What To Talk About (& What To Avoid) On First Dates

Tips on how to keep the conversation fun and playful — from a guy's POV.

How To Get A Guy To Like You: What To Talk About On A First Date Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

The good news is you’ve got a first date coming! Now what?

As you're thinking over what to talk about on a first date with a new guy, conventional wisdom suggests you should have some fun "get to know you" questions to ask and ideas of things to talk about prepared in advance.

This probably seems like a good idea in order to really get to know someone and make sure your first date conversation goes smoothly, but as a man, if you really want to know how to get a guy to like you, I can assure you that pretty much nothing could be further from the truth.


In fact, most of the best first date and general dating tips I give women feel counterintuitive at first — because frankly, they’re not men.

RELATED: The 5 Best Conversation Starters & Unique Questions To Ask Someone In Order To Get To Know Them


With that in mind, here are the most helpful tips on what to talk about on a first date, as well as which topics to avoid in first date conversation.

1. Hobbies

With all the buildup, you think I’d have some profound topics for you to talk about, but I don't — and that’s exactly the point.

What I’m suggesting is that you keep it simple and talk about the things you like to do.

When a guy first meets you, if he likes you, the first thing he’s thinking about is what he can do with you next. By telling him about your hobbies In a casual way, you’re planting the seeds of ideas for things he can ask you to do when he asks you on your next date.


On the flip-side, the main thing to avoid is interviewing him.

He’s not there with you because he's looking for a second job. If you start to asking him interview-type questions in an attempt to qualify or disqualify him as a potential boyfriend, you'll turn him off.

A guy has that like you before he'll want to impress you. Once that happens, he will tell you everything you need to know.

RELATED: The 13 First Date Tips That Pretty Much Guarantee He'll Ask You Out Again

2. Food

The easiest way to get a guy to ask you out on a second date is to tell him what kind of food you like.

Remember, when a guy likes you he’s gathering data to use in the future. By telling him the kind of food you do and don't like. you're setting the table for your next meal together.


On a first date, a guy is really just establishing whether or not he thinks it's fun to be with you, and the same should be true for you.

Being playful while bantering and enjoying each other‘s company is what makes for chemistry.

On the flip side, the second thing to avoid is being too serious. Nothing is more unattractive to most men than a woman who takes herself and the conversation too seriously on a first date.

First date conversations should be light, fun, and non-directional. There is a time and place for seriousness, but a first date is not it.

3. Whatever feels good

If you want to make a lot of points with a guy, compliment him on the planning he put into your first date. Tell them how what he’s done feels good to you.


Guys operate from a simple premise. They ask themselves, “Can I make her happy?”

If the answer is yes, the conversation flows freely. If the answer is no, it’s going to be an awkward night.

The flip side of this is behaving as though you're bored. I’m not saying you won’t go on dates with guys who are boring, I’m just suggesting that you not be the one who makes it that way.

This simply means being excited about enjoying the simple things in life, like hobbies, food and things that feel good to you.

A guy on a first date isn’t looking to discuss rocket science. He wants to feel and explore what it’s like to be with you.

This does not in any way mean you should tone down your intelligence. That part of you will come out naturally, and in fact, guys love it.


RELATED: 100 'Getting To Know You' Questions To Ask On First Dates

When it comes to what things to talk about on a first date, telling him about your hobbies casually plants seeds for him to plan your second date, while also letting you both know if you're compatible in regard to ways you'd enjoy spending time together.

Providing food for you is a time-tested way for a guy to show he likes you. By letting him know what foods you like, you give him a head start on making you happy.


Feeling good and letting him know you feel good — especially about his plans and preparations — is music to his ears.

More than anything, you are looking for a first date conversation that flows freely.

If the two of you have chemistry, the conversation will flow and the next thing you know, he will want to see you again.

The topics to avoid on a first date are interview questions, anything too serious, and anything bored.

In fact, in some ways, it’s not what you talk about on a first date, but what you don’t talk about, that makes a man fascinated with you and leaves him wanting to know more.

RELATED: 40 Get-To-Know-You Questions To Ask A Guy To See If You’re Compatible


James Allen Hanrahan is a frequent contributor to YourTango and a highly sought after relationship coach for smart, strong, and successful women based in Los Angeles. If you're a smart woman struggling to achieve relationship success, check out his free Get Your Dream Guy formula for lasting love and the treasure trove of information he offers in A Life Of Love.

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