Envision yourself through her eyes: a man she doesn't yet know and has yet to form an opinion on. Ask friends and family for honest first impressions. Then ask yourself if they're the projection you want to make.
Polish your presentation: appearance, behavior, etiquette. Most guys don't give their presentation much thought, but little changes in appearance can make a big difference. The basics: Shower regularly, wear clean clothes that fit, and use a breath mint once in a while. In addition, maintain good posture. Practice this at home or while driving: every few hours, mentally check your posture.
Define what you're looking for. Relationships come in all shapes and sizes, and some are more realistic than others for a first-timer. Most people don't open up on the first date. If you expect that, your goal will be more difficult to achieve.
Create conversation topics (icebreakers and fallbacks). Avoid potentially controversial statements (including anything political) until you get to know the other person better. Show off your knowledge of various topics a bit.
Right before the conversation, take a few deep breaths and ground yourself in the moment.
The First Conversation
Approach with an icebreaker. Be context sensitive: If you're talking about a train ride, a good opening topic may involve the destination. When possible, ground the conversation in a relevant topic.
Let the conversation flow naturally. If you run out of things to say about a certain topic, change it. If you start to hit it off, introduce yourself casually before returning to the topic.
If you run into a fork in the conversation, remember the path less traveled. It may make an interesting later topic.
Recognize when the conversation or the topic has ended. Don't try to hang on longer than natural; that will hurt more than help.
Gauge her mood throughout the conversation, but don't adjust your behavior over every little perceived change. Instead, work with the conversation topics that she presents. Don't stick with a topic longer than necessary: a good conversation is like a tree, and the topic itself is the seed that it grows from.
Maintain your manners and your posture. It acts as a mental buffer against some of the setbacks you may face during the conversation or during a date.
- If you're a shy person, start with a girl you already know and topics you know you already have in common. For instance, if you share a class or work out at the same gym, you can concentrate on what you have in common. This applies both to defining yourself and starting the first conversation.
- If things don't go as planned and you get cut off, don't be discouraged. Recover and move on. It's not necessarily a reflection on you if it doesn't go well! Maybe the moment was bad, or maybe she just wasn't interested.