Dating has evolved – it is not as simple as it once was. As dating has changed, the advice around dating should be updated to keep with the times. It’s not all about pulling out a chair and getting reservations at a five-star restaurant. Being kind and generous may secure a date, but be sure to follow these 7 tips to have a successful first date.
1. Look Your Best
Nerves on a first date are inevitable. However, there are subtle ways to boost your confidence. On a first date, individuals should put ample time into their appearance. It is crucial not only to make a great first impression but also it helps to diminish nerves.
2. Show Intention Early On
First dates are for individuals to determine their compatibility. As there is a possibility that a couple might have different intentions for the date, it is necessary to communicate physically and verbally your intentions. Whether it is settling into a long-term relationship, or something more casual, it is vital that you share to avoid confusion. One might physically communicate the intention with their closeness by kissing, hugging, or sitting close (thighs touching). Here is the opportunity to specify whether a couple’s intentions are aligned. Be confident and firm and leave no room for interpretation.
3. Ensure Good Positioning and Body Language
Traditionally, dates were seated across from each other. The assumption was that this position allows the couple to exchange eye contact, which facilitates intimacy. Recently, dating has shifted, where couples realized that this seating arrangement felt similar to an interview and was unsuitable for complex conversations. Those who think this way often scope out the seating arrangements beforehand to ensure the couple can sit side to side or adjacent. Irrespective of seating arrangements, one must utilize positive body language on a first date.
Tips for using Body Language for a Good First Impression:
- Open Posture
- Maintain eye contact
- Avoid touching your face
4. Listen and Capture
Listen actively on a first date. Take note of the other’s likes, dislikes, and philosophies. It is good manners and allows one to truly understand this person and evaluate whether to say yes to a second date. Listening is essential; however, having only one side share about themselves can be off-putting. So, try to be responsive. Both partners should contribute to the conversation equally. Also, try responding physically at times. The eyes give away a lot, so even if one tries to hide it, it is easy to tell if someone is bored or distracted.
5. Step Aside to Use your Phone
It is easy to get caught up in work emails and phone calls during a date, but this moment cannot be replicated or done over. There is only one chance to have a first date with someone. If it is necessary to answer a call, then be considerate and excuse yourself while answering the call. Individuals should consider turning off their phones or putting them on silent to avoid being distracted.
6. Prepare First Date Topics
It can seem like dates require no preparation. However, there is more to it than just showing up. Individuals must practice questions to ask during the date. While, for the most part, conversations tend to go off into different topics, it is still essential to prepare a list of questions and issues that are interesting and engaging. Avoid asking these questions back-to-back like in an interview. Instead, individuals are encouraged to throw in these questions at the beginning to start the conversation. These topics are helpful when there is an awkward silence or a need to change the topic.
7. Seed the Next Activity
Towards the halfway mark of the date, one should know whether they would like to see this person again or they would like to keep the date going. At this time, individuals should suggest places to go or restaurants you’d like them to try. Hinting like this not only clarifies to your date that you are interested in them, but it also plants a seed in their mind that either the date will escalate (taking a walk, getting dessert, sharing a bottle of wine), or that they should expect another date.
Some assume that a date went well if the couple ended on a cordial note. This may be true however if the goal of dating is short to long term relationships. Then its success will depend on securing the second date. Following these 7 tips on a first date will help to ensure not only that the couple enjoyed the night, but also that this couple genuinely enjoys each other’s presence.
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