How To Approach A Girl and Not Be Creepy

In For the Guys by Debra Fileta21 Comments

Due to popular demand, I’m bringing back the Q&A series for the month of October, and this time, we’re opening it up to ALL THINGS love, marriage, singleness and dating. For a chance to have your question answered as a feature blog in this series, click here to submit your relationship question. And then be on the lookout for the answer. Let’s get started: 

Q: Hey Debra. As a guy, what are some tips on how I can approach women in a Godly, but not creepy, way (e.g. “God told me we should be together etc.”)?

A: Let me start off by agreeing with you whole-heartedly that there is nothing creepier than telling a woman that God told you “we should be together”! AHHHH!!! I can’t even imagine!!!!! (Well, actually I can because it’s happened to me before….but let’s not bring back those awful memories). So yes, please don’t ever do that one. 

Another thing you SHOULD DEFINITELY NOT do to come across as creepy is approach her with a guitar, like the dude in this photo (he was just too funny not to pass up). Keep the over-the-top romantic gestures like flowers, songs, poems, and candy for at least the second conversation. Or the 10th. Any woman will tell you that she wants you to get to know her before you try to impress her.

Lastly, you SHOULD NOT start the conversation in any way implying you’ve been stalking them on Facebook or Instagram. “I was looking through every single one of your Instagram photos the other night at 2am and I noticed your interest in coffee!” Ain’t nobody got time for creepers.

Truth is, no matter how old you get, for some reason the guy-girl dynamic we struggle with in middle school tends to stick around much longer for those of us interacting within Christian culture. We’ve been wired to take relationships SO seriously, that an innocent interaction with the opposite sex can end up being just plain awkward.

Approaching someone of the opposite sex can be daunting, but it’s an important skill to learn because it’s one that’s going to come in handy. In fact, I would venture to say that…

Those with the most successful dating life are those with the most successful social skills.

Because to put it plainly, socializing is a SKILL.  And skills have to be learned along the way. So, here are some things to keep in mind as you’re honing in your “relationship skillz”.

Find common ground. When I met my husband John for the first time, a group of us were at a conference and someone in the group started talking about movies. After a few minutes of small talk back and forth, it was evidently clear that this new guy (John) and myself, had completely different tastes in movies (and funny thing is, we still do to this day. He likes super-hero movies, I like sad-depressing-dramas).

But rather than let the conversation linger in an area where we had absolutely no common ground, and in an effort to get to know me better, he decided it was time to change the subject. So instead of talking about movies, we starting talking about education (we were both grad students) and volunteer work (we were also both involved in different ministries).

Knowing how to find common ground with someone is an important social skill that will not only carry your romantic life and conversations, but your professional and personal social life as well.  I believe that you can find common ground for conversation with anyone you come across, but it takes the next step to stay there.

Ask a lot of questions – but then actually then LISTEN for the answer. A few days ago I was talking with someone I had just met, and asked for her name. She told me….and within minutes, I TOTALLY FORGOT!! How embarrassing is that? The truth is, listening, I mean REALLY listening, is one of the biggest factors in your communication skills. I used to teach a college class on communication and leadership, and found myself constantly drilling the importance of listening. Research shows that in passive listening, we retain less than 25% of what we actually hear. 

So when you’re approaching someone for the first time, come prepared with a lot of good questions, but then be even more prepared to listen and remember the answers. Not only that, be aware of the vibes she’s giving you to clearly assess if she’s interested in what’s going on. Is she asking questions back? Is she keeping the conversation going? Is she trying to escape? Be in tune and then go with the flow. 

Make a personal connection. If things seem to be progressing well with the conversation, then go ahead and think about taking the next step by making it personal. One thing I will always remember is how well John listened to me when we first met…but then he took it to the next level by making a personal connection.  After that brief conversation we had had about movies, a few weeks later he sent me a copy of my favorite movie in the mail (because we lived 10 states apart) with a little note just to say hello (if you’re wondering what that movie is….it’s The Sandlot!)

That little note started a series of phonecalls, texts, and interactions that led to our steadily developing friendship and eventually, our dating relationship. He made our relationship personal by showing me that I was the person he was interested in getting to know.

So make a connection – ask her for coffee, invite her to a get-together, send a thoughtful text, and figure out a way to make the connection a little more personal. Go get em’ boys. 

COMMENT BELOW: Ladies, what are the best/worst ways a guy has approached you for the first time?

Catch up on the entire #RelationshipQASeries

Debra Fileta is a Professional Counselor, national speaker, relationship expert, and author of True Love Dates: Your Indispensable Guide to Finding the Love of Your Life, where she writes candidly about dating, relationships, and how to find true love. Her newest book, Choosing Marriage, is set to be released in the Summer of 2018! You may also recognize her voice from her 200+ articles at Relevant Magazine, Crosswalk.com, and all over the web! She’s the creator of this True Love Dates Blog, reaching millions of people with the message that healthy people make healthy relationships!  Connect with her on Facebook or Twitter or book a session with her today!

