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We teamed up with Bowlmor to bring you a guide on how to be confident and impress on a first date. Whether you are going bowling, for ice cream, or just a drink, you will be at your best.

We all know that gut-wrenching, heart-palpitating feeling before a first date, exacerbated by the online reality of a drink with someone you have never met before.

We worry about EVERYTHING, from what we are wearing and where we are going to whether we have too much makeup on or if the other person will recognize us – heaven forbid there is a slight chance of rain! At the end of the day, you arrive and it all goes smoothly – the nerves evaporate within the first five minutes. You look back and think, ‘I really wasn’t that nervous’, and then the next first-date swings around and you are back to the routine, panicked frenzy sculling wine at your desk.

Here, we have compiled five simple tricks that will help make you feel more confident before a first-date, and keep those clammy hands at bay!

Make plans beforehand

If you make plans for a quick half-hour catch up before a date with family or friends, you will distract yourself from the inevitable freak out. Whether you meet a friend for a drink or schedule a phone conversation with a sibling, connect with someone so you don’t have time to stress. Make sure that whatever you do you are already ready for the date, so you can’t stress over the little things. Distraction is key!

Calm yourself down

Too many people sit at their desk staring at answered emails with minor heart palpitations before date night. Get out of the office, listen to some soft music, or go for a walk before the meet and greet. Follow your breathing and try to slow your heart rate down (easier said than done, we know). Consider avoiding coffee as it will make you more anxious, and wine, which can end in one-too-many (we’ve all been there).

Walk tall

When you are arrive, walk with confidence. Keep your shoulders back and your head held high. Notice your posture, and how you carry yourself, will help you feel more positively – improved physicality can improve emotions and reduce nerves. You’ve got this!

Focus on your strengths, not your weaknesses

First impressions are everything. Don’t complain or engage in negative response on a first-date. A prospective-partner does not want to hear about how long your work hours are. Try and focus on positive topics and things that you feel good about, leave the rest at home. At the end of the day, you want to emanate your best self on a first-date, and this can only be done if you keep things in a positive light.

Remember your date is human, too

The person you are about to embark on a date with is most likely just as nervous, and stuck in the too-frequent freak out as well. Relax in this truth. No matter what you are feeling when you are walking through that door, if you treat the other person the way you would want to be treated you will have a successful first-meeting. If all things go astray and your expectations aren’t met for a romantic future, enjoy a wonderful evening with a new friend, or gain new life perspective by learning someone else’s story.