If you’re single and hate making small talk on a first date, I have good news! New research shows that meaningless chit-chat about things like the weather actually hurts your chances of getting a second date!
Researchers at the University of Arizona asked volunteers to complete a daily survey that measured levels of life satisfaction. Each person also wore a device that recorded all of their conversations over the 4-day experiment.
The result: When the conversations were compared to the life-satisfaction tests, the happiest people spent the majority of their time talking about things that really mattered to them like family. While the volunteers who discussed impersonal things like the weather and TV shows had the lowest happiness scores.
What’s this mean to you? Lead researcher Dr. Matthias Mehl says it shows we want to make a genuine connection with the people we meet. Which means, someone you’re dating is going to find you more attractive if you let them see the real you. Of course, this doesn’t mean you should launch into a blow-by-blow rundown of your last breakup. But you should avoid focusing on meaningless things.
One easy way to fast-forward through the small talk: Ask open-ended questions that’ll spark a real conversation. For example, instead of the standard, “Where do you work?” Try asking, “What part of your job do you like the most?” Even if you discover the two of you aren’t a great match, you’ll both be happier at the end of the evening.