It only takes a few seconds for someone to create a first impression of you and a lot longer to change that impression once it is formed.
So to stack the odds in your favour, here are some tips on what to do in order to make that all important first impression on a first date.
1. Set Your Outcome
Get clear in your mind on the impression you wish to make. With my clients I recommend that they think about this beforehand. So how do you want to come across to a potential partner? Sophisticated, good-humoured, relaxed, fun? Decide in advance on the great impression you wish to make.
2. Develop A Strong Self-Image
To make a great impression naturally, you must have a healthy self-image. So, before leaving on your date, remind yourself of the following:
(i) What’s great about you?
(ii) Remember the times when you had your most successful dates.
3. Control Your Mini-me
This is what I call the little voice in our heads and it’s vital to control this inner dialogue as it can determine our confidence levels. Remember that it’s going to be speaking to you anyway, so you may as well train it to speak in a way that’s going to help you get your outcome.
Decide that you will only say things to yourself that are positive and supportive of how you wish to feel. Now monitor your Mini-Me and accept nothing less than what you want to hear.
4. Beat The Microexpression Trap
Microexpressions flash over our faces involuntarily and can betray true emotions. Even if you’ve convinced yourself to look happy during a date, just one distraction can reveal emotions you’d rather not share. Five out of six of the universal emotions – disgust, anger, fear, sadness, happiness and surprise – are, frankly, not ideal first date material.
So how can you help avoid letting these microexpressions sabotage your date? The answer is simple – change your thoughts, not your expression. For example, press the pause button on your worries. Let go of any burdens and you will make a far better impression.
5. Be A Great Communicator
This means great when speaking and great when listening too.
When your date is talking, pay real attention so that they feel that you’re interested in what they are saying. If you’re a little shy, paying attention will easily reveal what you can ask them or speak about next. Attention is also the key to charisma and unlocking chemistry.
When you are speaking, try not to talk too much about previous partners and certainly do not talk negatively about them. Finally, get the balance right and do not talk about yourself all of the time.