8 Questions To Ask On A First Date, So You Can Avoid Those Awkward Pauses

Listen, we all wish we could be the Beyoncé of dating. Some people date like it's their job — and they are the CEO. They've got their conversations down and know all the right first date questions to ask. They know how to approach that uncomfortable point when the check comes, and they successfully end the date without that awkward "how do we part" moment. They make dating look easy. But, there's some of us out there that hate every single part of dating. We don't know the topics to bring up, we worry about what to say, what to wear, and basically, we are a bottle of nerves the whole time. For those of you out there who can relate, I say, practice makes perfect (or close to it). It's just like any fear. The more you actually do the thing you dread and are scared of, the more confident you will feel as time goes on.

One of the most uncomfortable parts about going on a first date is thinking of things to talk about. Now, we mostly know the topics NOT to discuss (religion, politics, money, etc.) — but what can we talk about? What questions should we be asking to get to know the person in front of you and to use when that dreadful awkward silence comes around.

Take it from a chatter box myself: you'll want some pre-conceived questions or topics to have in your back pocket. Here are 8 questions to ask on a first date.

1. Where did you grow up?

They say it's good to leave the past in the past, but throw away this notion when it comes to a first date. Asking about your date's past might make for a future date. Questions like, "Where did you grow up?", or "What did you study in college?" will help you get to know your date better and it gives you more leeway for other questions to ask.

2. What do you like to do for fun? What do you enjoy?

Everyone loves talking about themselves. Therefore, people love to discuss their areas of interest. You two can bond over the fact that maybe you both love running outdoors and despise going to the gym. Or maybe, you realize you have very different interests, which could make your date more intriguing.

3. What are your favorite TV shows?

I mean, have you ever asked someone if they watch Game of Thrones? They go on and on and on. Television is an easy go-to topic if you're feeling lost for questions. Debating about your favorite shows is a great way to keep the conversation going, and also a good way to share all of your Breaking Bad knowledge.

4. What do you do for work? Do you enjoy it?

Asking someone about their work life can be a great conversation piece, along with a good way for you to get a better sense of your date’s personality. You’ll soon find out if he or she has a job that he or she is passionate about, or one that just pays the bills. Even though work can sometimes be a boring topic, it’s important to know what your date does for 40+ hours every week.

5. What’s your family like? Do you have brothers or sisters?

Asking about family can be tricky because not everybody is fortunate enough to come from a happy and healthy upbringing. However, it’s also a useful way to get to know your date and where he or she came from. Maybe you both are only children and can relate to one another. Or, perhaps you both come from a huge family and can laugh about how hectic holidays at Grandma’s can be.

6. Where have you traveled? Where do you want to travel to?

Bringing up the topic of traveling should be a breeze. Who hates talking about that amazing trip they took last summer or the places they are dying to go to? Nobody, that's who. Discussing travel is like eating ice-cream, it’s easy to do and it can go on and on forever.

7. What kind of music do you like?

This is the true moment you find out if your date is a country music fan or not. Oh, the horror! Even though some people might think this question is played out, it’s still an effortless way to learn more about your date, while filling up that uncomfortable silence.

8. When in doubt, ask about the location of the date

Asking questions about your location should be your last resort. Questions like “have you been here before?” are for the moment you’re dying to break that excruciating silence. If you two are at a restaurant you can comment on the food you’re eating, or on the ambiance of the place. When in doubt, use the location of the date as a way to make conversation.

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