Score More Dates Every Day!

It’s possible—and it’s simple. Just change a few of your habits, and you’ll become a lot more popular. See for yourself…

By Jerusha Stewart

sk yourself this: How many new people do you meet in your typical week? If the answer is “not many,” then it’s no surprise that you’re not rolling in opportunities for romance. The key to scoring dates, after all, is getting out there—and there are plenty of easy ways to fill your social calendar so it’s hopping with hot prospects. Try just a few of these tips below, then watch your date book magically fill with chances to find The One—and have fun in the process!

Cancel your premium cable-TV package
Or back off that Netflix addiction or anything else that keeps you glued to in-home entertainment. It’s time for some flesh and blood interaction! Often, neighborhood cafés and bars schedule movie or TV nights, so whether you’re keen on seeing Dr. Strangelove again or are a die-hard Desperate Housewives fan, join in and you’ll have plenty in common to talk about
Neighborhood cafés and bars often schedule movie or TV nights—join in and you’ll have plenty to talk about with your fellow viewers.
with your fellow viewers. Or, just uncork a couple bottles of wine and invite some pals over for a Simpsons DVD marathon, hinting that they’re more than welcome to bring any unattached friends to get some flirting done during the commercial breaks.

Don’t shop exclusively via catalogs and Web sites
We know it’s convenient to buy books, clothing, CDs and more online, but it’s not exactly a way to meet people, now is it? Bring a shopping buddy to boost your confidence and don’t be afraid to break the ice with cute strangers with, “Excuse me, could I ask your opinion? I’m wondering which necktie my brother would like. His hair is about the same color as yours.” Or, offer your own two cents with “Oh, that’s a great book; you’d probably also like The Kite Runner. Have you read it?” And electronics shops like Circuit City or The Apple Store also offer plenty of excuses to trade notes with a “Tell me honestly, do I really need a 60-gigabyte iPod or is 30 gigs plenty?” You could be mere minutes away from exchanging email addresses in case you have any “questions” later…

Get an activity buddy
Whatever your hobbies and passions, there are plenty of people who share them, which means there’s no reason you should be knitting, exercising, antiquing, or even walking your dog alone. Look in your local paper to see if anyone is advertising for an “activity partner” in your local newspaper; check; or register with, which matches people nearby who share your interest. Who knows, sparks may fly as you’re bonding over a mutual passion. But if not, don't despair—let it be known that you’re single and searching and your new chess partner could very well tap you into a bunch of great blind dates.

Learn a new skill
Always wanted to know how to tango, cook Thai food, or invest in real estate? Check your Yellow Pages for nearby dance studios, cooking schools, or sign up for a class at your local college or at, which offers single-evening workshops in many cities across the country. Learning a new skill forces you to engage other people in a natural way—after all, there are so many questions that need answers. It’ll be a cinch to get the conversation rolling with a cute fellow classmate and suggest continuing your studies after class, over coffee…

Ban takeout from your refrigerator
Why scarf down beef lo mein all by your lonesome when you could be mingling over your meal? Start a supper club with workmates and friends and head to a family-style restaurant that often groups parties together—authentic Italian or Greek restaurants and Japanese shabu-shabu are all good bets. Or, set up cooking clubs where you rotate at whose home dinner is hosted, asking people to invite their single pals. Consider it a “date my friend” dinner party!

There’s no reason you should be knitting, exercising or walking your dog alone. Plenty of people share your passion.
Lend a helping hand
Volunteering your time at a soup kitchen, park cleanup, or other charitable cause is not only great karma; you’re bound to bond with other do-gooders. For starters, you’re in a positive mindset, which makes it easy to make a top-notch impression on others. And since everyone’s so focused on helping the homeless or building a playground, the pressure’s off, so it’s easy to get to know each other. Plus, most cities have “singles civic groups” or “singles volunteer networks” (search your Yellow Pages or the Web for opportunities in your area), so you can be sure that hottie in your literacy program is probably looking for someone to share a beer with when it’s time to call it a night.

Be a sport: Join a coed team
Haven’t played dodge ball, softball, or soccer since you were a kid? Then whip your social life into shape by digging out your mitt or cleats and hitting the field! These are prime opportunities to meet new people, since you’re forced to forge strong bonds with your teammates. Peruse bulletin boards at your local gym or YMCA for announcements on how to get in the game, so to speak.

Get the party started—yourself
Why wait eons for someone else to throw a bash when you can jumpstart the fun? Invite four friends to a cool new martini lounge or jazz club and encourage them to each bring along co-workers or comrades for some welcome social (and hey, maybe romantic) cross-pollination. You’ll find plenty of reasons to have a bash: There are tons of birthdays, for starters, as well as seasonal de-stressors like ice-skating outings, or even just a standing Friday Happy Hour at the pub around the corner. Note: While flirting with coworkers is risky business, there will plenty of other prospects there. Bet your cube mate five bucks that you can approach an attractive stranger and say, “I think I’ve seen you before. Do you work at an office nearby?”

Jerusha Stewart, a.k.a. The Last Single Girl in the World, reveals how to be singularly sensational in her upcoming book The Single Girl’s Manifesta.
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