Should I Bring Flowers On A First Date?
Have you ever wondered to yourself, “Should I bring flowers on a first date?” The answer to this question is a tricky one. After all, you don’t want to come across as needy, but you do want to stand out from the competition.
I pose this question because a client and I recently went on a mock date, and he brought me a flower, which motivated me to explore the concept of gift-giving.
What Is A Mock Date?
Mock dates are pseudo first dates where a client and I meet in real life and go through the typical protocol of a first date. Afterward, I provide audio feedback to let them know what worked and what needs improvement. Mock dates are helpful when you’re getting ghosted repeatedly and can’t figure out why.
When I met my client for our mock date, he handed me a stargazer lily. It was such a sweet gesture, and even now, as I watch it bloom, I think of him with fondness. However, there are several reasons why I would avoid giving a woman flowers on a first date or a gift too early on in the courting phase.
Reason #1: Receiving A Gift Too Soon Makes Her Feel Guilty
While it is charming to bring a woman flowers on a first date (or even a second date), doing so has the unintended consequence of making her feel bad for you. Subconsciously, it sends a message that she is more valuable than you and when this happens, sexual attraction is lost. Gift-giving early on in any relationship kills sexual tension because it destroys your perceived value.
Feeling Guilty Does Not Compel A Woman To Take Her Clothes Off
Consider the adage: “If it were easy, everyone would do it,” or “Nothing worth having is easy to get.” Value and hard work are inextricably linked. One cannot exist without the other. The good news is, once you realize value is subjective, you have the power to influence how your value is perceived.
A Woman Will Always Want The Most Valuable Mate She Can Find
This desire is rooted in evolutionary psychology. It’s nearly impossible to get a woman to fall in love with you if she perceives you to be “low status.” Reason being, a woman is hardwired to seek a partner who can provide access to resources that create a stable environment for children. Now, here’s what’s crazy, the same is not true for men.
Men regularly choose women of lower status because their evolutionary goal is to pass on their genes. Both goals are designed to work together to produce stronger children fit to survive. But, the difference between the two can make it easy to get confused. So, how do you come across as the most valuable guy in the room?
You have to make it harder for her to win your affections. I feel a bit guilty even writing this because it was so thoughtful for my client to bring me that flower. However, if I’m stimulated to feel guilty, then I’m not thinking sexually. A better move would be to bring her a flower after you’ve had sex. Perhaps I can explain best if I take you back to the beginning of the mock date.
Reason #2: It’s Distracting To Carry A Flower Around
When I first met up with my client for our mock date, I saw the flower in his hand and immediately felt a pang of anxiety. I wondered whether I should assume that the flower was for me or to act surprised as if I hadn’t seen it in his hand. The uncertainty of not knowing how to respond set me on edge and I struggled to calm myself and remain present as he approached.
A Lack Of Focus Makes Trusting Your Date Harder To Achieve
A preoccupied woman cannot fully relax on a date, and if she can’t relax, then she won’t be able to trust you. A distracted woman is also less charismatic because charisma requires the presence of mind. If she’s in her head, then she can’t be fully present.
Once I had the flower in hand, I didn’t know where to put it. When we sat down, I was worried about it falling over and the water in the bag spilling out. I would have been mortified if I’d broken off a bud or dropped it on the floor. He’d probably spent his time and money selecting the perfect lily and the last thing I wanted to do was to let him down.
The experience made me feel like a little girl who didn’t want to disappoint daddy. As a general rule of thumb: Most women don’t feel sexy when they think about their pops. If they do, run.
Reason #3 For Not Bringing Flowers on a First Date: Carrying Around A Flower Makes Her Feel Self-Conscious
Another thing I noticed was that standing in the middle of San Francisco’s Ferry Building, holding a flower, made me feel self-conscious. I suddenly became acutely aware that people were staring, trying to assess the scenario. Is it a first date? Did they meet on a dating app? Does she like him? It all started to make me feel very uneasy.
Subconsciously I didn’t feel as though I deserved a gift so soon. After all, we’d only just met. To give a woman flowers, or to pay more than $10 on a first date, often has the unintended effect of making her anxious.
The goal of a first date is to establish trust and rapport. The goal of a second date is to escalate sexual tension. If you want to avoid the friend-zone, you must achieve both goals before giving a woman a gift or spending a lot of money.
As a comparison, I wouldn’t feel weird about receiving flowers from a boyfriend or someone I’d been dating for a while. After enough time has passed and the relationship has developed a bit further, a woman subconsciously feels as though she’s earned gifts and appreciation. Once you arrive at this level in the relationship, flowers and gifts become a charming expression of gratitude and thoughtfulness.
It’s all a matter of timing. A woman has to feel as though there is some reason, apart from her physical appearance, that a man would give her a gift. She wants to feel as though she’s earned it. Remember, when things are easy to get, they rarely feel special.
