5 Ways Healthy Relationships Start On The First Date

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Love

You probably don’t want to hear this because you're already feeling like you're under a lot of pressure, but healthy relationships start on the first date.

I know that this might seem contrary to what you might have heard — that first dates aren’t a big deal, to just roll with it. And this is, to some extent, true. First dates are meant to be fun.

That being said, a lot can be revealed on a first date. There are markers for whether your relationship — if one develops — will be a healthy one.

There are many things that can reveal this, but there are some specific ones you should focus on.

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Here are 5 signs you're heading for a healthy relationship on the first date.

1. Honesty.

The number-one most important part of any healthy relationship is honesty. Knowing that you can tell your partner anything and they the same with you is important, because honesty is how you work things out in relationships.

Even if it leads to an argument, honesty is still important. It gets things out on the table — good or bad — to be addressed.

If you go into a date thinking there are some things that you aren’t going to be honest about because they might embarrass you or that you feel ashamed of, you are going to doom your relationship from the start.

So, be honest on your first date. If you aren’t, the relationship could be over before it begins.

2. Transparency.

For many reasons, you sometimes don’t bring your true self to a first date. Whether it's because you're shy, cocky, insecure, or you're trying to hide something, you go into a first date being something that you're not.

How many times have you had a first date with someone who seemed so laid back that you found them compelling, only to learn down the line that they're as wound up as they come and exhausting to be with?

Or how about that time when you met someone who says they aren’t intimidated by your success, but then turn out to be exactly that?

How can you start a relationship with someone who isn’t who they present themselves to be? You can’t!

This is one way that healthy relationships start on the first date. If you can’t be yourself, the person you're sitting across from will fall for someone who isn’t real.

How long do you think that will last?

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3. Chemistry.

You know when you meet someone online and you're really excited to meet them, and then when you finally do, there's no chemistry?

Everyone tells you to go on another date, just to see if things are better the second time. And sometimes they are. But more often than not, they aren’t.

Attraction is a very important part of a first date. You don’t know exactly why chemistry exists between people, but it does and it’s an essential part of keeping a relationship healthy.

If you find it doesn’t exist on the first date, you might find that your healthy relationship might not ever get beyond the starting gate.

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I remember when I met my boyfriend. A friend shared his picture with me, but I wasn’t interested because he had a mustache.

When I did meet him, the chemistry between us was huge — in spite of the mustache. We were only friends for a while before we dated, but the chemistry was there from the start.

So, if the chemistry isn’t there for you at all on the first date, consider a second date. But don’t take it any further than that if that attraction doesn’t ignite.

4. Connection.

Yes, chemistry is an amazing thing and it feels good, but it’s not the only thing that is important to have on a first date. It's also important to have a connection.

I remember a date I had with a guy. We met for ice cream at Riverside Park in NYC. I was immediately attracted to him, and he to me.

We spent a few hours together, and at the end, he pointed out that we hadn't agreed on anything we talked about. I felt more like we were sparring over issues in a good-natured way. But the truth was that we didn’t agree on anything.

Even if the attraction is there, do your personalities, interests, and beliefs match? Could you see yourself bringing this person home to your family? To meet your friends?

Connection is a huge reason why healthy relationships start on the first date. Without it, you'll struggle to be happy right from the beginning.

5. Red flags.

Ah yes. Red flags. They're are almost always there and you may usually ignore them, in spite of your instincts.

You know what I mean — the things that you see in someone pretty darn quickly that give you pause to wonder what that says about this person.

Usually, you just gloss over that moment, thinking it’s not a big deal and that even if it is, you can probably change them, anyway.

If you see any red flags on your first date, make note of them. Don’t ignore them.

You can proceed with a second date, should you choose, but keep those flags front and center in your mind as you move forward.

It’s funny to think that healthy relationships start on the first date.

You may usually consider first dates to just be an easy, fun thing, and they should be, but they're also great indicators of what a healthy relationship might look like going forward.

On your next first date, make sure you're being honest and being yourself. Make sure that you feel like there is an honest attraction and connection, and don’t ignore any red flags that might pop up along the way!

First dates are fun, but wouldn’t it be nice to have your next first date be your last? It might be if you bring your authentic self to the table and are, in turn, met in kind.

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Mitzi Bockmann is an NYC-based certified life coach and mental health advocate. She works exclusively with women to help them to be all that they want to be in this crazy world in which we live. Contact her for help or send her an email.

This article was originally published at Let Your Dreams Begin. Reprinted with permission from the author.