4 taboos to avoid on a first date

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Living in a society that embraces free speech means that we often have no filter, and don’t think twice about what topic of discussion suits the occasion. After all, if someone else doesn’t like what we say, it’s their problem, and not ours, right? Short answer: No. While being able to voice your opinions without censure is important, image management should also be deemed equally important. There are still things you should avoid talking about on a first date.

1. Work

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Work may be the centre of your life. But that’s not a centre you want to put on full display during a date. Dates should be about getting to know each other, not the project you’re working on in the office, or, even worse, your expected income in the future. I know passion is important, and that’s a side of you you’d want your date to see. But really, if your date isn’t working in the same field as you are, chances are, he/she will be bored to death. Remember: It’s a date, not a presentation.

2. Vulnerabilities

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Even in the increasingly open society we live in, it can get quite uncomfortable to listen to a stranger detail certain aspects of his/her life. Information about your struggle to cope with debilitating mental illnesses falls into this category. While this is information you should divulge eventually, this is definitely not something you should say on the first date. If you think about it, it’s unkind and inconsiderate to share this – the other person will feel compelled to be nice to you, or to continue going out with you out of sympathy.

3. Your true intention

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Is this date a social experiment? Are you going on this date to write an article about it? Do you see the date only ending the next morning, preferably after your date makes you coffee? If so, don’t mention any of that. It immediately removes the possibility of the date developing into a long-term relationship, even if you find out you really like the other person.

4. Mutual friends

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Do you really want to spend the entire time bringing up friends you have in common? And talking about them never works well in your favour – you’ll end up being seen as a gossip and someone who cannot be relied on, no matter what you say about them. I mean, people remember less of what you say, and more of how you make them feel, right? Once you let this impression of you – where you’re constantly talking about others – set in, you’ll end up being seen in a terribly unflattering light.

The world of dating is difficult to navigate, especially if you’ve just set foot in it again after a hiatus. If you’ve grown accustomed to discussing just about anything and everything with close friends, switching back to lengthy personal conversations with strangers will necessitate you to consciously remind yourself what not to say.

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