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How to Put Yourself Out There in Real Life – 11 Actionable Tips

Last updated on November 7, 2022 by Sian Roelofsz

POV: You’re single and ready to start dating but the question remains… How to put yourself out there and where to meet decent people? 

With advancements in technology and the ease and speed at which you can connect with people from around the globe, the world is your oyster when it comes to dating. While this abundance of choice may be exciting for some, others may find it overwhelming and intimidating. But, no need to panic.

If you’re new to the scene, this article will help you discover some exciting ways to put yourself out there and find the right person for you.

How to Put Yourself Out There in Real Life? 

Tip 1: Know what you want

Having been on many dates myself, this is a very important first step to putting yourself out there that I wish I got clarity on sooner. People who know what they want generally get what they want. Getting clarity on what it is you want in terms of a relationship status as well as the characteristics you want your partner to have is like having a roadmap to reach your goal. 

I suggest taking pen to paper and making a list of all the characteristics and values you’d like your partner to have, as well as the type of relationship you want. Get clear on this. Once you’ve worked this first step out, navigating the dating world becomes a lot easier. 

Tip 2: Sign up on a dating app (or 2)

sign up on a dating app or 2

While this may seem like a really scary, new-age sort of approach for many, it’s actually a great way to meet a diverse range of people who you wouldn’t ordinarily come into contact with. Adding to it, the sense of ‘safety’ that comes with sitting behind a screen makes meeting people virtually a lot less intimidating than in real life. 

In my opinion, dating apps are the easiest introduction (or re-introduction) to dating. They’re easy to navigate and filter out what you don’t want - remember those characteristics we were talking about in the previous tip? Well, most dating apps allow you to filter some really specific wants - i.e. age, interests, whether or not they have/want kids, where they live, height, and religion.

Signing up on a dating app is a brilliant way to talk to and meet people who you may not ordinarily come into contact with simply because you live in different areas, are of different ages, have different social circles, and enjoy different hobbies. However, just because you have these differences doesn’t mean you won’t make the perfect match.

If dating apps are just not for you, you might want to read this article for some more ideas on how to meet people.

Tip 3: Get out there, physically!

Being a homebody, it’s so much easier to just spend another weekend lounging around your house, watching Netflix, and getting your favorite takeout. I can relate. However, if you’re serious about meeting someone, you need to get out of your lounge and into the town. Your soulmate is not going to come knocking on your door if he/she doesn’t know you exist. 

Throw on a great outfit, invite some friends and spend a night out in the town. This is the best way to start meeting and interacting with new and interesting people. 

Tip 4: Take classes or join a club

From cooking classes to dance classes, art classes, gym clubs, book clubs, sports clubs, and hiking clubs – the options are endless if you’re looking to meet more people with similar interests. 

Signing up for a class or a club is not only a great way to develop your skills and interests, but it’s also a great way to meet people in a casual setting. Meeting someone this way means you already have something in common and will have a lot to talk about… bonus! Plus, even if you don’t meet ‘the one’ this way, you’ll still leave with new friends and skills. 

Tip 5: Keep an open mind to dating opportunities

Whether it means being open to the idea of blind dates, speed dating, or allowing your close friends to set you up with someone, keeping an open mind when it comes to dating might deliver some amazing results. 

Let your friends know that you’re ready to start dating and allow them the opportunity to potentially set you up. Trust me, they’ll love the challenge! Many good love stories have started with friends playing ‘matchmaker’. Often, this can be one of the best ways to meet someone because your friends have already ‘vetted’ them, trust them, and like them, so you know you can too. 

Trying your luck at speed dating is also a fun way to meet people. Plus, it makes for good practice for traditional dating and striking up conversations with strangers. 

Tip 6: Use your single time to learn about yourself

Your single life can be an amazing time to learn more about yourself - your strengths, weaknesses, wants, and needs. Once you know who you are and love who you are, you are much better equipped to find a partner who compliments you. Not only that, but you’re also more likely to have a long-lasting, happy relationship because you’re better able to communicate your wants and needs.

Here are some of the benefits of getting to know yourself on a deeper level:

  • It’ll increase your self-confidence
  • It will enable you to express yourself more freely
  • Increase your self-worth and self-love
  • It will help you form better relationships 
  • People pleasing will be a thing of the past 
  • It’ll enable you to make better decisions when it comes to your personal life and love

Tip 7: Ask them out

ask them out

All too often we shy away from taking a chance on the things we really want, and we miss out. 

If you’ve had your eye on someone for a while, work on building up the courage to ask them out. What’s the worst that can happen? They say no. If that’s the case you’re then free to move on and find a better match. Best case scenario, they say yes… and it might just be the start of something special. 

