Photo courtesy of flickr
A lot of people fear the blind date. Even when a mutual friend or acquaintance sets you up, many people still have their reservations for going on a date with a complete stranger. What if they are boring, unattractive, or both? What if they don’t laugh at your jokes, like the same type of food, or don’t say anything the whole night? What if you’re just not interested in them? The truth is you won’t know if any of these concerns apply to you and your date until you are actually there on the date. Fret not though: there are some things you can do to make an educated decision regarding a blind date:
- Ask your friend why they think you and this person would hit it off. Do you share a love for obscure punk rock bands, farming llamas, and phone calls that last over an hour? Or maybe you work in the same industry and could share ideas? Perhaps you both just love a good lasagna. Having things in common with this person can help you see the potential your friend sees, provide you with an idea for a date, and even give you something for the two of you to talk about.
- See if your friend can pull up a photo of this person. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. While this shouldn’t be your sole means for deciding whether or not to go on a date, it is important to be physically attracted to a person when it comes to romance. However, you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover so don’t worry too much if they aren’t the type of person you’d usually go for or if your friend doesn’t have a picture to show you.
- Get some date suggestions from your friend. After all, he/she knows both of you and your interests, so they should be able to shed some light on an activity that you’d both enjoy (more date ideas to follow).
Wondering where you should go or what you should do? Go for a date that will allow the two of you to get to know each other (ideally a place you two can talk without things feeling awkward or overly romantic). Think coffee, happy hour, or dinner somewhere relatively casual. Remember, you want to be able to get to know this person so you can a) see if there’s chemistry and b) get to know each other. That being said, keep this initial date short. This gives you a chance to meet the person, see if you hit it off, and begin to get to know them all without the obligation of having to stay through a lengthy date if neither of you are feeling it.
What if you “run out” of things to talk about? Ask them how they know your friend (even if you already know the answer) or bring up something regarding a common interest. Think questions that go further than just yes or no, and make sure you both are talking/sharing a relatively equal amount. Resist the urge to over-share. Ultimately, you decide where that line is drawn but some topics to avoid would be exes, all the family secrets, fetishes, your deep dark secrets, and things of the like. After all, you are trying to make a good first impression.
Need more ideas on what to talk about? See our previous post, first-date-conversation-starters
How do you say goodbye? Just a short while ago, this person was a complete stranger so the concern of how to appropriately say goodbye is understandable. A simple goodbye, handshake, and “nice meeting you” will suffice if the date was just so-so or didn’t go as well as you hoped. If the date went fairly well, you could even hug. There shouldn’t be an expectation of a kiss after a brief blind date, but if things really did go well and you’re both feeling it, sure why not. Act how you feel is appropriate. When in doubt, read the other person’s body language or follow their lead.
Even with all of the possibilities and concerns, you should remain calm. Remember, the person who set the two of you up likely suggested the date in the first place because they truly believed the two of you would hit it off. So take a deep breath, take comfort in the fact that someone thought the two of you should at least meet, and say yes to the blind date already!