The ‘First Date’ is a pretty big deal, whether it’s a blind date or the first time that you meet an online friend or getting together with someone whose number you were given in a bar. It always feels as if you’re under pressure to be amazing and to have your date besotted within the first ten minutes, or be deemed a failure.
Firstly, there are many practical tips that will help your date go smoothly and ensure that you maximise your chances of meeting again:
- make sure that the venue is appropriate – not too loud, not too quiet, and suitable for your prospective partner;
- choose an outfit that you’re comfortable in and that you know shows you off at your best, without being too small – you should be dropping hints about your best features rather than literally laying them out on the table;
- take time to get ready and get to your date without having a mad panic about catching the bus in time, so this means making sure that you know where you’re going before you set out. Turning up 40 minutes late after two phone calls to check what the name of the pub was again will stretch anyone’s sense of humour;
- remember the list of subjects not to drag up on a first date. You don’t have to stick to the weather and holiday choices, but choose carefully before bringing up politics, exes or your favourite scene in 50 Shades of Grey;
- and plan for your exit. Whether the date is exceptional or appalling, make sure that you have the cash to make your own way home safely if that’s what you want.
But, practicalities aside, there are three simple pieces of advice for a truly great first date:
You could be a expert dater with a 100% track record of first date success, but if you don’t have a good time on your date, then it’s a waste of an opportunity. It’s easy to get carried away with worrying about saying the right thing and wowing the other person with your looks, intelligence and wit that the date becomes pure hard work and lots of stress. Remember that this isn’t a test that you have to pass, it’s about having a good time. If you do, the other person is more likely to relax and enjoy you too.
Just as you should try to relax and find out if you really click with the person opposite, remember to be yourself on the date. It’s easy to agree with whatever the person opposite you is saying, or to respond to their questions with the answer they obviously want to hear or are expecting, but if it’s not really you then what’s the point. Everyone likes the person who laughs loudest at their jokes and tells them how great they are, but keep a sense of who you are and don’t be afraid to step out of the box.
Leave them wanting more
A little mystery and intrigue will have your date wanting to know more and to see you again. The first date isn’t when you have to decide if they’re for keeps or not, just a chance to find out what sort of person they are and to find out if there’s any chemistry. Keep it shortish and sweet to have them begging for a second date.