You’re not afraid to admit that the idea of going on a first date is terrifying to you. You wouldn’t describe yourself as shy or introverted; you just don’t always have a way with words and first impressions. The amount of times you have said something stupid and then instantly regretted it is quite funny. This makes your track record of dating pretty dire. You have reached a point to which you want to settle down and find somebody who makes you happy. You’re determined to find your own way of navigating first dates and meeting the right person.

You want to figure out your style, conversation topics and other first date etiquette you might never have thought of before. Use the ideas below to perfect your first impressions and you will be sure to score a second date every single time!

The Greeting

The first thing you need to consider when you’re going on a date is how you’re going to greet them. The safe option would be a friendly hug and a potential kiss on the cheek. If this feels a little too bold for you a friendly smile will be just enough. You need to assess what you and your date would be most comfortable with. If you have been talking for a while and you feel extremely at ease together already a kiss on the cheek will be a no brainer. Ultimately, there is no right or wrong way to greet your date,  but try and steer clear of a hand shake. This is quite formal and off putting if you’re trying to pursue a romantic relationship with someone.

A Smile Says It All

This might seem extremely obvious, but you definitely need to flash a smile as soon as you meet them. If you are shy or timid, it can be quite difficult to show your smile right away. Remember that you want to welcome them in and make them feel comfortable too. A smile is the perfect way to do this as it is the friendliest and warmest greeting there is. It is likely that your date will give you a lovely smile back too, so it will be reciprocated!

Be on Time

The biggest no no when you’re going on a first date is to be late. Even if you’re renowned for your tardiness it is so important to stick to the timings you set. Make a conscious effort to get there in plenty of time. You may even want to head to the area extra early and go for a coffee beforehand. If you’re within a few minutes walk from the venue you’re meeting them, you know you’re not going to be late. Even if your date is late, you can have peace of mind that you make a great first impression. This will set a positive tone from the get go and you won’t have to start the evening off with an apology.

The Devil is in the Details

When it comes to dressing for your date, the devil is in the details. You want your date to be pleasantly surprised by your style, so think carefully about what you’re going to wear. You might want to check out Raving Trends Blog for a full review on the Xwatch Smartwatch. Choosing accessories that are not only practical, but stylish will work wonders on your date. Having a smartwatch is also a safe move; if by any chance you were to forget your wallet, you will still have your watch to pay the bar tab, phew! Just make sure it’s all linked up and ready to go before your big date.

Dress for the Occasion

Now that you have thought carefully about your accessories, you need to consider what type of clothing you’re going to wear on your first date. The most important thing to remember is to dress for the occasion; you need to think carefully about what type of activity you’re going to together. Is it an outdoor, physical activity? Are you going to a bar? Your dress sense should reflect the place in which you are going, so make sure you spend some time thinking about what you’re going to wear. You need to be completely comfortable with the outfit you choose too; don’t wear something that feels like something you would never wear.

Be Savvy With Shoes

Your footwear actually says a lot about you, so don’t throw on an old pair of trainers and hope for the best. You need to wear shoes that complement the rest of the outfit you have chosen. Clean, smart shoes make amazing first impressions; did you know a lot of people judge their date based on the shoes they wear? Although this might sound pretty shallow, it’s very true. The next time you think about stepping out of the house in your holey plimsolls you might want to think twice. Again, you need to choose comfortable footwear that is suitable for the place in which you are meeting your date.

Conversational Dos and Don’ts

You never want to come across as too chatty, too shy or uninterested when you’re on a first date, so you need to have some conversations in mind. Having some interesting bullet points in your head before you venture on your date will always come in handy. Even if you don’t end up using them, you can be sure that the conversation will never run dry. One of the most important things not to mention are your ex boyfriends or girlfriends. This is an ultimate dating no no. You can definitely get into these details on a third or fourth date, but you don’t need to be having these awkward conversations the first time you meet. Do ask them about themselves; show plenty of interest in what they do in their job and what their hobbies are. Try to steer clear from talking about yourself too much, because you will come across as uninterested in them.

Prepare for Eventualities

You need to be prepared for any eventuality when you go on a first date. It might go amazingly well and you share a taxi ride home. On the other hand it might be terrible and you need to make a quick escape. Think about both options and what you might do in each of these scenarios. First of all, make sure your apartment is clean and presentable; if they do end up coming back to your place you want to make a good impression in this department too. Be kind and courteous and don’t force the idea of having a night cap together. They will send you quite clear signals if they’re not keen on the idea. If things aren’t going well at all, you need a simple phrase that is going to help you end the date quickly. You don’t want to waste your evening with someone who definitely isn’t your type. There is no easy way to go about this, but you simply need to ask them if they’re enjoying the date. They might be taken aback by this bold question, but it’s definitely something they will answer honestly. It may be that you both come to a mutual agreement that the date isn’t working out well and you should probably call it a night.

Follow Up

The rules of following up after a first date are quite simple. You will want to drop them a courteous text to make sure they got home safely. The day after you could also message them to say you had a great time on the date. If things didn’t go as well as you’d planned, you should never ignore them. Let them know honestly how you feel and that you probably won’t be planning a second date. Be firm, but clear so that they don’t get the wrong idea and try to pursue something that may not happen. If you’re unsure about taking them on a second date, it really can’t hurt to try. First dates can be nerve wracking and you will often find that you’re both more comfortable the second time round.

If you can follow the advice above, you are bound to up your game when it comes to first dates. Remember that first impressions are absolutely everything when it comes to dating, so you do not want to get that part wrong. Whether you’re shaking up your style or learning the correct protocol for following up, there is so much to learn right here. If you’re willing to put in that little bit of extra effort to change your habits and adopt your previous dating patterns, the results will show. The fact that you’re willing to read this and take the advice on board is already a very good start! Don’t be too hard on yourself and don’t change too much. You still want to retain your own personality and your unique quirks; without those you won’t attract the right type of person for you. Implementing these changes will quickly make a positive on your dating life, so get to work and see how you get on!