First dates can be awkward and nerve-racking! Believe me, I have had my fair share of the good and the bad. Over that time, I have noticed a couple of tips that have helped me or that I wish my date had followed!
You might be thinking “What qualifies you to give dating advice?”. Honestly, nothing. However, my boyfriend’s friends have started coming to me for first date ideas and tips in a new group chat called “Alexis’s Dating Service”. Super hilarious but so far, every first date has been rather successful. If that doesn’t qualify you to give advice, I don’t know what does!
Tip 1: Avoid any sort of scene that prevents conversation (i.e. the movies, a concert, a comedy show, etc.)
Tip 2: Don’t get too personal- avoid pictures, activities that expose too much (ex. swimming), & questions that are too prying or private.
Tip 3: Don’t willingly share too much (i.e. your past relationship details, your medical history, controversial views, etc).
Tip 4: Be open-minded- don’t start the date with the mindset that it won’t work out. If I did that, I wouldn’t be in the loving and incredible relationship I am in now.
Tip 5: Don’t get caught up in the details- First dates are nerve-racking and sometimes we fumble or slip up out of nerves. Give the person a chance!
Tip 6: Physical attraction matters but it’s not everything- He/she might not be love at first sight but as long as they are “relatively” attractive that is okay to start. A good personality can make someone a lot more physically attractive and a bad personality can reduce that physical attraction really quick.
Tip 7: Do an activity that keeps your hands busy! First dates can be awkward and the awkwardness will take over if you have free hands. If you opt for a coffee date, I swear just holding onto the mug helps!
Tip 8: Put the phone down! Unless the phone contains pictures or other material that can initiate or further conversation.
Tip 9: Ask the same amount of questions and talk about yourselves equally! There is nothing worse than someone who is all about them or who doesn’t share anything.
Tip 10: Choose a public place- Pick a place for the date that is public to avoid any discomfort.
Tip 11: Actively Listen- Put in the effort to be engaged in conversations and actively listen to what your date is saying.
Tip 12: Stay within comfort zones- It’s great to have things new and exciting during a first date but keep the surprises to a minimum if you don’t know each other well & never push your date beyond their comfort level.
Tip 13: Keep the affection to a minimum- Show interest with words, attentiveness and low-key affection like a goodbye hug. Call me old school, but a guy who isn’t pushy with moves right away scores major points.
Tip 14: Regardless of gender, if you are into someone, initiate the first date! Who cares if the societal norm is for a guy to ask out the girl? Just go for it!
Tip 15: Be yourself- If the dates continue, they will see the real you eventually, so you might as well be authentic right away!
First Date Ideas:
Of course, if there is any sort of known common interests that can be worked into a date, do that! If you don’t have any known common interests, I would recommend some of the following ideas for the following kinds of people:
For the Shy:
A group date in a low-key environment can be the way to go, such as:
For the Adventurous & Brave:
Something new and different will be for you! Some unique options are:
-Go to an Amusement Park
For the Givers:
Find a one-time volunteer opportunity at places such as:
For the Artsy:
An activity that will help showcase your natural abilities like:
For the Food & Drink Lovers:
An activity that is unique but food related like:
-Local Food Tours (Nanaimo’s Nanaimo Bar Tour)
-Local Tasting Locations (Little Qualicum CheeseWorks)
-Local Brewery/Wine Tasting
For the Active:
Something that gets the heart pumping but watch for how much conversation time will be available:
-Indoor Trampoline Park
For the Laid Back:
Something unique and fun but low-key:
-Playing Pool/ Game room
-Pub Trivia Night
-Attend a Street Fair
For the High Maintenance:
Honestly, I’d say stick to the basics:
-Local coffee shop date