Image by: sprout_creative
By Agatha Schuring
First dates can be scary. It does not matter if you know the person or met him on a dating website. The dating world is a frightening thing. The unknown world of the first date is enough to make you cringe.
Never fear! Dating doesn’t have to be a scary thing. Sometimes we just need to reset our understanding of first dates to overcome worry and fear and have some fun. Check out these five ways to ditch the anxiety of a first date and keep yourself focused on the prize.
#1) Remember: This isn’t it
One of the main reasons women (and men) put so much pressure on themselves when it comes to first dates is the fact that we assume that this is it. If it doesn’t work out with this one, it doesn’t mean that it will never happen with anyone.
First of all, no. Stop thinking in this manner. This can lead to many other issues, including forcing a dead-end relationship to work.
Secondly, it makes us anxious for all first dates, because it finalizes our dating lives. Remember, there is no such thing as a dating life ending—even those who are married should go out on dates with their spouses.
Finally, do understand that the cliché “there are plenty of fish in the sea” is a very true statement, and with technology connecting people, it is no longer difficult to make contact with them.
#2) Drive Your Own Car
Whether you’ve known him for years, it’s a blind date, or you met him online, drive your own car. Of course you should always do this on a first date for safety purposes, but giving yourself a little extra control in a first-date situation will help you calm your nerves.
Driving your own vehicle can help you relieve stress of waiting for him to show up. You will spend more time concentrating on the road, and less time worrying if he is going to show up or not.
Additionally, having your own form of transportation gives you a sense of relief throughout the date. If you don’t like his personality, you have the peace of mind in knowing that you don’t have to put up with him any longer than you want to.
#3) Think of it as an Adventure
We often look at first dates as a way to get to know someone. However, those who have experienced several first dates know that first dates can end up being a way to see through b/s that was said over the phone or via text message, or a first date can be a two-hour long judge fest where a lot of negative material creeps out.
Do not walk into a first date thinking all men are the same or that you always attract the same kind of man. These preconceived notions will put you in a dark place, and that darkness will be projected on the first date.
Instead, consider each first date as a new adventure with a new person. Allow every man to start from scratch—even if he isn’t doing the same for you.
Step into every new date with a positive attitude no matter how badly your previous date went.
#4) Give Yourself an Out
One of the biggest things we dread bout first dates is being locked down for over an hour with someone we have no connection with. This can cause a debilitating sense of helplessness.
When we don’t feel as though we are in control, our minds short circuit and we become scattered. Feeling like this can often lead to feelings of dread.
Give yourself an out for the first date. First and foremost, do not plan anything that requires you to be in one place for too long. For example, schedule your first date at a coffee shop to help you focus on getting to know each other. This will allow you to make the decision to take it to the next level or not.
Additionally, it is always good to ask a friend to help give you an out. I know it sounds shady, but if you’re the “too nice” type and you can’t flat out tell him you aren’t interested, a phone call from a friend can help give you a strong excuse to leave the situation.
#5) Be Yourself
Part of the reason we are so reluctant to go on first dates is because we put so much pressure on ourselves (see #1 for more details). It is important to remember that you don’t have to pretend with this new person.
Get around your nervosa, and focus on learning more about him. Don’t focus on how you look or what he thinks of you. Instead, be yourself. If he doesn’t like it on the first date, he isn’t right for you anyway.
Giving yourself the opportunity to be who you are will give you a more relaxed demeanor and help you boost your confidence.
You are not alone. First dates can be stressful for anyone! If you have been dreading first dates, make sure you don’t put too much pressure on yourself, you give yourself control and you embrace who you are. What are some ways you prepare for first dates? Share with us in the comments below!