EliteSingles Guide: What should you do after the first date?

woman on her phone

Have you recently been on a first date? Would you like to have a second? Here is our in-depth guide on what to do after the first date. We’ll give advice on how to determine how the date went, whether you should contact your date or if you should wait to hear from them first. We’ll also dive deep into the thoughts and emotions you and your date may be feeling after the first date.

After you go on a first date, you’ll probably be wondering how things went or what your date thought of you. What should you do next? Firstly, you need to decide whether you thought the date went well and if you’d like to see them again.

How can you tell if your first date was successful?

Thanks to the researchers at the universities of Stanford and Santa Barbara, we now have the scientific answer to that question. The researchers studied more than 900 heterosexual dates to work out what makes people click. After analysing voice-recordings from the dates, they found that for couples who reported “clicking”, both the men and the women sounded excited. The men’s voices became deeper and varied their volume to show interest; while women changed both their loudness and spoke in a higher pitch. Therefore, when a couple clicks, the man’s tone will become more masculine and the woman’s more feminine, perhaps because they believe it will make their date more attracted to them.

The study also found that women, fell for men who imitate their laughter, laughing just after the woman starts laughing. Similarly, men were more likely to laugh when they felt that they clicked with their date. So if you laugh a lot on your first date, this can be an indication that it went well.

By contrast, people feeling awkward use more qualifiers – they say “kind of” and “sort of” and “a little bit” a lot,” one of the researchers, Dan Jurafsky, explains. “It’s as if they are feeling so uncomfortable with the date that they can’t even commit to their sentences.” Interestingly, however, Jurafsky and his colleagues found it was only when the woman felt uncomfortable that both parties said they didn’t click.

Whilst women preferred men who spoke loudly, sympathised with them and asked questions, men preferred it when the woman made herself the focus of the conversation, talking about herself in terms of ‘I’ and ‘me’. The first date is thus successful if the couple give each other attention, show that they are listening and (perhaps most surprisingly) if the conversation focuses on the woman.

When should I get in touch after the first date?

To call or not to call? That is the question – every dater has at some point been unsure whether to call after the first date. Often the fear of rejection can make you nervous to make the first step to arranging a second date. Even the most rational people can turn indecisive and unsure when it comes to this dating dilemma. Is it ok to get in touch first or should you wait and play it cool?

It seems that messaging rather than calling after the first date can help relieve this problem. Sending a text after the first date can often feel less intimidating, especially if the other person turns out to be less interested than you had hoped. The advantage of texting after a first date is that you can hear from your date relatively soon without being too pushy. Write a message that thanks them for the enjoyable time you had together, such as “It was lovely meeting you last night. Hope you have a great day.” Instead of trying to guess what your date is thinking or going to think when they receive your text, let your feelings guide you. Express yourself honestly and in your own time. However, don’t wait too long before sending a text, stick to an under 24 hour rule. If your date is interested in meeting you again then they’ll reply and from there you can ask for a second date.

If for some reason your date doesn’t reply or if they say that they are not interested in meeting again, of course this can feel awful. However, in an article in Psychology Today we can find on this subject thoughtful words from Karen L. Smith. She borrows concepts from the world of work and says we should see dates as internships: having a date is a way to determine whether you are well-matched as a couple, without the obligations of a being in a relationship. Therefore, through dating you are able to learn more about yourself and what you desire, ultimately each date aids you on your path to true love.

Whether you are a seasoned dater or new to the dating jungle, with the help of EliteSingles you can meet your perfect match. Register with us to look forward to more exciting first dates!


1 http://web.stanford.edu/~jurafsky/pubs/mcfarlandjurafskyrawlings.pdf
2 https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/full-living/201605/5-reasons-treat-dating-internship

About the author: Esther Moriarty

Esther Moriarty is an editor for EliteSingles.

See more articles written by Esther Moriarty