First Date 101: Tips for a Memorable Time Together!

First dates can be both exciting and nerve-wracking, but with a few simple strategies, you can make the experience enjoyable and memorable. Here are some essential guidelines to help you have a great first date and leave a lasting impression.

Anticipate Your Needs

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If you’re feeling nervous about your date, you might consider choosing a lower-pressure environment, like a cozy cafe or a pretty park. This may allow you to leave early if the date goes poorly or extend the date if you find yourself enjoying your time.

Choose the Right Location

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No matter which style of date you choose, try to pick a place where you can comfortably talk and get to know each other. Avoiding loud and overly crowded areas may help you to open up and have a better experience.

Dress to Impress

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When choosing your outfit, wear something that makes you feel confident but is also appropriate for the setting. Comfort is often the key to projecting confidence, so choose the clothes that allow you to focus more on your date than your own discomfort.

Show Up On Time

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Being punctual sets a positive tone for the date. It shows respect for the other person’s time and helps you to start things off on the right foot.

Be Authentic

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Pretending to be someone you’re not can lead to awkward situations later on. Instead, be yourself, and the right person will appreciate getting to know the real you.

Keep the Conversation Balanced

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Make sure the conversation goes both ways. You don’t want to dominate the conversation or not respond to the other person, so make sure you’re actively listening and sharing about yourself.

Avoid Controversial Topics

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Try to steer clear of heavy topics like politics, religion, or money. You’ll generally want to keep the conversation light-hearted to build a connection. However, if something is a deal-breaker, you may want to address it early so you can avoid wasting both of your time.

Ask Questions

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Asking appropriate questions can show someone that you’re interested in getting to know them. Simple follow-up questions or inquiries about their hobbies and interests can show the other person you want to get to know them.

Pay Attention to Manners

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Simple gestures like saying “please” and “thank you” are noticed and appreciated. Additionally, paying attention to how your date treats service workers, such as in a cafe or restaurant, can indicate what kind of person they are.

Be Positive

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Try to maintain a positive attitude throughout the date. Complaining too much or focusing on negatives can be both off-putting and exhausting for the other person.

Limit Phone Use

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Put your phone away to show that you’re fully engaged in the date. Checking your phone frequently or answering texts during a date can signal disinterest and is often considered rude.

Prepare a Few Topics

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First dates can create a lot of anxiety. If you have a few conversation starters in mind, you can avoid awkward silences. Topics like favorite movies, travel destinations, or hobbies would work well for breaking any gaps in conversation.

Expect Awkward Moments

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Most first dates, and even the second and third ones, include some awkward moments. Learn to laugh them off and move on without making a big deal out of them or overanalyzing the silence.

Pay Attention to Body Language

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Make eye contact, smile, and face your face to show you’re engaged and interested. Nonverbal cues can tell you a lot. Similarly, pay attention to your date’s body language.

Avoid Alcohol Excess

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While a drink or two may be helpful to shake the nerves, make sure you drink in moderation. Staying sober can help you to stay in control and, ultimately, leave a good impression.

Offer to Split

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Whether or not you end up splitting the bill, it’s always a good idea to offer. This can show that you don’t have expectations of paying or being paid for. Overall, this approach is fair and can prevent any awkwardness about who pays.

End on a Positive Note

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Whether a good or bad date, it’s polite to leave it with a smile and thank them for their time. This leaves a good final impression and reflects well on your character.

Be Honest

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If you’re not interested in a second date, be honest. Rather than ghosting them, be polite and honest when letting them know.

Follow Up After

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Let them know if you had a good time and are interested in seeing them again. A simple text the next day can keep the momentum going or give you the closure you need from the date.

Treat Dates as a Learning Experience

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Dating is a learning experience, so take each date as a fun adventure and opportunity to grow. Reflect on the date and think about how you can improve for next time, or what you might do differently.

The post First Date 101: Tips for a Memorable Time Together! first appeared on Mama Say What?!

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