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Dating: half effort worse than no effort?

I was reading the Very Smart Brothas’ blog post entitled The Don’ts of Dating: How to Lose a Good Thing in 8 days. When I read
“Doing the bare minimum” – I heard the record scratch sound in my head. I’ve been thinking that a guy of interest has been on the bare minimum plan and wondered WHY I was even entertaining the half effort.

The harsh reality is – half effort can be just as bad as no effort. Check out what Rahiel of Urban Cusp and my buddy Panama had to say about “Doing the Bare Minimum

Rahiel: He asks her out on a date, she accepts, and he responds, “So, figure out what you want to do and let me know.” This is what one of my girls had to say about that: “Why do I now have to plan everything? Wasn’t this date your idea? I think it says a lot if a man at least puts forth the effort to suggest something you could do on your date OR God forbid actually has everything planned. I think the complete lack of effort is either laziness, lack of leadership ability, or a sign of a self-centered man who does not think he needs to put forth any effort all.” This doesn’t mean that the blueprint has to be laid out, but where’s the initiative? Having ideas in mind and having made efforts to plan things out suggest interest, responsibility, and consideration for others. And those things never go out of style – even if you think chivalry has.

Panama: I totally agree on this one. Any man who won’t put at least a little effort into planning probably isn’t really that into you. I’ve been that guy before and I honestly feel bad about it sometimes. I’m almost sure I owe a few apologies too. But you live and you learn. You know what though? You have to be careful with this one as well – not to read too much into it. Some guys are just chock full of knowledge of random and interesting things to do because they like doing them. Of course, those guys are a win for you. Just remember, you might feel special, but he took a chick hang-gliding yesterday too, boo. But in general, the least a man can do is plan a day or an evening that you’ll spend together unless it’s agreed upon that you’ll just be streaming Netflix movies and ordering take out. Or watching reality television.

That pretty much makes things crystal clear in my situation. I’m moving on and putting half effort guy on ice. Live and learn right!
What are your thoughts? Are half efforts worse than no effort?

Would you let the person know if they are showing half efforts?

By Wise Diva, Misadventures in Atlanta Dating Blog

505 comments Add your comment

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Dude

December 16th, 2011
7:41 am

I put in as little effort as possible, if you put in a lot of effort and make them feel special, you have to keep up that effort and money spending. I have seen way too many times that the girl I am talking to get very upset because I didn’t do the things I did when I was chasing. I am not about to bankrupt myself trying to impress a woman. If it were a simple answer of, “I am thankful for what I got when he was chasing” instead of “he doesn’t do the things that he did when we first met”. So I simply don’t raise expectations anymore, in an ideal world I would put up more effort if I thought that it would do any good.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
7:45 am

Good Morning! It’s Friday!!!! ;)

Excuse me please

December 16th, 2011
7:51 am

You and I are on the say train of thought. Wanting the benefits at half the effforts, half the thoughts, half the time. VERY RECENTLY I was dealing with a guy where we communicated off and on for over six months and frankly we haven’t moved forward because of halfazzedness. In his defense, the first few months were just the friendlies. I knew the desire for more was there but we didn’t broach. I’d say in the last couple of months he indicated his desire to explore more. I responded with interest to see where things could go and now nothing. Consequently I had the conversation. Needless to say he was offended and knee deep in excuses. Prior to “the talk”, I even suggested things to do that would propel us forward. At this point it’s become nothing but talk. Empty words. No actions.

I don’t believe it’s this hard. “What comes next is about as natural as breathing if you’re truly interested. There’s been a woman for every man where he pulled out all the stops. I’m not patient. Until and unless you “show me more” this is where it stands. Truthfully I’ve backed things up and pulled the brakes. To continue all talk and no actions simply is a waste of my time. If you can’t give 100%, I’m moving on.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
7:57 am

Interesting topic……..I have seen both sides of this and of I love the side where my date has put in great efforts to not only make it a great date but making it unforgettable as well. A date with substance can’t be math and the date doesn’t have to break the bank to make that happen. The flip side with little effort is just wasting someone’s time and energy especially if you know its not going anywhere. Sure a time a two I went on the date just because but those days have been halted…….When I play I want to truly enjoy my date and not just past time away.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
7:58 am

*match* that is…..not math

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:01 am

Would you let the person know if they are showing half efforts? I somewhat think this is understand and backing away silently has worked for me. The communication dries up and another outing is not even an option…….non-verbals are key too!

