Dating should be fun and exciting--after all, it can lead to the one man who will share your life. Unfortunately, it can also be full of anxiety and stress, since meeting new people and establishing connections can be difficult. With the right strategies, though, you can have a wonderful experience.
One of the mistakes that many people make on first dates is expecting too much. It is much better to hope that the date works out, but remain realistic. Not every date has to lead to a great romance. Go into the date with the expectation of fun. Adopt the attitude that meeting new people is a pleasure and not something to fear.
Many people make the mistake of trying to impress their dating partner, and are not as truthful as they should be. Don't get into a situation with no exit strategy. After all, if the relationship progresses, your date will eventually find out that you are not on the fast track to the Supreme Court, and that you actually live with your mother and her three cats. There is never a good reason to lie during a date, especially if it is to impress the other person. A date will be a lot more fun if you are able to relax and be yourself. When you pretend to be someone that you aren't, you are only adding to your own stress. A first date is hard enough.
Breaking the Ice
Chances are, he's feeling just as nervous as you are. A good way to break the ice on a first date is to be up-front and acknowledge the awkwardness. It might even provide your date with a chance to breathe a much-appreciated sigh of relief.
Men appreciate a good listener, so let him talk. Ask open-ended questions that prompt him to talk about himself. For instance, don't simply ask if your date enjoyed the art exhibit: The only answer you will get is yes or no. Instead, ask him what he liked about it. Which piece was his favorite, and why? Asking questions is a way to get the conversation rolling. Ask where he grew up, where he went to school, what kind of music or movies he enjoys.
Neediness is the kiss of death. As much as you might want to see him again, it is best if you let him suggest the next meeting. If he is interested, he will make sure to call you again or even set up the next date before the first one is finished. This strategy may seem a little retro, but men (actually, most people) tend to want things that seem a little out of reach. They want a woman who challenges them. Don't be so available, and let him wonder.