Take the initiative
Make a good first impression and plan your date. Are you into food trucks or craft cocktails? Hit the local food truck scene or bar hop with your date around town. That way you explore different places while getting to know each other.
Just make sure to pick spots where you can have a conversation—a really loud bar or a movie theatre are not good options. A quiet (and public) place is the way to go.
Don’t be late
You’d be surprised by how many people show up late to a first date (editor’s note: not to mention meetings with their matchmaker!). Don’t be one of them. Your date will stress out, thinking they’ve been stood up—which is one of the reasons why first dates induce so much anxiety.
On the other hand, if you end up being the one waiting, consider leaving for your own sake. A genuinely interested person would not leave you hanging on the very first date.
Be honest right off the bat
If you’re shy or you’re nervous, say so right away and break the ice. It’s hard to open up like this on the first date, but you’ll be helping the other person understand how you feel. And they won’t blame themselves or assume you don’t like them when you’re a little quiet at first.
Be mindful of boundaries
Your date’s body language can be a source of information on what their boundaries are, so take note. Hugging might be okay for some people, but out of line for others. Everyone has specific boundaries and being mindful of them matters, especially on the first date.
If you truly listen to your date, you will know them faster and get along better. Actually, active listening is a key ingredient in building lasting relationships. And according to a study by the International Journal of Listening, paying attention to what your date is saying can even make you more socially attractive.
Take it slow
Don’t think of a first date as the be-all-end-all. Take it slow and get to know your date by asking questions and sharing some details of your life. Dig deeper when you’re genuinely interested, but still try to take your time. When the pressure to connect fast is off the table, a date can run more smoothly.
Don’t go ignoring them
After that first date, you should have a pretty good idea of whether or not you want to go on a second one. This is when honesty comes in handy. Don’t be afraid to reach out saying you had a good time and want to meet again. And don’t shy away from being honest if there was no connection at all. Whatever you do, just don’t ignore your date after the first meeting. Ghosting is bad etiquette.
These tips are courtesy of our friends at Consumers Advocate.