THE "FORM" FOR MEETING DATING PARTNERS

December 6, 2021
F amily
O ccupation
R ecreation
M e

During my mission in Australia, one of the mission leaders, Elder Mick Jupi, used to teach a formula for talking to potential investigators. He said to remember the acronym "FORM" for Family, Occupation, Recreation, and Message (which I changed to "Me" for dating FORM). The idea was to remember this acronym and resort to it when we had an opportunity to talk to a stranger. He taught us to use the first three subjects to help us understand the other person and build trust before introducing our message.

May I suggest that you can use the same formula for beginning conversations with a potential dating partner? You could use it at a church dance, on a group hike, or any other social gathering where you have an opportunity to meet other singles. When you meet someone, of course you first introduce yourself and ask the other person his or her name. You can then simply say, "tell me about your family" and you are off to a good start. It might be their family of origin, or it might be the family they now have with their children. After you've covered the family, you can ask them what they do for a living and to talk about that. Then talk about things they do for fun. After you've talked about all of those things, then you can talk about yourself and what you want, like asking for a date.

The important thing in these interactions is to make it about the other person and not yourself. Focus on getting to know him or her rather than racking your brain for how to make an impression. Ironically, you will make a better impression by forgetting yourself and focusing on the other person.

Some of you with trauma from past relationships might read what I'm saying and think, "I'm already too much of a giver and I get walked all over when I make it about the other person." Please trust that I'm not telling you to undervalue yourself. I'm just suggesting a basic principle of human interaction. You get further with people when you make it about them. That doesn't mean it's never about you. But, if you want to be successful, focus on understanding the other person first.

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