A leading matchmaker has revealed the eight mistakes that men and women are making when it comes to their first date.
Australian psychologist Yvonne Allen said she has witnessed the increasing challenges men and women experience when trying to find love.
‘First dates are really important and often only give you the one chance to set the right impression and make an impact that will help you to progress to a second date,’ Yvonne told FEMAIL.
‘While we all try to be on our best behaviour, sometimes, we can do off-putting things without even realising it.’
To assist people in their quest for love, Yvonne shared a list of things men and women should avoid doing on a first date – and how to ensure you score a second one.
‘First dates are really important and often only give you the one chance to set the right impression and make an impact that will help you to progress to a second date,’ Yvonne said (stock image)
What are the worst things men can do on a first date?
1. Dress inappropriately
Yvonne said this is a ‘big turnoff’ for women so if the date is being held at an upscale restaurant they should wear a smart suit with a well-ironed shirt.
‘Take time to check your accessories ensuring cuff links, ties, watches and belts match and look good,’ she said.
2. Check your Fitbit for calories burned and heart rate
‘Women don’t like being monitored or feel like you are monitoring the progress of your date, food intake or other metrics,’ she said.
3. Ask about her dating history
Everyone has a history and has had relationships and Yvonne said this should never be raised on a first date.
Instead, steer conversation away from asking about dating history – and focus on shared interests.
4. Take a call from someone
‘Interrupting a date to take a phone call is rude and disrespectful, phones should be off the table,’ Yvonne said.
‘Unless you have to be on call because of your occupation, you have no excuse.’
She also said men should avoid talking at length about their occupation and make sure they don’t disrespect the woman’s industry.
‘Show your interest in what occupies her day. Like you, a woman wants to feel valued,’ she said.
Australian psychologist Yvonne Allen (pictured) said she has witnessed the increasing challenges men and women experience when trying to find love
5. Insult people and speak badly about others
The matchmaker explained that someone who speaks badly about others is likely to do so behind other people’s backs too.
This tends to be a red flag for a woman and it erodes trust and respect.
6. Pressure her to drink
‘Women like to make their own drinking decisions and don’t like being pressured to drink,’ she said.
‘Women need to feel safe and know you are taking care of them. Attempting to force her to drink is a turnoff and is a warning sign.’
7. Mention previous girlfriends or partners and discuss at any length past relationships
‘This is a big no-no on a first date. It is important that you are genuine, interested and focus on being with her in the present,’ Yvonne said.
‘Sharing respective views about current news items or talking about preferred pastimes will help the conversation to flow.’
8. Avoid the ‘Peacock Phenomenon’
Yvonne said it’s important that men don’t talk too much about themselves in an effort to impress their date as this can often make women feel like their date isn’t interested in them.
The matchmaker explained that someone who speaks badly about others is likely to do so behind other people’s backs too (stock image)
What are the worst things women can do on a first date?
1. Not changing out of their business attire
Yvonne said it is important women change out of their work clothes, or at least change their shirt or earrings before going on a date.
‘This is important if you are coming from work, and it will help psychologically to transition from work mode into date mode,’ she said.
2. Talking too much about work
‘Try to keep the conversation steered in a more personal direction, while keeping the tone light,’ she said.
‘Whilst talking about work is a natural topic to discuss, it can distract from the finding out about who the real you is outside of work.’
3. Not asking questions about your date
Yvonne said it’s important women ask their date about his interests, hobbies and where he grew up so they can find out about him as a person.
4. Not talking about common ground
It is important that women find common ground, for example favourite Netflix shows that you might share, movies and sporting interests.
These are great conversation starters and build compatibility.
5. Asking too many interrogative questions.
No one likes to feel like they are being interviewed or judged, or having their accolades counted and assessed.
Yvonne said it is important women change out of their work clothes, or at least change their shirt or earrings before going on a date (stock image)
6. Ordering something hard to eat
Yvonne said women should avoid ordering something that is difficult to eat as it stops you from being able to readily engage in conversation.
7. Not letting him order
‘Letting him order can be a lovely gesture if you are comfortable with that,’ she said.
‘Men are not quite sure where they stand today and they are scared of offending you or being too masculine. Allow him to feel comfortable, if that is what works for you.’
8. Not letting him pay
‘Chivalry is not dead. If he offers to pay, offer to pay half, however if he insists on paying, let him pay,’ she said.
What are the tips to follow to ensure you get a second date?
Be more vulnerable
‘These days when women have careers and excel in what was once “a man’s world”, the supposedly innate flirting complex seems to have gone missing!’ Yvonne said.
‘Guys often say they don’t know whether to approach a woman. It seems that many a woman today develops a protective persona that conceals her more feminine and vulnerable self in the workplace – and beyond.’
Don’t call and text too often
Yvonne said men often lose interest if a woman they’ve started dating texts or calls too often.
She said this is due to the fact that their brains have evolved over millennia to assist them to focus on a task and to be ‘the hunter’.
‘While a woman’s hormones may drive her to want to communicate and connect, a man is likely to be more aware of his feelings through missing her than constant contact,’ she said.
Suggest a simple first date
Yvonne said as many women are successful in their careers and earning a large income, it can be difficult for a man to know whether he should always pay or suggest they ‘go Dutch’.
The matchmaker said the best way to navigate this situation is to suggest a simple first date such as sharing a coffee after enjoying a walk or visiting an art gallery.
Have a chat before a movie
‘If seeing a movie or going to a theatre is to be the first time you date, sharing a coffee and cake or glass of wine together beforehand will help to be more relaxed and able to enjoy the show,’ she said.