So, the past year or so of being Single has led me to explore the fast pace, vibrant and challenging dating scene in London. A year ago, I was terrified to go on a date with someone and have to take the time to get to know them but once I got out there it was a little less intimidating.
I have tried the likes of Tinder and Bumble – while it can be fun on a Sunday evening to swipe around and judge people on their looks while you’re laid in your pyjamas at home and the grey skies are rolling in, it just hasn’t led to anything substantial. In fact, I have always had more of a connection with the people I met the old school way (you know, without the internet). I know people who have met their future partner through dating apps but majority of the people on there are easily distracted. It has just become way too easy to meet people, yet harder to keep them around.
So now, I like to think I am quite the first date expert. I have gone on a few, analysed the market performance and come up with a few rules to follow to avoid super awkward situations (this is for both men and women) because I wish I had a rulebook to take along with me on a few of my first, first dates.
- Talk. If you connected with someone on a dating app, talk to them, get to know them, and I don’t just mean text – have a phone call! If after two weeks you are still intrigued and entertained or they haven’t just disappeared then it is likely that you guys will get along on your date.
- Men, ask a woman out so she doesn’t have to. It is always a good sign when the guy makes the plans to meet up, it shows interest. (I am speaking for myself and the girlfriends that I know – some women might disagree)
- Go for drinks on your first date. This keeps things casual, you can get to know each other without having to stay for a 3 course meal in case things aren’t going to plan. This also makes it easier to avoid the awkward bill situation.
- Keep your outfit casual chic. You want to look good but not like you made too much of an effort. Men, don’t show up in a tracksuit and ladies, avoid those chipped nails.
- If you do go out for a meal and the bill comes at the end, ladies, offer to pay for your half. I have listened to my male friends and they all say that they appreciate it when a woman offers to pay without just expecting the man to pay, although they then still insist on paying for the whole bill.
- Do not talk about your ex’s. I was once on a date and this guy would not shut up about his ex and how crazy she is and how she still wants to be with him etc. I like to avoid drama and people that haven’t fully moved on – it just gets messy!
- This is a rule set out by my Mom, do not jump into someone’s car on the first date. You don’t actually know them or how they drive (I tend to bend this rule once in awhile – don’t tell my Mommy).
- If there is no chemistry and you can’ feel the vibes within the first hour of meeting – then don’t bother with arranging a second one to give it a chance, it’s not going to happen. I am a strong believer in energy and it is something that you can feel immediately when you meet someone and have a conversation with them. If it doesn’t exist, it just doesn’t exist.
- If the above is true and you just weren’t feeling it, let them know after and wish them well. There is nothing more awkward than someone pestering to take you on another date while you can’t think of anything worst.
- Finally, do not take anything personally. The chances are you are probably not going to find your prince/princess straightaway or you might think you have but that feeling is not reciprocated. Just take it all in as practice so that when the time and vibe is right – you know exactly how to handle your stuff!
Do you have any other rules that come to mind? (Or any first date horror stories to share :p )