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Did you go on a few fun dates with someone, then they stopped calling? Could you have done something so bad, it turned the other person off forever? If you want to boost your chances of successful romantic happiness, now is the right time to learn the rules of 21st dating etiquette.

Two bad dating habits to shed post haste

Funny how two bad dating habits are opposites, but either can tank your chances of developing a great relationship. One is being too available; the other is not being available enough. You don’t want to give the impression of desperation, which is precisely the impression given by making yourself available any night of the week.

Conversely, you should not refuse too many offers from your potential date. The key is to achieve a happy moderation somewhere in the middle of being hard-to-get and far too available. A little longing can increase desire. Make your date wait too long, however, and they may become bored and move on to someone who’s more readily available, advise relationship experts at eHarmony.

Text etiquette: Yes, it matters. A lot.

Keep it brief. Seriously. If you are a woman who spends time texting, please remember that males are simple creatures, at least as far as texting is concerned. Chances are, the man with whom you are texting is swiping his keyboard to find words, and may not even read every word that you send. Don’t make room for your date to ‘read between the lines.’ State your point, and wait for the other person to reply before sending another. Brevity is key to keeping his interest.

Don’t text while intoxicated. Just about everyone has done it, and most regret having done so. Drunk texting sets you up for saying too much or crossing certain boundaries far too early in a relationship. Better you should enjoy your glass of wine or whatever in the comfort of your home, and leave the text chat with your potential paramour for another time, recommend dating gurus at Huffington Post.

Online stalking: Just don’t do it

Sure, you’re interested in what your potential date is doing, but knowing too much too soon can hurt your relationship before it even starts. If you’re not already Facebook friends, don’t rush into it and whatever you do, don’t become online friends with his ex. The one exception to the online stalking rule involves a blind date. If your friends arrange a date for you, you are certainly welcomed to peep their profile, but do so only once. Any more than that, and you’ll just give someone the creeps.

Timeless dating etiquette rules to remember

It doesn’t matter if you’re dating in the 21st century or the 19th. Male chivalry is appreciated. Stimulating conversation and first-class table manners are important, too, but there’s nothing that warms a woman’s heart quite like a gentleman who opens the car door for her and makes certain she’s seated comfortably before taking his place at a date night dinner table, remind romance mavens at Lovepanky magazine.

Don’t smoke tobacco on a date. If you do smoke, quit as soon as you can. Most modern daters find the flavor of cigarettes distasteful and many will refuse to go out with you a second time if you are a smoker. In the meantime, tuck an e-cig into your pocket or purse and use it to privately satisfy your craving for nicotine. Find a selection of e liquid flavors to customize your non-smoker experience.

Don’t live in the past. A new date is a brand new chance to get to know a different kind of person than you may be used to dating. Don’t compare them unfavorably to your ex, and no matter what else you talk about, do not monopolize the conversation with complaints about your erstwhile beloved. Nobody wants to hear it, and you could deep-six your chances of developing a nice new love affair.

Don’t fish for compliments, in person or online. Doing so reeks of neediness and does nothing to endear you to a new date. Don’t go overboard lavishing praise on someone you’ve just started dating, either. Let things evolve in that general direction, and see what happens.

Above all, remember to relax and be yourself. Avoid pretense and don’t pretend to like something your date likes unless you really do like it. Dating is a dance that can be choreographed to perfection if you don’t force the issue.

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