in: Dating & Relationships

5 Tips to Squash First Date Jitters

If you let them, first date jitters can derail your entire night. Use these five tips to squash bad dating manners so you can focus on your connection.


Many people become so nervous on a first date, worrying incessantly that they will do the wrong thing, that they fail to let their true self be seen. While it’s important not to get too hung up on the “right” and “wrong” things to do on a first date, there are also certain key things that you should avoid.

1. Having Your Cell Phone Out

Even though it has become somewhat normal these days to have your cell phone on hand, that doesn’t mean you want to do it on a first date. It could send the message that you’re not giving your date your full attention or you’re not that interested in the first place. Keep your phone in your pocket/bag and only answer it if it’s something important.

If an urgent call must be answered, keep the phone conversation brief. It’s also nice to explain why you needed to answer so your date won’t think that you always pick up phone calls when out on a date.

2. Being Late

It’s completely disrespectful of your date to show up late. No one likes waiting around for someone and it can get things off to a bad start unnecessarily. On the other hand, if you’re picking up your date from their home, you also don’t want to show up too early. If the person is still getting ready to go out this can create an uncomfortable situation.

3. Drinking Too Much

Having a drink or two is how a lot of people loosen up and relax when they are nervous on a first date, but be careful that you don’t get too drunk. A recent survey showed that many people consider this to be a deal breaker on a first date. Besides, you want to make sure that you’re relaxed and comfortable, but not so much that your inhibitions have totally gone out the window. Save the bender for when you know each other a little better!

4. Talking Too Much

Another thing nervous daters sometimes do is ramble on endlessly about themselves because they are worried about having an uncomfortable lull in the conversation. If that’s a concern for you, instead of talking exclusively about yourself, ask your date genuine and interesting questions about her/her life and interests. Do talk about yourself as well, but make sure that it doesn’t dominate the conversation. And don’t be worried that you’ll have nothing to talk about, after all, you don’t know each other at all. You have everything to learn.

5. Talking About Past Relationships

We have all learned something useful from our past failed relationships (let’s hope!), but that doesn’t mean that you should make your last relationship a topic of conversation on your first date. Don’t mention your ex. Not even once. It gives the impression that you’re not over the relationship.

*Bonus Tip: it’s also a good idea not to let the conversation get too serious talking about what you want for the future of your relationship. You’re on a first date, there will be plenty of time to see if you’re on the same page about the future once you know each other a little better.

[image: via Cubmundo on flickr]

About the Author:

Meghan

Meghan Stone earned her Master’s degree in Clinical Social Work and Master’s of Education in Human Sexuality from Widener University. She has worked as a therapist, social worker, teen counselor, and sexuality educator. She currently resides in Buenos Aires, Argentina where she writes, teaches, and volunteers with the local community. Her passions are social work, travel, photography, art, yoga, and learning about other cultures.

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