Meeting a person you are romantically interested in for a date, and to make it worse, the first day, is tough. It doesn’t only involve what to wear in preparation for the date, but also how to handle the entire date. Whether it’s set to last a lifetime or just a matter of minutes, every foray into love starts somewhere – usually with a first date.
But making it past that sweat-inducing, spine-tingling event not only relies on chemistry but good conversation.
So dating expert Michelle Lewis has listed the keys to preventing your date from becoming a disaster and giving you a great chance at seeing that special person again.
DON’T DO THE HARD SELL
When it comes to first date conversation, the key is not to start with yourself.
‘The biggest mistake people make is doing the hard sell, talking about themselves non-stop and talking too much about yourself trying to make the other person like you,’ Ms Lewis said.
‘Someone’s going to like you a whole lot better if you’re interested in them, try to bond and make connection, and make them feel good instead of just talking about how great you are.’
IT’S A DATE, NOT A JOB INTERVIEW
Sure, you may be hoping that this date is the last first date you have for the rest of your life, but don’t push your motives too heavily onto the other person.
In particular, don’t fire questions rapidly across the table with a look on your face that says – world’s toughest boss.
‘The interview is a date killer,’ Ms Lewis said.
‘So many people will walk away and say it felt more like a job interview than a date and if that’s the case they won’t go back a second time.’
GIRLS, LET YOUR MAN PAY
Some say chivalry is dead, but according to Ms Lewis that’s only true if you let it happen.
‘It’s nice for the girl to offer to pay her share, but it’s even nicer for the guy to then say “no don’t worry, you get it next time”,’ she said.
‘If the girl pays the guy is going to love it or hate it, so she’s taking a massive risk.
‘The guy is going to feel like he’s being emasculated or think it’s a really nice thing to do. I would say to girls not to do that, but to offer to pay her share.’
POLITICS ISN’T SE3Y
Unfortunately, no matter how invested in elections you are, political chat isn’t overly se3y.
If you’re not convinced, just take a look at Bill Shorten or Donald Trump. Exactly.
And furthermore, what will you do if your dates political beliefs don’t match up with you?
Don’t let immigration be the catalyst for your date ending in disaster.
… AND NEITHER IS S3x
While we’re at it, bringing up s3x on a first date can also be poisonous.
A person you’ve just met does not want to hear about your last s3xual encounter – no matter how good or bad it was.
Maybe leave the s3x until after the date, if you’re lucky.
DRINK JUST ENOUGH (NOT TOO MUCH)
With many people feeling nervous before a date, having a quiet drink once you arrive at the spot can be a great way to ease some tension.
But stopping before your 17th tequila shot is also crucial.
Getting the balancing act right between being bubbly and hilarious and having your head in a toilet bowl is a definite key for dating success.
DON’T ADMIT YOU’RE A SOCIAL MEDIA STALKER
Everybody does it, just don’t admit to it.
That’s the secret when it comes to social media stalking, a modern day pre-date certainty.
Being sure not to admit that you’ve heard of ‘Aunty Jan’ or to bring up their trip to Italy when they haven’t yet mentioned it themselves is the key to success.
And also, be wary of Instagram – an accidental double tap on a photo from 2013 may come across a bit creepy.
EMBRACE THE FIRST DATE NERVES
If you’re not nervous on a first date you either do it far too often or are simply not human.
The best idea is to embrace the nerves, expect that the other person is feeling the same and keep the conversation light.
‘You might be in an emotional hurry to find the ‘right one’ but don’t let that come across in a date,’ Ms Lewis said.
‘A first date is full of first date nerves, so keep it light bright and happy and on’t get bogged down in deep conversation.’
BE ATTENTIVE AND RECOGNISE THE SIGNS
In among all the stress of what you’re doing with your hands of how you look, it’s also important to listen to what the other person is saying.
Asking questions about things they’ve already said can be a killer, Ms Lewis believes.
‘Recognising some of the other person’s filters so that you don’t put your foot in it is important,’ she said.
‘It’s all about listening to what they say to you and feeding it back to them, or asking questions about it. It comes down to asking them questions and finding the triggers for what they like if you’re going to be successful.’
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DON’T GIVE OUT MIXED MESSAGES
It’s a question that plays on your mind throughout the date – do they actually like me?
Well, Ms Lewis says it’s important to be clear about how you fell and not to give out mixed messages, because that rarely ends well for either party.
‘I’ve spoken to thousands of people about their dating experiences, and one of the biggest problems I hear is when people tell me, “he said he was really into me, but that he’s just not ready for a relationship”,’ she said.
‘It’s important to be clear. I’m a firm believer that men will make a decision visually first and then what they hear and feel will come into play much later on.
‘A guy can date a girl who looks fabulous three or four times and then he won’t ring her back, whereas a girl will go out on a first date and say “I had a good time” or say “I’m not really sure if she’s the one”.’