You've been told that first dates should be quick, preferably under 30 minutes, so you've agreed to give it a shot. You're sipping your Starbucks coffee and making conversation with a fairly attractive man you agreed to meet for a coffee date.
What's going on in your head while you make small talk with this guy you said "yes" to meeting for coffee? The self-talk in your mind can turn a first date into a second one or into a rapid, "I'll call you" line from the guy across from you.
What can help you navigate this first date? Before we look at the inside of your head, if you tend to be anxious when meeting new people, may I suggest an herbal tea (or anything without caffeine)? Now that we got that out of the way, here are some tips to help you relax and enjoy yourself:
Change your attitude. If you have been on some dates that bombed, you may be discouraged. This new date is not the previous dates. Separate them in your mind or you risk developing a callous attitude with such thoughts as "All the good ones are married or gay" and "This guy is probably another loser like my last date." Give each date a fair chance without carrying along the baggage of the past dates.
Change your mind. Change how you think about the date. It's a meeting with someone new and possibly interesting. It's an opportunity to form a new connection, maybe a friendship, maybe more, but for now, it's just a meeting between two people who hopefully have something in common.
Change your feelings. Whatever you do, do NOT let your feelings get carried away, especially if he's extra dreamy. Spend your half hour paying attention to the conversation, not planning your wedding to Mr. Dream Boat! After your date, if you really enjoyed it, you can talk with your girlfriends about him. During the date your task is to be fully present and engage him in interesting conversation.
Most important of all, decide to enjoy yourself. While this guy could be "the one," he could also be someone who could enhance your life in ways you haven't even considered. What if he is not the one for you, but he is someone who you would like to know better, even if it's only platonically? Whatever the reason, meeting a fellow human being can be a pleasurable experience in itself. Give yourself a chance to enjoy the experience.
Join my upcoming webinar workshop on Conscious Dating: Relationship Success Training for Singles. They are held regularly, with the next one starting on October 13, 2010. For more information, click here: http://trueloverelationshipcoach.com/cdworkshop.html. If you haven't gotten my free report for singles yet, you can get it now at http://trueloverelationshipcoaching.com.