5 tips to break the awkward silence on your first date
To all introverted or socially awkward individuals, this one’s for you.
So you’ve upped your online dating game and finally managed to secure yourself a first date, and an optimum location to boot. But as you relish in your victory, here comes the real battle: ensuring a successful date.
No matter how much you attempt to prepare, you might find yourself in the dreaded scenario where you and your date have run out of things to say. But not all hope is lost.
We reached out to experts at Coffee Meets Bagel, and here are some tips to break the awkward silence and make your date memorable – in all the good ways.
1. Recall something from their profile
If you’ve been having a decent conversation but find that you’ve exhausted all conversation topics, Coffee Meets Bagel suggests thinking back to your date’s profile for something you can bring up.
To avoid generic small talk, try to mention something your date would enjoy talking about, such as their interests. For example, if they’re a fan of BTS, you can ask them about their favourite songs, or if they’ve visited the latest BTS-themed pop up cafe.
Not only does this help you get to know more about them and their hobbies, but if you’re able to discover shared interests, you’re more likely to have an extensive conversation that flows naturally.
2. Ask open-ended questions
Another important thing to remember is that the way you phrase your questions can have an impact on the answers you’ll get.
For example, yes-or-no questions are likely to leave you with one-worded replies, and even more deafening silence, Coffee Meets Bagel shared.
Instead, opt for questions which leave more room to dive deeper, such as which Halloween movie they would have no problem watching on repeat and why.
If that doesn’t come naturally to you, We’re Not Really Strangers (WNRS) is something that might help you out.
For the uninitiated, WNRS is a card game that was made to deepen relationships through thought-provoking and introspective questions. You can either buy the physical deck of cards through the store, or try the free version online.
Though some of the questions might get a little personal, it’s a great way to help you and your date open up if you’re game for it.
3. Tell a story
When questions aren’t doing the trick, Coffee Meets Bagel suggests spicing up the conversation. You can take the lead and fill the silence with a story.
But not just any story will do the trick. Try to go with something that you enjoy, perhaps things you’d do to mess with Telegram scammers, or interesting facts about yourself, as your enthusiasm will be a surefire way to engage with your date.
If you can’t think of anything off the top of your head, another alternative is to share about past or recent mishaps you might have gotten yourself into. It may seem counterintuitive to share borderline embarrassing stories about yourself, but it’s never a bad thing to show that you’re someone who can laugh at themselves.
But of course, be wary of oversharing in the event that you end up scaring your date off.
4. Switch up your questions
The last thing you want is for your date to feel more like an interview. To break up the weirdness, you can ask offbeat icebreaker or would-you-rather questions, said Coffee Meets Bagel.
You can always take inspiration from current events or interesting things you see on the internet and put an interesting spin on them.
For instance, asking whether they’d rather eat crickets or bees for the rest of their lives, or which k-drama they’d like to star in if they had the chance.
Ultimately, don’t be afraid to go crazy with your questions. The more absurd, the more enjoyable and lighthearted your discussions will be.
5. Embrace the awkward
When all else fails, rest assured that dating can be awkward. And it’s completely fine to embrace that.
Acknowledging the lull and even making a light joke about it can go a long way to help you and your date loosen up. Odds are they’re just as nervous as you, assures Coffee Meets Bagel.
The most important thing is to try to relax and have fun. After all that’s what matters when it comes to dating.