Blog, dating, Tips

How to Date for the First Time

Every first date is scary. It doesn’t matter how many dates you’ve been on the past; you will always feel nervous and apprehensive about meeting someone different for the first time. Even more nerve-wracking is if you’ve been in a relationship for a long time, so you’ve not dated in ages. Or, it might be that you’ve never actually been on a true first date.

Is there any way you can make your first date feel easier?

Well, yes, there is. As a lot of first date nerves and apprehension can be lifted by being fully prepared for that date with a few key tips and tricks that will help your date go smoother. Indeed, by following our first-time date guidelines, you might just be wondering why you were so nervous in the first place!

1: Choose the Right Activity and Location for Your First Date

Everyone will try to give you advice on what the best first date should be – whether that be a restaurant, drink, cinema, etc. – and what date you should definitely not do. The problem is, what makes us nervous is very personal to you, so no one can really tell you what the most calming date for you will be.

So, what do you choose? Well, think of something you enjoy and go from there. True, people think dinner can be quite full on for a first date, however, it doesn’t need to be a super fancy restaurant. Perhaps you love going for a walk down the beach with a bag of chips, there’s an ideal first date for you.

By choosing somewhere or something that you are familiar with, it will help you feel more at ease, allowing you to focus on your date instead.

2: Fake Your Confidence

Let’s face it, we’re all a bag of nerves before a first date, and that includes the person that you’re meeting. So, try to take solace in the face that you’re not alone in your nerves and instead try to fake your confidence. This doesn’t mean being overly cocky, just make sure you have a big smile on your face, and you’re sat or stood with a nice, relaxed posture.

Not only will this trick your body into thinking that you’re not that nervous, it will also help relax your date when they arrive too. After all, a smile is infectious!

3: Prepare Some Questions in Advance

First dates will inevitably run into one or two awkward silences, where neither of you know quite what to say. This can be helped by researching and preparing some questions you could ask your date if the conversation stops flowing.

These could include:

  • What’s been your favourite holiday so far?
  • What’s your favourite band/film/food/hobby?
  • If you could have any pet in the world?

None of these are great philosophical questions, but they will help you learn a bit more about your date and should get you both talking again.

4: Really Listen to What Your Date is Saying

One big mistake that many of us make on our first dates is that we feel that for a date to be interested in us, we need to show them how interesting we are. Which leads us to talking too much about ourselves.

Really, though, by listening and being genuinely interested in what your date is talking about, that single will really appreciate you and find you interesting in turn. So, every time they talk, listen to what they are saying and comment or follow up that story with a question. This will really help the conversation to flow as well.

5: Don’t Get Too Focused on Compatibility

When you’re searching for that perfect relationship, it’s easy to get too focused on all the qualities you would like that person to have. Which means, if on your first date the person you’re with mentions something that doesn’t quite fit in with those qualities, you instantly decide that they aren’t for you.

Try to throw that list out the window, though, as you will be unlikely to ever meet someone that is totally compatible with everything that you are looking for. Instead, keep an open mind and focus on what you like about them. You’ll find that after a few dates, when you start to become smitten with that person, you’ll not care about that slight compatibility issue.

6: Be Aware of Your Body Language

Body language is very important on a first date, as your date will be looking at yours to gauge whether or not they think you like them or not. Which is why you should always be aware of how you’re sitting or holding ourselves, particularly when nerves can cause us to have very closed off body language that can be off-putting to dates.

So, how do you sit? Well avoid folding your arms as this will close your body off, instead keep it open and slightly lean in when they speak, showing that you’re listening. Also be aware of what their body is telling you – if they’re closed off they might not be having fun or still feeling nervous so try to work to change this.

Yes, first dates can be scary, but they can also be exciting and wonderful evenings that lead on to second dates and even relationships. So, no matter how nervous you are, put yourself out there!