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Simply Solo Spotlight: Dating Red Flags

December 20, 2011

100RFLogoToday’s Simply Solo Spotlight is written by Bill Nichols, one of the men behind 100 Red Flags, a website examining the top 100 things perpetually single women do to drive men away. It’s definitely a good read for anyone wondering why they are still single … especially someone who can handle possibly getting mad because something they do is on the list! (Like my red flag of only being able to cook with an oven!)

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at:

Dating Red Flags

The Co-Founder of ‘100 Red Flags’ starts with himself, and suggests you do the same

I have a confession to make. I’m single, in my late-twenties, and I have red flags.

BillI’m the youngest of four children and I was spoiled growing up. That is, if you consider always getting my way a red flag. Or having a money drawer in the kitchen that I could grab from at any time. Or having separate meals made for me because I didn’t like what everyone else was eating. Or the fact that I’ve never, to this day, mowed a lawn.

Second, I’m not a big movie guy. In fact, sitting for two hours watching a movie is one of the last things I’d want to do. Most women look forward to having their guy cuddle with them every weekend and share a passionate exchange of how great the movie was. I can take care of the cuddling part, but there’s a good chance I’ll either be asleep or disconnected by the second scene. That’s no fun.

I’m also a horrible cook – as in I still can’t seem to figure out any kitchen utensils other than a George Foreman Grill. This means I’ll eat out a ton, not be able to help in the kitchen, and expect my girl of choice to do the cooking for me.

Think that’s it? Think again. My choice of occupation is also a red flag. I’m an entrepreneur, which some women consider the same as unemployed. I work in coffee shops, haven’t cut my hair in twelve weeks, and Airbnb is my largest source of revenue.

In the real world, it’s natural for people to judge. And in the real world of dating, there’s a 100% chance that women see these things and make a judgment about who I am and how good of a guy I am for them – but should I care? Should I change anything? Should you change your red flags?

You’ll undoubtedly get relationship advice saying that you shouldn’t care. That’s absurd, and I believe wholeheartedly that you should care. But first realize that caring doesn’t necessarily mean changing. Rather, it’s caring enough to have an understanding that, whether you like it or not, people build assumptions about who you are, and these assumptions are based around things that you do. And I believe that it’s only through this awareness that I can either change, or make sure that a woman I am dating sees the depth of great things that go beyond any superficial red flags.

That’s why it’s so important to constantly examine yourself, have this understanding of what might be going through the minds’ of the opposite sex, and decide how you’ll handle any of your own red flags. Here’s a list of what I’m doing with mine:

Spoiled Childhood – Not that this comes up in conversation right away, but it can be assumed through the younger child thing. Because I know the stigma surrounding it, I make sure a woman knows how much I appreciate the art of giving and am filled with so much joy when I’m taking care of others. I make fun of the fact that I never had to mow a lawn, but I demonstrate a learned sense of responsibility as I fix things in my condo and am a board member of my condo association. Also, my role as the youngest also shares the benefit of having three older sisters, from which I’ve learned a lot about women, including their habits, emotions, and all of the love and compassion that they have to give. This will make some woman very happy some day.

Movie-watching – I suck at watching movies, but I’m working on it – for instance, I created a Netflix queue with the Top 10 movies that I’ve never seen (think: The Godfather, Terminator, Jaws, Animal House) but that everyone always talks about. Plus, with the right person I’ll be excited to share that time with her, and I’ll make sure she knows that and feels that.

Cooking – Even though I’ve thought about taking classes or something, I’m going for the Foreman. But any woman that dates me knows that if she ever needs a restaurant recommendation, I’ve got it. Whether she’s looking to go out with her friends, a client, or is hoping I’ll pick a fun spot for us to try out, she’ll know I can come through. Not to mention, I’ll make sure she also knows that I make some killer paninis and stir-frys.

Entrepreneur – I’m not changing that which I’m most passionate about – that is, making a difference in the world, being in control of my life, and choosing to build something vs. sitting back being a cog in the wheel. Since I’m not changing this, I can make sure that any woman I date understands why this is so important to me, and why it should be admired vs. avoided. But again, it’s better than getting upset that the judgment is there, because I understand it and am not offended by it.

By having an awareness of why these might be red flags, I’m now able to address them by either changing, or providing the information necessary to squash them when I’m on a date. Ignoring my own red flags will not help.

