Congratulations! You did it. You nailed a first date with the cutie you run into every week at the neighborhood coffee shop. Sure, it’s been a long time coming, but the first date is here, and this guy is funny, witty and every bit the gentlemen you knew he’d be. You’re very much living in the present but can’t help thinking about the next steps. How can you make sure that he will ask you on a second date? Here are the do’s and don’ts of nabbing date number two.
**Disclaimer: This advice only applies to situations where you do, in fact, want a second date. If your date turns out to be an el creepo, please abort mission and save these rules for when appropriate.
Do Find Common Ground:
Finding something you have in common can lead to great conversation and instant chemistry. What is he passionate about? What are his pet peeves? Ask questions that show you are interested in learning more while also complementing his answers with stories of your own. Simple questions can lead to bigger discoveries about who he is as a person. Who knew that asking about a favorite food would lead to a discussion on how being close to his family is so important?
Do Be Open-Minded:
This is the first date, a somewhat formal introduction to someone that you are interested in. Keep your guard down and enjoy yourself. You hate cats and he loves them? Not necessarily the end of the world. Often times, people with different views from our own can not only introduce us to new concepts, but also expand our understanding of certain ideas. Let the conversation happen naturally and go with the flow. This isn’t eighth grade debate class - different can be good.
Do Avoid The Monologue:
Despite what you think, this date is not a play featuring you with the supporting cast of you. Make sure that you aren’t spending the entire date detailing your favorite memories from birth. Ask questions and feed off of each other’s energy. You can usually tell your answers are long-winded by paying attention to your date’s body language. Are his eyes gazing into the distance? Is he yawning every five minutes? Cut your answers short so that he can have a chance to share some stories with you. If there is a universal rule in conversation, it’s that everyone wants to be heard.
Do Put Feelers Out:
Sometimes it can be difficult to tell if your date is interested in making plans for date two or if this date is only the beginning of the end. There’s no harm in putting out feelers to see if he’s interested in hanging out more. It’s possible to casually put out radar for your date’s interest in you without coming across as a completely awkward human being. Mention hanging out in the foreseeable future and pay attention to his reaction. A “Yes! What are you doing next weekend?” is a pretty good indicator that he wants to see you again; whereas, an “Umm yeah, why not?” can mean he’s not too excited about round two.
Don’t Interview Him:
The first date is not a time to ask about ex-girlfriends, bad breakups, fetishes or family problems. You want to keep it light and comfortable. Use this time to figure out if his personality is compatible with yours, without drilling him “Law & Order” style.
Don’t Look For His “But”:
What’s a man’s “but?” We aren’t talking about his cute bottom. In this case, a man’s “but” refers to attributes that can sometimes be deal breakers. For example, he’s cute, smart and funny, but he has a terrible fear of commitment. Or he’s ambitious and loves family, but has horrible morning breath. Don’t make it your goal to find his flaws. No one is perfect, but looking for what’s wrong is never the best way to approach relationships.
Don’t Invite Your Baggage To The Date:
Your ex is your ex for a reason, and he shouldn’t be invited to this party for two. Want to make a reference to something a former lover did? Don’t. No one wants to hear about the way things used to be with the guy you used to date. This is a new person with a new set of experiences to introduce you to. Don’t make the water murky by living in the past. If you really can’t help bringing up your past into your present experience, you may not be ready to date after all.
Don’t Be Too Eager:
While you might feel the date is going great, don’t appear to be overly excited about your next rendezvous. Coming across as too eager for the next date can make you look desperate and no one wants to date “that girl.” Play it cool and don’t show all your cards. This is date number one; you’re allowed to be a little mysterious. Save your ideas of what your babies would look like for girl talk later.
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