When you are finally ready to try dating, there are some things you need to keep in mind, and that is knowing how to best navigate the important first date. With this in mind, you may have an easier time sorting out your thoughts on what to do.

Below are 20 tips for what you should never do on a first date, and some first date ideas:

1. Never go to a place where you won’t be able to talk

Not only will you not learn anything from each other, but you will find that being so close to each other may be uncomfortable.

For example, you will want to stay away from movie theaters, loud concerts, sporting events, plays, etc. Try going out for a light meal, a quick walk in a busy park, meeting at a museum, etc. This way, you have enough chances to talk with your date, and if it goes sour, you can leave, and no one gets hurt.

2. Never go someplace where you will be completely alone.

If something should happen, you may feel like you are falling into a trap. Also, tell your friends where you and your date are headed.

3. Never bail on a date last minute

If something unexpected and rather important does come up last minute, try rescheduling and see where it goes. Perhaps your date may understand, which may make you want to date them even more!

4. Never feel the need to dress up too much or too little

You will want to leave a good first impression obviously, but if you continue dating each other, sooner or later, you both will see each other for more than what is on the surface.

5. Never talk all about yourself

By speaking all about yourself, you are showing your date that you are more interested in yourself than getting to know your date. This is understandable since conversation lulls or silence on first dates can be uncomfortable, but you should ask yourself if you like them enough to keep dating.

To get past this dilemma, come up with a list of questions to ask for your time. There are lots of websites where you can get ideas for conversation starters. Just don't make the subjects too heavy or ask about their plans (engagement, wedding, kids, retirement) and scare them off. Your date may like you even more for not only coming prepared for the date but for being so invested in it.

6. Never feel self-conscious about what you choose to eat

If you want a messy burger, eat it! Your date may not notice your chewing because they may be eating as well. Unless neither of you decides to order food, go for a drink instead.

Also, if you keep dating each other, you will still want to eat a messy burger around them whether they like it or not. So why not order what your stomach wants on the first date?

7. Never leave without a good reason.

Criticism, both bad and good, may seem horrible at first, but it is feedback all the same. If your date is nice, they may understand and try better with someone else if they know where they went wrong. Unless there was no mutual connection of any sort, then best to keep your opinions of the other person to yourself.

8. Never go on a date without a phone.

If you have to leave quickly, say that you forgot to call someone back and that you must leave because it is critical. This isn’t quite the same as bailing because you tried to be with your date but it didn’t work out and never will.

9. Never take your date home.

So much could go wrong with this. You must know who the person you are dating is and if they are someone, you can trust.

10. Never go on a double date.

This might be tempting because it takes the pressure off of you too. However, you need to know who your date is and not how they act around other people. If you two hit it off, then schedule double dates for the future.

11. Never be indecisive about your wants and needs.

Instead, try to be upfront about your likes and dislikes and find a happy medium. After all, dating someone is about compromise and respect.

12. Never use someone for anything.

This means that you are not using the other person for their money, companionship, time, love, effort, sex, etc.

You should want to date the other person to know more about them in all situations unless it is consensual.

13. Never change someone.

You wouldn’t want someone to change you, so why change someone else? There are plenty of people to go on a first date with, so make sure your decision counts.

14. Never idealize someone.

Know your worth first. Otherwise, you may develop low self-worth.

15. Never give out personal information.

You should be safe, and a little mystery never hurts.

16. Never rush the dating process.

Take things slowly so that you can fully enjoy the present moment.

17. Never be anyone else.

Always be yourself, because you are enough.

18. Never fear rejection.

If things don’t work out then maybe it wasn’t meant to be. Learn from your mistakes and the mistakes of others so that they won’t be repeated.

19. Never date when you are not in a good place in life.

No one wants to date someone who is unhappy with themselves.

20. Never force a connection.

If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. There is nothing more you can do.

All these tips will allow you to focus on what matters when it comes to the first date, and it will allow you to think about first date ideas in ways you might not have before. It takes practice before you may understand each tip completely, and that is ok too. The point is that you learn from them.

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