Let’s preface this one by saying that everyone likes different things…
Some people love being approached full-on by someone confident who makes it clear what they want.
Others prefer to move more slowly and play it out to see how they feel.
If you think you may be coming on too strong for the particular romantic interest in your life, here is some advice.
What does it mean to come on too strong?
Coming on too strong means that you’re being really intense toward someone and expressing feelings that go beyond what is reasonable given the amount of time you’ve known them.
That might mean talking about getting serious very quickly after getting to know someone, it might mean bombarding them with texts straight after your first date, or it might mean being way too flirty and forward before it’s appropriate to do so.
What are the signs of coming on too strong?
Here are 6 signs you’re coming on too strong. You’ll notice most of them have the word ‘too’ in which gives you a pretty clear hint that coming on strong is all about intensity!
1. Texting too much.
We get it – you like this person and you want to talk to them all the time. You’re keen to get to know them, and you want them to know that you feel that way.
You might think it’s flattering, or that they’ll enjoy knowing how much you like them already.
However, you’ll probably come across as a bit intense if you’re texting them a lot – especially in the early days of dating.
Remember that things are still quite new, and you both have other things going on in your life!
You might like the other person, and you might be pretty sure they feel the same way, but try to avoid having high expectations just yet.
It’s a lot of pressure to put on someone, and, even if they like you, they might feel a bit overwhelmed and irritated by how much you’re messaging them.
What’s more, it’s better to get to know each other on actual in-person dates, and by texting too much, you risk having nothing to talk about.
How to avoid this:
Instead of bombarding their phone with texts, keep yourself busy!
It’s okay to text to chat every so often, and it’s a good way to keep the connection going, just not all the time. Limit yourself and stick to fewer messages.
Chat to a friend about this – if you feel like you really, really need to text them something, text it to your friend instead!
Let them be a ‘filler’ for you so that you can still share funny or silly stories, just not with a person that you’re still getting to know.
2. Texting back too quickly.
It’s hard to hold back a little bit when you really fancy someone, but try not to reply to their texts too soon!
It’s so annoying that there are games to play and ‘rules’ to follow, but some of them make a lot of sense.
If you’re texting back as soon as they send you a message, they might start to wonder why you’re on your phone all the time.
Reverse this – if someone replied to your texts almost instantly, you’d start to wonder just how boring they are and why they have no other friends or hobbies, right? It’s a bit worrying when you put it that way!
How to avoid this:
There’s no ‘set’ time you should wait before texting someone back, but straight away doesn’t always come off very well.
Instead, leave the message unread for a little while. If it’s really bothering you, swipe the notification off your home screen so that it’s not there taunting you every time you look at your phone.
You can mute the conversation during the day so that you’re not tempted to reply too soon, or you can turn off notifications from certain apps so that you need to click into your account to view new messages.
Whatever you can do to limit how rapidly you respond is good. Avoid coming on too strong by pacing your replies!
3. Being too available.
Similar to above, you would start to worry if someone you fancy was constantly available, wouldn’t you?
It would be weird if they never had any existing plans and were always free to see you, or call you.
You’d start to wonder if they had anyone else they spoke to or any hobbies that took up their time.
The more available someone is, the more they risk seeming a little bit needy or desperate – even if that’s far from the truth.
We know that sometimes you’re just really keen to see the person you like, and you want to make sure you have time to hang out with them.
But by being too available, you might seem like you’ve got nothing else in your life going on – that’s a red flag to most people!
They might worry that you’ve dropped other activities or plans to spend time with them, which can be sweet but might also seem like you’re way too invested and already putting pressure on things to work out.
How to avoid this:
Even if you really want to see the person you like, don’t just drop everything for them!
It’s okay to make someone a priority when you’ve determined that things are more serious and you’re on the same page. In the early days, however, it’s just a bit concerning if someone is always free.
Remember that they probably want to date you because of all the cool things you do – they might love the fact that you do lots of yoga or that you spend a few nights a week gaming with friends.
If you suddenly stop doing all of that so that you’re available to see them, you’re dropping a lot of the things they first found attractive about you!
Equally, if you fancied someone because they had similar hobbies to you or were really dedicated to a sports club, you might then find them a bit less interesting and attractive if they suddenly had nothing going on in their life other than seeing you!
Keep yourself busy and make regular plans with other people and with yourself. That way, you’ve got commitments in place already and you’re less likely to drop everything for someone.
It keeps you exciting and interesting in their eyes, it shows that you’ve got something about you, and it keeps the pressure off as you’ve got other stuff going on in your life beyond obsessing about them!
4. Suggesting a label too soon.
There’s no real timeline in place when it comes to dating – some people might want to make things ‘official’ after a few weeks, others might need a few months to figure out how they feel.
If you’re trying to rush things and suggest putting a label on it very quickly, you’re probably coming on too strong.
If you’re still getting to know each other, sticking a label on it or updating your relationship status on Facebook can be really off-putting to the other person.
Even if they like you, they just might not be ready to do that – and the more you push for it, the more they’re going to panic, feel pressured, and consider ending things with you, sadly!
How to avoid this:
However much you’re desperate to shout from the rooftops that you like someone, hold off!
Remind yourself that things have a better chance of working out if you can just slow down and read the room.
If you’ve brought it up once and they seem uncomfortable, drop it. As long as you know where you stand (e.g. you’ve both agreed not to see other people), a label doesn’t really make much difference.
If they’re the ones who are holding back from the label but they still seem keen to be with you, let them set the pace. The more space you give them with it, the more likely they are to speed things up themselves.
Nobody likes being pressured into anything, so just let them decide when they’re ready!
5. Being too physically forward.
Everyone moves at different paces, and it’s all about getting to know someone and figuring out what works for them.
You might happily sleep with someone on the first date if it feels right, but they might want a few dates before they feel comfortable kissing you.
If you’re the kind of person who gets very touchy-feely very soon, there’s a chance you’re coming on too strong.
This can be really off-putting to some people and can feel very intense! They might just want to get to know you, and might only hold hands in public, for example, once they’ve been dating someone for a little while.
They might feel forced or rushed if you’re being quite forward physically.
How to avoid this:
Read the room! If you know that you’re always the first one to make a move when you’re dating, take it slow this time.
Read their body language and act accordingly. If their feet are pointing away from you and their arms are crossed over their body, they might be closing themselves off because they’re shy or not into it.
Understanding how they’re acting can help you work out how to behave in return. If they go in for a hug or a kiss, great! If not, let them take the lead – this way, you’re not making them feel pressured to do anything they don’t want to do.
6. Revealing too much too soon.
If you’re the kind of person who opens up a lot on a first date, you’re probably coming on too strong!
It’s great that you’re confident and you want to share parts of yourself with someone, but it can be very intense for some people.
They might want to get to know you, but you digging deep and sharing childhood trauma, or intimate details, might put them off because it’s just… too much.
How to avoid this:
Stick to more neutral topics on a first date (or even a second or third date for that matter!)
It’s okay to share your personality and be yourself, but avoid sharing too much too soon.
They have time to get to know you, so you don’t need to rush it and give them everything all at once.
Imagine how odd you’d find it if someone told you literally everything about themselves (including some very personal information!) on the first date. You’d worry that they might not have great boundaries or that they’re committing too much, and you’d feel under pressure.
Hold back on some of the deeper details and save them for later – when they really deserve the right to get to know you on a more intimate level.
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