Who doesn’t dread first dates? Even Kourtney Kardashian said they’re “awkward and annoying.” So if you’ve taken the big step of asking someone out, you want it to go well.
To boost your odds of getting a “yes” to the second date, here are the 5 rules you must follow on the first.
Rule 1: Be the Best-Looking Version of Yourself You Can Be
Dress with finesse. Carefully consider every element of your look from head to toe. Keep it simple but sophisticated. Polish those shoes. Brush those teeth. Clean that car. And please, watch the cologne. Your date wants to taste the dinner, not your Hugo Boss.
Rule 2: For Heaven’s Sake, Be On Time
If you’re picking your date up, don’t arrive more than 5 minutes early or 5 minutes late. That’s your window. If you’re meeting somewhere, get there early.
Rule 3: Exercise Some Common Courtesy
Chivalry is not dead, but it seems like a lost art. Even the most independent person appreciates a door being opened or seat being pulled out. If you want to really impress, stand up when your date leaves the table. Who does that anymore?
Be a gentleman. Your companion will notice.
Rule 4: Improve Your Conversational Intelligence
The ability to engage in conversation on a first date is critical. A good conversation sets the tone and can make or break the outcome. It’s key to learning if you’re a future couple or a one-and-done.
If you don’t know what active listening is, look it up. Listen with intent. Really pay attention. Ask open-ended questions and avoid one-word answers. Have a few conversation starters in mind (here’s a helpful list), but don’t be too scripted. Avoid politics and negativity. And – of course – turn your phone off and put it away.
Rule 5: Take Cues from Your Partner
First dates can go all kinds of sideways if you and your date aren’t on the same page. Don’t be too familiar until your date goes there. Wait for the “lean-in” before puckering up. (Halle Berry is quoted as having said: “The worst thing a man can ever do is kiss me on the first date.”) If the chemistry is there, your expectations will probably align.
Go Forth and Conquer
A first date is an adventure to an unknown place. Best case, it will be the beginning of something beautiful. If not, at least you will have been at your best.
So put on your jacket. Take a deep breath. Relax. And follow these 5 rules.