Gentlemen, The 5 Texting Mistakes You're Probably Making

by Will Zhou

Are you textually active? Seeing as nearly 95 percent of 18-35 year olds send text messages, you probably answered “yes.” Even though we might not want to admit it, texting has become ingrained in our daily lives – yet, most of us guys have trouble understanding how to effectively use it to communicate with the opposite sex.

The truth is, we all want to communicate more effectively with the people whom we like, but it’s not always so easy. The beauty of texting is that it gives us as much time as we need to respond.

But unfortunately, that’s also the curse. A lot of us will spend far too much time carefully planning out each message in order to impress the lady who we’re texting. Sound familiar?

Well, days of spending 20 minutes to plan a single text message are over — so are the days of self-induced headaches from not knowing what to say. Realizing the five most common texting mistakes that guys make will help you to become a texting master.

1. Sending a poor initial text.

A lot of guys strain themselves to think of a witty first message, but it’s absolutely not necessary. This can actually reduce your chances that she will reply.

Let’s go over the two elements of a good first text:

One: it should be simple and concise. Do not write an essay. If she happens to see a massive block of text when she’s fairly busy, do you think she’ll be in the right state of mind to soak in the message and formulate a reply?

Probably not. More likely, she’ll put it off and if she’s not that into you, she might just put it off forever.

Two, it should be sent relatively soon after you get the number. Some guys stubbornly abide by the “three-day rule” before contacting a girl, but that’s tomfoolery.

The problem with the “three-day rule” is that if the girl gave out her number to several guys in the same day or night, she might not remember you after three days.

It’s okay to text a girl immediately after getting her number. It’s not desperate; it’s basic communication. No matter what, I’d recommend sending a text within 24 hours of getting the number. Something simple like this works just fine:

 “Hey Hannah, nice running into you at ABC Bar! Save my number. –Will”

Make sure you sign your name at the end of the first text so there’s zero chance of confusion.

2. Beating around the bush.

AKA: taking too long to ask her out.

This is a fatal mistake. Guys think that they once they get a girl’s number, they should start building attraction through texts. Unfortunately, texting is essentially just words on a screen. There’s no vocal tonality or body language — two necessary ingredients in building a connection. Generally, you can only lose attraction through text.

The lesson here is you should be building attraction during your initial face-to-face interaction, leading up to when you ask for the number. Remember, the primary reason for getting a number is to set up a future date.

Think about it from a female’s perspective. You meet an attractive guy and agree to give him your number. If he seemed cool (and not creepy), you’ll hope that he asks you out. But instead, he decides to text you a hundred questions to get to know you and tries to be clever with every reply. This continues on and on and on. Would you still be interested in this guy?

It’s important to consider the fact that attraction expires. Oftentimes, a girl has multiple suitors, and if one guy isn’t decisive enough to ask her out, the girl will go for the guy who is decisive. She’s not going to wait on any one guy forever.

3. Writing block after block of text.

Have you ever received a huge block of text that made you question “Why?” when you got it?

Maybe you felt annoyed. Maybe you felt confused. Or maybe, you felt burdened to reply with an equally lengthy text.

For some reason, many guys miss the point of texting. Basically, texting is a convenient way to communicate with short, efficient messages. But unfortunately, most guys spend far too much time crafting the “perfect” message. They’ll come up with a lengthy and witty reply to everything. They’ll try to have a detailed conversation with the hope of building attraction. As I touched on earlier, texting isn’t ideal for this.

However, texting is ideal for logistics. Short and sweet texts are the best. For example:

“Hey Hannah, let’s grab a bite at XYZ Café this week. How does lunch on Friday sound?”

Texting is awesome for getting a girl’s schedule. It’s awesome for setting a time and place to meet up. Still, don’t be 100 percent mechanical in your texts. Use witty banter to show off your personality, but the wit that girls enjoy is more casual and effortless — nothing lengthy or forced.

4. Giving her no chance to reply.

This is common sense, but when it comes to dating, common sense seems to slip the mind of too many.

If you text a girl and she doesn’t reply, you shouldn’t send a follow-up message after an hour. Or two hours. Persistence can get you the date, but sending “Are you there?” an hour after your initial text is ironically the best way to ensure you never hear from her again.

How long is a reasonable amount of time to wait before following up? From getting multiple girls’ perspectives on this, I recommend waiting at least a full day — 24 hours. Even though a girl may have seen your text, she might not have replied because she was too busy to formulate a response. So, give her a chance to reply before you send a follow up.

5. Not setting the exact time and date.

Here’s the deal – if you’re going to ask a girl out on a date, you must provide the exact time and place. Many girls look to guys to lead them in these situations and it’s irritating to the girl if the guy can’t make up his mind on exactly where and when to go. Once you get a girl’s schedule, you should set up the date. Here’s an example:

“Hey Hannah, let’s grab a coffee at this week. What’s your schedule like?”

“Hey, Will! I’m busy Monday - Wednesday but I’m free Thursday and Friday.”

“Ok, how’s 3:00 pm Friday at ABC Coffee Shop?”

“Works for me. I’m down”

Again, short and sweet. With this type of communication, there won’t be any confusion.

Guys, learn from these five texting mistakes and prosper. Though we’ve all made these mistakes, they’re actually quite easy to fix once we’re aware that we’re doing them. Remember that texting is best suited for logistics, not for building a connection.

Top Photo Courtesy: Tumblr