How to answer the dating question in DC: What do you do?
Knowing what to talk about on a date and how to start the conversation can be a challenge for many people. It is also one of the main topics people ask me as a DC Dating Coach. The question “what to you do” inevitably comes up in a conversation often right at the beginning. People do this because it is a huge part of their life, because they don’t know what else to talk about, or because they are trying to get you talking. Unfortunately this question can be annoying to some people, especially if they don’t feel that what they are doing defines who they are and what they are truly passionate about. So how do you deal with this so you can have a great conversation and really connect with someone new?
Some DC Dating Advice
The good news is there are ways to answer this question without it turning into a mundane or dead end conversation. Here are some quick tips to answer this question in a way that leads to a more interesting conversation and possibly more than just a date!
1) Redirect the conversation to something that is not work-related. Instead of responding by talking about what you do for a living, talk about an activity that you do that you enjoy or otherwise find meaningful. For example, for fun I like to go canoeing, dance, paint go to concerts at a local music venue, I go to baseball games, volunteer for a charity. The key is to be interested and show some passion for something, anything really.
2) Turn your answer into a short story. This gives the other person opportunities to share their experiences or ask follow up questions or you can follow your story by asking them an open-ended question like has something like that ever happened to you? or have you done something like that?
For example you could say” while I do have a job that pays the bills, I find what I do as a volunteer for the big brothers / big sisters program to be very meaningful … just the other day I was talking to this kid who had never been to the Spy Museum and I am going to take them next week!
OR you could joke “I have a job, but if I told you they might have to kill you (haha)” I do play on a kickball team, our name is (a pun or innuendo.) The other day someone on my team kicked the ball so hard it went flat. He literally kicked the air out of the ball! The outfielder then had to throw the ball in like he was tossing a hat …
3) If you do want to talk about your job, talk about it after talking about something fun first and try to pull a positive out of it that you do like that’s interesting or unique about it.
For example I work as a corporate lawyer right now which can be very stressful and lead to some long hours. However within the next few years I will have paid off all of the student loans and be ready to buy a house. However the work I do is also a challenge and part of what I do includes some pro bono work on the side to help those who cannot afford a lawyer which gives me the opportunity to help people like …
So there you have it. For more examples about how to have great conversations that can help turns dates into mates, check out my book or contact me to setup a dating coach session in Washington, DC or by phone.