Even if you use a top-of-the-line online dating service, getting a first date often takes a lot of work and a fair bit of luck. That effort pays off, though, if you manage to hit it off and end up in a solid, long term relationship.
Given the effort it takes just to get that first date, the last thing you want to do is say or do something that ruins the first date. Yet, a surprising number of people do just that. You should make every effort to avoid doing the following 4 things during a date that are almost certain turn off your date.
1. Showing Up Late
There is absolutely no way to make a worse first impression than showing up late. You could show up in a clown costume and you would probably still make a better first impression, as long as you show up on time.
Avoiding being late is quite easy, even if you are a person who is consistently late for everything. Simply prepare everything in advance (preferably a day in advance) and plan to show up early. Worst case scenario you will show up early. Fine. Set an alarm on your phone for five minutes before the actual time you are supposed to arrive and do crosswords until it goes off.
If an emergency comes up, contact your date immediately, explain the situation completely, and offer them multiple options on how they want to deal with, including postponing, moving locations, or cancelling. That is your only chance of salvaging the situation.
2. Being Judgemental
A first date is one of those rare times when people share more freely than usual. Since most first dates are between people who are mostly strangers, this sharing is necessary in order to determine if both parties are compatible. Even if you actually know your date pretty well, you probably still will be inclined to share more than usual, since you are now beginning an intimate relationship, rather than a friendly relationship.
Due to the unusually high level of trust you are being given, the last thing you want to do is be judgemental about what is being shared. That is basically an instant deal breaker and an easy way to ensure that there is never a second date.
Also, it should go without saying, but never share these private details with others.
3. Showing Jealousy
Jealousy is a common, and when kept in tight rein, even healthy emotion. It is a sign that your feelings for someone have become strong and can help you determine when it is time to move your relationship to the next level.
However, all of the above assumes that the relationship has been going on for some time. Jealousy on the first date is not a good thing. It generally means one of two things. It may mean that you are unusually possessive, but most commonly, it means you are allowing yourself to get emotionally attached too quickly. This is relatively common in people who haven't dated in a while.
Whatever the reason, showing jealousy is usually an instant turn-off. Your date will feel uncomfortable that you are expressing that type of possessiveness or attachment so early in the relationship. Never show jealousy and if you feel it, try to examine the reasons why and deal with those reasons lest they harm your relationship.
4. Forgetting Their Name
It's been a wonderful date. You talked, went roller skating, and even held hands for the slow skate. The evening is winding down and you want to add his contact information to your phone. Just one small problem. You have forgotten his name. Was it Bradley? James? Winston? For the life of you, you can't remember.
Forgetting your date's name isn't necessarily a complete disaster, but if it does happen, you need to be honest about it immediately, apologise and ask nicely to be reminded. Don't you dare forget again, because that was your only shot. And if you accidentally called your date by the wrong name, you probably won't even get a second chance.
Similarly, you should do your best to remember everything else your date told you. Forgetting your date's favorite flavor of ice cream or favorite band ten minutes after they told you is just about as bad, because like forgetting their name, it suggests that you aren't really paying attention to them.