10 Dating “Games” You Should Be Playing To Get (And Keep) The Guy

In general, honesty is the best policy, but let’s face it — dating is a lot more enjoyable when you have a game plan for dealing with every curveball a guy might throw at you. There are ways to approach dating that at first glance might seem like playing games, but are actually nothing more than good sense. There isn’t a guy out there who doesn’t love the chase, so it’s up to you to give it to him to some degree. Don’t consider it a strategy you’ll abandon once you get the guy. Adopt it as a lifestyle, and stick to it until it comes naturally. That’s how you’ll keep the guy.

  1. Never show your hand. Just like in poker, we all bluff sometimes. But for your bluffs to reach maximum effect, you can’t let him know that he might actually have the upper hand. If he knows you have a history of making empty threats, he’s not going to take you seriously when it matters most.
  2. You don’t always have to be so nice. If you think about it, being nice when all you want to do is unleash the super b*tch that’s writhing inside of you, is actually the biggest game of all. By never letting him see your genuine reaction to something, you’re making him believe you’re someone you’re not. How long do you really think you’ll be able to keep that up?
  3. Straddle the line between showing interest and playing hard to get. Ever notice the contradiction between a man’s desire to chase and how turned on he is by an aggressive woman? Dating should be like a game of volleyball. Sometimes the ball is in your court, and you have to send it back to him if you want him to keep playing. If you expect him to do all the work at all times and never give him anything in return, he will lose interest. It shouldn’t take much to let him know you’re receptive to his attempts, so throw him a bone once in a while.
  4. Keep him on his toes with a few secret plays. Just because you turned down his attempt at a spontaneous date the first time, doesn’t mean you always have to. Rules are meant to be broken sometimes, so don’t be afraid to go off script and catch him off guard. He’ll be forced to improvise on the fly, and that’s when you’ll see who he really is.
  5. Maintain a little mystery. Remember, a relationship is a marathon, not a sprint. It isn’t a mad race to see who can reveal their entire life story first. If he always feels like there’s more he still doesn’t know about you, he’ll be more motivated to work harder to get to know you.
  6. Reward him for good behavior, and ignore bad behavior. He’s not a dog; it’s not your responsibility to train him to be a good boy. Appreciate him for being a gentleman, and simply move on if he’s not. Positive reinforcement will get you so much further than berating him for every little thing you think he’s doing wrong. If he’s being an idiot just to get your attention, you need to establish from the get-go that you won’t be tolerating any BS.
  7. Give him the chance to prove himself. If you allow him to do the bare minimum, that’s what he’ll do. There’s nothing wrong with having high expectations because if he really wants to, he’ll meet them. All you need to do is let him.
  8. Don’t make him your #1 priority. You don’t have to jump at every opportunity to spend time with him. Especially not at first. He’ll end up taking you for granted if you’re at his beck and call, and you’ll become infinitely less interesting to him if it’s clear you have no life of your own.
  9. Test his commitment. The only way to know whether he’s genuinely interested, rather than simply going for the low-hanging fruit, is to turn him down a few times. Does he shrug and move on to a girl who will hang all over him without any effort on his part? If so, you’ll know it’s not you he wants, it’s just a girl — any girl.
  10. Take opportunities to show him that he isn’t your only option. Guys are competitive by nature. If he sees another guy paying attention to you, it’ll remind him that not only are you a catch and he’s lucky to have you, but there are plenty of other guys ready to swoop in if he messes up.
By day, Courtney is a digital marketing copywriter living in Toronto, Canada. By night, she's a freelance lifestyle writer who, in addition to Bolde.com, contributes regularly to AmongMen.ca, IN Magazine, and SheBlogs Canada. Want to chat about relationships, Stephen King or your favorite true crime podcast/documentary/book? She's on Twitter @courtooo.