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Red Flags vs. Green Flags on 1st Dates

Hmmm, why do we hear so much more about red flags on online dating versus green flags? Probably because we sometimes reflect on the negative---research says we have 80,000 thoughts per day and 80% are negative. Geez, I can barely believe that but I’ll leave it to the scientists and stop there!

Ok, on weekly coaching calls with my clients as a dating coach as the Founder of, we peruse potential dates for each client on a weekly basis and many of you know my 50-50 rule----if you’re on the fence about a person, meet them for coffee. You just never know. No one is a 100% sure thing from just reading the profile and looking at photos.

But let’s identify green flags on dates:

1. They talk positively about people in their life---from colleagues at work, to family, to exes. No bashing! Tells you quite a bit what this person will be like in the future.

2. Openness. They don’t dodge questions on a first date. (of course, that means you’re not digging deep into their past loves!). When discussing current events or anything, they seem to have an accepting perspective on others opinions.

3. Introducing you to friends. This happened yesterday on a date Melissa, 58, had with Michael at a sports pub watching the NFL game. Several of his friends were there and he enthusiastically introduced her to his friends. While they didn’t join them, she truly liked them in their 10-minute chat and the way he introduced her.

4. Terrific communication and follow through. Matt, 47, my client met Suzanne last week for lunch. She mentioned her favorite drink spot in NYC and followed up the next day inviting him Wednesday for happy hour. Third date coming up….

5. Both asking questions and listening on a first date. Huge green flag. It’s not a one-sided conversation and both are interested.

6. A good relationship with family, friends, kids. Yep, we’ve all heard the flip side which is a big red flag---complaining about the divorce, problems with their children, unhappy childhoods---really? On the first date?

7. Dogs love them! Or they like whatever pet you have. Ok, I am a dog person and as my boyfriend told me “You’re a package deal”.

As you embark on your dating journey and most likely many first dates, look as hard for the green flags. Of course, a red flag absolutely signals caution. And, remember to have fun---it’s not an audition for marriage, just an opportunity to see if you’d like Date #2 with him/her!

Happy dating!

Andrea McGinty

Dating Consultant/Dating Counselor

Founder of and

Text me at 702-494-7344 to have a 15-minute call to see if I can help----and we are a good fit!


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