It can be really difficult to fight though first date jitters. Meeting up with a new person face-to-face can trigger a lot of anxiety about whether the conversation will be comfortable or if your energies will be compatible.
If you’re someone who would describe yourself as shy or an introvert, trying to exude confidence to make a good impression can have you feeling a lot of pressure. But there are ways to hype yourself up to be confident so fear doesn’t deter you from connection.
“Confidence is imperative because it helps you find partners who are good fits for you, not for someone you are pretending to be or they are hoping you are,” Trish Blackwell, confidence coach and founder of the College of Confidence told Elite Daily. “Confidence gives you an attractive edge, which is always helpful in dating because it means that you know who you are and what you want.”
First of all, accept your nerves and don’t try to suppress them.
“It’s OK to be nervous for a date, that’s normal and not a sign that your confidence is shaky,” Blackwell explains. “Translate your nerves into ‘excitement’ and you’ll give yourself a confidence advantage.”
A good way to work through the anxiety is by putting on your favorite music (a bad b*tch anthem, preferably), dancing around a bit, and moving through it. You can also opt for stillness.
“Don’t be afraid to spend five minutes stretching, doing some deep, mindful breaths and speaking out loud affirmations,” Blackwell advised.
Make sure whatever you put on makes you feel good–don’t try to rock a tight dress and heels if that’s not your normal vibe. When you feel good, the people who encounter you feel good too.
“First impressions are often formed based on the expression of confidence, so if you want to exude confidence on a date, carry yourself with a confident posture,” Blackwell explained. “There are many ways to do this, but a few are to wear clothes that you love and that, most importantly, make you feel good.”
Once you are in front of them, keep a smile on and leave your arms and legs uncrossed.
“Lead with a smile and keep your body language open. An open body — that is, one with good posture and open palms (vs hunched shoulders, and crossed arms and legs) — is inviting and conveys a sense of personal confidence,” Blackwell advised.
Also, remembering listening can be even sexier than talking.
“You can skillfully navigate and lead a confident conversation by engaging your date with your full attention,” Blackwell said. “The more you can make someone feel heard and understood, the more they will feel drawn to you and connected to you, which inevitably will make you feel confident.”