First dates never get easier. But to get to know a potential partner, they have to happen. Yes, they can start out a bit awkward and unnerving, but by breaking the ice and exuding confidence, you can get to know someone faster and more deeply. From presenting your true self to avoiding toxic thoughts that weigh you down, here are six first date tips to boost confidence and stay calm and collected.
1. Show Confidence With A Brighter Smile
Like finding the perfect dress, a brighter smile can make you look and feel your best, while also making you more attractive to a potential partner. For starters, a healthy-looking smile is more kissable. Plus, someone with a bright white smile comes across as trusting, which allows for a more meaningful connection.
Clearly, while it may seem shallow, it’s important to get rid of yellowing, stained teeth. So as you jump into the dating pool, get a kissable, cleaner-looking smile by using a teeth whitening kit and touching up before dates with stain erasers.
2. Keep An Open Mind
When searching for that perfect someone, you probably have a preconceived idea of the personality and traits you desire for them to have. You have an idea of the type of partner you wish to be with, hoping they have all the same likes and dislikes as you. However, this is simply not probable or realistic, as no one will ever tick off every box. So whenever you have a first date, make sure to keep an open mind.
While it’s okay to set expectations for someone you want to be in a committed relationship with, don’t set the bar so high or cut them loose based on one minor detail. Sure, their perfect weekend might involve heading into the wilderness to be one with nature, while yours is to curl up and binge Netflix, but don’t dismiss their other finer qualities. Instead, when you keep an open mind, you might learn to see past certain things.
Plus, while it’s easy to say you want a partner who is agreeable, sometimes you need someone who challenges you. And who knows? There might be a middle ground you can both enjoy together, such as binge-watching movies in a cozy cabin in the woods.
3. Keep The Conversation Flowing
First dates are all about getting to know one another. And this means lots of talking, which can reveal a lot about your personality. Do you talk too much when you’re nervous or are you more timid and shy? Either way, and whether it’s to your advantage or not, your date will see straight through it. Furthermore, you will each discover small quirks, as well as likes and dislikes.
Keep the first date conversations light and carefree, without being too stuffy or prying. Come up with some open-ended questions that can help you both explore each others’ personalities. For example, determine if they’re a cat or dog person. Ask how many tattoos they have or their favorite destination. Do whatever you can to keep the conversation flowing and avoid awkward silences that can break your confidence.
4. Act Natural And Be Yourself
Stop overthinking and remember to just be yourself. On a first date, this can be tricky, especially since first impressions are everything and you are there to impress. However, when you find yourself worrying over whether to order a light salad or barbecue (when there’s hot sauce in your purse), order what makes you happy and let them be the judge.
Essentially, your date is there to get to know you better. So show them who you truly are, inside and out. Don’t hold back the sarcasm or refrain from speaking your mind, especially about things that matter most to you. Let the cards fall where they may so you can each determine if the relationship has potential. Also, try not to be overly critical of your little quirks. You never know – they may find them rather cute.
5. Avoid Toxic Thoughts
If your first date does seem to be going awry, take a deep breath and tell yourself to avoid toxic thoughts. Stop second-guessing your every decision or answer throughout the date. Also, remember to take it one step at a time. Avoid toxic thoughts like wondering if this will be the last date or if they think it’s going bad. Thinking this way can make you feel and even come across as insecure.
When we are desperate to find a partner, we tend to judge our every action, wondering if we said or did the wrong thing to turn them off. We lean into these negative emotions, which ultimately make us more agreeable and act less like ourselves. Instead of disagreeing with them or taking a stance at all, you nod to keep the peace. But this will not land you into a healthy relationship.
In other words, block out these toxic thoughts and show them your true self. If they love who you are and want to see you again, being straightforward will not deter them.
6. Remember Your Date Is Also Nervous
Just as you are nervous about how well things are going, so is your date. Everything from how your hair looks to whether you picked the right restaurant, these are the worries that pop up sporadically as you chat and get to know one another.
Overall, remember that you are both human. Let the tiny mistakes slide and don’t hold it against them, same as you wouldn’t want it to be held against you. First dates are nerve-wracking even for confident individuals, but once you break the ice and engage in a fun or meaningful conversation, the nervousness will eventually vanish into thin air.