a similar interest in these events and just completed one (or are there to support a loved one). It’s a fun time and an easy place to meet others.
If you are wanting to meet new people, then going to a concert, festival, or other large event is a great place to do it. While you can’t guarantee most people there will be single, you’ll still be around others who share similar interests and values. If you reach out to many people, you’re bound to find others who are single.
Not only are concerts, festivals, and similar events good to get like-minded people in the same spot, these events are also generally fun and exciting for the people involved. You can take advantage of the good vibes to try to reach out and get to know someone new.
Check local event calendars, find something that fits your interests, and go!
Those In the Service Industry
One day my brother and I went to Chipotle and struck up a conversation with a particularly friendly employee. She suggested that we become friends and we got her Facebook information right there. We’ve been good friends for several years now.
She isn’t the only example of relationships I’ve developed with servers, cashiers, and others in the service industry.
I know that some people will object to this advice. After all, these individuals are paid to be nice and friendly. While that’s true, they are also human beings who usually are open to meeting new people, even on their jobs, at least under the right circumstances.
Obviously, you have to be careful trying to date people in customer service. Don’t put them on the spot, risk getting them fired, or disrupt their routine. But, if done correctly, you can get to know those who serve you and even date them.
The key with this group is usually rapport building. Attractive servers, cashiers, and others get hit on all the time. So, you will have to actually build a friendship with the person over time. Realize that people in customer service get a lot of crap and negativity. Be cool, funny, attractive, and memorable and you’ll stick out in a positive way.
Two of my great friends and colleagues are matchmakers. They have helped countless people get into relationships.
If you have the money, hiring a matchmaker can be a good strategy to meet singles. Some people are genuinely unable to meet new people. Going to a matchmaker can help. They can find someone who shares similar interests and connect you with that person.
Find one who has a good reputation and always make sure that person represents you and your interests. Sadly, some national matchmaking groups are known for ignoring the requests of their male clients in favor of the needs of their larger number of unmatched females. Regardless of your gender, make sure you are getting what you want for your money.
But, matchmakers are not miracle workers. They connect you with other singles; they don’t turn you into a great date. So, if you aren’t attractive and have no desire to work on yourself, don’t expect to throw thousands of dollars at matchmakers and magically get into a relationship with the hottest person out of your wildest dreams.
But, if you’re a reasonably attractive person who wants to expand your opportunities, matchmakers can connect you with single people who have been screened and matched to your interests.
So, if you’re tired of the bar and club scene, know that you have options to meet quality people. The examples listed above are ways to meet new people and possibly get into a great relationship.