“Where are all the men?”, “It’s so hard to find someone!”. Probably you hear those statements quite often. That is the case when people are so busy with life, career goals and work that they don’t put time aside to invest in their love life. I am guilty of this and I am sure many of you can relate. If you’re anything like me, then you may be that person who generally keeps their circle of friends small and goes out only when it is absolutely necessary. It’s great to have a few close friends, however if we want to find a compatible partner then we have to spread our wings and fly. I mean, literally spread our wings.
By nature, we’re prone to following the same routines and same patterns of life. We’re creatures by habit and if we feel threatened to have to change our ways, then that scares us. Nonetheless, if there’s anything that I’ve learned is that change is necessary. We have to change certain things in order to improve and expand our networking pool.
As the infamous Albert Einstein saying goes, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. I adore this quote because it’s right on the money. If we are finding it hard to meet likeminded individuals and build a rapport with them, then we may just find it even harder to date and build relationships. We have to take a step back, evaluate ourselves and change our strategy when necessary. This applies to most things in life and can be given as best dating advice. If we keep failing at one thing, maybe it’s not the thing itself, but maybe it’s just us.
Attending Love Talk seminars that are held in London and all over the world opened my eyes to the notion of expanding my network and friendship circle and going out to the right places more. It would be a dream come true if my knight in shining armour knocked on my door and said ‘hey I’m going to be your husband in the future’, but that would never happen. Just like everything else in life, we have to work on our love life and relationships. Things don’t come easy, things come through hard work, determination and persistence.
Below are 10 different ways I found to help expand one’s social circle and dating pool.
1. Join community groups
Being a part of a community group can be a great way to expand your friendship circle, meet likeminded individuals and expand your network. Such groups consist of a broad range of topics and subjects like political groups, meetings involving your local borough or council and activity groups. As a Christian, my biggest community is my church. I take my faith very seriously and as a result I attend various meetings and functions it holds. This includes career and family based seminars, bible studies and services.
2. Take activity classes
What are your interests? Do you like attending gym sessions or are you into drama and music classes? Whatever your interests are, conduct research and sign up to the classes. You may not get excited about the prospects of going to the gym, nonetheless, you may meet people you would have never met otherwise. Attending such classes, groups or sessions can help you to meet all types of individuals from different career and cultural backgrounds who you may indeed find very interesting.
3. Go to networking events
There are all types of networking events you can attend from free ones to events that require a fee. Whatever the case, ensure you attend some of these events a few times in a year. I work in the media industry and I’m interested in business so I tend to attend events that cater to my skill sets and passion. Find what your passion is and search online for relevant events.
4. Attend concerts or theatre
Do you love going to concerts? Perhaps you’re passionate about watching the latest theatre shows? Whatever the case, attending concerts, theatre shows and various performances can be a great way for you to meet and talk to other people. You can start to build friendships this way as the vibes tend to be that of a fun environment. You can be dancing away and talking to the next guy who is always enjoying the day.
5. Socialise in cafes
Going to cafes by yourself with a book or your laptop is a great way to relax, unwind, order some light refreshments and see the type of people walking in and out of the place. You may find yourself talking and giggling to someone you would have never met otherwise. If the conversation flows well, you may want to exchange Facebook names to keep in touch. I generally don’t give my personal contact details like my number to strangers. Adding them on Facebook is a great way to spy on them without them even realising. If you don’t like what you see, you can always unfriend them.
6. Travel more
What better way to expand your social network and your dating pool by going on holiday to either a different town or another country altogether? You may be in a foreign land, but you will certainly meet and experience different cultures, atmospheres and people. Meeting new people will be the easy part, staying in touch will be the difficult part. However, it would be a great test to your determination to make new friends and possibly find a suitable partner.
7. Organise get togethers
Look at the friends you already have and the people you already know. It is said that most married couples met their spouses through a mutual friend. Organising get togethers with friends and suggesting that they bring their friends and their friends bring their friends will help you to know about more people you have within your network. It is easier said than done but it isn’t impossible. You can arrange for guests to come to your home or even plan a day out.
8. Get to know people at work
Where do you work? Are you based in a large office or is it a small company? If you haven’t already introduced yourself to people in other departments now is the time to do so. You just never know who may be working in the same company you are. A lot of companies host events during specific occasions, such as Christmas parties or even weekly meet ups. Make sure you attend such events where possible and mingle.
9. Attend award ceremonies
This may sound really fancy but a lot of award ceremonies are open for anyone to purchase tickets to. It’s also one of the few places you can go to and really dress up and look your best. These events often have a ‘black tie’ dress code so you have to look fly. That’s great because you may come across a few dashing gentlemen or well-dressed ladies you could talk to.
10. Work as an extra
You’ll be surprised how many people are extras for music videos, movies and the like in their spare time. You can have your full-time job and work as an extra on a freelance basis. If you’re interested, sign up to relevant extra and media agencies and they will inform you when there are casting opportunities available. As an extra, you may spend full days working or volunteering on shoots. There will be time for you to network, meet and speak to other extras, actors and participants.
Sometimes you may have to approach people you see at events, functions, classes etc and start a conversation. Other times, people will approach you. Regardless of the situation, make the most out of it. It will be difficult at first but it will get easier. So, I better get started then.
What are your tips on expanding a dating pool? Share your best dating advice in the comments below!