‘Flow Dating’: New Way to Find Love

By ABC News

Jan 22, 2013 7:30am
gty couple eating mi 130121 wblog Flow Dating: New Way to Find Love

                                                                                                      (Image Credit: Getty Images)

Paul Carrick Brunson left a successful career as an investment banking analyst to run his own nonprofits. Now he’s a life coach and matchmaker.

Brunson, the author of “It’s Complicated But It Doesn’t Have to Be: A Modern Guide to Finding and Keeping Love,” appeared on “Good Morning America” today to talk about “flow dating.”

It’s a style of speed dating created by Brunson in which daters use games and activities to break the ice and ease anxiety.

Brunson said he has found that people learn more about someone when they have to move and work on activities, rather than just talking over dinner.

Indeed, he said that dinner could be the worst first date. People learn about each other through action, but getting to know a prospective romantic partner at dinner can feel too much like an interrogation.

The most important thing to do on a first date is to learn whether the other person meets your most important criteria. For example, if one person wants children but the other person doesn’t, that’s a deal-breaker, Brunson said. And if one person smokes but the other is asthmatic, that, too, is a deal-breaker.

Top 7 Mistakes People Make on Dates

Brunson shared the top 7 mistakes he has seen people make when they’re out on dates:

1. Showing up late without a call or a text

Now, if you’re going to be later than five minutes for a date and don’t call or text, it’s a fail on your part. Showing up late starts the date off terribly and might even set the tone. It conveys a lack of importance on your part. We prioritize what’s important in our lives by how much time (and money) we dedicate to it. That being said, either aim to arrive on time or just call the moment you realize that you’re going to be late.

2. Dressing inappropriately

Underdressed, overdressed, or inappropriately dressed equals pretentious, not fun or easy. On a date, especially right after work, many women often forget to dress sexy. Your business causal outfit is not hot. Conversely, don’t wear close to nothing. Just because he’s salivating doesn’t mean he “likes” your attire. Lastly, if the date is an activity like a hike, forgo the heels and mini-dress because you think they look cute. Always dress appropriately. This, like a lot of the things that I’m going to advise, also applies to men.

3. Having poor eye contact and a fake smile

Poor eye contact plus fake smile equals not confident and/or stalker alert. The saying goes, “Eyes are the windows to our souls.” If you limit eye contact because you’re looking away, you simply don’t look confident. Also, fake smiles are fairly easy to spot. Too many inauthentic smiles and you enter the “looks like a stalker” category.  Eye contact should be focused on the person with whom you’re talking. Be sure to mix in a few nods and eye blinks. The rule of thumb is that short single nods are most effective, it shows that you’re listening. Double or triple nods make it seem as if you’re trying to speed the person up.

4. Using your cellphone on date

One of the biggest mistakes made on a date is using your cellphone or placing it on the table and glancing at it every time you get a message.  This can show that you are disinterested in your date. When you’re on a date, please keep your cellphone in your purse or pocket. Your date deserves your full attention.

5. Being rude to others

If you’re rude to others, it shows that you have poor social skills and aren’t nice. Nothing makes a date want to run away like a rude and impolite person.  If you’re on your date and the waiter forgot the extra lemon wedges … and before the waiter is out of earshot, you shout “Stupid M****…” Hmmm … that ain’t nice. It will make your date wonder how you will treat him or her in a relationship. As in life, treat everyone the way you would want to be treated.

6. Talking about your ex

By making frequent mentions of your past relationships, you might be conveying that you’re not over the ex. Living in the past is extremely dangerous. If you can’t stop talking about how great the old flame was or how you enjoyed the things you both did, chances are you still wish you were in that moment. Do yourself (and your date) a favor by admitting you’re not yet ready for a new relationship.

7. Not knowing BBR!

It’s the B.B.R. – The Belly Button Rule. This is my favorite rule and one I talk about in-depth at my coaching sessions. It is the most telling and compelling of all body language tactics. The direction our belly button faces reflects our attitude and our emotional state. When we face our navel toward someone, we’re subconsciously saying we’re interested in the person or the conversation. Face your navel away, and you’re saying “get me the hell out of this.”  Most people do not know this rule, so learn it, master it, and you’ll be able to better read and control your interactions. Not listening shows disrespect and is the most passive-aggressive form of disrespect.  Listen to your date.

Web-Extra Dating Tips From Paul Carrick Brunson

1. Start a Personal Ritual of Forgiveness
Many of us harbor past hurt and regrets. An effective way I’ve managed this is by not pushing these emotions away but harnessing them and moving on as a smarter person. Try writing a letter (you don’t have to send it) to get out all your feelings. Or even a journal. Any way to give yourself a regular outlet for all your emotions, regrets and worries.

2. Create a Daily Mantra
Your belief system is everything so it’s important to train it. Identify an inspirational quote or saying that you repeat to yourself each day. Here’s one of my favorites: “I was born with potential, I was born with goodness and trust, I was born with ideals and dreams, I was born with greatness, I was born with wings, I am not meant to crawl so I won’t, I have wings and I will use them and fly.” — Modified from Rumi

3. Commit to Befriending One Inspirational Person
Surrounding yourself with better people is the fastest way to change your life. The power of social media is that it allows us to connect like never before. Try dropping a line to your favorite blogger, pastor, author, etc. You might just find they respond.

4. Get a Love Mentor
Different from a friend, a mentor is a guide and a teacher. There are professionals you can hire but there are also many people in our communities qualified and willing to take this role in your life. Be diligent about your search, look for someone who shares your values and walks their talk.

 

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