It’s easier for a guy to accept these things, though, and that’s precisely the reason why was started. Women need a push to recognize some of the things that they do that could be keeping them single. When I point out a potential red flag, some women say, “Guys don’t really care about that,” to which I’ll reply, “Yeah, well if they didn’t care about it, they were probably just looking for sex, and a relationship just happened to come along with it.” So, however much a woman wants to deny these things, or complain that it isn’t true, it’s only going to get her so far. Instead, her best bet is to understand the way that men think, have an awareness around what might be considered a red flag, and then make her own choice to ignore it, change it, or in most cases, just make sure the guy sitting across from her has enough information to see who she truly is.

So, Simply Solo readers…are you aware of your red flags? Do you agree or disagree with red flags men raise? And do you choose to ignore them or do you address them?

Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. December 20, 2011 11:40 am

    Wow! I always considered the red flags to be stuff like abandonment, addiction, living with your parents after age 30…but never some of the things mentioned. I mean, I have kids which is a huge red flag for sure depending on the guy.

    Even so, I don’t think I’m willing to change much for anyone. I like who I am and I am working to make myself better every day. Do if someone doesn’t like it after I explain things, then I don’t need him.

    • December 20, 2011 12:16 pm

      Yeah, totally. Most of the time when publications or experts write up red flags, it’s painfully obvious stuff. A lot of the red flags that we’re bringing to the table are things that could be noticed earlier on in a relationship, before you even REALLY know someone.

      Good to hear that you’re sticking to your guns and trying to make yourself better. It’ll still be important to know what guys might think, though. Sometimes it could be the difference between date #1 and date #2, and you wouldn’t need to change who you are as much as be more aware of what you’re doing.

  2. December 20, 2011 12:57 pm

    Ive always known what my major red flag is: first born, Leo, type A workaholic. Oh and my job is to schedule people
    At first a guy usually doesn’t mind, or even thinks its cool because Im not the clingy type, but because I plan everything there usually isn’t room for adjustments or to be spontaneous. Lol. I’m aware and am working on it…. Kinda.

    • December 20, 2011 3:39 pm

      Good. No point trying to put a square peg in a round hole and trying to date a Project Manager or something, but even just asking someone “what do you want to do?” could be enough. Just don’t complain if you don’t like it 😉

  3. December 20, 2011 7:34 pm

    Forget the red flags…I want to know how to make stir-fry using a Foreman Grill.

    • December 20, 2011 8:04 pm

      Nice. I figured a microwave was assumed. Vegetables and Chicken on a Foreman, Uncle Ben’s Microwavable Brown Rice, and sauce = great stir fry. But yeah, bro, I figured saying Foreman would be representative of my not being able to cook.

  4. December 20, 2011 8:28 pm

    My own potential red flags for dudes? Hmmm. I’m kind of a loner/anti-social. Hanging out with people is often more of a hassle than a joy for me. Not 100% of the time of course, but in the general, day-to-day sense, I prefer to come home and chill after work versus going to happy hour or hanging out at a friend’s house. (Note: This does not apply to someone I am dating. I am nearly always happy to be around whoever I’m seeing.)

    My goals are my priority. I want to travel excessively and write for a living. I’m also very much devoted to fitness and I get antsy if I can’t run and/or go to the gym regularly. And by “regularly” I mean at least five days a week. I’m not OCD about it, but I’m happiest when I’m active with my training.

    I don’t want children. Ever. (And at 27, I am qualified to say that.)

    I’m extremely mellow. I don’t get worked up about much of anything, whether it’s good or bad. (Typically I receive more compliments about this than complaints, but I have had a couple of guys tell me I don’t express emotion very well.)

    Other than that… I’m completely awesome. As far as handling those things to accommodate the desires of someone I date, well, they’re pretty much core pieces of who I am. I’m not a chameleon and I have no intentions of changing to please anyone except myself. Luckily, I thoroughly understand the importance of compromise and can adapt easily to new and different situations.

    Great post, I enjoyed it! Not very often are we asked to look at ourselves instead of analyzing the other person.

    • December 20, 2011 10:54 pm

      Thanks! And I guess I’d have to comment on your comment about “Note: This does not apply to someone I am dating…”

      It’s important to point this out as some guy may never get to “dating status” (let’s say, a couple dates, even) if he gets the impression that you are a loner at times. So in other words, you may never even get to show him that you’re not a loner ALL the time.

      Sounds like, though, you’ve got your head on your shoulders or whatever the old saying is…thanks for the kind words and for reading!

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