7 post first date do’s and don’ts

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Ding Yuin Shan, Flickr

Ah, first dates...that most important date, where futures are forged or broken in an instant. But even if you had a good first date, you can't just throw caution to the wind and assume everything will go that way. No, young Padawan, there are ways of playing it safe, playing it cool and playing it right to assess the situation, create a strategy and execute your attack post first date...and my school of thought basically revolves around NOT doing any of that. Huh? Read on...

Photo Credit: Ding Yuin Shan, Flickr

It can be hard to figure out exactly how the date went. You'll come across the occasional girl who's a people pleaser and doesn't have the capacity to let you know she didn't feel a connection. Or, you could spend your time with someone who's head over heels for you but doesn't want to let on about it in case it scares you away. And you may not know which girl is which. Still, if you like her there are some things to observe that will help you determine where you stand. Did she pay for her half of the meal and then say it was nice meeting you and then peace out pretty quickly? That's a good indication that she had a nice time but didn't think you were a good match for her. Did she give you her social security number and then stick her tongue down your throat at the end of the date? I don't want to give out any spoilers, but usually that's a pretty good indication that she liked you.

Should you wait a day? A week? Is there some type of algorithm to go by that determines how long you should wait to call based on how well the date went? The answer is no, because you should do whatever feels right. This will come across as natural and not forced in any way (since it's not) and she'll appreciate it. Oh, and by "call" I obviously mean text.

No matter how the first date went if you put too much pressure about getting together for a second date, it won't end well. Treat each one as a fun time to get to know her further and go with the flow whether you have two dates two days in a row or you don't see each other for two weeks in between. This way, things will evolve more organically if there isn't that pressure for the "next step". It's that kind of pressure we know many women are guilty of putting on us.

This means that if you've been rejected, you most likely won't know for sure because you can't even get a text back to see what's up. The upside is figuring out if you really want to be with someone who's so easily dismissive, preferring to suppress or get rid of things they don't want to deal with. Would you? No, you wouldn't.

...by doing the same thing to her. Instead, if she asks, be clear that you don't think the two of you are a good match. It's not hard; compliment her on her good qualities, let her know why you don't feel you're right for each other (be careful not to be too vague and come across like you're your own publicist and don't be too specific unless you want to hurt her feelings) and wish her good luck. "Breaking up" is both and art and a science and as with anything else practice makes perfect.

Many daters are seeing multiple people without any commitment until they find something that feels right. Don't feel like you have to stick it out with one person until you do or don't like them enough to change things. Go out more, meet more people and find your ideal match that way. It may take longer to find "the one", but when you do you will have done your "research" and figured out what's best for you.

If you had coffee on the first date, go ahead and up that to a trip to the park or dinner. This will allow you to get to know each other in a different way. You don't want to come across as someone boring with no imagination. Save that for when you're married.

(Originally published on March 27, 2012.)

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