So you started dating someone new and you’re having a hard time getting a good read on them. You’re not sure just how you feel, or if they will make a good partner? Are there any tips in helping me decide if they are a good catch or not?
After spending 30 years working in mental health, I have come to know a few things about relationships. And the reality is that it is quite simple when we don’t over think it. All you need to know about dating someone new can be learned by 3 things. How they treat the wait-staff, how they treat animals and how they drive? That’s the secret to making a good choice. Let’s explore.
How they treat the wait-staff. This is called situational value system. People who are only nice to you when you have something to offer them, say’s a lot about them personally. This goes hand in hand with The Waiter Rule. And believe it or not, many CEO’s and HR managers take this into consideration. Why do I make mention of this? Well, because a date is very close to a job interview, as you want to present your best self. However, being nice to your date is far different to being nice to the waiter or waitress.
The Waiter Rule basically indicates how we treat people who seemingly hold an insignificant position. Remembering situational value system points out our priorities, and gives us great insight on someone’s personality. The Waiter rule is a prime example of this.
How they treat animals. Emmanuel Kant said “He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” Your date doesn’t need to be an animal owner or lover. But, by not showing compassion to animals is again a peek into their heart. What exactly does that mean?
The value we place on animals is going to be different for everybody. I have been a non meat-eater for well over 30 years. Does that mean I wouldn’t date a woman who ate meat? Of course not. That is a personal choice and I have no say in it. My preference is that she not. But, that is not a deal breaker. If on the other hand she owned a dog and gave it very little love and attention, I would see that as a problem. As fate would have it, I married a vegetarian and animal lover many years ago. But the discussion of meat-eating never came up for weeks.
How they act when they drive. Pay attention to it. Driving is a metaphor about life. Are you a safe and courteous driver? Do you pay attention to the other drivers? Are you easily distracted? Are you aggressive and have road rage? This metaphor proves true to companionship. It is not what you drive that matters. It is how you drive that does.
Look at it from another point of view. You are driving with your date. Is the music always on? This could mean that they may not always be paying attention to you. Do they drive fast and reckless? This could mean that they’re not going to provide you with safety. Do they go out of their way to be courteous to other drivers? Always a good sign, that it doesn’t always have to be about them.
Please know that I am not saying this is an end all be all guide to relationships. These are indicators and yes, studies have been done on these behaviors. But, if you really want to dumb it down, it comes down to, does one take into consideration the thoughts and feelings of others? If the answer is yes, that is a great first step.