As an avid cyclist, I spend a lot of time riding around the campus of my local (mega-huge) State University. I’m always reminded of my own time in college, and how freaking easy the dating scene was back then. Dating after college is a completely different ball game, and it took me many years to figure it out. Oddly enough, the solution for successfully finding love after graduating was brilliantly simple.
The backstory of how I discovered the trick to dating after school
I’ve always been a shy guy. Even in college. Thank goodness that girls do like quiet guys, because otherwise it would have been a very lonely and depressing four years.
Anyway, I never realized how good that I had it back then. Even though I went to a college that was predominantly guys, I still had a fairly decent amount of luck dating while in school.
As you might expect, things drastically changed once I graduated. Being thrown out into the real world when you’re shy and timid about approaching members of the opposite sex is a daunting experience. I struggled with it. Hard.
I was lucky enough to find a really good job right after school that paid very well. With that goal accomplished, much of my attention was focused on the next logical step for growing up: finding a girlfriend, and eventually getting married.
Successful dating after college is extremely difficult for anyone (like me) who has social anxiety and is uncomfortable going out and meeting new people. It was especially difficult for me sense it was the late 90s and there weren’t very many opportunities yet to meet women online.
Long story short, I spent the entirety of my 20s single and alone. Most of this was by choice, however, after being dumped by the love of my life when I was 22.
I was completely turned off of love and relationships after that, and I simply decided to focus all my time on ME. Travel, my career, just having fun and enjoying my life.
Little did I know it, I had actually discovered the secret to dating after college.
The method I discovered for successful dating after college
By the time I had reached 30 years old (and I was successfully over that failed relationship at 22), I realized that I was actually in a far better spot than most of my friends who were struggling meeting women. How so?
- I had far less frustration in my life. Therefore, I seemed more carefree, easy-going, and more attractive to members of the opposite sex.
- I didn’t put timelines on myself. By avoiding the mistake of telling myself that I wanted to be engaged and or married by the age of 25 (or some arbitrary number), I was free to enjoy my life to the fullest. Your 20s are and extremely important time in your life. A time for self-exploration and growth. It’s hard to do either if you’re focused on hitting arbitrary goals that don’t really matter in the long run.
- Appearing to be “aloof” and disinterested to members of the opposite sex will make them seek you out more. Think about it. Isn’t it frustrating when the guy or girl you’re extremely attracted to doesn’t even know you exist? It just makes you try harder to get them to notice you, which in turn makes you look like a pathetic (and desperate) fool.
If it isn’t an obvious by now, the method I discovered for successful dating in your 20s is as follows: just relax, live your life, and let them come to you.
Yes, I realize that seems overly simplistic. I would’ve thought the exact same thing if I was in my 20s as well. However, now that I’m deep into my 40s, I know the ways of the world and I’m here to tell you that it’s the best possible way to not only date successfully after college, but to stay sane as well.
Other super-effective dating methods that I’ve discovered
All of you in your 20s right now have it made. I didn’t have social media at my fingertips when I was in my 20s, and I never got to experience the joy and excitement of waking up to a long list of Instagram DM‘s from women I was attracted to every day. You guys are so lucky.
However, despite me being a dinosaur, a lot of what I learned about dating after college while in my 20s still applies today. Here are some specific examples:
1. The trick for success on dating sites is to be passive. Not active.
What I mean by this is that spending your days introducing yourself to all the pretty girls that you meet on online dating sites is a complete waste of time. Every single woman on any given dating site gets more messages than they can possibly handle, and the chances of you standing out in the crowd are slim to none.
Instead, simply create a thorough and nice looking profile for yourself and let it be. Forget about it, go live your life, and check back once every two weeks or so. Yes, it’s an extremely slow method of dating, but I’m here to tell you that it works. Back in my single days, I had far better luck doing this on JapanCupid and FriendsAsia than I did wasting hours trying to chase women who were never going to respond to my messages.
2. Get involved in activities that are interesting to YOU
One of the biggest mistakes that I made dating after college was thinking that I had to go to bars and nightclubs to meet women. Being shy and introverted, that was not my scene at all. I felt like a fish out of water every time I went, but I felt it was my duty to go and at least make an attempt to be social.
Other than feeling the dread of needing to go out every Friday and Saturday night, I got nothing from that experience. Sure, I may have danced for a few seconds with a random girl here and there, but other than that I always came home alone feeling lost and confused.
By the time I had reached 27 years old (maybe 28), I realized that I was fooling myself by going to the bars and nightclubs. I should has been spending my time getting involved in activities that I was interested in. Things like biking, travel, and whatever random fad I found myself infatuated with at the time.
3. It’s OK to admit that you prefer a certain kind of person
If you’ve read any other article on this website other than this one, you’ll know that I have a preference for Asian women. No, that does not make me racist. I don’t despise women of any other race, color, religion, or whatever. However, when it comes to loving relationships, Asian women have simply been more attractive to me. That’s it. It’s just what I prefer.
Anyway, things got a lot simpler for me when I realized what kind of woman I was attracted to. In my early 20s, right after college, I used the “shotgun” approach to dating. In other words, even though I slightly preferred Asian women at that time, I didn’t try to limit myself. This meant that I was focusing my energy on women that I wasn’t all that attracted to, which wasn’t fair to her or me.
Once I hit 30, I realized that I was attracted to Asian culture the most and I focused all of my energy on that. I married an amazing Japanese woman when I hit 35, and that’s when my dating life officially ended.
Final words of advice for recent graduates who just getting into dating out in the real world
Have patience! You’re in your 20s for God’s sake. You literally have your entire life ahead of you, and there’s no rush to settle down and get involved in a restrictive relationship that will only hold you back from doing whatever it is you want to do.
Relax. Loosen up. Enjoy the freedom of being out of school. If you focus on yourself hard enough, you’re eventually going to notice that members of the opposite sex will be drawn to you whether you like it or not. That’s how to win the dating game after your college years.