Bars. Obviously not the most romantic of places to meet someone. But if it happens, it happens, right?

How often have you gone out and the only guys you talked to all night were either self-absorbed players, Mr. Socially Awkward, or a normal guy-who ruined it by having to get drunk to build up the nerve to come talk to you? Not to mention the creepy stalker guy who hovers around you and your friends for half the night.

But there are some great men out there who do hang out at bars on the weekend. So why not make the most out of the situation and make sure that when you’re putting yourself out there, you’re attracting the right type of guy instead of always the wrong type of guy?

If you’re having trouble meeting the right kind of men, chances are that it’s got a lot to do with the energy you’re projecting.

Eye contact really is key. You can’t be too passive. It sounds romantic to just let things happen serendipitously, but the good ones are not going to just appear out of nowhere or fall right into your lap with the perfect words to sweep you off of your feet. When you’re out at night (or anywhere, really) and you’re huddled around not giving any men any outward signs that you’re interested, you’ll get approached by two types of guys: the overly macho guy who is overcompensating so he can get some action tonight, and the overly wimpy guy who really built up his courage to approach you but now he can’t get the right words out.

What you really want is the normal guy in the middle. Problem is, that guy will rarely approach you unless you give him the right signals. Here’s some male psychology for you: guys are more oblivious to a woman’s signals than you can ever imagine.

How To Meet Men In Bars
That means that giving a guy a quick glance for about 0.25 seconds and then quickly looking away isn’t going to cut it. That guy will never approach you, and it’s not because he’s not interested. What you need to do is pick a guy you like, and really LOOK AT HIM with a nice smile. I’m talking like several seconds, until it seems unnaturally long. After that, you can look away, but then look and smile at him again for a LONG TIME. And then again. Don’t worry, you won’t look desperate. Like I said, men are really slow at picking up signals. By now, maybe he’s starting to get a clue.

If he’s still looking at you, he’s interested but he may not know it’s ok to come over yet. Sometimes you may need to look at him four or five times to get him to come over. If he doesn’t walk over by then, he doesn’t have the guts right now, so move on to the next guy.

Similarly, if you’re walking by a guy who catches your eye, don’t just glance at him once really quickly and then keep walking in hopes that he’s going to come chase you down. Look at him as you’re walking by, take a deep breath, then turn around and look at him again over your shoulder with a nice, inviting smile.

Either way it’s the same principle: the key is that you need to look at him several times, not just once and then turn your back. The guy that you want will rarely approach you if you do that. In fact, most guys are secretly hoping that you’ll come approach them! (But that’s another blog.)

So your homework for this weekend is to really practice working on that great eye contact and smile wherever you go out. Practice not getting stuck in what I call “social constipation mode”, where as soon as we’re in a social setting, we suddenly start worrying about what everyone this thinking about us, we forget to let loose and smile, and basically we get this emotionless constipated look on our faces.

Really take the time to give a guy some real eye contact to let him know that you’re interested. Have fun, smile, and laugh everywhere you go. It doesn’t have to be overly sexy or seductive, just any inviting smile will do—you don’t need anything fancy. So many women are unaware of just how irresistible a nice genuine feminine smile can be to a man.