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These days, it’s difficult to go on a first date and feel like you’re meeting the love of your life. Online dating sites are literally inundated with men and women who are looking for a little something, and if you want to find love, you need to be prepared to put your best self forward. There are no guarantees that the person you pick up at a bar or online is going to be the person you end up with, but there are ways to prepare yourself for success and make it easier to connect with someone. Here are 5 tips for modern dating: 1. Be Honest, and Be Prepared to Be Assertive Being honest and assertive is important in any relationship, but it’s especially important in dating. If you get a “down” vibe, and aren’t sure if someone is interested in you, never hesitate to be direct. “The sooner you can cut to the chase with a stranger, the faster you’ll be out of there and onto the next one,” says Dr. Charlotte Brendel, a psychiatrist in Buffalo, NY who specializes in relationships. Being honest will help someone want to take the next step with you, and assertiveness will make them want to do more than just talk to you. However, being too honest or too assertive will be a turn off. Don’t be afraid to play it cool. You don’t want to come off as pushy or overly aggressive. Don’t tell a guy that you see him on a Monday night and have a perfect body, because then he will think you only want to date guys with a lot of money and a lot of time. However, if you ask a guy out and then tell him you saw him on a Tuesday and have a fight with your mom and just want to chill, it sends a different message. If you’re too honest with a guy, it may make him feel like you have something else going on. Know your boundaries and be prepared to say no. Image via Getty 2. Get to Know a Guy Before Your First Date Even though going on a first date is exciting, and a little nerve-racking, there’s no reason you have to go in blind. A new relationship is all about being honest and giving it your all, so why not share your secrets beforehand? That way, you’re less likely to bring them up during the date, and you’re both prepared for what is likely to be an emotional rollercoaster of a night.
Before you get into the nitty-gritty of how to find a new love, practice these 10 essential (and some not-so-essential) first-date tips. 1. Create a Touristy First Impressions If the first date will take place at the local coffee shop—or, you know, any coffee shop—you need to be sure that your outfit is loud and proud. Don’t worry, a tee, pants, and sneakers will easily do the trick—the key is the accessory. We suggest you keep your accessories small and simple: a small duffle bag, for quick access to a change of clothes, or a mint-sticky handkerchief (for the big smooches), as opposed to a hat or wig. Choosing a simple and sexy outfit will help you get the most out of the first date, and making sure your accessories are small and simple will help you fit in comfortably. 2. Dress the Part The way you dress for a first date matters, not just for how you’ll feel about yourself, but also how you’ll feel about the date itself. Here’s a little insider tip: Wear a girlie-girl dress with light makeup and your hair up in a low ponytail. The goal is to look amazing without looking like a hooker. You don’t want to look like a woman selling herself. You need to project confidence, but at the same time, you want to find something special that will make the person you date want to see you again. 3. Leave Nothing to Chance It goes without saying that you need to be completely prepared to go on your first date. Not just your look, but how you interact, your body language, and so on. You don’t want to say anything you’re not sure about, or to have a conversation that you’re not sure you want to have. Make sure you’re 100% sure of what you want to talk about. If you are absolutely certain you want to explore something in depth, then by all means talk to him about it! But make sure you’ve done your research beforehand, and make sure you feel confident in your body. Most importantly, you want to leave nothing to chance. 4. Ask Questions It’s normal to feel nervous for your first date, but you can definitely relax once you ask him questions. If you’re nervous, it will be natural to show nervousness

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