These days, meeting someone online for drinks doesn’t always equate to going on a romantic date. Add in to the equation that many singles tend to go out in groups, so defining dating has become complicated.
Unless you’ve met someone on a dating app, and you’ve stated that you’re looking for a long-term relationship, meeting someone you like or have a crush on for drinks could mean a several things.
From getting together to hang out casually to, expanding your social network or even to talking shop if you met this person in the course of business, unless they lean in for a kiss, you might be in the friend zone, for now.
With all of these possibilities, it might be baffling to know in advance if you’ll be on the same romantic page as the person you’re meeting for happy hour during the week.
Ramp Up Your Flirting Skills
To know for sure if you’re on a date, notice if there are visible signs of flirting. This could be in the form of sending regular text messages, possibly with a flirt emoticon, letting you know they’re single, and watching their body language to see if they smile when they see you.
Since first dates need to be in a low-pressure environment, I always advise going on a date to expand your social network and also to see if there’s any chemistry. There’s nothing worse than meeting someone you’ve got a crush on, only to find out they have a live-in partner they never mentioned before.
If you’re female, and you’re hoping your upcoming get together will be a romantic evening, make sure you dress up for the occasion. That means to change your outfit from work-mode to something a little flirtier such as a little black dress with a jacket and boots, add a little lipstick, and you’re ready to go.
Be Interested in Your Date
Remember to listen more than talk to find out more about the person you’re meeting for drinks.
Watch for their body language when you arrive. Are you greeted with a hug and a smile, or a handshake with your chair pulled out for you.
Try to limit your alcoholic intake to one drink, and at the end of the date, see if they’d like to get together again. If the person you’re meeting picks up the tab, that’s code for being on an official date, and a great sign if you feel the same.
If they suggest splitting the bill, know that you’re in the friend zone, and be okay with it. You never know if this person has a friend they could introduce you to, so be an exciting date, regardless of the label.
Follow Up When You’re Still Aglow
If you had a great time on your date, send a text the same evening to thank your date for getting together, and to let them know you had a great time and look forward to seeing them again.
Don’t play the waiting game, because the squeaky wheel gets the digital love deal.
Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may swipe or roam.
Julie Spira is America’s Top Online Dating Expert and Digital Matchmaker. As an early adopter of the Internet, Julie’s been coaching singles on finding love online for 25 years.
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