In the days leading up to a first date, it always seems like there will be so much to talk about, but you may find yourself wide-eyed and tongue-tied when the time comes to meet with that new person. While rehearsing a topic ahead of time may be overkill, doing some advance planning can help alleviate some of the inevitable first date anxieties and ensure that your conversation never lags. Use these first date subject suggestions to see if your date is worthy of a second date or if you should flee for the hills.
Things to Talk About on a First Date
If you’re looking for conversation starters on a first date, chances are you don’t know much about the person you’re about to meet. That means you should be prepared with a selection of topics or questions that you can use to assess their personality and determine whether or not you two could form a lasting bond. Dr. Colleen Long, a clinical psychologist, says that these conversational topics will provide you with “a solid base to rely on during those uncomfortable silences.”
Start With Easy, Interesting Topics
First and foremost, start with issues that are simple and easy to discuss. However, make sure you choose engaging topics that will liven up your discussion and allow you and your date to learn more about each other’s personalities.
Location or Event
Inquire, “Have you ever gone to (date location) before?” – Inquire about the area or event you’ve chosen to meet up at; your date may have some fascinating anecdotes about how they discovered that small-town bakery or hole-in-the-wall coffee shop.
I’d like to know whether you have any pets. – When you’re chatting to someone new, pets are a great place to start. Whether or not they have pets, chances are they have or have wanted one in the past, and you’ll soon be too preoccupied with your beagle’s ravenous appetite to worry about building a connection.
Ask: I was just perusing Netflix for two hours last night; do you have any recommendations? – Because so much of modern day life is spent watching media, inquiring about someone’s media tastes is as non-intrusive as inquiring about their shirt color.
Question: What is your most unreasonable fear? Asking someone about their irrational concerns is a fun way to start a first date. Everyone has one, and the more bizarre they are, the more material you both have for a good laugh.
Discuss Your Past
Talking about individuals you know or events you’ve attended can help you and your date get through the night without having to delve too deeply into your concerns and aspirations. This is particularly well suited to introverts or persons who keep their personal lives close to their chest. Here are some ideas for incorporating these gentler questions into your first date chat.
- Are you close with your family?
- What’s your favorite memory of you and your siblings?
- What’s the most embarrassing thing you did as a kid?
- Is there something from your childhood, like a stuffed animal or blanket, that you still keep with you?
Bring Work Life Into the Conversation
Given how much of your time is spent working, you should make a point of mentioning career and understanding your date’s work. If the two of you meet at work, you should avoid asking these questions and focusing your budding relationship solely on your jobs. If you didn’t, you’ll find these examples of how to transition into a discussion about work quite instructive.
- What does a typical day at your job look like?
- If there was one thing you could change about your job, what would it be?
- When you got your first substantial paycheck, what was the first thing you purchased?
- Would you choose to work full-time on location or from home full-time if you had the option?
Let Your Personality Shine
Among all the topics you and your date discuss, finding anecdotes that demonstrate your personality is crucial. Everyone has a terrific ‘party story’ that they’ve told to many gatherings and wowed them all; now is the time to bring out the heavy guns. Here are some questions to ask your date to help you bring out the best in each other.
- What is the most regrettable thing you did as a teenager?
- What is your go-to party story – the one that makes everyone in the crowd laugh?
- When I’m not working, I’m (personal hobby here like grooming my pet, crocheting, racing motorcycles), what about you?
- If you could survive through one cataclysmic event (think Pompeii, the plague, and so on) and survive, what would it be?
No Topic Is Taboo on a First Date
Religion and politics are traditionally forbidden topics to bring up on a first date, but you need to bring them up to see whether this person is a suitable match. It’s better to know that your lifestyles and ideas are compatible so that you don’t waste time on dates that aren’t going anywhere. It may appear to be a cold approach to dating, but keep in mind that a first date is similar to a job interview for a life mate, and you need to make sure that this person matches the work requirements. Approach themes like the ones below deftly to determine whether a second date is on the horizon.
- Do you see yourself wanting children at some point in the future?
- Were you raised religious?
- What are you looking for in a relationship?
- What’s the cause you’re most passionate about?
- Where do you fall on the political spectrum?
Avoid A One-Sided Conversation
You want to avoid having a conversation that is too one-sided. By gazing at each other’s plates, you can simply track your progress. If your date’s plate is nearly empty but yours is still mostly full, use it as an opportunity to shift the focus of the discussion to your date, then relax and relish the taste of your dinner.
Bottom Line — Things To Talk About on a First Date
First dates can make you feel like you’re climbing Mount Everest, but taking the time to prepare a few talking ideas to incorporate into the discussion can only make you feel more in control and at ease. But keep in mind that you’re there to have a good time. While this is essentially an interview for your long-term relationship, it does not have to feel like one. These twenty-one subjects will ensure that you and your date never hit that dreaded awkward silence, whether you’re introverted and quiet or rowdy and loud.