Most people are people pleasers––at least to some extent. We all want to make people we’re meeting for the first time like us.
While this is all well and good when we’re meeting work colleagues, friends of friends, or a friend’s new partner, it can make it hard to tell whether the person you just went on a date with actually had a good time or whether they were just trying to make a good impression.
Only a small proportion of dates go so badly that it is obvious neither person wants to see each other again.
In most cases, dates go fine! Both people have a reasonably good time, enjoy their conversation, and go home feeling like they just had a nice and social evening.
It is when the question about whether you want to go on a second date comes up that you really have to reflect on whether the first date went well.
Here are a few tips to help you tell whether your date (and you!) had a good time.
19 signs that a date went well
- Time passed quickly
- Conversation flowed naturally
- You were giving each other “the eyes”
- You both listened to each other
- You made casual physical contact
- You felt safe and at ease
- You felt comfortable being honest about yourself
- You discussed things you’d like to do together
- You have similar interests
- You messaged each other after the date
- You talked about what you’re looking for in a partner
- You agreed to meet up again
- You weren’t worried about what people around you were thinking
- They complimented you
- They made sure you got home safely
- They showed an interest in your life
- You had a fun time
- You’re looking forward to seeing them again
- Your date couldn’t stop smiling
When you’re on a date, it can be difficult to determine whether you’re having a good time.
Particularly if you are enjoying yourself, you won’t want to be sitting there analyzing how every new bit of conversation is making you feel.
Instead, it is often best to reflect on a date after the fact. When you get home after a date, take a few moments to assess not only whether you enjoyed yourself but also whether the person you met up with seemed to be having a good time.
If you aren’t sure whether your date was into you or is just a friendly person, think back to see how many of these 19 signs that a date went well apply to your evening.
1. Time passed quickly
The best indication that a date went well is that time passed quickly.
If you feel like you just sat down and then suddenly find yourself in an emptying restaurant, it means you’ve lost track of time because you’ve both been having such a nice time.
There is something called a flow state, which is essentially a mental state you get when you are completely immersed in an activity.
It is a state of energized focus that arises because you are enjoying yourself so fully.
While it is usually used to refer to a state that people enter at work when they are fully absorbed in what they are doing, it also applies in social contexts.
If you feel like you’ve lost track of time on a date, it probably means that you are having such a good time that you’ve lost all awareness of the context you find yourself in. This is a great sign!
If someone tells you that they lost track of time on your date, that is probably the highest compliment you can get. It means that the other person enjoyed your date a lot.
2. Conversation flowed naturally
There is nothing more isolating than being part of a conversation that feels unnatural.
If you’re struggling to come up with topics of conversation and are worried that you are failing at not being awkward on a date, then things probably aren’t going so well.
If, on the other hand, you don’t have to think twice about what you’re saying because you’re so excited to listen and respond to everything being said, then you and the person you’re seeing are clearly compatible.
3. You were giving each other “the eyes”
Now, this is a difficult one to explain, because it is difficult to describe exactly what “the eyes” are.
In many ways, asking whether you were giving each other “the eyes” is a way of saying, “did it feel right?”
If you were looking at each other with lit up eyes, were smiling, and found yourselves having to look at the table out of embarrassment, then you were probably giving each other “the eyes.”
People often say, “when you know, you know,” and looking at each other with a certain glint in your eyes is part of this concept.
Basically, if you were giving each other “the eyes,” you’ll know.
4. You both listened to each other
There are many horror stories of dates on which only one person is an active participant.
If you or the person you were meeting might as well have been on a date with yourselves, then you weren’t really listening to each other.
There is nothing more frustrating than sitting across from someone and having them constantly cut you off or interrupt you.
If you find yourself having a drink with someone who doesn’t seem at all interested in what you have to say, don’t feel bad if you want to get out of the date.
A date has gone well if both people on it have been speaking and listening in equal measure.
5. You made casual physical contact
Did you reach out and touch their shoulder when they made you laugh?
Did they demonstrate a particular Tai-Chi move by touching your wrist? Did they casually put their hand on your back when moving past you?
All of these are signs that you both feel a desire to touch one another––something that is a normal part of a healthy relationship.
If you go for several dates and neither person even comes close to making physical contact with the other, that probably isn’t a very good sign.
Physical attraction is an important part of dating, so don’t pass up being with someone you’re attracted to just because everything else seems to be going well.
If you really like someone but think you would be better off being platonic, let them know. After all, there is nothing to stop you saying, “I love you” as friends at some point in the future.
6. You felt safe and at ease
We feel most free to be ourselves when we feel safe. If someone makes you feel safe and comfortable, don’t take it for granted.
If you’re wondering what this means, ask yourself whether at any point on the date you felt worried that you were being judged or that the person you were with might criticize you for saying the wrong thing.
If you did, it probably means you don’t feel completely safe with your date. That is not a good sign.
If, however, you are on a date and know that both of you are totally relaxed and feel able to be completely yourselves, then that is a surefire sign that the date is going well.
