10 BLIND DATE TIPS:
1. Do say yes to all the blind dates people offer to send you on. My grandmother always told me, "If you get invited, you go; you never know who you are going to meet." This has been my advice to people ever since. Even if your blind date doesn't prove to be the One for you, you never know to whom that person could introduce you. One caveat: If you are simply burned out on blind dates, take a break; you'll come back to it a little while later feeling energized and excited for a new adventure.
2. Don't spend too much time on the phone before a blind date. It's better to have a brief, 5-to-10-minute conversation just enough to create a foundation so you will feel comfortable on the actual date, then say good-bye. A long conversation will only cause you to create a lot of unrealistic expectations that the person will never be able to live up to. (When I send my clients out on their dates, I don't allow them to talk on the phone at all beforehand for this very reason.)
3. Do go for drinks instead of dinner. Drinks are much less pressure. Dinner can feel daunting for a blind date because you have to make it through the entire meal before you can leave, whereas drinks can be brought to a close at any point. And keep in mind that if you are hitting it off, drinks can always turn into dinner or the scheduling of a second date. (The policy at my company is that the first date is always for drinks.)
4. Don't ask around about the person you are going out with. You are much better off going on the date and evaluating the person on your own than digging for gossip and other people’s opinions.
5. Don't choose a place for the date where you know too many people or that is too trendy. It will be very distracting if you are in a place where you need to say hello to a lot of people or where you are more focused or "checking things out" than on your date. It is better to choose a quiet place where the two of you can have a nice conversation and focus on getting to know each other.
6. Do wear something that you feel comfortable and confident in; blind dates are nerve-wracking enough without having to worry about how you look. Your blind-date outfit does not need to be super-trendy or fancy; it's better to pick something that you believe you look terrific in so you’ll feel good about yourself.
7. Don't show up on the blind date with a fantasy of your perfect mate in your head, hoping you'll hit the jackpot because the real person will never be able to live up to that image. Try to get to know the person sitting in front of you and see if you could like him or her for who he or she really is.
8. Don't answer your cell phone every time it rings. You should turn your cell phone off when you arrive at the date. If you need to answer it for one very important call, you should tell your date this at the start of the date so that he or she won’t think you're being rude. On blind dates, people are judging you through a microscope even though they shouldn’t be; don't give them reason to think you are not worthy of a second date. For the same reason.
9. Don't be too sarcastic or tell off-color jokes. Remember that when you go on a blind date, the person sitting across the table from you has never met you before, so he or she doesn't know your sense of humor or sarcasm. What might be funny to you or to people who know you well might prove to be insulting or off-putting to your date, who's virtually a stranger at this point.
10. Do reschedule if you are in a bad mood that day; you are better off canceling at the last minute than going and being grumpy or sullen. Remember, you only get one chance to make a good first impression, and blind dates are the ultimate first impression dates.
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