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21 First Date Ideas

21 First Date Ideas

First date is always important because it’s where you drop your first impression and most importantly, it plays a big role to determine whether or not this relationship will work out.

It’s just like choosing what to read. Let’s not talk about the book cover (I know, I know, Don’t just a book by its cover!) so now we all judge by how the story begins. No matter how amazing the storyline is, if the introduction failed to grab readers’ attention, no one is going to read it because no one likes to get their time wasted. Relationship works this way too.

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If you need ideas to secure your first date and your own impression, You’ve come to the right place! When I first started dating, my idea of a date was the stereotypical cheap-dinner-and-a-movie. Don’t hate on me, I didn’t know any better! By the time I finished high school I was pretty comfortable in my own skin and got pretty good at coming up with ideas for dates. I’ve put together a list of some of my favorites as well as some suggested by friends. Enjoy!

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Outdoor Adventures

  1. Go for a walk – This is such a simple first date idea but most shy away from it because they feel like they must do something complex in order for their date to be impressed. Wrong! The only ideas you need to impress your date with are the ones that you articulate as your conversation progresses. If you are an interesting person and have found a fun person to spend time with, rest assured that a walk about town will be just fine. Remember, the idea is to leave your date wanting more. As a warning, you may be tempted to start talking about previous relationships. Don’t. That’s not how to get over an ex. Rather, enjoying the company of a fun new person without dwelling on the past will serve you best!
  2. Watch an outdoor movie – Going to a movie is pretty worn out in the world of first date ideas. You can resurrect it in a fun way by going to see a movie outdoors or, even better, at a drive-in movie theater if you still happen to have one near where you live.
  3. Create your own picnic – Pick a nice spot near where you’re meeting up and swing by a grocery store or take-out restaurant for some quick eats before setting up camp for food and conversation with your new favorite person. There’s no need to spend a lot of money. Picnics are supposed to be simple and you want it to be about getting to know your date, not truffles wrapped in gold foil!
  4. Go boating – The idea of sailing on a first date seems like a recipe for disaster but something milder, like canoeing, row boating, or taking a paddle boat out on a sunny afternoon would work well. Admittedly, the last time I took a girl on a paddle boat for a date we both ended up soaking wet with marsh moss in our hair. It was amazing though!
  5. Go for a run together – If running is your idea of a good time, an easy run with a new friend can make for a great date!
  6. Volunteer at a soup kitchen – One of the best first dates I’ve ever been on involved meeting up with a woman at 5:30am to serve breakfast at the local soup kitchen. Not only did we get to know each other better but we got to do something worthwhile that helped our community. It’s hard to come up with a reason why giving back to your community could be considered a bad idea for a first date! If you don’t have a soup kitchen or other short-order volunteer opportunity, be creative and come up with your own. There is always somebody nearby who could use some help if we are willing to give it.
  7. Get up insanely early and be the first customers at your favorite breakfast joint – You’ll get a chance to chat before the restaurant gets busy and have time to do some people-watching when the regulars start pouring in. Note: If you find somebody who is cool with rolling out of bed early to join you for a breakfast date, it’d be a bad idea to let them get away!

Indoor Sweetness

  1. Take an intro yoga or other fitness class – If you’re really out of shape, this might not be a great idea for a first date. Otherwise, pick a class that will fit both of your fitness levels and have some fun! You should know that getting hot and sweaty
  2. Visit a psychic – Everybody likes to know the future, well, at least a prediction of it!
  3. Visit a shut-in – This might not seem like it belongs on a list of first date ideas but if you step away from your preconceptions, I think you might consider it and even try it out. Visiting people who are unable to get out and enjoy regular social interactions isn’t just a worthwhile use of your time. It gives you a chance to learn a bit about the character of your date. Is he or she willing to spend time with people who are in need? If your date is unkind it will only be a matter of time before that unkindness is pointed at you. Seek the good hearts!
  4. Play video games – Playstation, Nintendo, Xbox, it doesn’t matter. If your date is into video games and you’ve got strong thumbs, it might be time for a bit of virtual smackdown! Just be careful not to beat your date too badly at whatever video game you decide to play. You don’t want your first date ideas to turn into video-game-inspired revenge ideas.
  5. Take a music lesson together – Have you always wanted to learn how to play the guitar or some other instrument? Inviting a date along for a partner lesson at a local music school might be a fun way to start your lesson and get the much-dreaded first date out of the way.
  6. Go to a used bookstore – It can be a new bookstore if you insist. It doesn’t matter! If you and your date enjoy reading and perusing books, hitting up a bookstore on a first date may just end up being one of the ideas that sets you on a quick course to true love.
  7. Go gift shopping – Not for each other, but for somebody else. Perhaps you need to pick up a gift for your sister or some other relative and you need some insight into the process? Ask your date to give you some in-motion advice and perhaps even pick up something small for each other. Trinkets only. Save the cars and fur coats for later dates!

