It happens. A lot. You go on a few dates with someone. Things seem to be going well. You enjoy each other’s company. Slowly but surely, you start getting hopeful: could this be The One? Your confidence starts to build and…. BAM! You get the call (or text / email) that blows it all apart:
“You’re such a great person; I really like you …I just feel more of a friendship growing…”
Ouch! What happened?
Of course, you cannot make someone feel “IT” for you but there are certain things you can do to try to stay out of the Friend Zone. Start with these three:
First. Stop “hanging out”. Keeping it too casual and friendly will almost always guarantee that things stay in the friend zone. Men need to plan romantic dates or at least dates where she can dress up and feel feminine like she’s being courted. This does not have to be elaborate or fancy; even just a quiet, charming wine bar sets the tone. And Ladies, let him run the show. At least in the beginning. If he asks you what you want to do, don’t fall for it. Be demure and say “I’m in your hands” or something that conveys you’re up for whatever he chooses. No, it’s not playing games; it’s encouraging men to lead and engage in their masculine power so that women can trust and receive so that her femininity shines through.
Second. Even though you feel a great initial connection, try not to get too comfortable with sharing your shortcomings too soon. This means keep your financial challenges, crazy exes, family issues, job instability, former substance abuse, etc... on the down low. Getting to know someone takes time and since we all have a chapter (or two) that doesn’t need to be read aloud, keep bringing your best as you build a real foundation (that can weather the future storms).
Third. Don’t be afraid to lean in a little, literally and figuratively. In our culture, people are extremely careful about being appropriate and not too forward. Dating is the best time to flirt and seduce with your personality, body language, playful teasing and sensuality. Being too PC is not sexy. Being too much of a gentleman will relegate you to the friend zone. Being too ‘perfect’ with that mask tightly fastened does not promote intimacy. Be respectful of course, but beware of playing it too safe (or slow) or else your date will be wondering if you’re interested in romance or if it’s just a friendship.
Being confident in your masculinity and embracing your womanhood is the first step to igniting the flame of romance. Keeping the flame ablaze is a little like dancing the tango.
It’s about power and vulnerability. Speeding up, slowing down, and taking a pause.