Sure, saying nothing is an easy fix (if you don’t want to get in trouble) if you’re already in a relationship, but awkward conversations or the dreaded awkward silence is the last thing you would want to deal with if you’re out on your first date. Keeping that in mind, here are some tips that can help keep the conversation going if you’ve just started online dating.
Read. Read. And Read
That’s right. For some people, getting a conversation going and then keeping it going can be a chore, especially if you’re introverted. But, that’s no excuse not to use online dating sites. Before you can master the art of conversation, you need to have the knowledge to start a conversation. The only way you can get that knowledge is by reading. Whether its books, blogs, the newspaper or the writing behind the cereal box, or all of the above.
Reading is a great way to stay abreast of current events, sports, politics, pets, and almost anything. Nowadays, you have access to countless articles and blogs that are only a finger tap away. So, use them. If you want to impress someone with your pedigree in wines, read about it. If you want to talk about the latest gadgets or movies, or the elections, reading about it first will arm you with conversation points that will help you.
Ask Good Questions
Now that you’ve impressed them with your in-depth knowledge of global events and international events, it’s time for you to ask the questions. Asking questions is essential to help keep the conversation going. But, all too often, people resort to the cookie-cutter approach to questions, such as, “what do you do?” “Do you like working in marketing/sales/whatever?” While the person sitting in front of you will probably oblige you with answers to these questions, you don’t want them to feel like they are filling out a form at the DMV.
Instead, ask them something unexpected, like their hobbies or whatever they’ve listed on their dating profile. A person will be more interested in answering questions of subjects they enjoy, such as their hobbies and interests as listed on their profile. So, stick to that.
Always Ask Open-Ended Questions
Another thing to keep in mind when having a conversation with somebody who you’ve just met on an online dating site is to keep the questions open-ended. As in, do not ask questions that could have a simple “yes” or “no” answer. Asking questions that have a one-word answer can make the conversation feel strained after a while. Instead of going with hyper-specific topics, allow the conversation to bounce back and forth, just like a game of tennis.
For instance, if the person you’re talking to mentioned CrossFit on their list of hobbies, you can say, “I noticed you’re into CrossFit, it sounds exciting, what would you recommend for me as a beginner.”
Never Bring Up Past Relationships
This is a big no-no and can easily tank a conversation before it even gets started. Talking about a previous relationship is easily one of the worst topics you can talk about (apart from the weather). While you might want to come clean and be honest, swapping scars of your previous relationships is not a conversation for the first date. For now, your main focus should be on the future.
What’s worse is, bringing up your ex during a conversation with someone who you’ve met while using an online dating site, will only give the impression that you haven’t got over that relationship, which will kill the mood and make it harder to come back from once you’re there.
Don’t Try Too Hard
While you will want to put your best foot forward and make a great first impression, you don’t want to come across as being a show-off. Talking too much about all the amazing places you’ve been or that time you’ve saved a kitten from certain death, should be conversations for later. Instead, pay attention to what they respond to and work from there.
Hopefully, these tips should help you keep the conversation fun when going out on a date with someone you met on an online dating site.