So what does a great first date look like?
Well you probably shouldn’t hate the person, that’s a good place to start. You shouldn’t dread spending 2 hours with this person. You probably shouldn’t be thinking of all the other things that you were rather be doing. But heck, if you don’t want the date to end, then by golly, I think you might just be having a great date!
When I lecture about first dates, I love to ask the audience about the best type of activity for a first date. I give them options like going to a fun bar, going on a hike, having dinner at a nice restaurant, or doing to see a new movie.
Surprisingly I get people voting for the movie option. I think that’s the worst place if you really don’t know the person since in my opinion, first dates are really for Q&A and it’s hard to play Q&A in a silent movie theatre.
There are those that favour the night at a fun bar…I can live with that – assuming the people both enjoy being out in a loud, busy environment. Whatever floats your boat.
Dinner at a resto is a classic…maybe not a great idea for a first online date (because really we just need to make sure your pics check out and you’re not a troll and that you have some social skills, so I think coffee or drinks is better – in and out!) but dinner can be fine for a non-online first date.
But here is why the hike (or some other physical activity date) is the best idea…
In 1974, these researchers conducted the Capilano Suspension Bridge Study. And here’s how it went down…
2 different bridges are used for the study. One is the Capilano Suspension Bridge (unsteady bridge). The other is a bridge made of wood, not high, person can clearly see the ground beneath them (steady bridge).
A female researcher stands on the bridge and approaches males who pass by. She invites them to participate in a study on the effects of exposure to scenic attraction on creative expression. Men complete a short little survey package where they are asked to write a brief dramatic story based on a picture of a woman that they are given. Men complete the questionnaire and are told to call the female researcher if they would like more information about the study (she tears off a piece of paper and writes down her name and number).
They measure sexual content of the stories AND whether or not the men call her for more information.
And what happens? Well men who were on the unsteady bridge were more likely to write stories that included sexual content. They were also more likely to call the female researcher.
Why is this? Well the authors suggest that being on the bridge (being in an aroused state) resulted in the men writing more sexual stories and being more willing to call the researcher because they misattribute the adrenaline from the bridge as arousal/liking the researcher.
So moral of the story here, folks?
Do something exciting on a first date! You may not have the money for Bachelor/Bachelorette style crazy first dates, but let’s agree that no one should be sitting down and having coffee.
For a neat short video about the bridge experiment, check this video out.