Dating can be a nerve-wracking experience for anyone. With the rise of apps like Tinder and Bumble, it’s easier than ever to meet new people, even if you don’t socialize much in your everyday life. While these types of dates give you the perfect opportunity to meet like-minded individuals that could become something more, they also add an extra layer of stress and pressure to everything from talking to that person at the bar to asking them on a second date.
While first dates can be difficult no matter who you are or what type of dating situation you’re in, it helps to have some pointers about what not to do on your first date. These small things can go a long way in making or breaking the night with someone new. So if you’re looking for some advice on how not to blow your next date, keep on reading.
#1 Don’t be late
For many people, being on time is not a problem. But if you’re someone that tends to be late to everything, this is a really simple and important thing to change before you go on a first date. If you’re late, it makes the other person feel like you don’t respect their time or aren’t concerned about making good first impressions. It’s also a great way to stress out whoever you’re on a date with and make them feel like you’re flaky and irresponsible.
Being late for a first date is generally not a good sign and may give the impression that you are not mindful of other people’s time. However, it is possible to regain lost trust by apologizing and providing an explanation.
#2 Don’t check your phone constantly
If you’re on a first date with someone, it’s best to try to avoid checking your phone while you’re together. This can make you seem uninterested in the person you’re dating, which can be off-putting. If you do need to check your phone, try to keep it to a minimum and offer an explanation if the person asks. For example, you could say that you have a new message from a family member and want to check it.
Checking your phone is a great way to let the other person know that you are not interested in them and that you are more interested in seeing who else is contacting you. If the other person notices that you are distracted, they may think that you are not interested in what they are saying. This could lead to an awkward situation and make the first date difficult. It is better to be safe than sorry and err on the side of caution. Just enjoy the present moment and pay attention to the person you are sitting at the same table with.
#3 Don’t talk about previous partners or relationships
Unless you and the other person both want to know everything about your exes and the reasons why your last relationship didn’t work, try not to get into this on a first date. When you start talking about previous relationships, it can be easy to let your date ask questions about who, what, where, and why. It’s easy to talk about your exes and past relationships without even realizing it. If you’re asked about your last relationship and you don’t want to talk about it, try to change the subject.
#4 Don’t go to the same place you always go on a first date
If you always go to the same place you go with your friends, or where you go on a regular basis, don’t go there on a first date. Instead, go somewhere new and different that will help you avoid making assumptions about your date based on past experiences or habits. If you always go to the same bar, you’re more likely to run into one of your friends, or the bartender who knows you. Or maybe the bartender will call your date “friend” for the rest of their time in that bar. If you always go to a certain type of restaurant, your date will assume that you eat there on a regular basis. If you go to a fancy restaurant, your date might think you’re pretentious and picky.
#5 Don’t stay silent the whole time
Try to avoid just staring at the other person while they’re talking and not saying anything. If you feel like you don’t have much in common with the person you’re on a date with, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and feel like you don’t know what to say. It’s fine to take a break every once in a while and let the other person do most of the talking. Just make sure not to stay silent for long periods of time or you could end up scaring your date off.
If you are having trouble coming up with conversation topics, it can help to think of some questions to ask your date. Asking questions shows interest in the person you are meeting and helps create a more relaxed atmosphere. If you are staying silent on a first date, it’s important to maintain good body language and eye contact. This will help your date feel comfortable talking to you and will create a good first impression.
#6 Don’t only speak about yourself and what you want
While it’s important to be yourself on a first date, it’s important not to only talk about yourself and your interests. You don’t have to pretend to be someone you’re not, but you should try to get to know the other person by asking them questions about their life, hobbies, and interests. If you’re only talking about yourself and what you want, it can come across as if you just want to use the other person for your own pleasure. You don’t want to give the impression that you just want to use the other person for their body.
If you only speak about yourself all the time, this can be extremely off-putting to the other person and can make it very difficult for the two of you to actually connect with each other. If you really want to have a successful first date, you need to put the other person’s needs ahead of your own. If you pay attention to what the other person is saying, listen attentively, and ask questions, you’ll create a much better connection with them. This will make for a much more enjoyable first date, and will likely lead to a second one as well.
#7 Don’t be overly critical of their choices in food and drink
Everyone has their own likes and dislikes, and you don’t need to be a food critic on a first date. If you hate their drink and they order something odd, don’t make a big deal out of it. If they order a steak when you only eat fish, don’t put them on the spot and ask them why they ordered something you don’t eat. If they order something that’s vegan, doesn’t have any animal products, and you’re a vegetarian, don’t make them feel bad about it. If they order something unhealthy, don’t make a big deal out of it.
#8 Don’t forget to be a good listener and show that you are interested in what they have to say, too
Being a good listener is important in any relationship, but it’s especially crucial on a first date. When you’re with someone new, you want to make sure that they know you’re interested in what they have to say and that you’re not just there to talk about yourself the entire time. If you pay attention and show that you’re interested in what the other person has to say, they’ll be more likely to want to go on another date with you and potentially want to become a long-term relationship.
Bottom line: Be yourself, have fun, and don’t take it too seriously!
First dates are a great way to get to know like-minded people and meet new people. A first date doesn’t have to lead to a marriage or a lifelong relationship. But if it does, that’s even better! If it doesn’t, that’s fine too. You can learn a lot about yourself through dating and meeting new people. And who knows? You might end up meeting your future partner on the first date!