Signs He Likes You When Hanging Out
What Is Hanging Out?
First, what exactly does the phrase "hanging out" mean? One Urban Dictionary definition (I know, an odd choice of dictionary), defines it as: "to socialize with your friends, whether it is of your choosing or not; most of the time the term is used to refer to a type of fun." Hanging out consists of doing something with friends, family, or acquaintances outside work, school, etc. Hanging out is usually done with a group of people or one-on-one with someone. Hanging out does not automatically imply romantic interest. There's this strange middle area between hanging out and dating—good luck figuring out those limbo waters.
Often times when two people enjoy each others company in one setting, they'll try to see what it's like alone and somewhere else. It really isn't a date unless you both call it a date, in most circumstances. You can plan ahead to hang out with someone, but that doesn't mean it's necessarily a date: nor does kissing, holding hands, buying dinner, or talking about your families entail a date. I know. Crazy.
This isn't a bad thing; dating stems from the old days of courtship where a man picked up some father's daughter and try to buy her out with his ravishingly good looks, charm, and wealth. Now, we're more modern. Women are not seen as jobless and the like. You both can be fully independent beings, and therefore, some of the old date traditions are moot. They've turned into hanging out, friends with benefits, etc., etc. If you want a date—or want to call it a date—then you have to put that energy in. Yes, going and getting coffee can be a date, if you both say it is a date. At that point, you're saying you are trying to figure out something romantic (or you're already in a relationship and like to call things dates.)
What can you expect when hanging out? Other people may be invited into the social dance, wearing fairly casual clothes, getting food, talking about movies and books, watching a sports game, or engaging in the ever-subversive "Netflix and chill."
Can you tell the difference between a date and hanging out?
How to Prepare for a Hang Out
Likely you don't need any prep! Come as you are—you are among friends. If you are wanting to set the stage, take a shower, get dressed a little nicer, and think of some ideas ahead of time on what you might like to do. Try not to complain and gossip the whole time. People generally want to be around positive, likable people who have interesting things to say.
You should give yourself plenty of time to be spontaneous. If you are always on the go and feel you need a strict schedule of what's happening, you'll probably lose some friends who could care less. Try telling some jokes, read a bunch of articles, so your mind is ready to tell interesting things, and learn how to do a few games ahead of time, especially ones you can make out of nothing, essentially.
When you get the chance to be around others, give them compliments. Thank them for spending time with them. Try to come up with ideas on what you can do next time you meet. You should feel comfortable to speak what you're thinking, meet more friends along the way, and maintain a good attitude in the midst of chaos.
What if I Want Something More Formal?
If you're wanting a date, don't expect someone to just take you on one, or that just because you're hanging out a lot then you're dating. You should openly say what you want—hey, I want a date! But know that if it's not reciprocated, it could be a mood killer. Today a lot of people don't just start off with a date. They spend time getting to know each other in other ways, and then when the time is right, they'll do something more formal and romantic.
Often people wait till they're actually in a relationship (or pretty close to it) before they go on an official date. To be honest, it's different for everybody. There's a whirlwind of different expectations.
Hints That He May Like You
- He only wants to spend time with you and not a group. If you ask to invite others to join, he seems disinterested in the idea. Don't be dismayed if he isn't disinterested: he may fake this and say to go ahead and invite a friend so that you are happy.
- He'll lose track of time. He won't be trying to keep you to a strict schedule but will let the outing take its own course.
- He doesn't put pressure on you physically. If he likes you, he'll try to get to know you personally and emotionally.
- He'll give you gifts or random tokens to remember him by— such as his jacket, jewelry, or something pretty he saw.
- Lots of compliments that are genuine and out of nowhere.
- He finds excuses to touch you whether with a fist bump, high five, handshake, hug, or kiss on the forehead.
- He doesn't go on and on about other girls.
- He picks you up in his car, opens the door for you, and goes to your front door to greet you.
- He buys you dinner.
- His eyes sparkle when you look at him.
- He laughs at your jokes no matter how bad, weird, or incomplete.
- He talks about his feelings for you—I mean, dead giveaway.
- He calls you on the phone before addressing the hang out plans.
- He is fidgety and nervous but in a good way.
- He's really focused on you and your opinion.
- He asks lots and lots of questions about you.
- He isn't on his phone the whole time.
- He makes plans to hang out again soon.
- He calls you his "girlfriend."
Keep Being Positive
In this world of everyone having goals and there being lots of people and competition—keep your chin up and enjoy yourself! All of us have no idea what is really going to pan out in the end. Keep making friends, and eventually you'll square off with someone, if that's what you want. Don't become a victim of tunnel vision.
Tunnel vision is when you think you have to be with someone or else your romantic plans will never happen. Instead, be open to what could happen and add a cup of maturity into the mix. Don't get too focused on one person before you actually get into a relationship (or serious dating.) Until there's commitment, you don't need to invest all your energy in a person, so don't. Instead go have the time of your life listening to your favorite music, dancing, eating great food, and visiting your long lost family relatives from Scotland. There's a whole world out there. Don't get too down about the dating confusion spiral. You've got this. Don't make too big a deal of nothing sandwiches.
Need some tips on staying positive?
- Compliment yourself.
- Go after the things you've always wanted to pursue whether that's studying a language or getting into pottery.
- Get yourself enough sleep and a balanced diet.
- Spend times with those who support you and lift you up.
- Take a day to pander yourself—warm bath, wine, chocolates, whatever.
- Go explore something in your city you've never tried.
- Go on a vacation.
- Clean up all the clutter in your house.
- Be willing to try new things.
- And read all your favorite books, watch your favorite movies, and listen to your favorite music.
© 2015 Andrea Lawrence