3 Ways to Keep the Conversation Flowing On a First Date

You did it! You’ve met someone great on Plenty of Fish, had amazing conversation online and are ready to meet in person, awesome. Unfortunately, sometimes the difficult parts about dating aren’t even in finding a person, but finding how to actually connect with another person. Witty banter, charm, and a relaxed flow of conversation are not things that can be faked IRL. Often times – even when you know you would hit it off with your date – your nerves inhibit you from carrying on a thriving conversation. But, here’s a secret, you can be yourself on a first date despite those inevitable nagging nerves. Down with the awkward silence!


The easiest way to speak freely is to speak about things that you like. Duh, right? I used to keep a self-serving question in my dating arsenal that would help me determine further interest in my date; It was arrogant, but worked. I would either ask “what are reading right now?” or “what are you listening to right now?” Books and music are topics of interest to me, finding out what my date is interested in helped me relate to them. If things are going well and the other person had an answer (probable) it would spawn another conversation and another and another.

Don’t feel shy to give anecdotes about your life. The idea is to get to know each other; you probably aren’t talking about yourself as much as you are stressed about talking about yourself too much. Giving specific details to the plot of a story you’re telling will create imagery that in turn helps the other person engage with you. Extra points if the story happens to be fun. Laughing is a great way to ease up.


Just as it’s easiest for you to speak about your own experience, it’s equally as simple for someone else to do the same, give them a chance to. Listen when your date is talking. No, not that half-listening we all enter into once in awhile where we are preparing the next thing we’re going to say while the other person is still speaking. Really listen. When you genuinely listen to another person speak it provides the opportunity to naturally fall into a more empathetic listening mode. Also, ask questions. Not only will this help in keeping the conversation rolling, you will learn so much about your date. And, isn’t that the point?


Dating should always be fun; make comments about your surroundings, poke fun (with caution) at yourself and your date, laugh, acknowledge that you’re nervous – it’s all ok. Remaining calm, cool and collected is a feat easier said than done, I know. Dating can be intimidating, especially when you feel there might be a spark. A good way to avoid getting caught up in your thoughts, and acting out of character on a first date is to remember: You are interesting! Take a second to give yourself a confidence boost. This person is on a date with you.

Simple Tips to Elevate Your Dating Game

Between work, hobbies, family and friends, it can be hard to find time to date. But when you finally get some free time, you can meet people anywhere these days. There is no doubt that asking someone out can feel gut wrenching, but once they’ve said yes, the rest is a no-brainer. The most important thing to remember while dating is to keep an open mind. Bad dates might happen, and probably will happen, but they’ll only help you figure out what you want and don’t want in a partner. Throughout the process you’re going to have some questions, and thankfully, others have been in your place and have advice to help build your confidence and success in the dating world.

Is it wrong to text or call before the first date?

Before the big date, make sure you’re still actively communicating with your match. There is nothing worse than being ghosted before the first date even starts. While the two of you are chatting, make sure you figure out each others interests. This will help determine where your first date will take place. First impressions go a long way, so we recommend choosing a public location that will allow you to feel comfortable, and act your natural self. If you’re having trouble deciding where to take your date, check out these 20 Great First Dates for some inspiration.

What should I wear?

There is no need to stress when picking out an outfit for your date. Determining the location of the date is the stressful part, so figuring out what to wear should be stress-free! If you’re feeling unsure about what to wear, pick out a couple options and ask for some opinions. What else is Snapchat good for these days? Your friends won’t let you down!

When figuring out what to wear, make sure you are comfortable in whatever you’re wearing. There is nothing worse than sitting for hours in an uncomfortable pair of pants or sweating under multiple layers. If you feel confident in what you’re wearing, you’ll be able to act comfortable around your date. If your first date takes place during the day, or err on the side of wearing something casual (but not too casual!). For the ladies, we recommend wearing a fun colored sweater, such as this one, with a pair of skinny jeans. Throw on your most comfortable pair of booties, and you’ll be ready for your date! For the men out there, try wearing a pair of stretch jeans with a nice long sleeve shirt. Add a pair of chukka boots to elevate your casual look.

If your date takes place in the evening, try to figure out as many details about where you’re going before picking out an outfit. If the date is a surprise, try to give the other person as many specifics about the location. There is nothing worse than showing up somewhere under or over dressed for the occasion. For the women out there, you can never go wrong with a great pair of black jeans. Dress your jeans up with a black blouse with some accent jewelry, or a leather jacket. For the gentlemen, spruce up your dark wash stretch jeans with a classy dress shirt. Add a blazer on top for a dressy casual look.

Is dating etiquette still a thing?

