The older we get, the harder it is to meet people in general, especially those we want to potentially date. When I was single and living in a brand-new city where I knew no one, I was very open to finding new friends. I just didn't know how. School had always made it so easy to meet people, but once I graduated, I had no idea how to go about finding and forming new relationships without the introduction of having the same classes. So, after a messy breakup and being completely new to San Francisco, I did everything alone. Unexpectedly, doing things by myself helped me meet guys more than ever before.
Though you might find it uncomfortable and awkward to take yourself out on dates, it's actually very liberating and necessary at times you need to practice some self-care. And like anything else, the more you do it, the more confident you'll feel. One of the first guys I met as a single woman was someone sitting next to me at a cafe. All it took was a simple "hello" and smile to get the conversation flowing, and we ended up exchanging information. The next was on a shared cab ride, the following was when I hit a bar alone, and so forth. My favorite time, though, was on a Halloween when I left my friends to go dancing by myself because I hated the music we were listening to. I wasn't looking to meet anyone — I actually told everyone kindly to stop dancing with me because I wanted to just enjoy myself. When I stepped outside for some air, one of the guys who I rejected on the dance floor came up to me, saying, "You're that girl who didn't want anyone dancing with her" and introduced himself. I joined his group for the rest of the night and we even went out a few times.
When you and your friends go out to scope out your options all together, the chance of someone approaching you decreases. It's much more intimidating to introduce yourself to a group of friends than a single person. So the next time you're looking to meet someone, leave your friends at home (but be safe!). And even if you aren't, it'll still be a nice a little confidence boost.
Now, I understand that I'm speaking from the perspective of a heterosexual woman being pursued by men and that my advice isn't foolproof. Going out alone isn't guaranteed to help you automatically score dates. Based on my own experiences, however, it was hands down the most effective method that helped me meet new people in general, not just guys. On top of tackling the dating world solo, I also suggest welcoming conversation from strangers as much as initiating some yourself. So go ahead and put yourself out there — what do you have to lose?