A first date is a scary thing. Like, lock yourself in a panic room, curl into a ball, pee your pants scary. I get it man, I’ve been there, and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy (first year Home Ec teacher, I’m looking at you). And now it’s happening to you. So what do you do? Just listen to me pal and I’ll be your magnificent, ethereal and beautiful guide through this time in your life, much like Gandalf through Mordor, since, let’s be real, it’s basically the same thing anyway. Here's an idiot's guide to the perfect first date:
1) Try not to be nervous.
Easier said than done, I know, I know. But seriously, keeping your cool and being yourself instead of freaking out and acting like Lesley Knope on speed will seriously help your case. Do what you need to do to keep calm; have a glass of wine while you’re getting ready, listen to the Little Mermaid soundtrack on the bus in and imagine you're on a date with Tina Fey, something you would never mess up since she's obviously your soulmate. You do you Gurl!
2) Be your most interesting self.
By this, of course, I mean, be you. Because you are interesting as hell and fabulous and what’s not to love about you, you little gem. So talk about things that interest you, and let them see what an absolute star you are. There’s no point pretending to be an expert on the history of Cambodia when your heart sings for Broadway only, so let them know your specialities and show them what you’ve got.
3) Give them the same opportunity.
You may be the most interesting, amazing fairy queen on this earth, but give them an opportunity to feel the same. Let them do their thing and talk about what they love. After all, you’re here to get to know each other, so listening and learning is where it’s at! Ask lots of questions and give them their time to shine.
4) Do what feels right for you.
I, for one, know that when I was younger it was ingrained in me that dates had to follow the pattern that was taught to me by films such as “She’s All That” or “A Cinderella Story,” when that is absolutely, 100% not true. Never do something that makes you feel uncomfortable because you feel that you should, or you feel pressured by outside influences. If you don’t want to kiss your date, don’t. If they have a problem with it, that’s their problem, and they obviously aren’t worth the hassle if they don’t respect your decisions and boundaries. So listen to your gut and do what feels right for you. There are no rules or guidelines here, just make up your own as you go along.
5) Enjoy yourself!
A date is meant to be a fun way of getting to know someone personally and talking one on one, so don’t let nerves get in the way of enjoying yourself. They're just a person and are most likely feeling the exact same as you, so take them down off their pedestal as some perfect human who must pay attention to you, a mere slug, and talk to them like you would anybody else.
So that’s all I have for you. I’ve given you everything I know about dating (times five), so spread your wings and fly my beautiful butterfly, you’re ready to take the world of romance by a storm. Be yourself and relax, because you're great and anyone would be lucky to be given even a chance to get with you. Go forth and date and remember, good luck!