So many guys want to know the best way to write an email. It’s a good question, and naturally, something people would want to know. However, sometimes even more important than learning how to write a great email is, learning how not to write an email. With that said, here are the top 3 mistakes you need to avoid!

1. Asking a woman, “Can I have your number?”

Of course we need to get a woman’s phone number sooner or later if things are going well, but the problem with the above question is that we are asking for it as if we need permission. We need to assume she will say yes no matter what.  If things are going well, don’t ask, tell her to give it to you.

Instead, end the email with something similar to, “Well you seem like an interesting girl. I wouldn’t mind meeting up for a drink sometime. Hit me up with your phone number and I’ll give you a call this week.”

Now you are no longer asking or trying to live up to her, you are calling the shots and you are the one in control. This puts you in a position of high power and makes you appear to be the alpha male that girls are naturally attracted to you.

Asking reeks of desperation and weakness. Telling shows confidence and builds attraction.

2. Asking a woman, “Do you want to go out to dinner sometime?”

Again, this hits on all of the mistakes listed above. Also, dinner dates are very unoriginal. Most women have been on dozens of dinner dates that clearly have not worked out. Psychologically, you are placing yourself in the same boring category as her last ten dates before you have even met.

In addition, paying for an expensive dinner also comes across as if you are desperate, and trying to earn her approval. We should not have to buy her feelings for us. This is what guys who are desperate to be liked do. Love should come naturally, not through how much money we shell out.

Finally, dinner dates create a lot of distance between you and your date. It is very hard to touch each other and communicate with your bodies. When this happens, it is very easy to fall into the “friend” category, which often happens after a dinner date. Going in for the first kiss will feel awkward at the end of the night if there has been no previous touching.

Ever have a great date full of great conversation and no pick up when you call for a second date?  Odds are the above reason is why.

3. Going overboard with compliments.

Many guys eventually get so great at emailing that they start to receive tons of flattering compliments from females. This should happen all the time once you get experienced at presenting yourself in the right way.

However, don’t make the mistake of responding with comments like, “I really like you,” “You seem great,” or “I think we’d be a perfect match.”

Even if they are doing it first, saying it back ends the chase and kills tons of attraction. Women can be very quick to change their emotions. You must not fall into this trap!


Joshua Pompey is the author of three online dating books for men, and runs a profile writing service that comes with a “110% Guarantee”. For more information, click online dating advice or online dating tips!
  1. Amazing. It seems to me that your advice is geared toward teen-agers or the immature, or to the “player” we are advised to be aware of. Honesty, sincerity, and being a gentleman work best with today’s female. A “first meet” should not be dinner, but certainly on a first “date” is the respectable way to go…..”Touching”, being hands, arms, knees, can wait until the next date, or a walk after dinner. And lastly, compliments are always most welcome, as long as they are sincere. Really now, are you writing to train “players?”…..Just trying to be honest and more helpful to your readers male readers.

  2. I actually agree with a couple of your no-no’s! I hate “easy” compliments. At least at first. And I do agree about a dinner date…awkward if not 110% on target. An activity gives a basis for conversation even if you find you’re not on your “dream date”!

    As for touching….I find some men needing to bring that up and more asap…I mean even in an e-mail. (doesn’t feel safe or attractive) I guarantee that a woman will let you know if she wants to be touched…how quickly and in what way. Just pay attention and don’t have an over powering agenda!

    And as far as telephone numbers go…just make plans then and there and then ask to exchange numbers if plans change. Or real simple…just tell a women you would like to call her…then ask if you can have her number. If someone is playing games it will show. Just take a breath and be yourself. IMHO!!!!

  3. As a woman, I totally disagree. Now wonder it is so difficult to find a decent man cause they are taking terrible advice from other men. Of course a diner date is nice and if a man wants to take you out for a first date, he should ideally be wiling to make some kind of invesment; however, if I like a guy a cup of tea or coffee is just as good, basically I either like the go and want to go out with him or not. As far as asking for the number, yes ask me if I am ready, some men want it too soon and are not respectful of my feelings about giving my number. As far as complements, come on what woman doesn’t want a good complement, as long as it is genuine and not because they want something in return. So that article is very inaccurate, look who wrote it a man, come on men, ask us woman what we want not the men.

