Dating is a hellscape. It’s confusing and tense and awkward and embarrassing and everybody has to do it at some point. Human beings simply weren’t designed to communicate well with each other or really even get along. That’s simple science, folks.
But we all want to love and be loved. So we date. Maybe we don’t call it a date. Maybe we insist it’s not a date. Call it what you want, but if there’s a chance of sex afterward (or during), then it’s a date.
Dating is hard. There’s no way around that. But try some of these weird little tips. It might make absolutely no difference at all, but then again, it also might? Who knows?
Maybe not anyone. But date people you wouldn’t normally think to date. Losers. Chubsters. Mormons. What you’re doing here is practicing. You’re getting out of your comfort zone, meeting people, and maintaining conversation with somebody new. And it might turn out you actually hit it off!
No Meals, No Movies
Skip the classic date scenarios. Movies are not good because you’re mostly sitting together in darkened silence. Meals are better, but there’s lots of quiet time, too, when you’re busy chewing your fettuccine alfredo.
Try a museum. Or a park. Somewhere where you can go at your own pace and there is something around you to talk about. You can combine that with a coffee or a quick bite, but movement and novel surroundings make a better first date than silent mastication.
I mean, get dressed. But don’t try too hard. It’s transparent, for one thing. It makes you tense and nervous. And most importantly, it means you’re hiding your true self. Being genuine is a skill you should be practicing whenever possible. if your date’s going to like you for the long run, they’re going to like you when you’re being authentic. And if they don’t like you when you’re being yourself, then isn’t it better to get that out of the way on a first date, not once you’ve been dating for a year?
You Can Ghost, Sparingly
This goes in with not trying too hard. Take time before you respond. Show them you’re not desperate. Show them you’re a busy, important person with lots of other stuff going on that kept you from responding right away.
Don’t be an asshole about it. Use this tool sparingly. But don’t be afraid to use it.
Mimic Your Date
Not in a mocking way, of course. But mirroring their body language can help build an early rapport.
Again, DO NOT JUST REPEAT WHAT THEY DO. You’re going for an overall impression. If they’re laid back, lay back. If they’re a little more closed, fold yourself up a little bit. Subconsciously, it builds trust. They see you as a like-minded person with a similar worldview.
Yes, this sort of contradicts the bit about not trying too hard and being yourself, but dating is a confusing and complex phenomenon.
Apparently, sugar makes people more romantic. They did a study on it.
Try karaoke. Ask dumb questions. Maybe snort a little when you laugh. Letting yourself look silly shows you don’t take yourself too seriously. It’s also endearing, and it’s a decent test of whether your date can handle you at your silliest.
Just a little. It eases the flow of conversation, it relaxes you both, and it makes you a little more open and vulnerable.
What you probably don’t want to do is get drunk. But a drink or two acts as social lubricant.
Don’t be a creep, and don’t get yourself arrested. But be honest about your feelings. You’re both adults (hopefully), who know perfectly well you’re testing each other out as possible sex/life partners. Don’t be afraid to ask for a second date right at the end of the first one, or, if you’re the type, to finish up the date back at your place. Or his. Or like a park bench, or whatever you’re into.