9 secrets of experienced daters

1. Meeting potential mates is difficult. But by getting out among people we can dramatically increase our chances of meeting someone special.

2. Pursue activities and interests you enjoy. Instead of going out just to meet a mate, do something you find fun. People usually meet the partner of their dreams when they aren't looking.

3. You need to break the rules. We may need to reach out across geographical boundaries to meet someone for us. Online dating makes that possible, but use caution with strangers.

4. Women can do the asking. It's acceptable for women to do the asking, planning and paying for dates, and to be more assertive in the dating scene. Women should carry name cards they can hand to men, making it easier for men to contact them.

5. You need to be approachable. To meet new people, you have to show a friendly face to the world. A warm smile breaks down barriers and opens doors.

6. We need to have realistic expectations. Finding someone whose values and standards match ours -- a good companion -- is more important than how someone looks. And we believe we're never too old to find love or to feel chemistry.

7. Seeking a considerably younger mate isn't the answer. It's better to hook up with someone who thinks as young as we think. That could be someone older.

8. ThirdAgers want honesty. Dishonest singles who misrepresent themselves -- on the Internet and elsewhere -- are wasting their time and ours. Being honest up-front leaves time for more productive pursuits.

9. Go to the right places. Group events and reunions are better places to meet potential mates than singles functions, where the ratios are unfavorable and the environment is too competitive. Parties where invited guests are half women and half men, and where each guest must bring a single friend of the opposite sex, level the odds.


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