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Dating Tips

So you've found someone nice in the online dating services and its time for you to met in person.  There's no need to let nerves take over.  Our dating tips are here to help you make the best of your first date.  Most of these tips apply as much to men as women.

Dating Safety Tips

The rest of the advice on this page is much more fun, but first a few tips for your protection, just in case.

Make sure that your first date is in a public place.  Ensure that someone you know is fully aware of where you are going, who you will be seeing and what time you expect to be back at your own home.  If possible, arrange to phone a friend or member of your family as soon as you get home.  Know in advance exactly where you are going on your first date and do not let anything change your plans (see the notes below about booking a table in a restaurant for example).  Make your own way to your date and ensure that you can make your own way back home.  If you have a cellular mobile phone, take it with you.  If you don't have a cell phone, it is worth getting one as they are not very expensive now and do not take up much room in your pocket or handbag.

Planning your Dating Experience

Find out what your date likes to do and try to organise something around that, as long as it is somewhere public.  Try to make it something that you enjoy too, otherwise it may come across to your date that you are not having much of a good time.  If it's something you both enjoy, the positivity of the situation will add to the date itself.  Ensure that wherever you go, you are able to talk to each other.  A movie is not a good idea for first time dating for example, whereas a meal in a restauant where you can find a quiet personal table is a great selection.  If going for a meal, make sure that the restaurant serves the type of food that your date enjoys.  It's not really the best idea, for example, to go to a restaurant which only seves steak if your date is a vegetarian.  Call up the restaurant in advance to ensure that a table will be free, otherwise you could be waiting for ages or even turned away at the door.

Plan what you are going to wear, and make it something that you feel comfortable in.

Immediately Before your Date

The trick is to ensure that you're not rushed.  Have a relaxing bath or shower and give those teeth a little brush before going out.  Make sure you have everything you need to take with you and try to plan to be ready at least half an hour before you are actually due to leave your home.  That way, you leave time free in case anything goes wrong, plus you have a bit of time to relax a little more before you go out.

The Date Itself

One of the most important things to do is something you normally do in everyday life - just be yourself.   Try and treat your date as if he or she is a friend who you've known for a long time.  This will help cut down on your nervousness and assist in you being able to act naturally.  In addition, if both of you are naturally compatible, this will show much clearer if you both are being your natural selves.  Just enjoy yourself and things will go fine.  Remember its not the end of the world if you don't end up as long term partners and have a good time.

Men may want to consider buying a small gift on the night out if the chance arises - something small and maybe a little romantic - not anything over-the-top though.

Be honest throughout the date.  If your date partner expresses a keen interest in pony trekking and you are afraid of any creature on four legs, don't be dishonest and say you love it too, otherwise you'll end up engaging innumerous activities that you really can't stand after a while.  If you are having a good time, let your date know.  Try to maintain eye contact even if you are a little shy.  Glancing around the room whilst your partner is talking can give the appearance that you are not interested in what they are saying.

This one may seem obvious but do ensure you remember your date's name.

What to Talk About

It is important that you show interest in your dates likes and dislikes, particularly on a first date.  If your entire conversation is about yourself, your dating partner could think you are self-centered.  An easy conversation opener is simply asking how his or her day went today.  You can move on to discussing how your date makes a living, although be careful about reading the signs of his or ger feedback - some people really don't like talking too much about their jobs, finding it a little boring sometimes, particularly if they're not in the most enjoyable of working environments.  Interesting topics to talk about are often the simlest.  Try finding out what kind of movies, books or music your date likes, her favorite TV program, what she really dislikes and what they like to do in their spare time.  If there is a new attraction in the area where you live, ask if your partner has been to see it.  Ask about your date's family, whether there are brothers or sisters and where in the birth order your partner comes.  If you met through the internet singles services featured here you can maybe discuss some good websites you've visited.  Discussion of recent news events can always bring up interesting topics, and can often give you some more insight into your potential partner's views on the world.

After your Dating Experience

Once your date has ended and you are back home, spend a little time thinking over in your mind how it went.  Hopefully you had a good time, and if so, remember that is the main thing - if you found your one and only true partner, that is a bonus.  Don't get too paranoid over it but try to think of the parts of the date which went well, and the bits which weren't so successful.  This way you can use things as a learning experience in case you need to go on future first-dates.

Think of the person you dated and consider whether you think you are compatible.  If there were aspects of their personality which you felt uncomfortable or incompatible with, be honest with yourself about it.  Don't think that you can change someone to fit your own needs.  If you were compatible you will know it, but if not, attempting to change someone is not a viable option and rarely, if ever, works.

If you think that you were compatible and that you have a chance of a further meeting, call them within a few days to see how they felt about the time you spent together and whether they would like to go out again some time.  If they decline, do not get upset, simply move on - there are millions of personals ads out there and one will be for you.  Hopefully, however, they will have enjoyed your first date and will want to meet a second time.  From there on, you may become good friends or romance may happen leading to absolute true love.  Take it slowly and naturally and the right thing will happen.

For some more great free advice, read Mary M. Alward's exclusive article here on Online Dating Services, "Making Every Date Perfect Every Time".
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