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:02 am

damn *understood* that is, let me back away for a second! lol

Randyt (okay, you asked for it)

December 16th, 2011
8:11 am

It seems simple and obvious, but this is not that easy. I may catch some crap but here is why men don’t like to plan. This was a typical Friday when I was married.

Me… “Lets go do a dinner and a movie”
Her…”Okay”
“We can go to Red Lobster and still make the 9:00 show”
“I’m really not in the mood for seafood”
“Okay, we can go to Texas Roadhouse, and go from there”
“I don’t know, I don’t want a steak”
“Golden Corral, it has everything”
“I don’t want to eat all that much”
“A deli from Sam and Andy’s”
“I don’t know, I don’t know what I want”
“We have to decide, or we will miss the start of the movie”
“I’m not that hungry really”
“Okay, want to go to the earlier feature, and eat after”
“That would be too late to eat”
“What do you want ? (said nicely as my anger is building)”
“I don’t know”

So, eventually what would happen is we would end up getting a lousy pizza from Little Caesars, and go to Blockbuster (another friggin ordeal deciding what to rent), and I’d fall asleep on the couch during the movie.

My point (tirade) is that women make “leading and/or planning” more complicated than it has to be. Men like things SIMPLE. For men it is the old Army adage, “Lead, Follow, or Get the Hell out of the Way”.

I love women, I really do…but sometimes they can make a guy tear his hair out trying to please them.

(Okay, I am calming down now…go ahead and take your shots ladies, LOL) ;-)

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:15 am

Wow Randy! gotta respect the male’s POV! gheesh are we that complicated?!?

M. (pronouced M dot)

December 16th, 2011
8:17 am

Happy friday folks.

“What are your thoughts? Are half efforts worse than no effort?”

I think the half effort thing is interesting because sometimes in life you have to go all in and sometimes you have to proceed with caution. I think some guys in the beginning are proceeding with caution but that may seem like an half effort but the reality is you really dont know the other person that well YET! Therefore, you have to take your time and get to know them before you bump up the effort. The dating game is so crazy now, you dont know what you are getting into dating someone new.

Another thing about “half effort”…lets keep it real, monogamy and dating really dont go hand in hand single-wise because for the most part everyone that says they are dating means they are dating more than one person at the time…therefore if people know that, maybe they feel there is no real incentive to give 100% to someone who probably can only offer 50% or less right now…thoughts?

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:23 am

Another thing about “half effort”…lets keep it real, monogamy and dating really dont go hand in hand single-wise because for the most part everyone that says they are dating means they are dating more than one person at the time…therefore if people know that, maybe they feel there is no real incentive to give 100% to someone who probably can only offer 50% or less right now…thoughts?

^^^^^ @ M. I was thinking this and you brought it full circle!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:26 am

I still feel in the start more effort can be made. Calculated risk are welcomed. :)

Dude

December 16th, 2011
8:28 am

Lets look at it this way, a guy wants to get laid first and get to know the woman second, if he can go for some low hangng fruit or go after a woman that he has to work his ass off for, he’s going to go for the low hanging fruit. You never know if the effort is going to pay off in the first place, so why try and get a girl to like you and impress her if you can just go after the girl you know likes you for you. You know how guys look at marriage is “now I don’t have to keep this crap up to keep her”. If the effort worked both ways that would be a different story, when is a girl that makes more than I do going to take me out, buy me all my drinks, so on and so fourth. That isn’t going to happen, so I will go after the one I have to put the least amount of effort with and the one I don’t constantly have to impress. Not worth the effort anymore, I like Simple, like Randy said.

C'mon man

December 16th, 2011
8:33 am

I understand this article but it is close to the problem with women today. The “princess”syndrome. Understand I am married but my wife has a lot of single friends and I see it every day. Todays 20-40’s and younger are raised to believe that they are special and are not taught independence. Their should be some chivalry left in dating but women today are too expectant of men to take care of anything and treat them like royalty. Then after getting married reality sets in and bills come first. The bubble has burst and divorce is next. I see so many married women without jobs, with nannies, shopping every day and still complaining about how their husband doesn’t treat them right. Worse yet, their children especially the daughters have things grown ups don’t have. 9 year olds shouldn’t have Iphones. Anyway, I am sure some women will jump on me saying how wrong I am and how off my stereotype is but I know what I see.