7. You felt comfortable being honest about yourself
This sign that a date is going well is closely related to feeling safe with your date, but it goes one step further.
While there is no need to tell a date your deepest, darkest secrets when you are just getting to know them, you also shouldn’t feel like you have to put on a front or put effort into thinking about how you are coming across.
In theory, the purpose of a date is to assess whether you are compatible with someone.
If you are, then you will eventually spend a lot of time together talking about your most intimate feelings and worries.
So, if you don’t feel like you can be yourself around someone, then that is a huge red flag.
8. You discussed things you’d like to do together
Particularly if you are dating a girl who is always busy or are dating someone who works nights, it is nice to throw out suggestions for future plans to make sure you actually do get to see each other again, despite your hectic schedules.
While these plans may not all come to fruition, the fact that you are both actively thinking about what it would be like to be a part of each other’s lives means that the date is going well.
9. You have similar interests
This is key.
If you are really into outdoor activities and your date has never not worn high heels when leaving the house, you may struggle to form a relationship that both of you are happy with.
While opposites can attract and it is of course a good thing to have separate interests, friendship groups, and ways to relax, if you have nothing in common at all, you will probably not have all that much to talk about.
Additionally, you won’t really be able to spend much time together that you both enjoy.
If your date loves action movies and you exclusively like romantic comedies, what will you do when it comes time to decide what to watch on a movie night?
While it is of course not a deal breaker if your date is into different things, do make sure that you have at least a few common interests.
10. You messaged each other after the date
If you thought a date went reasonably well, but it was followed by radio silence, that likely means it might not have gone all that well after all.
The polite thing to do after a date is to write a quick text thanking the person you met up with for a lovely evening, telling them it was nice to meet them, and letting them know that you would like to see them again.
If neither person does this, it probably means that your date didn’t go all that well.
11. You talked about what you’re looking for in a partner
You know a date is going really well if you discuss what qualities you value in a partner.
This means that you have moved to a stage where you are both actively wondering whether the person you are sitting across from could fit into your life in a more permanent, long-term way.
12. You agreed to meet up again
If someone asks you on a second date it is a clear indication that your date has gone well.
By telling you that they would like to see you again they are letting you know that they enjoy your company and that they want to see where things go with you.
13. You weren’t worried about what people around you were thinking
Those of us with anxious personality traits often spend a lot of time in our own heads, worried what the people around us are thinking about us.
If you’re on a date and spend the whole time looking around the room wondering what the people at the other tables in the restaurant are thinking about you and your date, that’s probably not a great sign.
If, on the other hand, you feel relaxed and comfortable and aren’t worried about how you are coming across, that is a sign that your date is making you feel safe and cared for.
14. They complimented you
Another clear indication that your date is going well is if your date is complimenting you or if a guy tells you he appreciates you.
If someone tells you that you look good, that you are funny, that you are smart, or that you are great to spend time with, they are clearly having a nice time in your company.
If you felt like complimenting them in return, that is a further indication that you liked spending time with them and that the feeling they expressed is mutual.
15. They made sure you got home safely
This is a sweet way to tell that the person you’re seeing had a good time on your date.
If they asked you how you were getting home, offered to walk you home, offered to drive you home, or asked if they could hail you a taxi, they are demonstrating care for you.
If someone already cares about you and proves that they know how to communicate this, then that shows that your relationship has potential.
16. They showed an interest in your life
Another good sign that a date has gone well is that the person you are seeing likes you is if they ask you real, substantial questions about your life.
These could be about your friends, your career, your living situation, your hobbies, your pets, your family, or any other aspect of your life that is clearly important to you.
If a date demonstrates that they want to know more about you, they are investing time into becoming part of your life.
17. You had a fun time
Now, this is key.
If you want to know whether a date went well, just ask yourself whether you had fun.
It is highly unlikely that you will have had a good time on a date if the person you met up with wasn’t also enjoying themselves. It takes two to tango, and that includes when it comes to having fun.
Think about it. When was the last time you had fun with someone who wasn’t having fun themselves?
So, if you want to know whether a date went well, asking yourself whether you had a good time should provide you with a clear litmus test about how the evening went overall.
18. You’re looking forward to seeing them again
Are you looking forward to meeting up with your date again? If the answer is yes, it means you probably had a great time.
This means that the two of you probably get along like a house on fire.
Having a good time on a date means that you enjoy each other’s jokes, company, and way of seeing things.
If you are looking forward to spending time together again, it probably means that the time you spent together was enjoyable, and that feeling rarely goes only one way.
19. Your date couldn’t stop smiling
If you and your date couldn’t stop smiling at each other (or at the table), that definitely means that your date went well.
Facial expressions don’t lie, and if you and the person you’re seeing appear unable to wipe your grins off your faces, it means you’re clearly into each other.
If you had a good time and are walking around your apartment after your date smiling like a fool, it means you’re probably well on your way to your date calling you “honey.”
Hey, it’s me, Steven. Dating and relationships have always fascinated me. On Dategosu, you will find my best tips to make sure your next date is a great success!