Why you don’t have to be afraid to make the first move

It’s never easy to make the first move when you like somebody, but it’s a lot easier when you give yourself permission to do it. It’s 2015, and that means those outdated rules shaming women for expressing their interests are just that—outdated. It’s OK to ask someone out, to act on your feelings and to express yourself if you like someone. Obviously, it’s important to be aware of other people’s comfort levels and boundaries, but it’s perfectly badass to step up to the plate and make a plan if you’re feeling some mutual attraction vibes. And you shouldn’t judge yourself for it. Here’s why:

Good things don’t come to those who wait, good things come to those who go out and get them.  If you want a new pair of shoes, you guy buy them, you don’t sit at home and wait for someone to magically deliver them to your doorstep without you even asking.  If you want more responsibility at work, it tends to go a lot better if you communicate to your boss about what you want rather than just hoping someone will just pick up your career ambitions.  So why do we make our personal lives an area where we’re just supposed to sit around and wait for someone else to ask us out?

You’ll eliminate regrets.  In my experience, the things we regret the most are the missed opportunities and the chances not taken. When you’re looking back on these moments, you’ll never wonder “what would have happened if I hadn’t asked so and so out?” but if you don’t do it, you’ll always wonder what could have happened if you had.

It is your fundamental right as a woman. You know all those books and people and shows and movies spouting off “truths” about how women aren’t supposed to make the first move and people like a chase etc.?  Those are nonsense.  These ideas about women waiting around passively are just carryovers from the time that women weren’t even considered equals, but rather property to be traded by their fathers and husbands.  That’s not even remotely true anymore; 2016 could be the year we have a woman in the Oval Office, so why can’t 2015 be the year you ask a guy or a girl to dinner?

Timing is everything,  Yes, you could wait for the absolute perfect moment to ask out your crush, when you’re having a good hair day and the weather’s nice and the planets are in perfect alignment.  However, by that time, he or she could have met someone else or moved to Montana.  Life keeps happening whether you’re playing along or not, so you might as well get in the game.

You have the best knowledge of what you want. If you’ll permit me to return to an earlier metaphor, you don’t let your shoes pick themselves, so why let your dates do that?  In my experience, a date has a far higher likelihood of going well if it’s someone I picked out, because I know what I’m looking for in a partner.

You’re doing a huge favor to shy folks everywhere.  Yes, some people like a chase.  Other people are shy or are afraid of rejection or have some other reason for not asking you out that has nothing to do with how much they might otherwise like you. It doesn’t mean they aren’t awesome, so help them out and make that first move.

It’s a good filter.  If ever a person you like is annoyed by the fact that you made the first move or said something about being “old fashioned,” consider this a red flag.  Maybe it’s just that they had a really cute plan to ask you out that they didn’t get to use, or maybe they expect you to bake a lot of pies while also doing their laundry. Oy.

You’re awesome. This is a fundamental truth. You are fantastic, and by expressing an interest in this person, you are doing them an incredible favor and they should be flattered.  If they don’t see it that way, that’s their loss, because you’re still awesome.

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