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First dates may be fun, but they are also fairly stressful. Not only are you trying to make a great impression, you have to consider lots of options like where to go, what to do and last but not least, let’s not forget about the conversation!

For many people, the topic of first date conversations is the most stressful part of the evening. Even if you’re a great conversationalist, keeping the conversation going with someone you just met can be difficult. Instead of leaving it to fate, why not come prepared?

The following conversation starters can help keep the chatter going, even if you tend to stress out trying to find something to talk about.

  1. Tell me about your work.”
    Asking about work is a safe go-to topic for first dates. It can also lead you into additional topics, which is an added bonus. This question can also quickly help you get insight into their daily life and what’s important to them. Just be sure to join the conversation by listening and asking questions, otherwise they might feel like they are giving a presentation and not having a conversation.

  2. Do you have any pets?”
    People generally love talking about their pets, so use that to kick start a fun conversation. It is also a good way to learn a bit about them as a person and see their softer, less guarded side. Ask if they have a pet, what their name is, how long they’ve had them and if they are easy to take care of. Share your own pet stories and keep the conversation going.

  3. What kind of movies (or books) do you like?”
    Movies are a popular and easy topic to chat about, so use it to your advantage. Ask what types they like and if they have any recommendations. Just remember that you’re supposed to share too, so be ready to tell them about your favorites in return.

  4. How long have you lived here?”
    Asking your date about where they are from and where they grew up is an easy way to keep the conversation going while learning more about them. Since most people enjoy talking about themselves, you don’t usually have to work hard to keep the chatter going.

  5. Do you like to cook?”

    Asking if they like to cook gives you some insight into their passions and is an easy conversation starter. If they don’t like to cook, you can ask about their favorite foods, least favorite foods, or most unusual food they’ve eaten. As an added plus, you will have more info for planning dinner on date two!

Keep in mind, conversations are a two-way street, so ask questions and join in with your own thoughts and ideas. And if you get too nervous, slow down, take a breath and remember that your date is just as nervous as you are.