The Single Woman’s Dash of Sass: Overcoming First Date Jitters
Quotes of the Day:
“As in the case of all first dates, only 70% of their brains was talking, listening, and responding to what the other was saying. The other 30% was wondering…” ~Liz Tuccillo
“I need to be casual but not too casual. Dressy but not too dressy. I need him to think I just threw on the first thing I found and that I’m not taking this too seriously or overthinking it or even that I was thinking about it at all. Because I’m not. I’m totally not thinking about him, and I don’t want him to think I was thinking about him, but I don’t want him to think that I’m not thinking about him, because clearly he thought about me enough to ask me out and it would be mean not to be thinking about him at all, so I need just the right amount of thinking, and I’m not sure if that means boots and a skirt or skinny jeans and ballet flats. Help!” ~Gemma Halliday
The Single Woman Says:
As single women, this is a phenomenon we will likely encounter many times on the road to love. First dates are always a little uncertain, a little hopeful, a little scary…all rolled into one. It’s normal to have a few jitters on a first date – I mean, essentially, you are “auditioning” for the role of potential love interest while simultaneously holding your own audition for the other person to see if they might fit into your life. Does he make me laugh? Does the conversation flow? Are there any noticeable red flags?
I recently went on a first date, and I turned to my dad for a few words of wisdom. Here’s what I got:
“Don’t trip over anything and fall down,” he said in complete seriousness.
Don’t trip over anything and fall down.
To his credit, he knows I favor the highest of stiletto heels and I honestly think he thought this was useful advice. “Thanks, Dad. Good talk.” I replied, visions of myself tripping, falling down, and skidding down the aisle at the restaurant, sending waiters flying right and left now dancing in my head.
For those of you looking for a little more detailed advice on overcoming first date jitters, I wanted to put together a few helpful hints on how to successfully complete a first date (without tripping over anything and falling down):
1) Dress appropriately for the occasion. Meaning, if you’re going to lunch, don’t wear a formal gown. At the same time, if you’re going to dinner, you might want to steer clear of sweatpants and sneakers. Stay true to your own sense of fashion, and definitely put your best foot forward. Remember, you only have one chance to make a first impression.
2) Keep things in perspective. Don’t pretend like you haven’t already tried his last name out to see how it sounds with your name and pondered the thought that this could FINALLY be THE ONE! We have all been guilty of this. As women, we tend to put a LOT of weight on one little date. It’s important to remember that this date does not define whether or not you will be single for the rest of your life. Instead of trying to turn it into a preamble to marriage and Happily Ever After, just let it be whatever it’s going to be. At the very least, you could get a really great friend out of it.
3) Be yourself. The woman he asked out in the first place needs to be the same woman who shows up to the date. Not a perfect, polished, flawless version of you. Nothing is more transparent than pretentiousness, so avoid “putting on airs” or going overboard to try and impress him. Do you really want someone to fall for a fake version of you? Drop the act and let your imperfect, unique, authentic spirit shine through.
4) Above all – HAVE FUN! Dating is supposed to be fun…not an experiment in torture! Take away all the pressure and the expectations and the ideas about what you think is SUPPOSED to happen and just enjoy the moment for what it is – an opportunity to get to know a new person and make a new friend. Maybe this person is “The One”…maybe not…but you’ll never find out if you weigh down the first meeting with unrealistic expectations. Relax, breathe, and release the outcome. You’re much more likely to make a love connection when you’re laughing and smiling and having a good time than when you’re worrying and fretting and stressing and obsessing.
Whatever happens…a first date allows you to come out of your shell, let down the walls, and step out of your comfort zone…so whether it leads to a second date or not, it is time well spent. And hey, even if the worst happens and you do “trip over something and fall down”…get back up, dust yourself off, and try again. Because sometimes in life, we have to trip and fall in order to give the right person the opportunity to catch us.