10 ways to avoid an awkward first date
The time between arranging a first date and meeting your date face-to-face is usually most nerve-racking. What if you do something stupid? What if you say something stupid? What do you wear? What if there’s tons of awkward silences? The list goes on…
I think the first thing you’ve got to remember is that the other person will probably be going through exactly the same thoughts in their head. Still nervous? OK, well here are my top 10 ways to break the ice and avoid awkward silences on a first date.
- What’s your tipple? On a first date you’re highly likely to be going for a meal or drinks so this is a great one to start with. You could chat about your favourite food and/or drink. If you’re anything like me (absolute lover of anything edible), this will keep you nattering away your nerves.
- Avoid ex chat. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, leave your (and their) ex out of it. It’s adds negativity and awkwardness to the date. Being comforted (or comforting someone) over the past is not an ideal way to get to know each other and is definitely not the relaxed vibe you should be aiming for. It’s important to start on a clean slate. Not over your ex? Probably best to live the single life for a while.
- Working to live or living to work? Asking them about their job and career goals can be a safe topic even though a lot of people may tell you to completely bypass this. We would like to disagree. Work takes up a large proportion of your life and generally speaking, people like to brag about. It’s great if the conversation is starting to dry up a little. Of course, you should quickly change the record if your date starts describing the mundane details of their job while glugging large quantities of alcohol. If nothing else, this topic will determine whether you’re dating a workaholic.
- Travelling and holidays. Mention holidays and it instantaneously creates a positive feeling…especially living in the rainy UK. This is our summer…SUMMER. Argh, anyway… Ask them if they’ve travelled anywhere cool or what their future travelling plans entail. This also provides you with some valuable information on each others backgrounds and openness to adventure.
- What are your friends like? Ask them about their friends. Most people will love to talk about their pals..how they met and where they go when they meet up. Could you see yourself fitting in with that bunch? I think it’s important to fit in with your dates friends and quite telling as to whether you and your date will actually get on as a couple in the long-run.
- Body language. Definitely pay attention to your dates body language as well as your own. You can tell a lot by this. Arms crossed? Leaning away? Limited eye contact? They are obviously uncomfortable about something. Whatever you are talking about.. STOP and move onto something else. Also, think about the kind of vibe you are giving with your body language.
- Keep it casual on a first date. By this I mean don’t get too “deep.” Just use this time to get to know each other better. Whatever you do, don’t use the “L” word. Before you think; “What preposterous thing to say!”, someone declared their love for my friend on a first date and what did she do? She ran a MILE and didn’t look back.
- Free time frolics. What do they like to do in their spare time? Do they like any sports? What kind of music do they like? All these kinds of questions show you are interested in your date and will also help you find whether a bond exists. It will also no doubt lead to further conversation.
- Their family. If they have brothers and/or sisters, ask about them. I would suggest the same goes if you both have children. It will trigger good feelings and show your caring side.
- The grand finale. To kiss or not to kiss? Always the most awkward part of the date. I would say don’t lean in unless you are sure that the other party will respond. Do a brief evaluation in your head…flirtatious body language, great connection? A kiss could be the perfect end. Not gone as well as you’d hoped? Probably safer to avoid kissing so as to not give false hope.
Offer your date a balloon.