M. (pronouced M dot)

December 16th, 2011
8:34 am

@Lady @Dude

Interesting perspectives.

Question, so since we are discussing effort and obviously the guys effort is to pursue the woman, I hate to ask an obvious question, but what does everyone think the woman’s effort is?

One thing that guys DESPISE is feeling like they are “Trying Out for a Woman”

Brian

December 16th, 2011
8:35 am

I give 100% on dates. I don’t half butt it (using the pc online term). I put effort in picking the place, the event. I make sure to ask questions about her, find out her interest. I am a great opener, first date goes well etc.. I even will try to send nice texts once a day saying “hope you have a good day” etc etc. To show effort. What do I get in return.. ZERO.
I know women want to “change” men, which in some ways makes the “chase” fun. But come on, do I really have to be a jerk to date you? I am on Match, and its not bad as some of the others who will remain nameless. One should be called Plenty of Flakes.
On flakiness, there are good people out there, and lumping them all into a general category is not smart. However, if someone is making an effort, male or female, give them the respect of being nice, polite. If you aren’t feeling it, put a parachute on, and jump!
That is my 2 cents for the day.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:38 am

I am confused with Dude!

@M. while I believe a lil bit of aggressiveness is OK for a lady I feel both have roles to play. I also feel with an independence flair a woman can still show effort and create great outings in the start just like a man.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:39 am

but as many like to say its a fine line and she can come across thirsty and be labeled as such early on and placed in certain categorical relationships (FWB)

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:41 am

really every Dude wants to get laid right off hand….truly not being naive and I do know men are more physical and visual but still will one or is it cool to make it so known……Courting is cool too! Same resuts I think

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:41 am

Dude

December 16th, 2011
8:42 am

On what level are you confused?

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:44 am

I am trying to sort it out. assessment coming soon but I am confused with you!

M. (pronouced M dot)

December 16th, 2011
8:50 am

@Lady

I feel you. I just think sometimes the media gives women an excuse to use “Tradition as Laziness”. They make them think they dont have to work or put in effort at all! Just bat your eyelashes!!!

nelsonh

December 16th, 2011
8:51 am

That is a great question. i really like it. It may appear that the fella is only making a half effort at dating. Actually, it may be for him, a full invasion. This fella needs a girl to saort of bring him up to speed. Look at Clint Eastwood[when he was younger] he only appeared to be half interested. Even when he was shooting a guy, it was in a days work.
Soooooooo, bring the guy around and up to speed, put a little and get something out.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
8:53 am

and M. I feel your 8:50 as well and that is why I said it is OK for a woman to create a nice date flow early on too……..is there a specific art to it who knows but it can happen and not be perceived as negative. We are adults and just shouldn’t be so limited sometimes

Randyt (okay, you asked for it)

December 16th, 2011
8:59 am

@ Lady…re the question are women really that complicated….oh very much so.

That said, it is not that men don’t want to plan, it is not that they aren’t willing to give 100% (although admittedly they really don’t want to put out that much effort, but they will). It is that once a man gets burned a couple of times by scenarios like I described above, they consider it “simpler” (again that word), to just go straight to Little Caesars (figuratively speaking) and skip around the hassle, than to take a chance on their efforts being wasted or not appreciated.

I’m not saying that every woman does this every time…they don’t…but men struggle with indecisiveness and want to get straight to action. That is how men are typically wired. (I understand that some men are indecisive also, but not as much).

girl on the scene

December 16th, 2011
9:01 am

As a girl out in the dating scene, effor does NOT = $$$
Effort is a guy showing interest, ie, conversation, consistantancy, calling as opposed to only texting, making plans with a girl in a timely manner instead of last minute’ing it (and those plans can be pizza and game – just spending time together and enjoying each others company) . In other words, just make a girl feel special and that you actually think of her when your not face to face.
And I think saying that all women between 2-40 wantto be treated like a “princess” etcand insinuating that they are all materizlistic and only looking for someone to take care of them is completely out of line.
Personally, I’m not looking for anyone to “take care” of me. I’m looking for a man that enjoys my company and I enjoy his and we have a mutal respect for each other – in other words we do things for each other.
And, honestly, I prefer things like opening doors, holding hands, listening to what I have to say and remembering the little things, reaching out and asking me how my days was, etc over a fancy date and “things” any day of the week. And if a guy is doing those things for me, they are always reciprocated and a little more ;)
Just the perspective of a girl that is currently out there.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:01 am

The magic word “APPRECIATION”! Why do I come across men you say they feel they aren’t appreciated?!? Is this the real issue and is it an epidemic?!? Wow!

