The most powerful tool you have on a date is not your outfit, your money, the venue you choose, or your looks.
It’s your voice, your ability to hold a conversation, make it interesting and keep her hanging on your every word.
A lot of guys think that means talking about themselves the whole time or, on the other end of the spectrum, asking way too many questions.
It may have worked in The Forty Year Old Virgin, but treating a date like an interrogation will most likely make things feel creepy and give you away as someone who’s socially awkward.
It’s not an easy skill. Meeting someone for the first time, finding things to talk about and then making those things relevant, fun and entertaining is about as hard as stand-up comedy or any kind of public speaking where there is a lot of pressure on the speaker.
It takes practice, the ability to slow down your perception of time and the ability to stay one step ahead of where the conversation is headed.
It seems calculative, but over time it will become second nature if you just go out and practice.
There will be moments of awkward silence, in which you struggle to make a new topic appear, but this is just part of the process.
She may even pick up the slack if the conversation starts to go cold (if she’s interested), but I’ll get to that later.
There’s a really simple process to developing an organic conversation between you and a chick, and it’s actually extremely easy to understand.
The first thing you have to be prepared to do is pay attention. If your mind is racing from nerves, it’ll be difficult to concentrate on what she’s saying and come up with responses that showcase your personality.
The more relaxed you are internally, the easier it’ll be to keep the interaction moving.
Why is that? Because of the ping-pong style nature of conversing. You say something then she responds.
Then, based on something she says, you take the conversation to another place, and the cycle repeats itself, just like a ping-pong volley. This is why attentiveness is so crucial.
All you have to do is ask a question, wait for her to answer, and pick one part of what she says as material to formulate a response.
It takes some time to make this feel natural, and your tone of voice and perceived comfortability have a lot to do with it, but over time you’ll feel less like you’re trying and more like the dialogue is happening on its own.
The fact is girls are stingy at first with how much and what they contribute to a conversation. You have to enter a social situation assuming that they will not give you the benefit of the doubt in the way of small talk.
They may start off giving you generic responses, or choose not to reveal the finer details of their personality just to make you work. It’s your job to steer the conversation in a deeper direction.
Talking about sports or your favorite foods isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but you can do that with anyone.
This is a date, where the undertone is possibly sexual, romantic or otherwise, and if you want things to progress you need to keep that in mind when you’re sitting face-to-face.
For example, a conversation about tattoos is better than a conversation about dogs, just like a conversation about your craziest nights in college is better than one about how nice the weather has been.
You can’t suddenly shift gears (it’ll seem too abrupt) but your goal should be to drive the talk toward something more sensual, personal or emotional.
There are plenty of instances in which a girl leaves a date not necessarily disappointed, but also not turned on by the guy she was with because the mood was lukewarm.
This is the fast-track to the friend-zone—a place no guy ever really wants to be.
Occasionally, a guy will rely on talking about himself as a crutch because it’s easier.
You know yourself pretty well, and calling up information about your life seems like a good way to fill gaps in conversation.
It may accomplish the goal of avoiding awkward silence, but it also comes off as egotistical and probably isn’t the best strategy.
However, if she asks a question about you, feel free to divulge as much as you think you need to. When girls ask questions, it’s a sign of interest, and a pretty clear indicator that she wants to know more about you.
In this case, it’s perfectly okay to mention some cool facts about your life, as long as you don’t overdo it.
Answer her questions, but don’t get selfish about it. Keep her a part of the conversation so she stays engaged and focused on the interaction as a whole.
No matter how you look at it, a date is work. Or, at least, a successful date is work. You can’t show up tired, or not feeling social because it will hurt your conversational abilities.
It sounds crazy, but get a good night’s sleep the day before, and be the best possible version of yourself you can be. Avoid going into the night with a spate of pre-planned conversation topics, and be fluid and improvisational.
And above all else, pay attention. If you do nothing else on a date, listen as closely as possible to her responses to your questions.
She may be giving you opportunities to take the interaction somewhere exciting with the things she says, but if you’re not in the moment, you may miss them.
Be present when you’re sitting across from a woman, and show a genuine interest in the things she says.
It’s the key to a good conversation, and if you do it right, she’ll probably even tell you that you’re more fun than the other guys she’s been out with.
For a first date, that’s about as good a compliment a guy can get.