How to Prepare for a First Date

Men's Dating

How to Prepare for a First Date

Sam Stieler
Sam Stieler Updated:

Is there any more singularly stressful event in the world of dating than preparing for a first date? Sure, approaching an attractive woman provides its share of stress. And, of course, second, third and even 25th dates all have their own sets of worries to deal with. But nothing will quite set you on edge like a first date.

No other moment in your relationship with a woman will match a first date’s unholy combination of expectation and uncertainty. If you’re going to excel on your first dates, hell if you’re going to simply survive your first dates, then you need to make a few preparations during the lead-up.

The tangibles.

We’ll get to the more difficult moments of date preparation in a second. For now, let’s focus on the easier elements of preparing for a first date — maintaining your physical state.

At a very basic level, you need to feel physically vibrant if you’re going to have any chance on your first date. You need to feel well rested, you need to feel energized, you need to feel ready to tackle the challenge ahead. During the day leading up to your date, make sure you get enough sleep, you don’t eat anything that will bog you down, and you don’t drink too many stimulants, like coffee, or too many depressants, like alcohol.

This holds true during the date itself. It doesn’t matter if you’re physically disciplined all day, but then you go ahead on your date and drink too much beer and order a dish of pasta so huge it sends you into a food coma just from seeing its listing on the menu.

You also want to make sure you are tightly groomed and dressed in a manner that you consider attractive. It’s hard to remain fully engaged during your date if you’re worried about how your breath smells or if your hair looks (unintentionally) unruly. Shallow or not, it’s impossible to feel your best if you don’t look your best. Take the time to wash your clothes, take a long shower, get a shave and a haircut, and show up looking and feeling as fresh as possible.


“All of these activities will fill you with an incredible

amount of energy that  your date will pick up on

from the second you walk into the room.”

The intangibles.

Instead of writing off the above tips as “shallow,” keep in mind the relationship between your material reality and your intangible reality. Do you feel better when you look your best or when you look your worst? Do you think clearer when you’ve taken care of your body or when you’ve been sitting on the couch all day shoveling Doritos down your gullet like you’re a human trashcan? Far from being shallow, taking care of the tangibles will contribute directly to your mental and emotional state.

If you only make sure your tangibles are in line, you will do better on your first dates than if you didn’t consider them. But if you take care of your tangibles and also put in a little intentional effort to directly address your intangibles, you will find yourself unstoppable when your date arrives.

During the lead-up to your first date, perform some enjoyable actions that require a high level of focus. If you have a professional assignment that you feel excited to take a crack at, then work on that all day instead of killing time shuffling papers. If you have a personal project you feel passionate about, then spend a couple hours diving deep into it before heading out for drinks. If you haven’t spent some time with your best friend in a couple of weeks, then schedule a meetup with him right before you go on your date.

All of these activities will fill you with an incredible amount of energy that your date will pick up on from the second you walk into the room. And this energy will carry you through your date with a combination of grace and fire she will find irresistibly attractive.