Life & Culture

Matchmaker Matchmaker: First dates aren’t easy, but they are worth it

They can be a huge let-down - but you have to be in it to win it


By the time you read this, I will have begun my dating marathon: 28 dates in 28 days throughout the month of February. Wish me luck!

Whilst I am embarking on this adventure in aid of charity, there are plenty of people who regularly take on their very own version of a dating marathon mostly, in search of finding their person.

They treat it like a job, a project, a hobby even and they mean business. Then there is the other type of single person who would rather run a marathon than go on a first date.

So, I think it’s about time we had an honest chat about first dates.

As someone who avoids first dates like the plague (ironic, I know), I think we can all agree that it isn’t the most natural or always enjoyable of experiences.

Who wants to feel (or make someone feel) that this is their first-round audition for the role of husband or wife? I’d much prefer a busy diary of plans with friends I adore and doing activities that make me feel alive than risk a first date that could trap me into spending my evening with a man that is wrong for me on all counts.

And if we’re being real, first dates can just be a huge let- down when you’ve psyched yourself up and end up leaving feeling disappointed.

Despite all this I do believe with all my heart that you have to be in it to win it. You have to go on the bad dates to get to the good dates.

And I always tell my clients if it’s a bad date, it’s a great story and if it’s a good date, you can thank me later. So here I am, taking my own advice and pushing myself to go on a blind first date every single day this month.

If you’re feeling inspired and want to set yourself a dating challenge of your very own but are apprehensive, then I recommend putting some boundaries and parameters in place. For example, stay in control of the dates and schedule them yourself.

Go for low-key coffee dates. I’d even go as far to say you should go on two in one day! You’ll already be date-ready; mentally prepared and why waste a fabulous date outfit?

Some people claim that dating is a numbers game, which I’ve always contested. I guess I’ll be educated to share my thoughts on this at the end of the month.

I’ve no doubt that by the end of February I will have learnt a lesson or two. I’m nervous, of course, but it’s an adventure and I am going to become a pro at going on first dates.

After all, I’m about to meet 28 people who all have a story, and the fact that they’re game to take part in this will mean they’re all going to be good guys. And when you go on a first date this month, just think Aimee is probably on a date right now too!

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