Randy I now understand.

disco

December 16th, 2011
9:01 am

good morning. folks are chiming in early today.

excuse me please – I like that phrase “just the friendlies”

randy – I’m not even going to take a shot at you. for a lot of folks that scenario is right on the money. I also hate “I don’t know. wherever you want to go”. hence why I generally have a running list of places that I wouldn’t mind going.

dude – while a lot of guys do take the path of least resistance (the low hanging fruit as you put it) there are still some guys that have to prove to themselves that they can pull that other piece. it’s the challenge, it’s the ego, it’s the game.

girl on the scene

December 16th, 2011
9:03 am

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:05 am

girl on the scene like your post! What is with money being spent and what comes with that. sure nothing is free but we ain’t pimping either. True substance is out there I still believe. Far and few between but still it is easier to point out the jerks and keep it moving!

I may be a hopeless romantic but I still believe in romance even through the hurt? Is that fantasy living though?!? hmmmmmmm

Dude

December 16th, 2011
9:06 am

Yup, game, blah blah blah,
Lady- Yes appreciation is lacking on a lot of occasions, I would be a rich man if I got a penny, not even a nickle for every time I went out of my way to do something nice and didn’t even get so much as a thank you.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:07 am

Randy how do you you define a woman’s appreciation and name a few times its been demonstrated?

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:09 am

Dude I see your point and I am not just saying this just because but I truly am a humble lady and I always say THANK YOU, PLEASE, follow up with more thank you’s and even breakdown how grateful I am to be in company of a cool man. A bit much but I can stroke a ego but is stroking egos mandatory all the time?!? is it ongoing? so women become comfy too soon huh?

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:10 am

NP Four Leaf Clover-Atlantic Starr Love It! ;)

girl on the scene

December 16th, 2011
9:11 am

Lady ~ It’s sad but men over the years have euqated $$ $with making women happy. Fancy dates, flowers, the WOW factor to try and impress women. THen once in a realtionship extravagant gifts to make up for poor behavior, etc… and yet they don’t understand why some women “expect” that…It’s like pavlov’s response. ring the bell…what did they really expect would happen over the years?

When in all actuality all men really would have to do is Show the effort in their actions and behaviors. so sad that they don’t get this.

I am a hopeless romantic too and I totally believe in it! I’m right there with you. Fantasy – Hell no!

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:11 am

I don’t feel entitled and being single and even married before made me appreciate what I don’t have in a relationship currently……its learning process!

Bartender

December 16th, 2011
9:13 am

I rather a man go all in or none at all. A little effort can send mixed signals vs you like her enough to put forth effort or you don’t. Fellas you don’t have to spend a ton of money to get a girls attention with scoutmob / groupon / parks / art galleries you should be able to have a blast and really get to know her (if that’s what you want to do).

Kym

December 16th, 2011
9:13 am

Good Morning Sugarplums!

Half-Effort is not worst than no effort..they are equal in my book. If you not gonna give it your all..you might as well do nothing. JMO. If dude is not making any effort I will let it be known..I will even try not to say “Hey joker Step your game up!”j/k But I am not gonna keep telling a grown man the same thang over and over. Next time around I am just gonna not be available..if figure eventually he will catch on. This is going nowhere.

DreamsMaterialize

December 16th, 2011
9:13 am

Anything worth having requires work. On the flip side, what effort does a lady put forth? If you’re assessing our level of interest by our effort, then should we assess yours by the lack of? It seems as though we’re saying, “If a guy likes you, then he puts forth lots of effort. If a woman likes you, then she is receptive to the effort…no effort required on her part.”

