Forget pickup bars and chance encounters on public transit, ladies! If you want to meet quality single men, you need to think outside the box.

bear salmonEver see a picture of one of those grizzly bears fishing for salmon? They don’t wait around on the shore for a salmon to maybe wash up. No! They wade right out into the middle of the river, where the salmon are leaping up to get over that waterfall, and then they open their mouth. The fish jump right in. That’s what you need to do – find a place where there are lots of interesting and available men. Make sure you’re over your ex before you do the following tips. However, if your ex is sending you good vibes, and you still want to give your relationship another go, then think things over and find ways to make it work.

Otherwise it’s time to join a club. That’s how people met while having fun back in the day, and it still works well even in our modern era. So change your social media status to “I’m out having fun” and shut off your computer.

What sort of clubs am I talking about? Well, that’s based on what your interests are and also on the type of man you’re looking to meet.

After my mother got a divorce 30 years ago, there she was, an intelligent, charming, graduate-educated, attractive woman with a lot to offer, but the men who wanted to date her were mostly losers. So she joined the Sierra Club and started hiking and backpacking. That was something she was interested in, and it also put her into contact with non-couch-potato types of men who enjoyed the outdoors. And, best of all, the length of the backpack trips gave her a chance to really get to know the men. [RELATED: How to Stop Dating Losers and Find the Perfect Man ]

On one two-week backpack trip in the mountains, she met a likely candidate, though he was somewhat shy and didn’t speak to her for the first week. But on about day six or seven, after they’d arrived in camp in the afternoon and set up their tents, he asked her if she’d like to take a short hike around the area with her.

“That’s when I knew,” she said with a grin. They’ve been married now for 25 years.

Maybe you aren’t into carrying a 50 pound backpack through the wilderness – I understand. But you get the idea.

When I say “club” I am talking about some place where you interact socially with other people while doing something fun. Ever try bowling? There are bowling leagues and clubs in most cities and towns, and that’s a great way to meet people and have fun. Men enjoy bowling, so there are bound to be plenty there, and some of them will be single.

martial artsOther types of clubs include athletic clubs like martial arts, for example – something few people ever think of. Private martial arts schools can be expensive, so if you don’t have money to shell out, look for a community center class at a nearby university or YMCA. Big universities often have clubs that people from the community can join, and there’s the added attraction that you’ll likely meet smart men there, since they study or teach at the university. They offer classes aimed at everyone, not just men who want to fight. (Of course, if big guys who like to fight are what you prefer … have fun!) Some martial arts, like capoeira, for example, are more like dancing than fighting, and are a lot of fun.

Boxing gyms aren’t what they used to be – instead of sweaty, all-male enclaves they are open to everybody, and usually they love women students. Joining a boxing gym doesn’t mean you ever have to get in the ring. Gyms have fitness classes where you can jump rope, hit the heavy bag, learn how to wrap your hands and throw a punch. Even if you don’t meet the man of your dreams, you’ll have a good time, get some exercise, and learn something valuable.

If those sorts of things don’t appeal to you, and I understand, think of other types of clubs. What you want is something where you meet and interact with a lot of different people – not a group where you are passive or work only with the teacher or one person. Feeling brainy? Try a chess club – you’ll meet plenty of cerebral folks there. Or a music club – go for something different, like traditional Japanese or Korean drumming. Think of fun outdoor activities like sailing. Join a sailing club or class. Once you start looking, you’ll find an infinity of clubs out there.

Mr HandsomeIf you’re interested in business, seek out your local chamber of commerce, which should have meet ups and mixers every month where local entrepreneurs and executives get together to network. The men you meet there are likely to be go getters who were brave enough (or crazy enough!) to quit their safe, steady jobs and start their own business.

Business groups like Toastmasters are also fun, as you will not only meet people, but you’ll learn to overcome your fear of public speaking (if you have that fear).

So let me sum up for you. Forget all the pick up joints and desperately seeking anybody type places where everybody’s going to try and hook up. You deserve better. Sitting at a “singles bar” waiting for someone to approach you is lonely and depressing, and the people you’re likely to meet there aren’t high quality. Do some thinking about something fun you’d like to do or learn, and find a club or class you can join. Do your homework – this should be a place men go to (ballroom dancing is fun, but the odds are low) and where you yourself will have fun. Because if you’re having fun and enjoying yourself, it shows, and you’ll attract guys with your air of happiness and confidence.

Good luck – here’s hoping your soulmate will walk into your life very soon! 🙂