what and how to talk about on a first date?


Excitement, embarrassment, or feigned confidence, awkward pauses are almost inevitable – how can you still make a good impression?

1. Talk about travel, not movies

English psychologist Richard Wiseman has conducted research on this subject. It turned out that of the couples who discussed films on their first date, only less than 9% wanted to meet again. But of those who spoke about travel, 18% continued to meet. The reason, perhaps, is that travel for us is associated with carefree vacation time, with the embodiment of our romantic dreams. As we talk about these exciting moments, we are encouraged … and more attractive.

2. The main thing is not WHAT to talk about, but HOW

The secret of communication, say American social psychologists Eli Finkel and Paul Eastwick (Eli Finkel, Paul Eastwick), is to avoid extremes. Don’t try to dominate, but don’t be passive either. Accept the “serve”, slightly change the direction of the conversation and give the “pass” back. Respond to his or her responses warmly and with genuine interest. This combination – acceptance of the other and unobtrusive adjustment of the topic – will ensure a smooth flow of the conversation.

3. Be honest

On a first date, many of us are shy or afraid to talk about ourselves. And in vain. Arthur Aron, a psychologist at Stony Brook University in New York who studies the formation of romantic relationships, experimentally proved that you can quickly accelerate the process of inner rapprochement at the first meeting of a couple.

Aron compiled a long list of questions that the participants in the experiment had to read out loud to each other and take turns answering them. For example: “Would you like to become famous? In what area? ”,“ Did you have any old dream? Why didn’t it come true? ”,“ What is your greatest achievement? ”,“ Your most precious / worst memory? ”.

The effect of the “games of frankness” turned out to be striking: literally in an hour of communication, previously strangers began to feel like kindred spirits.

According to Aron’s estimates, a level of trust arose between them, which ordinary couples sometimes do not achieve in weeks, months, or even years.

Of course, this is a little too much for real life, Arieli admits. But he still recommends avoiding too banal and therefore boring topics. Why not approach your first date outside the box? For example, when making an appointment, you can agree in advance which topics that are interesting to both, you will discuss. Or, conversely, make a list of prohibited topics. Be that as it may, the main thing is to risk getting out of your comfort zone, and you will win, says Arieli.

4. Better controversial topics than boring ones

If you can’t make contact, take heart and start a conversation … but at least about abortion. Dan Ariely, an expert in behavioral economics and author of several best-selling books (for acquaintances and Russian readers), notes that on the first date people usually balance, deciding there are two tasks at once: they want to show themselves, and to find out something carefully about their counterpart so as not to offend him (her). Therefore, as a safety net, they choose some safe topics for conversation, bypassing risky ones, and as a result, they may seem boring to the interlocutor (interlocutor).

But what if you make the first conversation more piquant, catchy? With this question, Arieli conducted an experiment. He suggested that dating site visitors completely exclude neutral topics like the weather, hobbies, football championship or work from their correspondence, and start an absentee date with “immodest” questions like: “How many romances have you had?”, “When did you break up with your last partner?” , “Did you break someone’s heart?”, “How do you feel about abortion?” In the end, the participants admitted that the correspondence was really exciting for them.

5. Talk – and nothing more?

How to understand if you can count on sex at the first meeting? According to the American dating site OkCupid, for this, you need to ask a person an elementary test question: “Do you like beer?” Regardless of their gender and orientation, the willingness of beer lovers to have sex at the first meeting is 60% higher than among those who do not share a love for this drink.