I can’t control or manage how first dates happen for folks out there in the jungle, but here in MY world, there is a distinct process, which has been designed, adapted and proven over time. With over 1200 couples on the Success Story List that sits right here on my desk, I’m actually quite optimistic and hopeful about what can happen for two people on a first date, especially when a first date is set up just right and when both people do certain things…. Just right. Here’s the How To.
In my personal matchmaking community, when two people are meeting for a first date, you have both already said Yes to meeting up, in person, for a real, live date. You’ve both had the chance to study up on each other’s detailed profile and photos, and you’ve said Yes to meeting each other. I’ve helped the two of you pin down the when and where for that first date, which has been set and confirmed by you both. PHEW!
Lovely. Now, the rest is up to the two of you.
Here’s how to … not screw things up…
Before the date, If you’re The Guy. I’ve shared cell numbers with you both, so you’re sure to find each other at the venue. When you receive that first date confirmation from me, it’s a good idea for you, The Guy, to shoot over to her a short, sweet text message to say “Looking forward to meeting you, _____, on _____ at ______p.m.” That’s it. Refrain from the urge to launch into 20-questions, to text a selfie, share a photo of your cat, your car, or of yourself in front of your bathroom mirror sans shirt…. Leave those tactics to the online dating folks – THIS is personal matchmaking, where your date has already been set. You both get to relax and patiently await your real live date.
Before the date, If you’re The Girl. You both have each other’s cell numbers, through the email or text confirmation that I’ve shared with you both. What to do? Sit tight and wait patiently for the date. Often (but not always) you’ll see that your date will text over a short, simple message to say “See you there” – to which you should reply with a short, sweet, positive response. If he hasn’t texted you, he’s not misbehaving; it’s not a requirement that he check in prior to the date. If it’s the day prior or the day of the date and you’ve not heard from him, especially if you’re feeling a bit anxious, it’s OK for you to text him to say, “Hi ____, it’s _____, looking forward to meeting you on ____ at _____.” And you should also refrain from the temptation to share extra photos, your last name or email address, and please don’t ask him for any extra details. Your job is to simply get to the date, with a smile on your face, and to do your part to put him at ease.
Make this date a GREAT date. You’ll be doing your part to ensure that your date is a wonderful experience if you:
- Plan ahead. Arrange your week and your day so that you can be relaxed, nicely dressed, groomed and on time. Print up or store in your calendar your date’s cell number and profile, and take a few moments prior to the date to read that profile again, which will provide a treasure chest of topics to talk about on your date.
- Be your Best Self. Neither you nor I can control or fully manage what happens on your first dates, but you’ll be doing YOUR PART to ensure a positive experience for you both if you are fully present, warm, positive, courteous and pleasant company, no matter what happens.
- Balance the conversation. Strive to create meaningful dialogue, asking thought-provoking questions and then really listen. If your date is doing most of the talking, then jump in to save the day, by asking what he/she would like to know about YOU.
- Be PRESENT. Be positive. Resist the temptation to tell the same stories you always tell, don’t spend a lot of time talking about past relationships, and keep steering the conversation back to the present moment and to what lies ahead for each of you.
- Look for what’s RIGHT in this person. What are you Top Three Critical Criteria, in your future partner? Look for evidence of these qualities in the person sitting with you on this date. Rather than looking for and finding elements that might be lacking, off, wrong or disdainful, discover the qualities in this person that are admirable, lovely, and worthy of note. Make a new friend, create a lovely new connection. Do most first dates end in life-long love? Nope, sadly, they don’t – but each and every first date is a chance to enrich a person’s life and a chance to have your life enriched by this new person you get to meet. Look for surprises, for unexpected AHA moments, and for a chance to make someone feel good, worthy, and important. Even if just for this one hour.
- BE a great date. That means doing your part to make sure this person you’re meeting is having a nice time. Whether you are “feeling it” or not (that romantic magic that we always hope for), give your focused attention and your best behavior to this person, who has taken the time and put forth the big effort to meet you.
- Who pays? It’s common, in my personal matchmaking community for The Guy to pick up the tab for the first date. This is not set in stone, but it’s safe to assume that he’ll spring for the check for the first date. Will he also go overboard and jump in to pick up Valet Parking? Sometimes, and certainly not always. I recommend that you both have cash on hand to handle such incidentals. Don’t make assumptions, don’t be judgmental, just go with the flow.
- What to say at the end of the date? This is always tricky, but SO much less so, in my world, as I’ll be getting post-date feedback from you both, so I’ll know if your date is open to seeing you again, and I’ll always share that pertinent information so you’ll know if your date is open to having Round Two or not.
- Safety matters. It’s a wild world out there, and it’s always a good idea to make sure a lady gets to her car safely. Gentlemen, please offer that escort, and ladies, please ask for that escort, every time you’re on a date.
- Report back to me. Within 24 hours of the date, I want and need to hear back from you both. I will want to know what your impressions are of your date. You can share your post-date feedback with me via email, text message or voice mail. I always what to know: What qualities do you appreciate in your date? Are there qualities that you don’t appreciate? I’ll want to know if you found this person to be interesting, attractive, warm and kind. I’ll want to know if you’re open to having another date together, and if not, I’ll want to know why, which helps me to match you both again in the future.
Adhering to these guidelines will ensure that you and those fortunate enough to meet you will be having first dates with lasting potential. Thank you for bringing your best self to your dating process.
I appreciate your being here with me. Here’s to your success. !!
Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Personal matchmaking is an ever-evolving art, and I’m always happy to hear from you. Email me: Julie@JulieFerman.com