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Top 10 tips for a successful first date

In the spirit of improvement, here are some tips for a successful first date.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez from Unsplash.com

“A successful first date is about making a connection, building trust, and having fun.”

So said Michelle G, founder of Incredible Love, who made a name for her tough love approach to dating, not believing in sugarcoating things. And now, in the spirit of improvement, here are her top 10 tips for a successful first date.

1. Dress to impress.

First impressions matter. According to research, most of us form an impression about someone within the first 7 seconds. What lasting impression do you want them to have? Make sure your clothes fit properly and are suitable for the occasion.

2. Come prepared with engaging conversation topics.

The purpose of a first date is to learn about that person’s world and experience what it is like to be around them, so avoid treating it like an interview or discussing deep topics too quickly. Build emotional connection through storytelling. Think of it as mental foreplay. Some great topics are sharing what you’re most proud of, travel destinations, family and future goals.

3. Make eye contact and actively listen to your date.

44% of people say the first thing they notice when meeting someone is their eyes. Maintaining good eye contact will make you more memorable and build trust with your date. Listening is a skill we are often not taught growing up so we do our best. A simple practice when it comes to active listening is to listen without judgment and instead with curiosity. Curiosity leads to questions, conversation, and storytelling – you get the gist.

4. Avoid talking about your exes or past relationships.

Ex’s or past relationship topics are inevitable on a first date – don’t spend more than 3 minutes on the subject. Discussing past relationships can bring up unresolved feelings and emotions that might not be appropriate for this first date. If there’s potential, there’s time to learn more.

5. Don’t drink too much alcohol.

Most people drink on a first date to use it as a social lubricant; however, the importance is to not overindulge. Drinking too much leads to impaired decision-making. Remember, first impressions matter.

6. Be open-minded and willing to try new things.

Modern dating challenges past dating trends and the tradition of the first date dinner. Today, the quickest way to get to know someone is to see them in an element where they have to use all their senses. Instead of a coffee or tapas at your local restaurant, opt for an activity date. It takes the pressure off both parties while sharing a memorable experience.

7. Avoid being on your phone or checking social media.

This is a NO-NO because it’s rude and screams to your date: “I don’t value your time.” If possible, place the phone out of sight and be present for this person, you never know, it could be your last first date.

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8. Be yourself and don’t pretend to be someone you’re not.

Enough said!

9. Be honest and straightforward about your intentions.

Every person is at a different place in their dating life therefore, you can’t make assumptions. Every dater needs a dating intention statement that clearly answers the question: “What are you looking for?” It saves everyone time and unnecessary heartbreak.

10. Don’t be afraid to show vulnerability and express your true feelings.

We are all going through this human experience called life. Sometimes conversations can go in a direction where you both have the opportunity to share about what experiences shaped you – welcome it! Vulnerability on a first date can look like sharing what you’re comfortable with and saving the rest for another occasion.

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