Conversation is Key!

    You’re all settled in for your date, and that awkward moment arrives.  What do you talk about?  The key to a good conversation is to be prepared and know ahead of time what information you want to get from the conversation.  I take a very systematic approach to this.

If you met online, prior to the date take the time to scrutinize your date’s online profile.  Are there any inconsistencies?  Is there anything that seems off, or maybe too general?  Know what is in their profile inside and out, and be prepared to question them on things and have them expand upon what is written in their profile.  For instance, does he have children?  If so some questions you may want to address are when (or how often) he spends time with them.  How does he spend that time with them?  Is there a formal agreement to this arrangement?  What are the children’s ages?  If you do not have children of your own, remember this will be a huge lifestyle change for you.

What are his hobbies?  Many men (and this absolutely drives me crazy) list every sport out there as hobbies, and nothing else.  Really?  They have no other interests?  I personally would steer clear of these guys, but I know there are many women out there who are interested in sports.  When evaluating what they like to do in thier free time, you need to know what it is you are looking for from a partner in this area.  Are you looking for someone to do things with all the time, or do you already know you will want time apart to seek your own interests?  Take all of this into consideration when evaluating how he spends his free time.  Maybe there are things you would like to learn that he does regularly – this could be an opportunity to do that!

They key here is to ask!  Have a conversation and learn what it is you need to know about him.  Do not make it an interview and blast him with questions, but work these things into normal conversation!  while you are chatting, you will also want to take note of what type of personality he has.  Is he a “take charge” kind of guy who just automatically steps in and takes control of a situation, or is he more laid back?  What is your personality (honestly, and not what you would like it to be)?  Do your personalities work well together?  How about his every level?  Are your energy levels compatible?  These are just some of many, many things you should look for on a first date.

The point is to make sure you do your homework ahead of time and be ready to find out the key information you want to know.  In this age of online dating, you get one shot to make a good impression AND learn about your date.  If you are lucky enough to have a date that did not originate online, you still want to find out as much as you can about him.  If you met through a friend, drill your friend for as much information as you can get.  Keep in mind that when information comes from another person, it may be skewed from the other person’s perspective.  Just take note of what is being said, and ask your date about it later.  If you met out somewhere and do not really know much about him, make a mental note of things you definitely need to know in order to proceed with a relationship, and make sure you find these things out.  Either way, conversation is key on the first date, so make sure you choose the right location.  Most importantly, remember this is not an interview – enjoy the date!  Smile, laugh, and have fun!

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