Score That Charming Date


In the quest for love? Behavioral science can help. Send your question to Questions may be revised and edited.

Dear Maze,

I met a charming, witty man the other day, and couldn't help thinking about him. I don't know if he feels romantic with me though. He is definitely someone I'd like to keep as a friend even if we can't go down the romance path. I wanted to ask him out to find out more. I'm evaluating several options. Concert? Restaurant? Park? Ideally, it should feel natural and no awkwardness. Of course, I'm hoping for a high chance of a "yes" to my request. What's the best way to do? –Jamie

This may sound counter intuitive. The best way to ask someone out is to ask for their help. Moving, buying electronics, negotiating contract with your landlord, etc anything you can use an extra pair of hands or a second opinion would be good. First, it's hard for them to say "no" to your request for help. Second, you can naturally observe them solving problems and team working with you. Third, most important, the process of helping you triggers their cognitive bias of Effort Justification. When people make sacrifices to fulfil a task, the effort is often rationalized by elevating the attractiveness of the goal. People come to love what they suffer to achieve. In your case, if he puts in a lot of work for you, you must be very special. His mind would whisper to him.

So the best way to score them? Make them work for you!

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have a great time, and come out with a lifetime partner.