Probably the most difficult part of dating is a period of time when you aren't actually going on dates. It is that time when you have discovered someone new that interests you or realised that your feelings for someone you've known for a while have turned romantic. Transforming that desire into dating is nerve racking for most people, as the fear of rejection is quite high. The following tips will help you let someone know you're interested in a way that increases the likelihood that the revelation will lead to dating.
One Phrase: "Go on a date"
There are a lot of euphemisms that people use for dating. They may say that they are going out, hanging out, spending time together, etc. While the euphemisms are a fine way to describe dating once you're with someone, they are a terrible way to ask someone out on a date.
When asking someone out on a date, you want to use the exact words "go on a date." It can feel safer not to use those words when asking someone out for the first time, but you muddy the waters when you do. By not being clear about your intentions, your potential date is likely to be unsure about the situation. That creates discomfort and makes them less likely to accept the invitation, because they aren't quite sure what your intentions are.
Be Direct About Your Attraction
Just about every person in the world likes positive attention and likes to feel appreciated. And when you tell someone you are attracted to them, especially for some part of their personality, life, or features that they are proud of, you are providing the positive attention that they most appreciate.
As part of asking someone out on a first date, be clear that you are attracted to them and tell them why. It shouldn't be a gushy over the top statement that sounds like a wedding vow. That's just creepy. Instead it should be a simple statement like "I really like the way you laugh" or "You're obviously very intelligent, I've always found that attractive." A simple and clear reason for your attraction will increase the odds of them accepting your date request.
In general, there is nothing more attractive in another person than confidence. Even if you are plain featured, if project an air of assurance, your date request is much more likely to be answered positively.
Just remember that there is a fine line between confidence and arrogance.
Engage in a Conversation First
If the only interaction you have ever had with someone is an introduction at a social gathering or reading each other's profiles on a dating website, you are unlikely to get a positive response if you ask them for a date. And if you do get a positive response, it is probably due entirely to physical attraction, which can easily lead to a terrible date once you get to know the person.
Whether you have met in real life or digitally, engage in a meaningful conversation about a topic of shared interest first. Choosing a topic is much easier online where you effectively wear signs discussing your favourite activities. Of course, getting the person to respond to your first message may be difficult, but a creative title for your message or a good opening one-liner will help. Also, if you are female, the odds of getting a response is three times as high than if you are male.
Either way, after a good conversation, you should have a sense of each other's personality and there is even a good chance that you will know enough about them to suggest a good place for a first date.
Be Prepared for Rejection
Even if you ask right and have a great personality fit, there are hundreds of reasons why you might be rejected. The person you asked might not be ready for dating, might only date people of a different gender, may not be attracted to you physically, or may be currently in a relationship.
Understanding, in advance, that you might be rejected and being ready to accept rejection gracefully is incredibly important. Not only will it help you potentially maintain or make a friendship, but it also leaves the door open for a future relationship if the situation changes. If you react badly to a rejection, you can be certain you won't ever get a second chance. But if you react well, the good impression you make will last.