If you’ve been in the dating game for a while, chances are you’ve had your fair share of first dates. Meeting someone new is an exciting time, but it can also cause anxiety. If you’re really looking forward to meeting someone for the first time, you can probably make good use of a few pointers designed to help you keep it real, and keep things moving in the right direction.
- Keep your confidence up. Meeting new people causes anxiety for lots of folks. You may be wondering about the other person, their likes and dislikes, and whether or not you’ll hit it off. If you’re spending a lot of time worrying whether they’ll like you though, you could be getting yourself too worked up. Do something just before your date that you’re good at and like to do. This could be anything from a round of racquetball to a half hour of playtime with your dog. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s something that puts you in a good mood and keeps your confidence level high.
- Be yourself. Remember that you want your date to like you for who you are. While there’s nothing wrong with putting your best foot forward, putting on airs is likely to create artificial distance, and isn’t going to win you a second date. Set the location in an environment where you feel comfortable, dress in clothes that reflect your style, and try not to get too nervous, as we usually hide our true selves when we feel pressure.
- Show up on time. Whether you’re picking your date up at home or meeting at a specified location, don’t be late. It doesn’t hurt to be a few minutes early either, but showing up half an hour early for a date usually signals desperation.
- Be courteous. Gender rules for courting behavior are no longer as important as simply being nice to your date. Even if you’ve already decided you’re not a good match, playing nice will make your time together less stressful for both of you. Listen when they talk, open doors for your date if you like, and offer to pick up the check – or at least split the bill.
- Show interest. Many people make the mistake of feeling they have to “wow” their dates with all kinds of interesting details from their life. Not surprisingly, though, most people like to talk about themselves and topics that interest them, if given the chance. By all means be prepared to share a little about your life, but be sure to practice active listening when it’s your date’s turn to talk.
Online dating may simplify the process of finding quality people to date, but it doesn’t guarantee things will go any further. For that, you’ll need to behave yourself. If you’re really interested, go ahead and ask for another date before the first one ends.