How A Fierce Single Woman Can Date Like A Pro

Got first date jitters? Columnist Bianca Valerio offers her tips on how to make a great first impression as an independent gal.

It's a jungle out there, as they say, and they aren't merely talking about real life per se but more so, the world of dating! Who's the predator and who's the prey? Not that we're implying that dating is a contact sport for the mighty-skilled; emotional investments or possible matters of the heart are never to be taken lightly. However, this shouldn't discourage you from puting yourself out there, as the discovery of potential partners, while it puts you at risk of heartache and boredom, can lead to great friendship or better yet, true love!

Here are some pointers to go by that'll surely give you an edge in the dating scene, as confirmed by women who have successfully done them:

Ditch Being Fetched

Chivalry is not dead, but in this case, let it die a martyr's death. First dates bring along unexpected circumstances, both good and bad. So opt to meet your date at the restaurant rather than be picked up (as old school custom dictates).

This tactic has five pros:

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  1. Should you get bored or lose interest by mid-dinner, you don't have to worry about your date driving you home with the obvious hint of rejection.
  2. You establish right from the start that you are modern and non-traditional in your ways, hence, harder to mess with, should he try.
  3. You are implying without words that this date is merely casual and a means of getting to know one another. You are not trying to nab a husband (as most ignorant men tend to assume) and you will avoid looking desperate.
  4. You don't have any reason to be paranoid that you'll have a potential stalker, in case he becomes so enthralled by you yet you don't exactly feel the same way.
  5. It lowers both parties' expectations about intimacy and finding a long-term partner. From there, you can get to know each other in a way that has less pressure and could develop a friendship, whether the date goes somehere or not.
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It has a couple of cons, too: your date might assume you are a serial dater or just looking for something temporary (this especially goes for very traditional Filipino men); and you risk giving your date a hall pass to assume you don't need to be treated like a lady. If you decide to go on another date, only then should you start opening up about your concerns regarding first date "rules," which will make him understand and respect you as an independent woman.

Have A Back-Up Plan—Without Him

If your date isn't as promising as you had hoped, have a friend on "standby" to meet you after your date instead of going home right away. The pros are: he'll understand you're a busy gal and he is not the center of your social universe; and your night can still get exciting and not end on a boring note. However, the con is, it might be harder for your guy to take you seriously should you plan to do a take two or more.

It doesn't take much to establish your ground rules when it comes to going on first dates. As with everything, your actions come with consequences—both good and bad—so be prepared.

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