First dates can be both exhilarating and nerve-wracking, filled with anticipation and uncertainty. While it’s natural to have hopes and expectations, it’s also important to approach the experience with an open mind and realistic perspective. We’ll explore seven things you shouldn’t expect on a first date, helping you navigate the journey of getting to know someone new with grace and understanding.

1. Instant Chemistry

It’s tempting to hope for that instant spark or undeniable connection portrayed in movies and novels. However, real-life chemistry often takes time to develop. Don’t be discouraged if you don’t feel an immediate connection; sometimes, the best relationships grow gradually over time.

2. Deep Emotional Bonding

While first dates can certainly be meaningful, it’s unrealistic to expect deep emotional bonding right from the start. Building trust and intimacy takes time and requires mutual vulnerability. Focus on enjoying the present moment and getting to know each other gradually, it is a first date after all.

3. Perfect Conversation Flow

Awkward silences and lulls in conversation are natural, especially when meeting someone for the first time. Don’t put pressure on yourself or your date to maintain a perfect conversation flow throughout the entire evening, have some ice breaker questions prepared and see where the conversation goes. Embrace moments of quiet and use them as opportunities to reflect or explore new topics.

4. Full Disclosure

It’s important to be open and honest on a first date, but it’s unrealistic to expect your date to share their entire life story or deepest secrets right away. Respect each other’s boundaries and allow the relationship to unfold naturally over time. Trust and intimacy are built gradually through ongoing communication and shared experiences.

5. Agreement on Everything

Differences in opinions, interests, and values are inevitable, and they can lead to interesting discussions and personal growth. Don’t expect to agree on everything with your date; instead, approach differences with curiosity and an open mind. Respectful debate and compromise are key components of healthy relationships.

6. Plans for the Future

While it’s natural to envision a future with someone you’re interested in, it’s important to stay grounded and avoid placing unrealistic expectations on a first date. Allow the relationship to progress organically and focus on enjoying the present moment. Rushing into discussions about long-term plans can add unnecessary pressure and may scare off your date.

7. Closure or Certainty

Not every first date will lead to a second, and that’s okay. It’s unrealistic to expect immediate closure or certainty about the future of a relationship after just one meeting. Regardless of the outcome, view each first date as an opportunity for personal growth, self-discovery, and connection with others.

Approaching first dates with realistic expectations and an open heart can help alleviate pressure and anxiety, allowing you to fully enjoy the experience of getting to know someone new. By embracing uncertainty, respecting boundaries, and staying present in the moment, you’ll increase your chances of building meaningful connections and discovering genuine compatibility.

If you would like to learn more about dating intentionally, working with a matchmaker may be just the step you need. Maclynn is a boutique, multi-award-winning introductions agency with offices in California, New York, New Jersey, and London. We’re world-renowned for bringing together highly compatible singles within our vast network of attractive, intelligent professionals, and our matchmakers are relationship experts in their own right. Get in touch today, and prepare for genuinely meaningful dating—just like you deserve.