Dating Tips
For Men

How to respond to a 'No'

September 16, 2016
▪ 3 mins read

Flirtation is in the air!

Summertime is when everyone is in a great mood... and guess what? Flirtation is occurring! You all know that I am a big fan of flirtation, but there’s a way to do it that is ethical, respectful and sexy. Even if you have to respond to a no.

In this episode, Rosie Allen joins me to talk about good and bad examples of flirtation to help you this summer! Including how to respond to a no and ask for consent.

I talked about my experience of going out with two female clients of mine. Both were interested in learning the skills that I teach on Going Renegade, some of which are about approaching the guy and sending signals that will let him know you’re interested.

Here's my card

When I take my clients out, I am in my work zone. At some point, I turned around and I made eye-contact with a guy and said `Hi’ as an automatic response. He immediately engaged in the interaction and complimented me. However, I was in a different headspace and I literally gave him my business card (Yes that really happened, because in my mind I was working!).

Later that week he sent me an e-mail, which to be honest with you guys I did not reply to. I did not think we had much of a connection. A few days go by, and I was walking down High Street and guess who I run into?

He re-approached me and a turn-around started to happen because I was in a different mode. I was relaxed, I was out with a friend and he walked up to me with a big smile and said "Hey, do you remember me?" in a warm and friendly tone. I was genuinely really wowed by his effort and his charm and I ended up offering to give him my number (he did not ask for it!).

Why am I telling you this story?

Well, because I wanted to emphasize the importance of intentions and knowing how to respond to a no! One great hack for becoming good at dating is refocusing your intentions. What do I mean by that?

In this story, if this guy’s intentions when he met me had been to take me out or to get my number, he would have put so much pressure on himself throughout the interaction, which in turn could have messed it up.  

Instead, he thought "You know what? We live in the same neighbourhood which is why I am seeing her again now". So he decided to be friendly, communicative and warm. This made me feel more open to talking to him (and was actually attractive). I felt that there was no pressure in the interaction to go somewhere!

Traditional dating advice has created an idea that men need to be teasing, sexy and challenging. Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and a place for that. But she’s not going to want to hear any of that unless you establish a mutual feeling of trust first. So, approaching her with the intention of being friendly can make you more attractive.

Now, I can almost hear you saying: "But Hayley... what about the `friend zone’? If I don’t make my intentions clear, I will end up stuck in it again!". Let me tell you when you walk up to a woman in the street, your intentions are crystal clear! 

Also, by adjusting your intentions, you can also change your perception of rejection and how you feel about it.

Imagine this:

You’re out on a date with someone and you want to kiss her, so you decide to act on it and make your move. If your intention is to get that kiss and she pulls away, you’ll end up feeling embarrassed and rejected.

Now, what if your intention had been to show her that you’re attracted to her?

Then you could shake off that `rejection’, by saying "I’m sorry, I am trying to control myself... But you are looking very pretty today". Believe me, there’s nothing more attractive than a guy who can handle taking things slower and accepting a `no’.

Truth is, people move at different paces. So, when you respond to a no, you have to find that rhythm through communication, acceptance and a bit of humour!


Hayley x

Hayley Quinn smiling profile
About the author

Hayley Quinn is a leading dating and relationship coach, with 3 million views of her TEDx talk and 18 million YouTube views. She is spokesperson for Match, a columnist for Cosmopolitan, a regular contributor to international media, and has been published by Harper Collins (“The Last First Date”, 2022) and Simon & Schuster (“Do This, Not That: Dating”, 2023).

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