How to Date Americans, Part 1
If you want to date Americans, an excellent first step is to learn how to make small talk. Small talk is the inconsequential exchange with which Americans start many of their interactions. On a first date, small talk might include remarking on the place where you are meeting, the kind of beverage or food you’re going to order, or the weather. Small talk is important to establish a comfortable feeling between you and your date. (Master the art of small talk with Welcome Dialogue.)
Once you get past the small talk, it’s critical that on a first date each person spends time talking and listening. If you begin to talk about yourself, your job and your life, be sure to pause after a minute or two and ask your date about their job or their life. Also, if your date asks you a question, after you answer, ask them the same question back. That’s considered polite.
Now here is the most important thing to remember on a date. Be sure to ask questions because if you don’t, you will look like you don’t care about your date. Seriously. This might seem strange depending on where you grew up, but Americans love to talk about themselves and they love being asked questions about their lives, their areas of expertise, their interests, their families and their free time. The exact questions don’t matter as much as the fact that you ask them. On a date, Americans – especially American women – will feel like you’re not interested in them if you don’t ask questions. On a date, no one wants to listen to one person talk on and on and on without getting an equal chance to participate.
Speaking of talking on and on and on, if you’re talking and your date stops meeting your gaze and maybe starts to look around or at their watch or at their drink, there’s a problem. The problem could be anything, including that they have an appointment to get to, but the most likely problem is that you are talking too much. At this point, stop and ask your date a question so they get to talk for a while. Do not make the mistake of continuing to talk and trying to find a topic that will interest your date! If your date doesn’t seem engaged by whatever you’re saying, please switch to asking questions and listen for a while. Ask “What do you think of what I just said?” or “Has anything like that ever happened to you?” or “Have you ever done anything similar?” Or ask anything and let your date change the topic.
These are just a couple of dating tips, but they’re important ones. Getting a date started with small talk, asking questions, and having a balanced conversation with no one dominating are critical to the success of a date with an American. For private coaching that will get you successfully dating Americans, contact me.