Last updated on Jun 10th, 2021 at 04:53 pm

Steve Harvey says you’re either a ‘sports fish’ or a ‘keeper’ when it comes to dating…

In his best-selling book, Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man, Steve Harvey uses a fishing metaphor to illustrate “how men distinguish between the marrying types and the playthings”.

“A man fishes for two reasons: he’s either sport fishing or fishing to eat, which means he’s either going to try to catch the biggest fish he can, take a picture of it, admire it with his buddies and toss it back to sea, or he’s going to take that fish home, scale it, fillet it, toss it in some cornmeal, fry it up and put it on his plate. “This,” Harvey says, “is a great analogy for how men seek out women.”

Every date has that crucial moment when each person decides whether to cut bait and look for another fish or keep this one around for a while.

Subscribe to our Free Daily All4Women Newsletter to enter

If you donâ??t want to get thrown back into the dating pond, there are some things you can do to send the right signals and make him see you as a keeper.

Be polite and courteous
Manners are always a good indicator. Nobody likes a complete boor or slob. Looking presentable and acting courteously can go a long way toward making him take a second look.

Even little things like remembering to say â??Bless youâ? when he sneezes can show him that you are considerate and kind.

… but don’t be a pushover

“A sports fish,” Harvey explains, “doesn’t have any rules, requirements, respect for herself, or guidelines, and we men can pick up her scent a mile away.”

The moral of this story is, be kind and accommodating towards your guy, but not if it’s always at your own expense. Men respect women who respect themselves.

Be comfortable with yourself

Being comfortable in your own skin is also very important. If you want him to be comfortable around you then you have to be at ease with yourself. 

The more you look like you need reassurance and the more a man has to work at the date, the less likely he is to want to turn it into something lasting.
Every man likes to feel needed, but there is a fine line between wanting some attention from him and becoming too needy.

In fact, neediness may be one of the biggest turn offs of all – for men and women. Very few people will be comfortable with a clingy partner, so show him that you can stand on your own two feet too. The more he sees that you are your own person, the more attractive you will be to him.

Have a life beyond your relationship

Having your own friends and interests beyond just what you and he do together is a sign of a healthy personality. You also need to take an interest in him, obviously, but you need to reassure him that you can both have your space too without it being a problem. That means allowing him some breathing room as well.

Not giving him all of your time also makes you more appealing – men value that which they have to work for, so if you make it too easy for him to see you all the time in the beginning of a relationship, he might lose interest and start fishing again.


Be respectful of his interests
Nobody likes to be judged, so turning up your nose at your guy’s hobbies, his friends, or intruding on his sport watching time, will all be immediate warning flags for most guys.

Even if you donâ??t particularly share his interests, show him that you acknowledge and respect them and heâ??ll be much more impressed.

If he doesn’t afford you the same courtesy, then he’s not a keeper!

Think about what turns you off and avoid those things

When it comes right down to it, weâ??re all looking for the same basic things in a serious someone, so if a particular quality wouldnâ??t be attractive to you, odds are it wonâ??t be to him either. A first date can be particularly nerve wracking but donâ??t make it harder than it has to be – just try to relax and be yourself and youâ??ll give him plenty of reason to keep you around.
And remember: “It’s not the guy who determines whether you’re a sports fish or a keeper – it’s you. When a man approaches you, you’re the one with total control over the situation – whether he can talk to you, buy you a drink, dance with you, get your number, take you home, see you again, all of that.”

So make sure you know what you want from a man and don’t be afraid to ask for it – either with your words or your actions.