Do your activity preferences match your guy’s?

Are you clear on how much you like to weekly participate in activities with a sweetie? How much alone time do you want/need? How much time do you want weekly/monthly to spend with your friends and/or family without him? And when you’re with your guy, optimally how many times a week do you want to do something out, versus at home?

Many online dating personality assessments ask your activity preferences. An example:

Do you prefer to go out
1) Once per week
2) 2x/week
3) 3-4x/week
4) Every night is party night

Other questions focus on specific physical activities. I’ve deleted guys’ profiles based on their saying they spend all their free time running marathons, climbing mountains, SCUBA, mountain biking, back-country skiing, working out and playing team sports. I get tired just reading about all this physical activity! While I’m not a slug, I’m also not an iron woman.

When you’re beginning to date someone, one of the first questions to ask is “What do you like to do for fun?” Of course, what one likes to do is often different than what you actually do. Men have told me they like to go to live theater, concerts, fine dining, wine tasting, dancing, first-run movies, lectures, comedy clubs, etc. However, when dating them, their idea of a “date” is to rent a DVD and get take out. Or occasionally dinner out and a movie. That’s it. I’ve been flummoxed at why a guy doesn’t make any effort to arrange for us to do what he says he likes to do.

One of my frustrations of being single is not having a ready-made activity partner. My friends are available for some activities, but most are coupled so have limited time to spend with buddies. I see first-run flicks once in a while with some gal pals. I like to see the world, try new things, re-experience old favorites, and I prefer to do those activities with friends, ideally a sweetie. Yes, there are organized activity groups, dance classes, ranger-led wildflower hikes, and other classes or singles-focused events. An experience is richer to me when I can discuss it with someone during and/or afterwards to share each others perspectives and insights.

Imagine my delight to find my sweetie likes to do — and initiates — fun stuff! In our 7 days together (he’s visited 3 times from out of state) over the last month we’ve:

  • Picnicked and walked on the beach (twice, different beaches)
  • Went square dancinghiking
  • Visited a blues club
  • Taken a hike in a nearby regional park, along with a picnic
  • Dined at a Japanese restaurant
  • Played tourist in a nearby city
  • Breakfasted out
  • Walked in my neighborhood
  • Cooked dinner together
  • Viewed an indy flick at the local film festival
  • And yes, snuggled on the coach in front of a fire and watched a DVD

And we also just kicked back, took naps and relaxed.

Soon I’ll visit him in for a week and he’s already planned:

  • Visiting one of my friends for a horseback ride and dinner
  • Attending his professional awards banquet and gala
  • Hikingtulips
  • Viewing the local tulip festival
  • Listening to a favorite local blues musician at a club
  • Dining with his friends and his kids
  • Watching a friend do his act at a comedy club
  • Overnighting at his favorite beach inn

And he’ll be working 4 days during the week I’m there! If we lived in the same town, we would not try to cram so much in. But we like to make maximum use of our together time. So right now my activity needs are being met, both for frequency and variety, and with a fun, loving partner.

Does this sound like too much “doing” to you? Too little? Do you like variety, routine, or a mix?

When you know your activity frequency and variety desires, communicate them to your guy early on and see if you have similar wants. If he agrees with your preferences, yet doesn’t want to participate in ideas you offer, nor take initiative to do anything interesting, discuss the disconnect and see if he’s willing to step up — and out — a bit more.

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3 responses to “Do your activity preferences match your guy’s?”

  1. Aggressively Single Avatar
    Aggressively Single

    Really like your activity selection! For people who like to do things, don’t think it’s too much at all. And I think variety is nice, especially when still getting to know eachother. Too many people use primarily meals, movies and DVD for dating, and that’s just not enough variety. Glad you’re having so much fun!

    Oh, and your line, “Of course, what one likes to do is often different than what you actually do. ” is classic. Every guy in my area just “loves to dance”. I’d sure like to know where they go dancing at, because there are never any single guys at the few dance spots here! So I may add that to my profile – “what do you actually DO with your free time?” A new guy I’m dating is the first one ever who actually cuts out notices of fun activities and invites me to go – sure beats renting a DVD!

  2. LadyLD Avatar

    Oh my…the long distance relationship. I’ve had so many I can’t count. I always look to them and compare to my “local” dates; long distance always wins out. The problem starts when you are in the same city and the excitement slowly fizzles and you find the you were “vacationing” with a great guy, but it just doesn’t translate to the real world. It boils down to each of us feeling the pressure to entertain….

    Please keep us posted, I’d love to hear a good ending!

  3. Dating Goddess Avatar


    Yes, I know what you mean. This is the 6th man (out of 75) I’ve dated from out of the area. Four of them went poof after one or two meetings, either with not even an email afterwards, or one sent a “have a nice life” after a weekend together. The fifth one is still a pal. So this one is so different than the rest. But generally, I agree that it can be the boyfriend equivalent of the Disneyland dad — all fun and no “real” time together. I even say in my profile “no long-distance suitors, please” as I’ve had such bad luck from people from out of town. It’s easy to seem to get close to someone before you even meet them, spending hours on the phone, then no spark when you meet, or one of you has a dealbreaker personality characteristic that didn’t come out on the phone.

    I’m spending 10 days with my guy next month and that will let us know how compatible we really are. He’ll go to work 4 days, taking one vacation day and I’ll work remotely.

    I’m sure this will spawn some blog entries!