Nine dating habits to ditch

Want to know where you're going wrong with your dates? Find out the bad moves that could be messing with your game...

You’re not a perfect date. Fact. Don’t get us wrong, you’re awesome, but like all of us, you’re guilty of picking up a few bad habits. And whether you know it or not, those little foibles could be messing with your game. Sometimes your body language screams “get me out here” when you’re actually thinking “take me home”.

To make sure you’re not sending out any bad signals, here are nine habits you need to ditch:

Talking about yourself too much. We totally get it, when you’re nervous you tend to blabber non-stop, covering every topic from politics to your dad issues. And while silence can be, well, awkward, keeping up a running monologue can be just as bad. Not only does it seem like you’ve no interest in what he’s got to say, you can come off as self-obsessed. Remember: a conversation requires two people to speak, so try to ask as many questions as you answer. Really listen and respond to what he says and most importantly, keep it light. Don’t mention your uncle’s neighbour’s dog’s funeral, stick to fun topics like the top five places you would like to visit.

Checking out other people or constantly scanning the room. Nothing says, “I’m not in to you” more than constantly looking everywhere but at your date. You’ll come off as bored and snooty. Insist on keeping your eyes trained on the hot bartender and you can kiss a second date goodbye.

Talking about ex or conquests. If you keep mentioning your ex it will sound like you’re still in love with him (even if you couldn’t be more indifferent). It’s best to never mention him at all. The same applies for conquests; no one wants to feel like the one hundredth notch on your belt.

Using or checking your phone too much. Checking your phone is like looking at your watch repeatedly, it shouts: “Why is time moving so SLOWLY? Why won’t this date END!” Sure, it’s the norm to be on your phone 24/7, but that doesn’t mean it’s good manners. Resist the urge to use Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, and NEVER “check in” for the duration of the date. Even if you just want to make sure everyone knows you’re on a date with a hottie, said hottie will think you’re just distracted and rude.

Being too forward. Even if you feel like you’ve known him forever, you haven’t, so don’t be giving it all up straight away. Some guys dig a girl who wants to take him home on the first date and some have, well, more traditional sensibilities. You don’t know which type he is, so play it safe and take your time before initiating a sleepover. More importantly, it’s an unspoken rule that once you sleep with him, you’ve pretty much cut yourself off from the chance of ever dating his friends. What if you call it quits after date two and become mates? You could be cutting yourself from a new pool of potential soul mates.

Ask very personal questions. You’re only just getting to know the guy so don’t start trying to peel back the layers of his soul. This isn’t an interrogation, so don’t get too nosy or he’ll feel uncomfortable and awkward.

Cutting the date short without an explanation. If you need to bail (because that curry hasn’t gone down too well) don’t just vanish into the night. Let him know that you had fun and would like to do it again, but for now you have to head home. Otherwise, he might think you bailed early because you couldn’t spend another minute in his presence.

Not returning his calls. If you don’t want him to play games, then don’t do it either. Most guys are reluctant to do the double-call, because it’s just a little weird. So save him the agony and call him back. We’re not saying you have to do it right away, but he could take no contact as your goodbye.

Avoiding the bill. Sure, most guys still like to try and pay, but they appreciate it if you offer to go dutch. Refusing to split the bill can make you look high-maintenance, and that’s not cool.

What are your bad dating habits?