  4. Josh’s advice is really just generic.

    I get it that he doesn’t date much himself. If he did, he would know that both men and women are for the most part clueless in these areas, so not all will notice the faux pas he lists as fatal mistakes.

    Most of us are just trying to find someone, and we will gladly give up a phone number, or meet in a public place in an effort to find that “chemistry”.

    Be nice, engaging, interesting. SPELLING COUNTS! So does syntax, especially if English is your first language.

  5. just show them your check book…….that works everytime on jdate !

  6. Hey Bud, I don’t know what you have been smoking. The day of men dominating women is long over. Today woman want to be treated with respect, dignity, and wanting. Enough of the crap that you must prove yourself at a first e-mail, a first date. etc. ?She has as much on the line as he has and in many cases more. Remember why you are on this site. You are looking to find that someone who can make you feel as important as they are.

    Remember personal recognition takes time and patience. I have been there but no longer.

    Happy and satisfied with my life and love


  7. Krissy – I mean this with the ut most respect – you don’t know what you are talking about! Most women don’t know what they want or if they do they don’t admit to themselves. It would be nice if we didn’t have to play games but unfortunately we do until we get into comfortable point in a relationship. Dinner is an absolute no no on a first date. You should be worried about getting to know one another not what to order.

    Best first dates are usually over drinks – both parties can relax and be at ease. Josh’s point about touching is important. There have been psychological studies about this showing that people grow closer emotionally through physical contact so sitting at a tiny table with a glass of wine and the ability to brush up against the other person’s hand has a better shot a making a connection then having dinner plates between you.

    Asking for a phone number is a little more complicated issue. Internet dating still puts people at a bit of uneasiness. I respect that some women don’t like to give out their number so quickly but at the same like most people who are looking to date I’m not looking for a pen pal. I usually wait for a third email to ask if I could call the person. At that point, if the girl doesn’t want to give me her number it’s time to move on. But I can see the logic in approaching it in that third email as Josh instructed. It puts things in a little more positive frame.

    I agree about not giving compliments in emails. You haven’t met the person. How genuine can it sound? Telling someone that you think you have things in common or would get along is fine but past there is just weird. And going overboard with compliments will get you no where. It reeks of desperation. Both men and women enjoy the mystery of a new relationship. Will he or she call? Etc.

    Lastly, I find it funny that Josh’s biggest critics here are women. How many women have each of you dated? You may know what you like but this article is written for the general public (i.e. what most women like; not individuals).

  8. “You seem like an interesting girl.” Really? Maybe in Jr High, but most adult women I know would shoot lazer beams of disapproval if you referred to them as an “interesting girl”. Besides, attractive women get TONS of emails, so one of the keys to cutting through the herd of men is to pay attention to detail. Set yourself apart and comment on something SPECIFIC, and say it in an interesting way. Something like, “I noticed in your profile that you’re a gemini…how do I know I won’t get your evil twin on our next date?” Unless she responds with “There’s not going to be a next date,” you’ve already asked her out again, you’ve shown that you pay attention, and best of all, you have teased her a little bit, and made it clear you aren’t afraid to be playful.

  9. Who is his/her RIGHT MIND would want a woman to begin with? True they can come in handy….but since most of them are a pain in the ass, it’s just easier to have them look for a man, that way a man can have a choice of up to at least 40 of them vying for his affections and such.

    No, women are just a dime a dozen and to find one that is remarkable and somewhat good, if just rare, but not impossible!

    Even the ‘great books’ talk about women as having an insatiable appetite for men…….no wonder even the ugliest of men can still find a woman and marry her……not tops in good looks….LOL….or anything else for that matter! Just saying……..