If asking them out in person is too intimidating, pop them a casual text message asking them to join you for a coffee or drink at your local hangout. 

Don’t regret not putting yourself out there and taking a chance on love. You never know where courage can lead you. 

Tip 8: Expand your friendship circles

Expanding your friendship circles will introduce you to hosts of new people. As mentioned, one of the best ways to meet new people who are likely to be great matches is through your friends. So, get out there and make new friends

Making new friends can start out as simply as complimenting someone next to you in a queue, striking up a conversation with a new parent at your children’s school, interacting with people at one of your sports clubs, or being more interactive in your workplace. 

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Tip 9: Switch up your routine 

If you’re the sort of person that loves routine, I would suggest switching things up a little. Instead of frequenting the same coffee shop, bookstore, and dinner spot and seeing the same, familiar faces time and time again, try something new. Switching up your routine may open up a whole new world of people, opportunities, and experiences. 

Adding to this, if you’re going to switch things up, make sure you remain friendly, open, and approachable. No use in switching up your routine to try and meet new people if you’re going to be closed-off and unapproachable. So, strike up a conversation with the unfamiliar face sitting next to you in your new coffee spot. 

Tip 10: Be active on social media 

Ever wonder how to put yourself out there on social media? An easy way to meet, interact, and reconnect with people from around the globe is by being active on social media. Post snippets of your life and what you love on social media, giving other people the chance to interact with you. And, interact with other people by commenting on their posts. 

Striking up a conversation on social media is also relatively effortless and unintimidating. Social media is a great way to get a feel for someone and their likes/dislikes and life in general before (potentially) meeting up in person. You can also easily pinpoint commonalities by browsing through someone's profile, making for great conversation starters.

So, without further ado, put your fear aside and post that selfie looking oh-so-fabulous!

Tip 11: Expect to go on a couple of first dates, and be okay with that

expect to go on a couple of first dates and be okay with that

Chances are you’re going to go out on a couple of dates before you meet someone who wants what you want and whose energy matches yours. That’s okay! Learn to enjoy the journey and take something from every date/person you come into contact with. The more dates you go on, the more you’ll learn about yourself, your wants, needs, and areas to work on. 

You’ll meet some people who want more than what you want, and sometimes you’ll be the one wanting more. Some people might be great eye candy but terrible company. Some might become your best friends. You never know what fun, interesting experiences await. 

Remember to just have fun. Enjoy each date for what it is, continue stepping out of your comfort zone, and you’re sure to meet amazing people (and hopefully run into your soulmate along the way, too).

FAQs

How do you put yourself out there if you're shy?

If you’re shy, taking small steps with regard to putting yourself out there can help build your confidence and still produce some fruitful results. Start with whatever you feel most comfortable with, whether that’s creating an online dating profile or striking up a conversation with someone at your local sports club/coffee shop.

If you’re shy, relying on your friends to set you up with someone suitable can also be a great option. This way, your friends are able to ‘introduce you’ and tell you about the person, and vice versa, before you even meet up.

How do I stop being scared of putting myself out there?

Remind yourself why you’re putting yourself out there and what your end goal is. Start with one small step at a time. These small steps will help build your confidence and rid you of the fear of rejection. Rely on your friends and family for support and encouragement - let them know what you’re doing and why and they’re sure to cheer you along.

What does it mean to put yourself out there in dating?

Essentially this means stepping out of your comfort zones and being open to different dating opportunities. It means being brave, bold, and confident in who you are and what you want, and going after that. Putting yourself out there can range from talking to a stranger to attending a local event, making new friends, asking someone out, or signing up on an app.

How do you put yourself out there for dating without an app?

There are many ways to put yourself out there for dating without the help of dating apps. People have successfully dated for centuries before Tinder and the likes were invented, and you can too.

If dating apps aren’t your thing, try one of the many tips mentioned above – i.e. joining a club/class, changing up your routines, asking friends to set you up, or becoming active on social media.

Conclusion

Putting yourself out there for dating may seem scary and intimidating at first but as you take small steps and build up your confidence it'll become easier and easier. Set yourself a goal, get clear on what you want, and then take the first step. The rewards will pay off.

If you like this article or think someone may benefit from reading it, comment below and give it a share. We appreciate your feedback and support.

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Sian Roelofsz
Hello, I'm Sian! I've worked in the media industry for the past 6 years and my love for writing, coupled with many interesting dating experiences over the past decade, has led me here. I hope to give you some fabulous dating tips that'll help you navigate the complex world of relationships and hopefully, lead you to 'the one'. I'm a single mama and now work from home in sunny South Africa. I've managed to go on enough dates to figure out what works, what doesn't, and what'll seal the deal!

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