By David Steele
The "Rule of Three" has many incarnations and applications, as a cursory Google search will reveal. In the area of relationships, you may have heard that the "third time is the charm," and while that has certainly been true for me, I'm not recommending getting divorced twice to find your life partner.
The "Rule of Three for Conscious Dating" says that when meeting someone attractive to you, it takes at least three contacts to determine mutual interest and comfort to proceed further.
This is not good news for fans of "speed seduction" whose goal is to manipulate the outcome and immediately "hook up." (OK. I see you're excited about the idea, so go ahead and look it up in Google and continue reading when you're ready).
In the real world of singles, the most anxiety-producing situation occurs when you spot someone attractive to you that you would like to meet. This is so stressful that an entire industry caters to singles to help them with this; for a price.
Save your money and use the Rule of Three. Here is an example:
Let's say you are attracted to the teller at the bank. You could flirt, deliver your best pick-up line, and ask what time he or she gets off, but you anticipate (rightly) that if they have any class they would not be comfortable with that approach.
So, what do you do? Try the Rule of Three:
CONTACT #1: You smile, make eye contact, introduce yourself, ask their name, make small talk, pay a compliment, anything you would do to be friendly with anyone in any setting.
The purpose of this first contact is to walk away having left a positive impression.
CONTACT #2: Return to bank within 24-48 hours. Now that you are on a first name basis you can start with small talk and add some personal sharing about something important to you related to your requirements such as your children, work, etc, as you would for our "Power Introduction." Note their reaction- positive, negative or neutral. Having revealed something specific about yourself, you then ask him or her about the topic (e.g. "Do you have kids?").
You are seeking to do three things at this step:
-First; discover whether you have anything in common, especially an important requirement.
-Second; confirm your attraction and interest after discovering something real about this person.
-Third; leave another positive impression, this time based upon something real about you.
CONTACT #3: Return to bank within 24-48 hours. Now it will be like a reunion of old friends. Talk a bit further about what you have in common. Towards the end of the transaction say "I really enjoy talking with you and it seems that we have a lot in common. Would you be interested and available to meet for coffee sometime?"
Notice the above is a clear statement about you, and asks about their INTEREST and AVAILABILITY. Asking in this way is typically construed as friendly, non-threatening, and respectful. You are giving him or her lots of room to decline easily and gracefully. Most people would be flattered and positive; don't worry about the people that take you the wrong way, they are simply screening themselves out. You're just being authentically, benignly and innocently friendly. It is very helpful for you and for them to not be attached to the outcome- they can accept or not, you will be fine either way.
ALTERNATIVE #1: If asking so directly is not your preference, you can give them your business card and say "I really enjoy talking with you and it seems that we have a lot in common. Here is my card. I would love for you to call or e-mail if you are interested and available to meet for coffee sometime."
ALTERNATIVE #2: You can repeat Contact #2 as many times as you like to build more comfort and learn more about each other before you decide to try #3.
The Rule of Three for Conscious Dating can be applied any social setting such as a party, except you would use intervals of 15-30 minutes instead of hours or days.
Scouting and initiating contact with people that are attractive to you is essential to being "The Chooser." I hope the Rule of Three for Conscious Dating will empower you to take more initiative and be a successful single .
The important thing about applying the Rule of Three for Conscious Dating is to be authentic, especially with your bank teller, because he or she already knows more about you than most of your friends and family!
© 2005 by David Steele / http://www.consciousdating.com