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Dating: Crucial Do's and Don'ts

Updated on November 18, 2014

My father's prediction was certainly accurate. Ten years later, I'm no stranger to the dating game. This once introverted, average looking little girl has assumed the position of a confident, socially adept young woman. While I by no means claim to be an expert on the subject, I'd like to think I know a thing or two. So, without further ado, here is my personalized list of Dating Do's and Dont's.

Do:

  • Mutually discuss and agree upon an appropriate time and location. Choose somewhere in a public setting where you can comfortably get to know one another. Ideal first date settings include coffee shops, restaurants, parks, festivals, concerts, and art galleries. Be aware of your date's hobbies and interests and cater activities around them, if possible. This proves you've made a conscious effort and increases the likelihood of your date both starting and ending as well as, or better than planned.
  • Confirm your date an hour or two prior to meeting.This can be done by a simple text or quick phone call. By confirming, you are ensuring both parties are on the same page and cancellations are improbable. Also, be sure to make any necessary reservations or arrangements. Nobody enjoys a wait.
  • Dress and smell nice. Wear something suitable for the occasion, and use a subtle yet noticeable perfume or cologne. First impressions are indeed everything.
  • Be yourself. Take this opportunity to show off your fun-loving personality. Enjoy your time together, and perceive it as a date rather than an interview.
  • Pay the tab on the first date, men. Hold the door open. Tell her she looks beautiful. Consider bringing her flowers. Show her that chivalry is still very much alive.


Don't:

  • Assume that plans you made a week ago are still on without confirming unless you're willing to wind up confused, dateless and disappointed at the last minute.
  • Have your first date at a noisy sports bar or movie theater. The point of dating is to get to know someone, not to stare at them or sit in silence for hours on end.
  • Text or accept phone calls during your date unless there's a justifiable reason. Doing so can potentially cause your date to feel awkward and/or unimportant.
  • Randomly confess that you want seven children, reveal to your date that you believe they are your God given soul mate, ramble on about your frequent drug use and binge drinking problem, or any and all of the above.
  • Belch, curse incessantly, or have bad manners.
  • Take about past relationships, hook ups or dating partners. This is a major don't, and I myself am guilty of it too at times. Saying too many kind things about an ex may lead your date to believe the relationship truly isn't over. On the other hand, talking about an ex in a heartless, inadequate way may lead them to think you are immature, unable to handle a relationship at the present time, or got dumped. Needless to say, you're better off not mentioning anyone at all.
  • Try to cop a feel on the first date. Doing so can (and most likely will) ruin the ambiance and earn you a slap in the face.
  • Point out any imperfections, faults, or weaknesses your date may possess.
  • Publicly scold your date for glancing at other men or women. This will without a doubt make you appear jealous and obsessive.
  • Consume too much alcohol, for obvious reasons.
  • Wait three days before communicating with your significant other following your date. Contrary to popular belief, most women actually prefer to be contacted within a day or so.

Dating can be viewed as a process of trial and error. Unfortunately, not every date will result in a long-term relationship. There will be times everything works out perfectly, and situations in which there is no connection whatsoever. Don't beat yourself up over a date gone wrong, even the experts can't get it right every time. The last piece of advice I will give you is this - just try to have fun with it.

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