How To Avoid Time Wasters When Dating

Haven’t we all been there? We meet someone new and invest our time and energy into getting to know them only to learn that they really were never interested at all, they were just passing the time or having fun or feeding their ego AND wasting your time. Some do it on purpose, others don’t know they’re doing it at all (yes, it is possible to be THAT clueless) but how do you know? Can you actually distinguish between someone who’s seriously trying to get to know you and a time waster? How DO you avoid time wasters when dating and looking for someone serious? Well, I’ll tell you. It’s actually easier than you might think.

Time Wasters versus Serious Dating

Time-Wasters-When-DatingWhat is a time waster really? How do you know? Well, first of all let’s be fair, haven’t we all been guilty of wasting other people’s time when we’re not really all that interested in seriously dating them? It happens, often times, we just like the attention or they feed our ego or they’re a “new toy” we want to play with and completely disregard (or not notice) that they have other intentions in mind. I’ve done it and I’m certainly not proud of it, but now that I’m more aware, I don’t do it anymore.

A time waster is out to feed their ego, plain and simple. You will know them by what they say and what they do. It’s actually quite easy if you know what you’re looking for. Some people are master manipulators and experts at what they do so you can’t tell, but on the most part that’s not the case. So how do you know someone is wasting your time? Well, do they ever mention you and them in the context of “us” or is it all about them? Do they ever mention going on a “real date” with you or is it “hanging out” or just talking on the phone or texting only? Do they make an effort to REALLY get to know who you are and take an interest in your life? Do they care about what happens to you? Are they preoccupied with just getting in your pants? Does something just not feel right with them? Do they disappear for days on end? Do they have a history of meaningful relationships or not? Are the red flags always waving? Are they emotionally unavailable? Well, you get the picture.

How To Avoid Time Wasters When Dating

actions-words-matterSo now that you know what to look out for, how do you avoid these time wasters when dating? Well, it starts with knowing what you’re looking for. Know yourself and be true to yourself and your intentions. If you’re not really looking for a relationship then you won’t be bothered by time wasters because really you’re just going with the flow. If you are looking for something more serious however, you need to invest your time wisely. That doesn’t mean that you will only date people who you’ll end up having a real relationship with, because you never know unless you try, but, you will date with purpose. It might happen that you meet someone and go on a few dates and it doesn’t work out and that’s completely OK, but you tried. Actually, that will probably be your experience on the most part.

What else can you do to avoid time wasters when dating? Here are some more tips:

  • be clear about your dating intentions and expectations
  • be selective about who you talk to and date (just because they’re interested or they’re attractive doesn’t make them an ideal partner)
  • assess people on their actions and not their words (time wasters will promise the world and deliver nothing)
  • pay attention to the frequency and quality of their contact with you (are they actually trying to get to know you in a real way?)
  • are they more interested in having sex than actually courting you? (sex is good but it shouldn’t eclipse non sexual activities)
  • do they talk about other people they’re “talking to” in the same way as they’re talking to you?
  • listen to your gut (goes without saying)

But remember, dating is a process and someone getting to know you isn’t wasting your time if they are actually getting to know you by dating you and making a conscious effort. Don’t focus too much on the outcome, focus more on finding the right person who makes a good companion and the rest will fall into place where it’s supposed to. So there you have it, how to avoid time wasters when dating. It’s inevitable that some will indeed slip through the cracks, but on the most part choosing your dates wisely will help you avoid people who don’t want the same things you do. Before making an emotional investment in someone you’re talking to or dating, know what you’re getting into and that way you’ll avoid time wasters when dating. People will only waste your time if you let them, remember that, so don’t let them. Plain. Simple.

Readers: Have you encountered time wasters when dating? What was your experience? What did you do about it? I would love to hear about it in the comments section below!

Your Sister in Dating Bliss,

Single Dating Diva

Copyright Single Dating Diva



  1. This might actually why a friend I’ve been hanging out with for a year never replied after I texted them recently. We stopped chatting after she said we should talk on Skype. I’d asked for her Skype details (don’t you need their email?) but never heard back. Too late now, but should I have phoned her then? Dammit, I think I’m a serious but clueless time waster.


  2. Us guys have it tough when trying to get the measure right with ladies. You will see on my Tinder Tips how I usually go about progressing from app to date. I dont usually hang around as you get in the messaging circle, and there are a lot of people who appear to be very willing to text but not progress to chatting on the phone or actually meeting.

    Then once meeting it gets even more complicated, how to flirt without looking like a player but at the same time not just coming across as a potential nice “Friend”.

    The players of the field have made it very hard to flirt as a lot of women have become wise the to over zealous player who wants to just get in her pants and as a result shuts down as soon as a genuine flirt is used.


  3. Yes -The Mr. Good For Right Now theory does not help in finding Mr. Right because your time is focused on that Mr. Good For Right Now. It is a time waster unless you are just looking for a booty call and in that case it is good for late night! LOL


  4. Thank you for giving us ideas on how to determine whether our date is a waster. But I do believe that going out to a date is like having fun with someone. In my own experience, I`ve gone through a lot of dating but none of them became serious. I never thought of dating as a waste of time.


  5. What a brilliant article!

    Most of us have been there and wasted our time with people who were totally unsuitable and would never give us what we wanted either because we weren’t clear on or honest with ourselves about what we were looking for exactly or because we missed the red flags (which is easy to do when you are enjoying the attention and thrill of a potential relationship). Being clear on what you want, paying attention to people’s actions rather than their words and being strong enough to let people go is definitely the key.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and suggestions


  6. We cant opt out of this situation,we all find ourself in one way or the other,to me its part of life. One has to go through this in order to make right decision regarding relationship.


  7. Say hey let’s go for a drink at (convenient time and date) and actually test the would be suitor. 20% of women will never meet guys from dating sites no matter how horny or interested they appear. It’s a psychological hurdle they will never overcome. Knowing this will make it easier to move quickly to the next profile and avoid wasting precious time.

    Yes you will need to go on A LOT of dates to find the right person so have very low expectations. 1/100 is the new dating stat that I’ve just made up.


    • In over 40 online dates in a year I’ve only had one not accept the “wanna grab a drink” line, and she was also the only one that called me from a private number after we were chatting on the site. There is your psychological hurdle statistic right there 😉
      Actually she DID accept it, but followed up with “I am busy this week blah blah” and I never contacted her again, noticed that she blocked me on the site about a week or two


  8. Great blog! I think there’s even a more simple rule. If they haven’t made an attempt to ask you on a date within a week of initial contact, time sucker. Delete.


  9. i myself will ask every match in the beginning two important questions;

    How long have you been on tinder?
    How long have you been single?

    I end the conversation immediately if she says she’s just joined tinder and or is recently single as they will more than likely flake. A girl in that situation has probably joined on the recommendation of a friend and wont appreciate a nice guy talking to her because she will automatically assume there are other nice guys that haven’t matched with her yet and will keep her options open, so she will fob you off when you try to plan a date. You have greater chance going on a date with a girl if she has been on the app a fair while and has seen the pros and cons already as well as being a gentleman.


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