Dating etiquette is by far the most important aspect of a first date. Looking good in your outfit shouldn’t be the only reason to “wow” your date. Etiquette is by far the most crucial aspect to a first date, and when taken into consideration is likely to increase your chances of getting a second date. There certainly will be nerves at the beginning, but don’t let that be a reason to forget your manners. One of the biggest things to think about is disconnecting from your phone. It can be hard, but we highly recommend putting your phones away altogether to avoid any temptation to use it. There is no worse feeling than being on a date when the other person whips out their phone to check out their Instagram feed or Snapchat a picture of their dinner – don’t be that person. Make sure you are engaged in the conversation. Eye contact and good conversation can go a long way! Check out how to tell if your first date is going well here.

The first date ends, now what?

Like mentioned before, always remember to keep an open mind while dating. You might not feel a connection with someone after the first date, and that’s okay! There is no reason to feel bad or upset. It’s a learning experience. The best thing you can do at that point is to be honest with the other person. Don’t agree to a second date if you’re just going to ghost them or make up an excuse in the end. They’ll appreciate it and you can build up your confidence in making the right dating decisions.

Lastly, there is always the debate of waiting a few days to text your date or to contact them right after your first outing. If the date was a success, don’t let any doubts cross your mind. Let them know that you had a great time! Don’t feel timid, and confidently plan that second date. If both parties are interested, the other person should offer to make the plans this time. And if that’s you, don’t stress. After all of the great conversation from the first date, planning a second should be easy!

Body Language – How to Tell If Your Date Is Into You

If you are someone that needs a little more than a subtle hint about how someone feels about you, then listen up. Body language is one of the simplest and most telling signs of someone’s true feelings. People will subconsciously reveal their reactions and emotions to a person or situation without even meaning to through body language. As the saying goes, “listen to their words but watch their actions”.  Here are a few common body language movements decoded:

Crossed legs or arms

If any part of their body is crossed, it means they are guarded and not feeling completely relaxed around you. If a woman’s legs are crossed (as most women do this for modesty and comfort measures) look at where her legs are pointing, are the crossed away of towards you . Folded arms over the chest also indicate that your present company still needs to be convinced.

Playing with hair or ear

When someone plays with their own or someone else’s hair, this is usually a flirting technique. It means they feel comfortable and attracted to you and want to be able to get closer to you. However, ear grabbing usually means that the person doesn’t like what they are hearing and feel uncomfortable and a little nervous as well.

Touching of the neck and décolletage

This can be taken in two different ways. Someone who is stressed can rub their neck or loosen their collar, or even place a hand up around their own neck.  These signs will also go with probably a straighter back and maybe even crossed arms. On the flip side if someone is grazing their fingers playfully around this area it can also mean they are flirting and are attracted to you.

Eye contact vs. no eye contact

The eyes will really tell you a lot about someone. If you are yet to be able to master reading the small movements of the eye, then just stick to understanding the importance of eye contact. When someone feels comfortable and attracted to you they will make eye contact. Anyone who is bored, nervous or uncomfortable will not be able to hold your gaze. They will keep looking away, or down and will answer your questions without looking at your directly.

Smiling with teeth vs smiling with no teeth

A big open smile with lots of teeth, shows that the person you are with feels relaxed, happy and comfortable. It’s also a clear way of flirting. A more demure and coy smile with no teeth but smiley eyes will also indicate a playful and flirty nature. A smile that has no teeth and no “smiling eyes” indicates they are just being polite but are most likely not interested, lacking confidence or comfortable.

Remember just because their body language indicates one thing at the start of a date, doesn’t mean it can’t or won’t change throughout the course of the date.

7 Signs Your First Date is Going Great

If you’ve been online dating for any length of time, you know that first dates can be very hit or miss. Sometimes, you just don’t seem to hit it off at all. In these cases, you exchange an awkward hug at the end of the evening, and call it a night. Sometimes, however, you receive a call or text the next day asking to hang out again. Dumbfounded, you wonder if he or she was on the same date as you.

While we can all laugh about these awkward encounters, sometimes you simply hit it off with someone right away and your first date goes off without a hitch. During these times, however, you may be wondering, “am I the only one who feels this way?”

To avoid these misunderstandings, we wanted to look at tangible evidence that indicates a date is going well. We came up with this simple checklist you can use to analyze your outing; here are seven signs your first date is going great!

[ √ ] Genuine Face Time

I’m not talking about the FaceTime app on your iPhone, I mean face time as in eye contact, nodding, and smiling. If your date is too busy looking through his or her phone instead of at you, it’s a good sign they may not be interested. Pay attention to this, it’s definitely bad form to scroll through your phone and ignore your date.

On the other hand, you can tell if your date is really engaged in the conversation by his or her body language. Is he or she reacting to the conversation, leaning in, nodding, smiling or laughing?Smiling can also be a good indicator of mutual attraction.

[ √ ] The Conversation Flows, Easily

Are you and your date able to have a normal conversation, or are there a lot of awkward pauses? If you’re able to converse comfortably, it’s a good indication that you feel at ease around each other. It’s an even better sign if you’re able to crack jokes and share your sense of humor.

