The same tactics that get you ahead at work can boost your success in the dating game, says match.com’s Relationship Expert, Kate Taylor.
Have you ever wished you had as much control over your love life as you do over your career? You do! Using five solid business practises – including planning, networking, and publicity – you can be as successful in your private life as you are from 9-5.
Set strategic and tactical goals
They’re not the same thing. Strategic goals are what you WANT to achieve, tactical goals are HOW you will achieve it. Let’s start with strategic planning. What do you want? Marriage? A partner to help you raise children from a previous relationship? A sexy, short-term fling? Be very clear in your mind what you’re looking for and don’t allow other people’s expectations to influence you. Your Mum might be hounding you to produce grandchildren, but that’s HER goal. What’s yours? Once you know what you want, you can begin to implement tactics to achieve it.
Let’s say you want marriage. Tactically, you can increase your chances of success by spending your time with people who want the same thing. So, sign up for an online-dating membership, spend your evenings at singles nights rather than glued to the TV and stop dating people who say they’re not looking for anything “serious”. Don’t skip the planning stage – entrepreneurs know that the more specific the goal, the easier it becomes to attain.
“It’s not who you know, it’s who knows you.” Don’t hide the fact that you’re single and looking for love. When a company is looking to expand, it doesn’t skulk around shiftily, it advertises for new staff. Adopt that same attitude. Put pictures up on your profile that are visible to everyone. If someone you know recognises you online, good! Maybe they’ll introduce you to their hot friend, or ask you out themselves. Don’t hide in a group of friends; go out by yourself occasionally and eat dinner at the bar of a lively restaurant. It’s fun, and you’ll be more approachable solo than you would be going out with a platonic mate bemoaning your single status. Tell your friends you’re up for being introduced to new people. Mark your Facebook relationship status as Single and make it visible to everyone. People might not be asking you out because they assume someone as gorgeous as you MUST have a partner. Let them know you’re on the market.
Just as you carry business cards for work, consider having personal cards printed, giving just your name and phone number. Keep them plain and elegant, and carry them in your pocket when you go to parties, match.com Nights, or anywhere you’ll meet new people. When you’ve especially enjoyed talking to someone, hand them one of your cards when you say goodbye, adding you’d love to keep in touch. If they like you, they’ll call you.
Present your best side
When a business is in trouble, it doesn’t publicise the fact. Do the same in your personal life. If you’re struggling with debts, family problems, stress or just a general feeling of unhappiness, don’t confide in everyone you meet, talk about it at work, or blurt on Facebook. Air grievances only with a handful of very close friends, or professional helpers like counsellors or doctors. To the rest of the world- keep quiet. Aim to appear on top of things. Talking about problems becomes addictive and you can become hooked on others’ sympathy. It only takes a few crises before people regard you as someone who’s depressing to be around, and start to avoid you. As much as possible, appear cheerful. Research has shown that the more you talk to acquaintances and strangers in a positive way, the happier you feel. And happiness is hot.
Keep up to date
Just as you’d read the trade press for your industry or keep up on trends, you should stay informed about the business of love. Set Google Alerts for dating news, read the latest relationship books. Swot up on the psychology of attraction by reading scientific blogs, watch programs about couples on TV. Ask your happiest married friends how they met, download the newest dating apps. Stay current! Focus your attention on what you want and you’ll dramatically increase your chances of finding it. Don’t leave it to destiny, but maximise your chances of success. As Goethe said: “Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”