  10. Jan — THANK YOU at least a million times for your comment about spelling and syntax! Why do people think their opinions are important enough to be published and read, but not important enough to be proofread first?

  11. I was reading The Top 3 Mistakes Men Make. While I was reading, I had thought up good ideas of meeting rather than dinner. In a public area for meeting and conversations like at a mall or Starbucks for coffee. During the conversation and afterwards it is best to be friends and try to agree to meet next time for some activities, movies, museums, or outdoors. Someday being friends can turn into more than friends. You will be surprised.

  12. THE TOP 3 . LUCE . MONEY . and A** H**S. (thiz all you need)…

  13. The dinner idea is not so bad. You can make it interesting by asking her what her favorite restaurant is or favorite food and find out where they have the best. I haven’t met you yet so I need a table between us to see if I like you or am attracted to you in person. If I want to be touched you will know it. We can always go for a walk after dinner or go for drinks, music, whatever if I want to spend more time with you. Dinner also let’s me see what your manners are like. At the table and how you treat the waiters, etc. One can learn a lot from dinner. I can ususally tell if I am going to enjoy myslef after emailing and talking on the phone. I think dinners are a nice icebreaker. Guys who invite me for a drink or coffee are usually like speed daters and are not interested in really getting to know me. A lot of times they just want to hook up. In all my years of dating that has been my experience. Lastly, I don’t need a drink to be myself and I don’t want to meet a “drinker”.

    There are lots of other activities that I mention in my profile but no one has ever picked up on it. i.e. gallery openings, putt putt golf, tennis, a football game or other sporting event, dancing…I have had some great dates where we went for a bite at a late night spot after after dancing. If drinks are still preferred, make it interesting at a piano bar or jazz bar, something with ambience and live entertainment.

    Asking is always preferable to demanding no matter what it is. Manners count!

  14. Coming from another man, there is some truth to #1 and #2. You need to be assertive in asking for numbers or dates. Personally, I see nothing wrong with “I think we should meet, how about dinner next Thursday?”. But in reality, any woman with a truly open mind should respond positively even to being asked in a way like “How about if we get together for dinner this Thursday?”.

    But your advice re #3 is very poor advice. If you happen to get to the stage where you can find something in common (e.g. rock climbing or something like that) on the phone, then that bodes well for a “different” kind of first date. But face it, most “first dates” are going to turn out to be drinks or dinner or a meal. I try to work out a table where I am situated next to my date instead of across, simply because I believe it lends itself to a more fun and intimate evening. If the opportunity presents itself to making subtle physical contact, sobeit.

    However, if for whatever reason, the date doesn’t “progress” that far (after all, you are still two strangers at this point) … both people have to come to grips with the fact that this can take time and have to be willing to see each other again if it went ok. I find that too many people expect sparks and knees to wobble on a first date between two perfect strangers. And many women (in my experience) can’t get past this expectation … which may be reasonable if you already know the person, but is completely unreasonable on a blind or internet first date. Don’t push the physical contact if it’s not natural. But if the two of you got along and had a nice convo, try it again. Of course, you can’t go 5 dates like this because then you go into the friendship zone.

  15. Gee, more rules and regs! Yes, our culture is based on the double standard that men must be the assertive ones in dating while women can get away with being shy. That applies to asking for numbers and dates and what not. However, to Jan and Steve in particular, I don’t like spelling errors either but, give me a break! What kind of fool would I be if I refused a date with a woman because she had a spelling error in one of her messages? The same applies to women. We all make spelling errors. If the email is full of texting terms, it would clue me into who the person is and I could make a judgement on that. The same goes for the mail with perfect spelling and grammar. However, that is a ridiculously rare case. This is the real problem here folks. We have put up so many walls of rejection that getting to know someone becomes a walk through a minefield. How stupid are we?

  16. I just had a very good date, or so I thought. When we left the restaurant I felt she had no desire to be physical in any way with me although I felt she really likes me. It was a first date so I guess I should be patient? As a man i have a strong desire to have sex with someone I am attracted to. Is that wrong? What advise can you give me?

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