How To Avoid the Friend Zone


Knowing how to avoid the friend zone is a skill that is a necessary one for people that always get called the nice guy or girl or the funny guy or girl. Too often, you’ll try and start something romantic with someone you’ve connected with only to find out you’ve already locked up a spot in the friend zone.

In this guide, we’re going to look at exactly how to avoid the friend zone from day one. While it’s totally cool to be friends with people, there are some people you want to be more with.

The Friend Zone Starts From the Start

When first getting to know someone, you need to make sure your actions and words are in alignment with the results you truly want. You don’t need to confess your undying love for the other person on the second date (that would be cray cray anyways), but you do need to make your intentions known. Don’t shy away from your feelings out of fear of rejection.

Often, a lot of people don’t start asking how to avoid the friend zone until it’s too late. But don’t worry if you don’t know how to do that! We’re here to help. We will give you some pointers to help keep you off the friend zone bench and in the relationship game.

Be Forward to Avoid the Friend Zone

When it comes to dating you must tell your potential match what you are and are not looking for. If you are open to a serious relationship but you’re not looking for something casual, or vice versa, you need to let your potential match know this. Be forward with what your intentions are when it comes to online dating. This is easier on dating apps for men, but can be tougher when you meet somewhere else.

When a woman is seeking a serious dating relationship, and the guy only wants a casual fling, this spells out a recipe for disaster. Surely someone will be hearing those infamous words, “it’s not you, it’s me… I think we should be… just friends.” Boom. Instant friend zone status. It happens to the best of us.

Being forward doesn’t mean you have to be a jerk about it. Just let the other person know where you’re at. Don’t lead someone on if you know it doesn’t have the potential in your eyes, or if you know you really don’t want the same things.

Be Flirty to Avoid the Friend Zone

An important part of ensuring you don’t get benched from playing in the game is to be flirty. Being flirtatious is crucial throughout the entire life of a relationship. Never losing the flirty spark can protect you from a late entry into the friend zone.

In the beginning stages of a relationship flirting is like the fuel needed to keep your vehicle (relationship) moving forward. Without that flirtatious spark, without fuel, you will likely be stranded on the side of the road wishing you had opted to pay that 9 dollars a month extra for roadside assistance.

Yes, most people end up in the friend zone on day one. However, there are a lot of times that guys and girls take a while to figure out where you fit in their life. If you lost the spark while they’re trying to decide, the decision becomes easy.

Be Aware of The Situation

Not only do you need to be aware of your own feelings and needs in a relationship to communicate with clear intentions, you also need to be aware of the other person’s feelings. How engaged in the relationship and spending time with you are they? Do you seem to be making more of an effort than they are? Relationships are partnerships in effort.

A quote we love is “Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option” -Maya Angelou. How true is this? Very. If you let someone treat you like an option, your chances of avoiding the friend zone are slim to none.

Additionally, remember to be aware of the other person’s body language. Do they get weird when you try to hold their hand or touch them in any sort of way? Be mindful of how they introduce you. Do they always refer to you as their friend? If so, perhaps it is time to wake up and smell the roses, they may have put you in the friend zone.

Be honest with yourself about the engagement level of the other person. Do they take 3 days to return a text message, or do they get back to you with one to two hours tops no matter what they are doing? We get it, they’re hot… but… you still need to pay attention to the red flags. If the referee throws up a flag, then pay attention and address it.

The Wrap Up On How to Avoid the Friend Zone

Not every online dating match is going to be a match made in heaven, we get it. Be open and honest with your communication and be forward with what you want instead of simply hoping for something to happen, or for things to go your way. Hope is not a strategy.

  • Be flirtatious from day one.
  • Be forward about what your intentions are. The longer you hide things, the harder it is to avoid the friend zone.
  • Realize that you may not be put into a category on day one. It’s important to stay on your game throughout the process.
  • Be as aware of the situation as possible. If someone is giving you all the clues that you’re in the friend zone, accept it and put your effort elsewhere.
  • Realize some people use the friend zone as an excuse. “I just see you as a friend,” could mean a lot of different reasons why they don’t want to date you.
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Author: Healthy Framework Team

The Healthy Framework team has a combined 50+ years of experience in the online dating industry. Collectively, the team has reviewed over 300 dating apps and is known as one of the leaders in the relationship advice and information space. The team's work has been featured on Zoosk, Tinder, The Economist, People Magazine, Parade, Women's Health, Her Campus, Fox, and more.