Play It Safe Ideas

  1. Take a cooking class together – Check your local community college or continuing education program for listings of cooking classes you can take if there isn’t a culinary school to be found.
  2. Visit a tourist hot spot in your town that neither of you has been to before – Even if you’ve been living in the same place for years, there’s a great chance that you’ll have missed at least a few interesting places in your community. If it turns out that your chosen spot is a dud, get creative and come up with a few quick ideas to finish off your date. Most will give you a lot of slack if little things go wrong. Just keep the conversation interesting and the venue won’t be such a killer.
  3. Attend a local film or music festival – It’s a rare individual who won’t enjoy a local festival at least a bit. This is a pretty safe bet for anybody but the most boring of people.
  4. Meet up for a drink – This is one of the safest, and therefore one of the most-used first date ideas. You can make things a bit more adventurous by visiting a jazz club or finding a bar that will teach you to make new drinks. Of course, you could always go and grab some bottled water.
  5. Visit a new restaurant – There’s a bit of risk in eating at a new restaurant because you can’t be sure of the quality but this first date idea still makes the “safe” list because it’s not hugely risky.
  6. Eat in – Do you already have great cooking skills? If so, break ’em out for an early dinner! You might want to check for possible food allergies before you start sharing your iron chef skills though.
  7. Phone it in – Oh yeah, the date that consists entirely of talking into a small electronic device. This one is for all you cyber dating pros out there looking for first date ideas like you planned on doing something other than talking on your phone.All jokes aside, there are some benefits to phoning in. Sure, you don’t get to see your date’s face while you’re talking, but that also means that you don’t have to get dressed up or worry about what your face looks like. See? Might not be a bad idea.

Things to keep in mind on your first date

So now I guess you have sufficient ideas on where to go on your first date. Still, I would like to remind you some of the important things that you need to keep in mind if you want your first date to be perfect!

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  1. Don’t be late. This is a common rule but a lot of people still fail to do so. No one likes to spend their timing waiting and being late is simply disrespectful. Give yourself enough time to prepare and try to arrive the location 10-15 mins earlier. If you are running late, make sure you give your date a call or text so they can go to a cafe or find somewhere to sit while waiting for you.
  2. Don’t get over-dressed. I know how that feel, you want to look perfect for your date and try very hard to dress up to impress them. However, it’s best to dress according to the event you are going to. Imagine if you guys are going for pinic and you are in suit or high heels, that would be super awkward for both of you. I am pretty sure you won’t impress him/her for this.
  3. Don’t talk about past relationship. Either asking or talking about them are a big “NO-NO”. This is something very personal to ask on a first date because you are not sure whether your date is comfortable to talk about it. Talking about your ex might also leave your date an impression that you still haven’t moved on yet.
  4. Don’t get too drunk. If you can’t control yourself when you are drunk, I am pretty sure you know what to do. Also, it’s always nice to stay a sharp mind to remember all the things that happened on your first dates so you guys can start to build on memories and topics to talk about on your next date.
  5. Do offer to split the bill. If you are a guy and you feel comfortable to pay the bill, that’s very nice of you. But for ladies, don’t just sit there and expect people to pay for your meal, it’s always nice to offer help on the bill! It shows that you are friendly and considerable person. Of course, if the guy insist to pay, just let them do the job and don’t argue over it.
  6. Don’t focus on talking about yourself. Who doesn’t love to understood? Dates are supposed to be chances for you guys to know more about each other before getting into a relationship (or friendship, oops) So if you can’t help to blablabla about yourself, you will leave an impression of you not interested in your dates. Always remember it’s not a stand-up comedy, it’s a CONVERSAION. Try to ask your dates about their interests, jobs and hobbies, nothing too serious and personal!
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Seth Simonds

Seth writes about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on September 28, 2020

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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Con #2: Less Human Interaction

One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

Con #4: Unique Distractions

Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

Final Thoughts

Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

More About Working From Home

Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

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