The holidays are upon us which means those dreaded plus one invitations are adding up in your email, mailbox and phone. What's a girl to do? Sure, you can invite a female friend to join you, but your own man would be preferable as it does get tiring being the only single in a group of couples. Don't go it alone this holiday season, follow these tips on finding a date for the holidays, and you may be cooing over the other half of your own couple soon.

Recognize you are not the only one. There are single men out there also facing the dreaded questions from their moms and relatives. Inform moms, co-workers, friends and married folks you know that you are actively searching for a date for the holiday season, and do they have anyone they can recommend? Let them know you are open to their suggestions and blind dates. You'd be surprised at how many of your circle have single male friends they may introduce you to meet.

Expand your date criteria. Include men several years younger than you, those that are not "perfect" and those that do not resemble Greek gods. Consider dating men who are not "bad "boys, but are nice, normal regular guys who will treat you nicely. Set up a date with all the men your friends recommend.

Employ the 5 date rule. Attend 5 mini-dates before you decide he is not dating material. Get to know him and find out if you click on an intellectual level or share common interests, such as biking, playing volleyball or are sports fans of the same team. Give time for chemistry to develop. Naturally you will not repeat a date with undesirable men who drink like fish or smoke like a haystack-unless you share these traits- but keep these men as friends. Ask them if they have any single friends they would recommend you date.

Set up a coffee date as your first meeting. Ask them questions about their interests, hobbies, and clubs they are a member, not about their wallet or the amount of money they earn. Tell them about activities you like to do and discover if they share them. Let each man know you are not ready to settle down yet, and you are dating others. Discuss the holiday and activities that require a date to determine if you can be each others plus one.

Keep these activities going and don't become discouraged. Your circle of eligible men will expand with the more dates you go on. If it doesn't work out with one man, just keep asking about possible friends he would consider hooking you up with on a date. You may find someone who piques your interest and becomes more than just a holiday date.