Dating can be a complicated feat that sets heads spinning through over-thinking and over-doing things in a bid to impress, writes Shaniqua Benjamin.
But according to dating coach Hayley Quinn, dating is all about simplicity, specifically in the early stages.
She says dates should be short and sweet, lasting about 45 minutes to an hour and recommends meeting at a landmark to avoid awkward waiting scenarios.
She also says that first dates should always be somewhere with an outside space, like the Southbank.
The coach says an outside environment or activity keeps things more interesting and relaxed especially during summer – dinner dates should be saved for later once you are more relaxed in each other’s company.
Tenpin bowling or a walk through Crystal Palace Park are not bad ideas.
The man should make a simple plan, because any huge gestures put on too much pressure, but he should compliment the woman so that it feels like a date.
Quinn says: “Women should have a good attitude and be playful and friendly; tell your date that you like his choice to make him feel good.”
However, the most important element of dating is to just be you.
Quinn says: “Be true to yourself, because it’s not about impressing everyone.”
She also says: “People do not want to feel like they are being judged or interviewed, so relax rather than jumping into interrogation mode; talk to your date like they are a friend.”
But dating should not just be for people who are starting their relationship – it should be an integral part of long-term relationships too, she says.
She says: “Have a date night of the week.
“It’s just nice to get out of your normal home environment.
“It keeps the romance alive.
“Changing the environment can change your mood and increase your libido.”