6 Little Things You Shouldn't Avoid On A First Date

I have showed up to every date I've ever had with a list of things I shouldn't do running through my head. But on top of all the things I think I shouldn't do on a first date is a list just as long of things I should do. And yet those things are much harder to remember.

When you think about it, a date is sort of like an interview. You're meeting up with someone to see if you like them enough to have them be part of your life. You're looking for that spark and that chemistry. So if you're going to put on a show and act like someone you're not, then what's even the point?

Of course, we should all be the best versions of ourselves on any date. By all means, be cleaner, more polite, and more talkative than you usually are if you want to. But never go overboard to the point where you're no longer acting like yourself. Let the other person get to know the real you, and don't be afraid to get to know them, either.

Forget all the things you shouldn't do on a first date, and instead focus on the things you should do. Here is a list of things to keep in mind on a first date, so your lucky date can get to know the real you.

1. Be Your Honest Self

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I know l've professed love for a TV show I've never seen just for the sake of getting along with a stranger. It's a totally normal thing to do when you're nervous and when you want someone to like you. But resist the urge to tell these little white lies on your first date. You want to get to know this person sitting across from you, and they want to know you, too. So if you've never seen Breaking Bad, then you've never seen Breaking Bad. It's hardly a deal breaker. Plus, by admitting you haven't seen something, you're opening the door for future date ideas.

2. Order Whatever You Want To Eat

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Back in high school, I was on a date with a guy and was shocked to see him order French onion soup. Who orders French onion soup on a first date? Someone who is confident AF, that's who. I remember watching him slurp away, with strings of cheese stretching from his face to the bowl and I thought, "This guy know what's up." We all feel like we should politely eat a few bites of salad on a first date, but there is something incredibly charming about ordering whatever you want, no matter how sloppy it is.

3. Figure Out The Other Person's Goals In Life

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Don't pull out an interview pad and go to town interrogating your date, but definitely find out what makes them tick. If you guys don't share any common goals or interests, then the sooner you realize that, the better. If you do happen to share a bunch of goals, well now you have fodder for an amazing conversation.

4. Wear What You Normally Wear

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When I was younger I'd go teetering out for dates in heels and a tiny dress. Did I like heels? No. Did I even own any? No. (They were my roommate's.) I felt like my fancy getup was date-worthy and appropriate, but it wasn't an accurate depiction of me or my personality. By the third outing, my dates were always confused as to why I was suddenly three inches shorter, and then I had to go through the awkward transition of introducing them to my true T-shirt and jeans self. That's why while you should always present your best self on you first date, you should also make sure it's only a slightly polished version of what you are like in real life.

5. Ask The Hard Questions

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If all you say the entire date is "Yeah, these breadsticks are amazing," then you aren't really getting to know each other, now are you? Don't go overboard by telling your date all your deepest insecurities, but don't be afraid to talk about some deeper stuff, either. You're trying to figure out if this person is someone you want to hang out with and continue to get to know. If the conversation keeps going back to your messed up families, let it go there, and don't be afraid of getting too heavy.

6. Nab That First Kiss If You Want To

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There are a lot of opinions out there regarding how much action you should get on the first date, but if you're feeling' it, I say it's fine to lean in for a kiss if you're feeling it. If you're not feeling it, of course, don't go there, and never feel pressured to do so. But don't avoid the kiss if you're dreaming about it just because you're nervous — the nervousness is half the fun. Maybe it'll be awkward, or horrible, or incredibly wonderful, but it'll undoubtedly be a good way to gauge your chemistry.

First dates can be fun and awkward and nerve-racking, all at the same time. Relieve the pressure by being yourself.

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