9 Ways To Meet A Man

Must-try tips from Cosmopolitan’s editor-in-chief and the author of the new book How to Set His Thighs on Fire.

By Kate White

K, admittedly it’s been a while since I went man shopping (I’ve been married for years), but the subject still fascinates me. I’m always curious how women meet guys—and the frustrations they experience along the way. Many admit to being discouraged because the process is “so hard.” But I think you have to tackle meeting guys like you would any big project—by putting lots of effort into it, perfecting your skills as you go, and realizing that some strategies work a whole lot better than others. Here are the nine best tips I’ve learned.

1. Don’t develop hard-and-fast rules about the ways you’re willing to go about your search. Some women, for instance, have a policy against being fixed up. But you need to be flexible and willing to experiment with a variety of strategies, particularly if you find yourself in a drought. My theory has always been that a
If you see a hottie and there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to meet him, accidentally bump into him.
winning prospect only comes around every six to seven blind dates, so you may have to chitchat with five chumps in order to get there. You also need to be flexible about the places you go to meet guys. If you head to the same bars all the time, you’re going to see the same old guys—or the same type. There are always interesting new ways to meet men, and you need to keep your ear to the ground to hear what’s hot at a given moment. It keeps changing. One minute networking cocktail parties are all the rage, and the next something else is. I heard lately, for instance, that day spas are starting to offer times when singles can mingle.

2. Be unashamedly proactive and methodical. Cold-hearted calculation doesn’t seem like a very magical approach to meeting the love of your life, but there will be plenty of time for magic once you’re dating. Tell yourself that you will do at least two specific things every week to facilitate your quest. And when opportunities present themselves, make things happen rather than just allowing them to unfold. For instance, if you see a hottie and there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to meet him, accidentally bump into him, for God’s sake.

3. If you’re going to a party, bar or event, don’t travel in huge wolf packs of women. It’s hard to break into a group that size, plus it’s easy for a guy to think that the moment he turns around after talking to you, all the other chicks are going to laugh hysterically about a comment he made or even the pants he’s wearing. Two is an OK number (you and a friend) but three is even better because one friend has a pal to talk to if you start chatting someone up.

4. Avoid being too glam. When you’re all dolled up, you may feel like a man magnet, but guys are often put off by too much product. Lots of makeup and tons of designer labels scream high-maintenance, and guys don’t like that. One
Guys, as we know, like the chase. But if you seem too elusive, guys won’t approach.
other tip: Consider wearing something that could be a conversation-starter, like a t-shirt with something funny written on it or a faux-fur vest that a guy may ask to touch.

5. Have a drink in your hand. We once had a girl to write a piece about her experience being a wing woman—someone hired by shy guys to chat up women in bars and then introduce them. She provided a great tip: Don’t stand around empty-handed. If you’re holding a drink, a guy won’t feel he has to immediately buy one for you. But then later, if things are going well, ordering you a refill gives him something positive to do.

6. Do not be too coy. Guys, as we know, like the chase. But if you seem too elusive, guys won’t approach. These days, men shy away from the slightest chance of rejection. So what’s a coy move that works? Make eye contact with an object of desire, hold for three seconds, and then look away. Repeat. If he’s interested, you’ve given him a pretty clear signal that it’s safe to head your way. Once you’re talking to a guy, you don’t want to be all over him. But let him know in a more subtle manner that you’re interested—for instance, by laying your hand on his arm when you make a point.

7. When there’s an adorable guy suddenly in your path, don’t be so worried about saying the perfect thing that you end up saying nothing at all. As long as you seem friendly, you’ll be OK—so just get something out. Asking for help is a surefire conversation-starter. If you’re in an electronics store, try “Excuse me, could you tell me the
What’s a coy move that works? Make eye contact with an object of desire, hold for three seconds, and then look away. Repeat.
difference between LCD and plasma screen TVs?” Humor can work, too. If you’re standing by an elevator, you could slyly say, “I hear that pressing the button twenty or thirty times actually does make it come faster.” Another good trick: playfully polling a guy. An example: “I’m taking a survey for the bar. Did you have to drive more than five miles to get here?” You could also come up with a question about yourself, like “Do you think I should get blue contact lenses?”

8. Be positive. A few years ago I arranged for a single friend of mine to sit next to a hot guy at a charity dinner. Through the night, I watched them from my table and I had every reason to believe things were going well. But later the guy told me that my friend had offered up an endless stream of negative riffs. She hated the subway, her boss, teacup dogs, etc. She thought that confessing things she didn’t like was a way of bonding with him, but guys are turned off by negativity.

9. Really hear what he has to say. When you’re nervous, it’s easy to become overly self-conscious. You might ask a guy you’ve just met plenty of questions, but be so worried about what to say next that you don’t pay close attention to his answers. Here’s a trick to help you focus. Wait a few beats after he says something and think about what he’s said. Then allow your next comment or question to really play off what he’s told you.

Stay tuned for a Q&A with author Kate White, Editor-in-Chief of Cosmopolitan, in the August 14 issue of Happen.

From the book HOW TO SET HIS THIGHS ON FIRE: 86 Red-Hot Lessons on Love, Life, Men, and (Especially) Sex by Kate White. Copyright © 2006 by Kate White. Reprinted by permission of Warner Books, Inc, New York, NY. All rights reserved. To buy the book, go to

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