You’ve swiped right, exchanged numbers, and now she’s down to meet. Maybe your buddy set you up and you have no idea what to expect; maybe she’s a friend and you’re trying to get to the next stage of the relationship. Whatever the situation is, a date is a solid step and you don’t want there to be any awkward gaps in the conversation. Here are 8 tips for keeping her attention and having a successful chat-filled date.
- Adapt. If you’re super into something specific, that’s awesome. Girls dig it when you are passionate about things, but keep in mind that she may not be as into what you’re talking about. If you’re unsure, think about a broad category that she can relate to as well. For example, I’m extremely passionate about surfing. I can rank every break up both coasts and follow the pro tour religiously. I’ve met plenty of girls with the same passion, but I know a lot of girls I date don’t care that much. That’s okay. Instead of giving them an in-depth analysis of a swell about to hit Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, I think generally. Pretty much everybody loves the beach, so I’ll ask her about the beach! Where does she go? Does she get in the water or chill on the sand? Use this as an opportunity to gradually get more specific. By doing this, you can use your passion to fuel your end of the conversation and she isn’t pretending to know what you’re talking about.
- Stay current. What’s going on in the world? Did Apple just drop a cool new update? Is there a new movie coming out? Current events don’t have to be hard-hitting political stories or celebrity gossip. In fact, if you have some insight on a story that isn’t on the front page, that’s good. Intelligence is always a positive thing. Stay up-to-date on things and you’ll have unlimited topics of conversation.
- “She did WHAT!?” Embrace tabloid headlines. The first rule of telling a story is to have conflict somewhere in it, so if you want material for an interesting conversation, gossip is a fantastic starting point. Everyone has an opinion about click-bait. Even having no opinion is a viable conversation topic. If you can rant to each other about the same things, that’s a great sign!
- Research. To be successful at these topics, you have to actually know what’s happening. Start reading news headlines. I read headlines every morning and if something looks particularly interesting, I’ll go into the full article. At the very least, I know that something happened or something exists. The more headlines you have in the back of your mind, the more opportunities you have to connect them to a conversation. More than once I’ve pulled out my phone and used “looking up an article I saw” as a reason to move closer to my date. Now you’re smart and smooth.
- Keep it positive. Nobody wants to go out with a downer. If you and your date bond over ranting, go for it. Don’t just start going off about something though. First impressions are important and you don’t want to have your first conversation be a negative one. If you show yourself as a fun and reasonable person first, that will be a better look than leading with your pet peeves. Second chances come, but it’s almost impossible to reverse a negative impression so don’t make life harder for yourself.
- Keep it real. Don’t try to bullshit your way through a date. She’ll be able to tell and it will make her self-conscious. You want to make her happy and comfortable, but not at the extreme expense to yourself. If you don’t know what she’s talking about, don’t pretend. You’re better off sitting back and waiting for something to hang on to than trying to throw your two cents in.
- Ask away. If she knows about something you aren’t familiar with, ask her about it! She’ll dig that you are interested in her expertise. If you’re just trying to get a conversation started, think about the kind of question you’re asking. Is your question super specific? What happens at the end of her answer? This isn’t an interview, it’s a date. You want to know who she is, not a list of fun facts. The best way to get an awesome answer is to ask a broader question. “What do you do?” is a good question because it is so open-ended.
- Listen! If you do nothing else, listen. Girls will give you a lot to work with if you pay attention. If she’s quiet while you’re talking about something, take note. Take more mental notes of things you say that peak her interest. Take an actual physical note if she tells you something specific. It’s cool if you can naturally remember what her favorite color is, but it still counts if you care enough to write it down. Also, if you’re going on dates with more than one person this will help you stay organized. The easiest way to keeping a spark alive is to give it fuel and she will give you more than enough fuel throughout the conversation. Don’t let it go to waste.