It’s a rarity that you’ll find friend online who you click with so completely that you go from strangers to star-crossed lovers in a matter of a few conversations. Generally, these things take time. You need to build a rapport first. You have to get to know who they are, what they stand for and where they want to go in life. Once you get an idea of their quirks and they begin to get an idea of who you are then fine – move over Romeo and Juliet. Probably the most important step in this progression, though, is your first face-to-face meeting. Consider it a test date, of sorts. You get to see if their in-person persona matches their online presentation. If you’re heading out for a test date, here are a few things to keep in mind.
“Hopefully you have been reading their body language and listened to what they had to say and you have a good indication of whether or not you’ve passed the test.”
First impressions will often ensure a second date or sink things right from the start. When I speak of first impressions, I’m talking about those first few moments of meeting – the first five to thirty seconds. You had better be on your game for this stage in your test date, if any. To do this, you just need to plan ahead. Start by ensuring you’re feeling great. Take time to make sure you’re looking your best. This could mean grabbing a new outfit or simply getting enough rest the night before. Make sure to show up early for your date so you don’t have worry lines crinkled atop your forehead. When you meet, make sure to smile! It’s a small thing but smiles are contagious and if you’ve ever tried to smile and feel bad at the same time, you’ll know how difficult it is. Make sure to look them in the eye and look at nothing but them for those first few moments. They are going to want to feel like the center of your attention. Ask a question. Show them you’re interested. Don’t take those first important seconds to tell them how wonderful you are. Make it about them. Compliment them on something they’re wearing but make sure it’s not sleazy. We’re sure their butt looks really good in those jeans but save that for another day. First impressions deserve a lot of attention so start your test date off right by preparing a little beforehand.
Your goal is exploration. This means that you are testing the waters of his or her personality. You want to ask some of the important questions on your mind but make sure you don’t get too personal. Typical taboo subjects such as sex, money, religion and politics should probably be avoided if possible. These are best covered when you know each other a little better and can read what’s meant by certain looks or phrases. You don’t need to go pushing any hot buttons accidentally. An equally important part of this process is letting your date ask you questions. It’s important to allow this to happen because as much as you’re going to want to make sure that they are right for you, you’re going to want to be certain that you are right for them. Not only that, you can learn a lot about their concerns and values by listening to the types of questions they ask and the way they ask them. The first goal of any first date is to test the waters so make sure you take advantage of this essential occasion.
Eventually your date will come to an end. Hopefully you have been reading their body language and listened to what they had to say and you have a good indication of whether or not you’ve passed the test. If you’re at all uncertain, don’t push for more than a peck on the cheek or a hug. It will only come off awkward if you plant one on someone who doesn’t want to kiss you back. Even if they do, a little bit of restraint goes a long way to increasing the excitement of your next fateful meeting.