For many people, a third date is a milestone, beyond which a serious relationship might really be developing. Despite the hype (and the implied pressure) behind a third date, it's important to stay cool and retain your perspective. Putting too much stress on yourself and on the situation is a common dating mistake that leads to others. Follow your heart---and these steps---and you should do just fine.
Make the first two dates count, as every third date starts here. Put your best foot forward on your first two dates; go out of your way to make a good impression while always staying true to who you are. Remain focused on your date and the goal of trying to get to know the other person and letting him or her get to know you. Three good rules for the first few dates: Be punctual, smell good and don't talk about your exes.
Keep cool. After the second date, leave a little time for the dust to settle so you both can think about how you feel about each other. Try to space out interactions with the other person as well; a week is a good rule of thumb. Also try to avoid calling or texting too often. Remember, as the old saying has it, familiarity breeds contempt, and absence makes the heart grow fonder.
Evaluate your situation. Ask yourself: have I enjoyed myself on my first two dates with this person? Do I think I will continue to enjoy myself with this person? A third date most commonly signals a definite interest, and if you're not sure if you're interested, it may be best not to go on a third date. If you decide you want to move forward, then keep reading. If not, get bow out now and try again with someone else. As advice columnist Dan Savage is fond of saying: None of your relationships work until one of them does.
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If you've decided you'd like to move forward and see this person again, all you have to do is ask for the third date. Remember: expect the person to say yes, accept gracefully if the answer is no. Rejection is a part of dating, and handling it well can boost your confidence in the future.
Discuss plans for your third date. It's always best to go into the situation showing that you've put some thought and effort into having a good time with someone. This doesn't mean, however, that this is what will happen. You should always leave room for the other person to share thoughts and plans for what makes the ideal date.
Make a reservation (if your plan so requires), but be willing to cancel if the two of you compromise on another plan. Flexibility is a great feature in a potential mate, so show it whenever you can. Plans for dates you both work on are most rewarding, because it's one more thing you can do together.
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- Be polite, be courteous, even be chivalrous. Don't take phone calls during a date, no matter how big the merger you're working on is. Don't be afraid to pull out a chair or open a door if you're a male; old-timey romance is making a comeback.
- Keep your dating experience fresh by doing something new every time. If you have a "first date" place you take every guy to, how can you not be reminded of all your past relationships? Also, don't repeat date plans early in the courtship process; you shouldn't have "a place" by the third date; that's for couples.
- Nontraditional dates are more popular than ever. If dinner and a movie feels a little tired for a date, why not try rock-climbing? Creating good memories by sharing unique experiences with someone never hurts.