Of course, if the conversation doesn’t flow freely, don’t write your date off just yet. Remember, everyone can have first-date jitters, and it can be hard for some people to open up right away. You also don’t want your date to feel too much like an interview with pre-rehearsed questions.

If you’re enjoying yourself and having a normal conversation, rest assured things are going well. This is a good sign that you can at least communicate, and as you know, that’s a non-negotiable foundation piece for any successful relationship.

[ √ ] They Make You Laugh

Not every first date is going to be a comedy show, and it really shouldn’t be, but if you’re able to laugh with your date from the get go, you’re already ahead of the game. Plus, this means you’re probably pretty comfortable with him or her, which isn’t always the case when you meet someone new.

[ √ ] You Have Things in Common

While we all have heard “opposites attract,” it’s a lot easier to get to know someone when you have some common interests. Plus, this sparks ideas for future dates if you’re both into similar music or movies or enjoy the same types of activities.

[ √ ] You Get the Feeling They’re a Good Person

I once found myself on a date where the guy yelled at our waitress because his tacos were breaking. Newsflash, genius, hard-shell tacos crack when you bite into them. I knew right away I didn’t want to be on a date with someone who was that rude to other people.

First impressions are very important, and you can generally tell when someone has good intentions. Pay attention to the way your date talks to you, the wait staff, or anyone else you interact with. If they’re generally courteous to the people around you, they’re most likely a nice person, or at least on their best behavior for the date, as they should be.

[ √ ] No One Pulls the “Something-Suddenly-Came-Up” Move

We all know the classic get-out-jail-free or get-out-of-this-date-now lines; “I think I left my straightener on,” “my friend needs me to pick him up…”, etc. If your date suddenly bolts with a lame excuse, it’s a safe bet the evening is a wash. But if you met up for dinner and are going somewhere else for coffee or dessert or you’re still sitting and talking long after your plates have been cleared, it’s safe to say you’re both having a pretty good time.

Now, this doesn’t mean you want to have a marathon, all-night first date, but if no one is in a rush, go with the flow and enjoy getting to know your date.

[ √ ] The Long Kiss Goodnight

OK, don’t get too excited, some people don’t kiss on the first date, out of principle. When you part with your date, however, pay attention to if he or she leans in for a kiss or hug, or just awkwardly walks away. If there’s some sort of comfortable embrace, there may be a second date or at least an “I had a wonderful time” text.

Of course, if you don’t hug or kiss, don’t jump to the conclusion that all bets are off just yet. He or she just may need a little more time to get more comfortable with you.

Keep an eye out for these positive indications while you’re on your date. You generally know right away if you want to see the person again or not, but if you pay attention to the signs, you will have a better idea if your date is on the same page.

How can you tell your date is going well? Let us know in the comments below!

Top 5 Fall Date Ideas

And just like that, you blinked, played a Drake song or two, and Summer 16 was history. It may be a little chillier and a little darker, but Fall 16 has fully descended upon us, and believe it or not,  it’s the best time of year to try out some exciting new experiences in your love life!

Because pool parties and barbecues are overrated, and actually pretty awkward date ideas anyway, here are our top 5 fall date ideas:

1) A Pumpkin Patch

I know it sounds a little corny, but it can be pretty cute! Farmers markets are bustling with activity during the autumn months, so get in on the fun and check out one with a pumpkin patch! While rocking your gumboots, roll out into the patch and snag the perfect Jack’ O Lantern. Afterwards,  stick around and grab some local veggies to cook up together for dinner.

2) A Halloween Party

Sometimes, it can be fun to play pretend and dress up as someone else entirely. You may even see a completely new side to your date that you didn’t know existed. Even if you just head to a haunted house together, it’s great to get a little spooked all in the name of fun. If you’re really strapped for cash, a scary movie can create a similar ambiance for you and your special someone. Ghostbusters anyone?

3) An Art Show

When the weather is great, you probably don’t want to coop yourself up inside for hours – but that’s what fall is for! I guarantee there are some great places within your community to appreciate art, both great and small. So after some due diligence on some places that interest you (or bonus points, the style of art your DATE loves), grab some lattes and spend a rainy afternoon getting some culture! Even if you end up not loving the art, there’s no shortage of conversation starters! If you’re not wild on art in general, I recommend perusing your local bookstore or craft market!

4) Spa Day

This comes with a pricetag of course, but sometimes dreary autumn days call for a generous helping of good old fashioned TREAT YOURSELF. Indulge in massages and relax by the hot tub or pool. If that sounds a bit hard on the wallet, there are some great DIY spa recipes you can put to the test, without having to leave the comfort of your own home!

5) Brewery Tour

These days, it’s impossible to swing a purse without hitting a craft brewery in almost any neighborhood, so why not embrace it!? Many of these breweries boast seasonal offerings, so if it’s pumpkin flavor you’re after, you’re in luck! On a sunny, crisp afternoon, walk, cab, or take some responsible mode of transportation down to your local brewery for a tour of the premises, and indulge in a beer or two! Bonus points for most likely supporting a local business.