First dates can be truly terrifying. What to wear, what to do, how to act – it can all contribute to pre-date jitters so severe that they make you wonder if you even want to go on the date at all. Whether you’ve been messaging your date for weeks and you like them before you’ve even met them, or your friends have set you up on a blind date and you have no idea to expect, here are our first date tips on how to make a great impression that will leave your date wanting more.
Iron out the details beforehand.
Are you going for dinner? Or having an activity-based date? Are you meeting at the bar? Or at the nearest train station? As with most things in life, it’s always better to be prepared. If you’re organized and finalize these little details before the day and time of your date, then it helps eliminate any additional anxiety that you may have in the run up to it. Not only will you know exactly where you’re supposed to be and when, but you’ll also know what to expect. Goodbye, miscommunication and confusion!
Greet them nicely.
Did you know that it only takes eight seconds for someone to make an assumption about you when they first meet you? They can decide almost instantaneously whether they like you, which is why it’s so important to make effort from the get-go. When you’re greeting them, make sure you stand up, shake their hand, kiss them on the cheek and exclaim how amazing it is to meet them. Your politeness won’t go unnoticed.
Make interesting conversation.
There’s a fine line between asking your date insightful questions, and bombarding them like they’re interviewing for a job. Ask questions, but also let them enquire about you. Listen, let the conversation flow, and don’t be afraid of awkward silences. It’s only natural to have these when you’re both nervous. Just use these pauses to think about your next talking point instead. Oh, and try to avoid talking about the weather – unless you’re really stuck!
Be mindful of your manners.
If you’re at dinner, say please and thank you to the server. If you’re a gentleman, pull out your date’s chair so that they can sit down. Sometimes, it’s the little things that matter. Also if you’re at dinner, be mindful of your dining etiquette. Don’t start your meal before your date’s has arrived – and don’t choose anything that might be messy to eat. Tomato soup all around your mouth and down your top? Not very attractive.
Offer to pay.
Regardless of your sex, you should always offer to pay your half of the bill at the end of your date. If your date waves your money away, then that’s their choice – but at least you’ve offered. It says a lot about you – in a good way – if you’re willing to cough up, as opposed to making the assumption that your date will pay, which creates more of a negative impression.
Be direct with your feelings.
Whether you’ve had a wonderful date and want to see them again, or disliked every minute and don’t think you’ll be a good match for the future, always be upfront and honest about your feelings. When you’re saying goodbye, it’s better to tell your date there and then what you’re thinking in regards to them, in order to avoid having to deal with it later on. It’s so easy to agree to another date, even though you didn’t enjoy yourself, just because your date really likes you and has asked to see you again to your face. Always stay true to yourself and your feelings, even if it means you have to let someone down. And if it goes the other way, and you both want another date, then you can end the first one on a high!
There’s no right or wrong way to behave on your first date – the most important thing is that you’re enjoying yourself. If it doesn’t go quite as well as you hope, then don’t sweat it. There’s plenty more fish in the sea! And if the date is everything you wanted it to be and more, then that’s a bonus! Either way, every date is a learning experience in order to better prepare you for the next one. Now go get ‘em, tiger!