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How to appear confident on a first date

Confident on a first date

First date nerves are natural, but did you know that you can appear confident even when your stomach’s churning? Dating expert James Preece explains all

So, you’ve been talking online for a while and you’re ready to move forward and meet up. First dates are exciting, but also can be a situation that can make even the most adventurous feel a little afraid!

Perhaps you’ll wonder if they’ll like you or whether you might run out of things to say? What if something goes wrong or you aren’t interesting enough for them? It’s amazing how many silly things we can think when we’re nervous about doing something. Don’t worry though; it’s surprisingly easy to face your fears – I’ve coached 1000s of singles through similar situations.

Here are a few of my expert tips to make sure you make the very best impression on your first date.

Expect success

Your date starts from the moment you start to get ready. Choose an outfit that you feel attractive in and make sure you look your absolute best. That way you’ll know how good you look and feel so much more confident. The same goes for personal grooming (maybe book a haircut), and a nice aftershave or perfume can make a huge difference.

The success trigger

Close your eyes and imagine how your first date might go. Think about seeing them for the first time, laughing and joking with them, and everything going perfectly. Smile while you’re imagining and enjoy every second, embracing the feeling. As soon as you finish, push your finger and thumb together to ‘anchor’ this wonderful memory. By remembering this positive experience you’ll be able to give your real date the best possible outcome. All you need to do is squeeze your finger and thumb together a few seconds before you see them and the good feelings will come flooding back. The more you practice this exercise, the better you’ll get at it and the more natural it’ll feel.

You’re both in the same boat

It’s not just you who’s feeling the pressure. It’s very likely that your date is also a bit worried about how it’ll go. They’ll be having the same thoughts, concerns and butterflies as you. The reality is that hardly anyone is 100% confident – we all have our own insecurities and thoughts to deal with. Nobody is going to be completely themselves on a first date and it’ll take time to really get to know each other. Once you understand that, first dates become much easier to handle.

Fake it ‘til you make it

If you aren’t naturally confident, think of someone you know who is. Maybe it’s a friend, film star, or someone else famous that you admire. How do they act when they’re talking to someone? What do they sound like? Try and copy this in your own interactions. If you’re feeling a bit unsure of yourself, there’s no reason why anyone else needs to know. Pretend that you’re outgoing and in control and, chances are, no-one will think anything different.

Focus on them

A date isn’t just a chance to show someone how amazing you are. It’s an opportunity to find out all about them too. Turn your attention to them and you’ll soon forget to be self-conscious. The best way to do this is to plan some interesting questions in advance. Try to avoid asking anything that could be answered with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ – get them to open up a little. You could ask them to tell you about the best holiday they’ve ever taken, for example, or what their greatest ambition is. The more special you make them feel, the more likely it is that they’ll relax and want to spend more time with you.

I hope you found these tips useful. The real secret is just to try to relax and enjoy the dating experience. If things don’t go entirely to plan, then at least you’ll have a funny story to tell afterwards. And if you do decide to see each other again then you’ll naturally be more self-assured and comfortable. Good luck!

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