How to make dating suck less. I know, I know. Sounds impossible to any 20-something. But keep reading.
I’ve never been much of a “dater.” I’ve always been more of a relationship person or just totally single and doing me. Honestly, I haven’t been on a ton of first dates compared to other people my age. I’m okay with that, because first dates suck.
Okay, I shouldn’t say that exactly. The time leading up to a first date—and I mean the whole day of—is what really sucks. The build up, the anticipation, the anxiety. It’s either a major let down or potentially awesome. Total toss up.
Follow these few steps to set yourself up for a hot date.
*Disclaimer: Even if you follow all or most of these steps, your date could still be a dud. Just go with it.
This is my number one. For those that know me, I’m a huge worrier. I freak myself out on the regular. I’m pretty much always panicking. Dating is no different. Also, for those that know me, weird stuff happens to me when I’m nervous. Stomach aches, nervous rashes, clammy hands, the whole nine yards. #DateMe boys. But really, don’t panic. Ground yourself with the fact that this is just one date. It’s a casual interaction between two people who have likely already been communicating in some way. If it doesn’t go well, it will probably just be a blip on your radar for years to come. Don’t sweat it.
This is easy to forget and can go along with being nervous. Even if you want to look hot in the little black dress you bought for dinner, make sure you eat full meals. Even if you’re going out to dinner later. Your stomach growling during a movie or a quiet car ride will make things even more awkward. And no one wants that. [Pro-tip: don’t forget to pack the gum.]
DON’T TOUCH YOUR PHONE (Seriously don’t.)
This is hard. I get it. It’s usually pretty awkward when you’re first getting there and starting to get to know each other. Small talk starts to dwindle. In any everyday interaction, that’s when us millennials would unlock our phone and start scrolling. Resist! Nothing makes a person look more disinterested. (If you actually aren’t interested, you can disregard this advice and do you.) The only time you should be touching your phone is if you get a phone call or if you want to show your date some funny video on Instagram. Be engaged and in the moment.
PICK OUT THAT OUTFIT
I am infamous for picking out my outfit the night before. Every day. No matter what I’m doing. If I’m going to the gym, my outfit is picked out. I’m all about saving time. For a date, you just want to make sure you’re dressed for the occasion. If it’s cold, bring a jacket. If you’re going to dinner, take it up a notch. If you’re watching movies on the couch, don’t be extra and wear wedges. Get what I’m saying?
LAUGH A LITTLE
It’s inevitable that you’ll have one or two or five awkward moments. The key is to own it and laugh a little. No one likes somebody who is uptight. If you can laugh at the weirdness (without being rude, of course) they’ll probably laugh too. And who knows, you could be bonding over this day before you know it.
DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF
This is easier said than done, trust me I know. But because you are a human being, it’s likely that things will go wrong. Maybe you’ll get stuck in traffic. Maybe your boss will ask you to stay late at work. Maybe you’ll spill wine on yourself. Maybe a zit will mysteriously appear on your face the morning of. You are human. Be endearing, apologetic, and sincere. Most of all, be authentic.
Which leads me to…
Cliche, I know. But it’s true. If you act comfortable, they’ll act comfortable. If they don’t, do you honestly want to date them anyways? Vibes attract vibes. So play it cool, be yourself, and you could have yourself a perfect night.