8 Common First Date Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
You managed to score a first date with your longtime crush.
The hard part’s over, so what could go wrong? Turns out, there’s quite a bit that could go wrong. The first date is the most important one—if you screw this one up, there likely won’t be any second chances.
We’ve put together this little list of first date mistakes to avoid. Keep reading to learn what they are and how to avoid them.
1. Showing Up Late
This is one of the easiest first date mistakes to avoid.
A first date is all about first impressions. And lack of punctuality makes an awful first impression.
Showing up on time demonstrates respect for your date. It shows them that you actually want to be there and that you’re excited to meet them.
Look, sometimes unforeseen events arise to complicate things. Maybe you have a perfectly good reason for why you’re running a bit late.
In these situations, communication is key. Your date will understand, but contact them with a text or phone call to let them know you’ll be late. Once you show up, make sure to apologize again.
Your date will understand that things happen and will forgive you—as long as you do them the kindness of communicating with them.
2. Appearance Matters
Scheduling a date is the easy part. The tough part is the preparation.
That means you need to put some effort into your appearance and personal presentation. This should go without saying, but you’d be surprised how many people neglect this aspect.
Personal hygiene, and dressing smartly for the occasion is an absolute must for a first date. The way you dress and present yourself says a lot about who you are.
Make sure that your date draws the right impression about who you are from your personal appearance.
3. Boring Date Activity
There’s a reason that the old “dinner and a movie” is a cliché.
Guys, you can do much better than this. The best dating activities, at least when it comes to a first date, are those that are short and sweet. A first date is about getting to know one another.
Unless you’ve started out as friends, and already know something about each other, sitting through a long movie with a stranger can be a little awkward. In these pandemic days, your date might be a little gun-shy about movie theaters.
There are plenty of great dinner date ideas out there, which allow you to have great conversations but also bail out if you have to.
4. Good Conversation
Conversations on dates can be tricky.
You want to maintain the flow of the conversation, with all the witty banter and exciting back-and-forth that are the stuff of dating legends. Of course, sometimes this part can go horribly wrong.
Don’t do most of the talking. We all know about the guy who talks about himself to no end.
This is a major turn-off. Among the best relationship advice for men that we can think of is to throttle back on the information sharing.
Instead, you should encourage your date to do most of the talking. This allows them to feel more comfortable, and also connect more with you. It also indicates that you’re a great listener, which is a plus.
5. Incessant Phone Usage
This is one of the absolute worst first date mistakes you can make. Avoid this at all costs!
As with punctuality, this is about respect and consideration for your date. After all, how would you feel if your date was constantly scrolling through their phone while you talked, texting someone else, or checking their Facebook page the whole time?
You wouldn’t like it. It would be a sure indication that they’re not interested in you or anything you have to say. Nothing leaves a worse impression on a first date than sheer indifference.
Go ahead and silence your phone, and keep it hidden throughout the date.
6. Be Sparing With the Compliments
Compliments are nice, of course, but they should be used sparingly.
It’s important to avoid the mistake of complimenting your date too often and in ways that might be construed as coming on a little too strong. Keep it to one or at most two general compliments about your date.
You don’t want to come off as too desirous of your date’s approval. Also, it’s too early to know much about her, so your excessive complimenting will come across as shallow.
It’s wisest not to compliment your date on her looks. Try to keep things light and fun on the first date, and avoid making her feel uncomfortable.
7. Don’t Bring Up the Ex
Hey, sometimes it can be hard to avoid this slip-up.
After all, you’re both talking about your pasts and the interesting and relevant things that happened in your lives. What’s more natural than to mention previous relationships?
This is something best relegated to later dates. A first date is all about getting to know each other and making a good overall first impression. Dragging your ex into the picture suggests that you might not be over them.
To summarize, don’t bring up the ex on a first date!
8. Keep It Cool
Finally, it’s important to keep things fun and not too heavy on the first date.
One of the most egregious first date mistakes is for one party to come on too fast, too soon, or take things in a serious direction too quickly. That means you shouldn’t ask her to marry you—at least not yet.
Save that for the third date.
Don’t bring up sex. Even if your date knows that’s all you’ve been thinking about the entire time, she’d like to maintain the fantasy that you’re really here for her intellectual attainments at least a little longer.
Avoid These First Date Mistakes
We all know that first dates can be stressful.
Look over this list of first date mistakes, and be honest with yourself if you’re guilty of any of them in the past. Now that you know what not to do, you can make that first date a success, and hopefully find the love of your life!
We hope you found this article informative. While you’re here, please check out some of our other great posts on lifestyle and relationships.
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