Date disaster: Mistakes you don't realize you're making

Apr 3, 2013 at 4:55 a.m. ET

Your problem isn’t so much getting a date as it is getting that person to ask you out again. Sound familiar? If so, find out all the tiny little dating mistakes you might be making that are causing potential lovers to flee in the other direction... and fast.

You’re trying too hard to put your best self forward

So you go out on a date and think things are going really well, only to return home and never hear from Mr. Right again. Um, what’s up with that!? Well, apparently, according to Lone Morch, award-winning author, photographer and speaker, you could be focusing on your "performance" and perfection a bit too much. "This will totally kill your ability in coming off as authentic and comfortable in your own skin. Focus on loving yourself, being confident and truly understanding what you like and look for and simply relax," she recommends. "Dating life in America (speaking as a Dane from a completely different culture) is weirdly agenda driven. In my world, you can’t find love with an agenda and with a checklist in your pocket — you find it by being yourself." Ah, we couldn’t agree more!

You’re kind of a whiner

Expert tip:  Lay off the booze! “When you’re out to dinner and having a great time, it’s easy to have one too many,” explains Marla Martenson, matchmaker, dating coach and owner of LA-based company Cupid For Hire. “Unfortunately, alcohol loosens the tongue, and you’ll most likely regret spilling your guts to a guy you just met!”

This one may seem like a bit of a no-brainer, but remember: No one wants to date a whiner. If it’s a restaurant he’s chosen, don’t complain about the service or food, warns Roland Hinds, relationship expert, author and producer/host of TruVue Relationship Radio. "Allow him to strike the first blow, and remain coy with your answer," he advises. "Going on a rant can be seen negatively as to how a person handles a problem publicly." Basically, it’s a bad, bad idea.

Also, adds Didi Zahariades, psychotherapist, life coach and founder of Coach To Win, be cautious of complaining about your life. "It’s easy to let your guard down and just start chatting away," she says. "However, keep in mind that a date is a lot like a job interview: You want to share only enough to pique his interest and make him want to see you again."

You’re interrogating him

Your first date should be about light and positive subjects, advises dating, communications and flirting expert Rachel DeAlto, author of Flirt Fearlessly. "Get to know each other, but save the heavy stuff for down the road. Discuss what he likes to do for fun, where he’s traveled recently or what his favorite local spots are. If heavier topics come up, you can answer them quickly, but then move on. Oh, and never, ever ask, 'why are you single?'" she cautions.

Your body language is off

Jenn Flaa, author of The Happiness Handbook, points out that your body language may be to blame for your lack of dating success. "Are you turning away?" she asks. "Leaning back? Crossing your arms in front of you? Paying more attention to your phone than to him? What you don’t say is even more crucial than what you do. Remember to make good eye contact. When you're interested and attracted to someone, you'll lean in slightly and rest your hands gently on the table or on your lap." Your smile is the signal that lets him know he’s still got a shot at another date with you, so flash those pearly whites, girlfriend!

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