Randy You don’t know how many times I’ve been down that road with deciding what to do. Eventually, you’re just tired of all of your ideas getting shot down with no contribution on their part.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:14 am

Show the effort in their actions and behaviors. so sad that they don’t get this. <<<< Love This! I HATE INCONGRUOUSNESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Be you! Even with Dude I respect his stance through the confusion! as long as the informed consent is presented in the start you have to RESPECT it! Play with it or KEEP IT MOVING!

girl on the scene

December 16th, 2011
9:14 am

Dude – sounds like the quality of women you are choosing to date is lacking…a real woman always shows appreciation just like a real man should. Even when i’ve been dating a guy a long periodof time – I never forget to show appreciation, even for the littlest of things. I think it is a matter of respect for the other party. I don’t understand couples that trreat friends and coworkers better than they treat their companion…SMH

Dude

December 16th, 2011
9:14 am

Not stroking ego at all, a good way to show appreciation is if a guy does something nice for you, do something nice back, how many times have you ladies bought a round of drinks when around guys, I am guessing it’s not that many times. Have you taken your “man” out to dinner or surprised him to let him know you are thinking of him, as many times as he tries for you. there are tons of ways to show appreciation, if you are at a movie, he gets the tickets, you buy the popcorn while he goes to get seats, just simple stuff, that guys traditionally have to do all of it, and women traditionally don’t. So it’s far more SIMPLE to show less effort to get what you want then to go and do all that without thank you or any thing to take back.

Into the Light

December 16th, 2011
9:17 am

Morning, all!

I’m with disco…I always have a few ideas on what I would like to do. If you’re really interested in spending time together, you can usually find something that interests you both.

Oh, and Happy Friday!!! :)

disco

December 16th, 2011
9:17 am

oh boy. the $$$ thing. is money everything? nope. is money important? yep. can I fall in love with a broke man? I suppose so but I don’t really want to. best way to keep that from happening is to not date said broke man in the first place. do broke folks need love to? sure but I hope they don’t come sniffing around me to get it.

as for half A efforts. I can’t really think of any off the top that I remember as far as dating. what I think of immediately is advising a child to clean the kitchen and they translate that to washing the dishes. I’m like what happened to wiping the counters, the stove and sweeping the floor, etc. washing dishes alone doesn’t constitute a clean kitchen.

Randyt (okay, you asked for it)

December 16th, 2011
9:18 am

Sidebar to Brian

I’ve read your posts often here and I wanted to comment. I think that maybe you are doing all the right things…but perhaps with all the wrong women….and it is hurting you. No one (or at least not me) likes rejection…it stings. That said, it is sometimes necessary to step back and attempt to evaluate the process, dissecting each element individually to try to identify what element is consistent and perhaps not working.

You have described several times in the blog your approach, and it sounds fine. Yet there seems to be a pattern of rejection that occurs that is starting to work on you inside. For me, when I have had successive failures, I back off and try to isolate what commonality was present in the failures. I ask some of these questions:

Where did we go?
What did we talk about (easy pitfall is to talk about past failures or exes..tempting but never go there)?
What did the women have in common (am I trying to hit the hot “Barbies” when I am more of a studious, brainy type)?
Did i come on too strong?
Did I not come on strong enough?
What was the ratio of how much I talked, and how much I listened (this is an easy pitfall, it is a natural tendency to want to “sell ourselves” when we really need to just let things flow naturally)?

Etc… I’m not guaranteeing success, but I know that I do know that I almost do a mental ledger sheet in my mind after something I had high hopes for falls. I then make a plan for how to not make the same mistakes again. Dating is no different from athletics or studying for exams…it takes a plan and a corrective action strategy. Again it has sounded like you are doing things right mostly, but it is time to determine what needs refining…and then put yourself out there again.

girl on the scene

December 16th, 2011
9:19 am

Dude – actually I do those exact type of things for my man. I love to go to the bar and sneak and pay the tab before he has the chance or excuse myself to the restroom at dinner, find the waitress and pay for our meal before the ticket even hits the table. Because most men that I have dated will not allow me to if I offer or suggest it to waitress in front of them. And I am a single mom on a fixed budget and still like to “treat” my man.

Lady~Living in a fantasy!

December 16th, 2011
9:20 am

@Dude I did that for three years with my ex boyfriend! Nothing new under the sun. Hell we even went to Vegas and WE both spent money on each other….The surprises too! but anyway we bout to beat a dead horse. I get your point.

Into the Light

December 16th, 2011
9:22 am

What was the ratio of how much I talked, and how much I listened (it is a natural tendency …we really need to just let things flow naturally)?

Worth repeating.