We’re really all about first impressions.
The bottom line, no matter what, within the first ten minutes (give or take) you’re going to decide if you have something in common with a person other than just a physical attraction. If they’re not exactly what we were looking for, your personality could change that person’s look entirely.
So, let’s talk a little bit about the four essential tips for that best impression on a first date.
- Bring your A game (initial first impression)
- Avoid oversharing
- It’s not just what you say but how you say it
- Without appearing too eager, don’t play it too cool
It’s important to bring your A game
You’re groomed. Fingernails. Nose hairs. Your best clothes? On. Ironed.
BUT did you come with a plan of what you’re doing that evening? Does she care? Oh, and don’t forget to always have a Plan B, too.
You: Let’s get sushi!
Her: I’m allergic to raw fish.
You (Mr. Man with a Plan): Oh, well there’s a great Italian joint down the street. Let’s go!
Bring that A game as you are and be prepared. It’s OK to always give 100% of yourself. Best to give your A game on that first date than to completely not care and wonder what might have been. Don’t tone it back. Give everything you got at this moment just as you would at a job interview. It will help you in all aspects of your life. Other people will pick up on this and is critical if you really work on it.
Part of bringing your A game: making eye contact, smiling, and really listening to what the other person is saying. Those are all components of bringing your A game and that making a great initial first impression. It’s not just in how you look but how you carry yourself.
You can bring it, do everything right, and nail that initial impression with the right clothing, grooming, and the best eye contact. But if you overshare? Woof. It can just kill everything.
“Hey you look just like my ex.”
“My ex and I used to come here all the time.”
“I had the worst hemorrhoids last month.”
“I’m only staying in my parents’ basement for another month or so.”
That shit is a deal breaker all the time.
Ex talk is completely out. If they ask why you’re single keep it very simple and very brief. You don’t need to get into detail whatsoever. It’s not the purpose of this date but you don’t want to completely avoid answering that question. Additionally, when you’re asking questions or directing the conversation avoid prodding too much. Also consider…
It’s not just what you’re saying but how you say it
Think about your body language when you’re asking a question. Is it an open mind or do you give off the feeling you already have the answer?
“Oh, I bet you don’t like sushi?”
Don’t act like you know a person based on what you’ve read in an online profile or what you’ve heard from mutual friends. Give them a chance to answer. Listen to how they answer and follow up with a question. Be conversational and nice. It doesn’t matter the situation you’re in. An interview. A cocktail party. Let them feel comfortable giving you an answer so you can get to know them.
When you are more honest and give them the comfort of being themselves, you break the ice a little bit.
Allow these sincere, organic conversations to occur. You do want to have fun though so sprinkle it with some laughter. Kid around a little bit – but not too much. A sense of humor is critical but don’t try some sort of stand-up routine.
Without appearing too eager, don’t play it too cool
Not desperate, but interested.
You want to show that you’re putting yourself out there. You’re a guy that’s fun and interesting. You have things to do and you’re going to have fun no matter what but you’re going to have fun with them, too.
“It’d be a lot of fun if we went to ____ Saturday.”
“Sometimes I go check out art exhibits on weekends. Would you like to go with me?”
They might not like the monster truck show you’re going to but, maybe they will!
One time, I suggested ice skating and she said let’s hang at my place and watch ultimate fighting. Uh, OK!
After a date, send a text the next day without appearing over eager.
“Hey I had a great time last night. Hope you did too”
You’re taking an initiative to tell them how you feel. And, listen, I don’t care what the rules of dating say over the years. You text the next day. Just keep it short. Don’t seem too eager and don’t overthink it.
“Had a great time last night what are you doing Saturday night?”
That’s entirely too eager.
“Had a great time last night hope you did too” FULL STOP. See the difference?
If they send a text back that only says “thanks” well, that says more than enough. Time to move on.
If it’s “thanks me too!” well, then you have another chance and can ask about a second date.
These are critical points of first impressions. It’s all confidence. Appearance. Asking questions. Level of preparation (the plan, the grooming, the clothes). When you approach a person sometimes you judge them immediately by what they look like but: You. Have. To. Get. To. Know. Them.
If you see them the way they like to be seen, that’s the best. “they don’t really see me for me” - people hate that.
And, look, it’s not always going to work. Sometimes you just strike out on everything and they’re not feeling it. Pick yourself up and try again another day with someone else. Because sometimes, you just can’t get anything right.