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21 Comments on "How To Approach A Girl and Not Be Creepy"

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Lauren
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Would not recommend John’s movie move for everybody – that would creep me out! Great alternative: “Oh hey, we were talking about movies and I just bought the Greatest Movie of All Time. Would you like to watch it with me?”

Sam T.
Guest

The reason John’s movie move worked is because he was someone Deb was already attracted to.

Shay
Guest

Thanks for this and sharing your love story. God bless!

David W.
Guest
Hey Debra, this post addressed more on the side of approaching someone when you’re already in group settings or have had some sort of interaction. My questions would be more on the side of how to non-creepily approach a girl that isn’t in your circles or you haven’t interacted with; in those instance where there is no natural reason to approach them (i.e. you’re not hanging with the same group of friends, you’re not on the same serve team, you don’t have mutual friends, you see them from a distance, etc) Without a natural reason to approach them, that’s when… Read more »
Sarah
Guest

I can think of a few times when a “random” guy started a conversation with me in a store. There was nothing awkward or creepy about. One guy got my number, others didn’t, but either way I think it’s a totally doable way to meet someone and take it from there. Who knows? 🙂

David W.
Guest

Ok, well I guess that’s encouraging to hear from a girl’s side with that experience. Thanks for saying Sarah!

Norah from Europe
Guest
Oh dear. Talking about creepsters… Thid mudt be the worst one yet!! So jere goes… I once met a (christian) guy online. We talked and became Facebook friends. After a while (weeks or months, don’t remember) I once logged in and wondered why I had 20+ notifications. Well, he had gone through ALL of my status updates and liked EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. 😀 But there’s more: he had also used a mobile number finder service and managed to get my phone number, because thanks to Facebook, he knew my full name. And when I asked him why did… Read more »
Becky Griffith
Guest
One time I reconnected with an ex boyfriend from high school. We had been talking on facebook. He had recently moved back. We finally met up for coffee and I was explaining how exhausted I was from mowing my lawn. He said …How can you be tired? You have a tiny front yard and a pool in your back yard. Uh? How would he know that? Well it was pretty obvious that he looked up my address and property via satellite to have a peek at what kind of house I lived in. He was a good guy and not… Read more »
Jean Claude
Guest

Most importantly you said find a common ground and make it personal. That’s my take over. Very true sister and more grace as you continue to inspire many others. Blessings

Alicia
Guest
Maybe we could focus on being Merciful to one another by acknowledging that for lots of people, social skills do not come easy. Especially, in the area of dating or approaching the opposite sex. There have been many times that I’ve walked away from a first encounter with a stranger and regretted the interaction because I was nervous or self conscious, which is only in place because meeting someone new can be nerve racking and awkward. I’m not normally a nervous or self conscious person. No matter how skilled a person is socially, I think most of can relate to… Read more »
Alicia
Guest

To add: thank you, Debra for writing about these thought provoking topics.
How will the creepers ever know they are creeping if we don’t tell them? It’s as simple as that!

Steve240
Guest

“Because to put it plainly, socializing is a SKILL. And skills have to be learned along the way. So, here are some things to keep in mind as you’re honing in your “relationship skillz”.”

That is one thing I have heard about Josh Harris and his kissing dating goodbye. Josh Harris did date and develop these social skills but then told everyone not to date and thus not be able to develop these skills.

Breanna Scalf
Guest

I hope there’s a blog post coming (if it doesn’t already exist) about tips for girls talking to guys. I get nervous talking to guys.
If it’s a guy I’m interested in I typically say the dumbest things then shy away because I’m afraid I’ll say more stupid stuff.

T T
Guest
Don’t keep asking someone out who has previously said no or don’t keep hanging around someone who isn’t giving you the signals that she’s interested. I would think in the long run, the man who backs off would have a better chance than the persistent man. If I’m not interested but the guy doesn’t act like a creep, I may take him into consideration for a friend. When approaching a woman, remember that she’s not the last woman on earth and it’s not the worst thing in the world to be rejected. She might say no, but the next one… Read more »
Carol
Guest

Would you ever suggest a girl make a move to express more interest after the initial meet/conversation? For instance…if you had sent the movie to John instead of the other way around.

Delphine
Guest
Hi, I’m Delphine, writing from France. Guys can be creepy here too. 🙂 A couple of years ago, I agreed to date a guy I had met at a wedding and whose good friend attended my church. He really was a gentleman with me. But on our first date (he was more interested in me than I was) things became kind of creepy or I should say awkward. We had lunch and at the end of the lunch he declared that I looked like the sunshine in the room. Hard to find an equivalence in english. Although I was flattered… Read more »
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