Reason #4: Expressing Interest Early On Kills Sexual Tension
For some reason, bringing flowers on a first date reminds me of middle school and the following story from 8th grade offers a good example of this scenario. It was the summer of 2000, and I was a chubby, 14-year old girl with braces and these terrible, hairspray-shellacked, curling-iron bangs. There was a boy I’d known a long time in my community theatre group, let’s call him Sam, and all of a sudden, I had become very attracted to him.
Sam and I had known each other for several years at this point. And, while I’d never been attracted to him before, the rush of teenage hormones mixed with his sudden interest in another girl made him irresistible. And so, I did what I had to do. I told a friend to let him know I liked him — very advanced flirting back then.
To my surprise, a few hours later, Sam showed up at my front door and rang the doorbell. When I looked out the peephole, I saw a big printed sign on the ground with rose petals scattered all around.
My Stomach Dropped, And My Heart Began To Pound
I anxiously flipped the deadbolt to the left and slowly turned the brass knob over in my hand. I prayed silently to myself that I’d imagined the whole thing. But then, when the door floated open, I saw the presentation in all of its glory.
The sign I’d glimpsed through the peephole was probably six computer pages long. It had been carefully printed on those old printer papers with the holes on the sides that come all attached. Sam must have done this using the school’s computers. Very deliberate. It was clear he’d spent a lot of time on it.
In big, bold, black font, the sign read, “Emyli, will you be my girlfriend?” Rose petals were scattered all around the white, cement sidewalk. As soon as I’d had a second to take it all in, Sam lunged forward with a gorgeous bouquet of red roses.
In That Moment, I Began To Feel Like The World’s Biggest Asshole
For some reason, the entire romantic gesture made me want to throw up. I hated myself for feeling this way. There was no logical explanation for why something so sweet could make me feel so gross. Was I a horrible person? What kind of girl would react to flowers this way? My body was having a physically adverse reaction to a tremendously warm display of affection. Was I a monster? In the space of three seconds, I went from 100% interested to 0%.
I’m not sure why it hit me so hard and so suddenly, but I can say that he no longer seemed desirable. He was doing too much to show me he was interested. All at once, my perspective shifted, and I looked at him like a brother. It felt weird and icky. Suddenly, the idea of kissing him, with my tongue, made me want to vomit.
Note: This story does not paint me in a particularly positive light. However, I think it’s useful to examine and share for learning purposes.
Women Are Hardwired To Want What Is Hard To Get
If this experience taught me anything, it’s that women aren’t inherently mean, we are just programmed to look for value. With that said, we are hardwired to want things that are hard to get. I’d argue that men have the same programming. Have you ever dated a woman that told you “ you’re perfect?”
If so, then you know. Feels icky, doesn’t it?
Often my clients express disinterest when a woman they’re dating is overly excited about them. It’s important not to get too invested too soon because doing so kills sexual tension by making you seem easy-to-get.
Reason #5: Flowers Are Like Compliments, Neither Should Be Given Early On In The Courting Phase
A similar scenario can occur with compliments. One of the men I dated during my 100-Date Experiment experiment was doing well with me until our third date. That night, in his car, he laid it all out on the line, and told me I was “perfect.”
Look here man, I am not perfect. Not at all. You must be talking about someone else. It was like 8th grade all over again. My stomach dropped. The butterflies turned to nausea. And all I could think about was getting out of there as fast as possible.
Never Tell A Woman She’s Perfect
I’ve been on the other side of this one too. Also during my experiment, I dated a professional ballplayer. At the time, my ego was so jazzed at the idea of becoming Mrs. Pro-ball player, that I started telling him how “perfect” he was. Ya…he ghosted me in like two seconds flat.
Reason #6: Flowers, Gifts & Over-Texting Kills Early Dating Relationships
Another story from my 100 date experiment reminds me of this experience. I’d just had a compelling first date with a charming finance guy. He almost seemed out of my league with his fancy finance job, amazing tan, and long, surfer hair. I could picture us together. The babies would have been beautiful. But then he did something that changed everything.
As I was walking away from the date, no more than 30 seconds after we’d parted ways, he made a critical error. He texted me a compliment. If memory serves me right, it was this, “You’re a dime piece girl.” Instantaneously I lost all interest in him. He gave me no space to get curious about him, and he complimented me, which made him seem overly invested. How could he even be that excited after only one date? The kid barely knew me. I hadn’t had a moment to catch my breath.
Should I Bring Flowers on a First Date: Conclusion
In summary, a woman doesn’t want to know that you think she’s perfect. Neither does a man. We want someone who is out of our league that we can “win.” Now that’s sexy.
If you’d like to learn more about the right and wrong ways to be chivalrous, express interest, and manage your mindset, check out my webinar or book a new client session to learn more about my 3 month Signature coaching program and how I can help.
I’ll tell you what; I’ve made ALL THE MISTAKES in dating, so you don’t have to. I can save you the embarrassment of an experience like the ones described above. It’s simple really, but you have to understand women, and I can teach you. The key is to manage your mindset, and the solution is MegaDating. Learn more about it in this webinar.