1) Slow Down: Too much, too soon, too fast – That long and flirty exchange of e-mails – for a week or two- is a big mistake. Texting back and forth all day long before your first date is a dating blunder -unless you are looking for a pen pal. Expectations grow and grow and become way out of proportion:
- You expect a sexy, flirty Brad Pitt kind of a guy- and Bradley Manning shows up. Your name is Penny and you are petite, with long dark hair and he expects Penelope Cruz.
- Sometimes when you meet, face-to-face those grandiose expectations fall flat. Texting pithy one-liners is not the same as carrying on a conversation. Exchanging ideas and dreams- pre first date? Don’t waste your time and valuable time and energy with fabulous flirting via e-mail.
- Keep your eyes open – blinded by a crush -sometimes we forget the goal is to carefully, nonchalantly, check a person out.
2) Shaken – not Stirred? Meeting for cocktails– Maybe you think that a first date should be for smart cocktails at a glam joint. It sounds sexy and fun and you love going to Union Square…
One drink is a great idea. Two drinks are generally pushing it, and anything beyond that – is a very bad idea. Why? Your brain will be murky by Makers Mark or clouded by Clos de chardonnay – and you will be compromised and vulnerable; your standards will have dissipated and your “Top 10 Things I’m Looking for in a Date” flies out the window when a modicum of charm, and champagne cocktails blind you. Take it easy. Take your time. Set limits.
3) A Formal Dinner Date on the First Date… A First Date/Coffee Date can last from 15 minutes to an hour. This is perfect amount of time to ascertain if you are a match – or if there is potential. You check one another out, you do a subtle mental inventory and you know, “All engines running. Liftoff! We have a liftoff!” Or, “Next! Dead end.”
A meal at a nice restaurant can last 60 minutes – or more. It can be the best of times – or – oh, darn! The worst of times. You may notice your date is rude, a non-stop talker, a boor, a boozer, a flirt with everyone but you…you get the idea. Before investing time in a mere coffee- date-caliber-person – do your homework, talk on the phone, ask questions, and, yes, Google the person.
Stick to Coffee Dates, walks, and casual encounters before doing a prolonged dinner date.
In the beginning, on every date: be on guard- remember, there’s no reason to divulge your income, address, rank, serial number…or all the private little details from your last relationship. Less is more.
“There is hardly any activity, any enterprise, which is started out with such tremendous hopes and expectations,
and yet which fails so regularly, as love.” Erich Fromm