Whether it’s humorous or heartwarming, listening to silly stories can help ease first-date nerves and create a lighthearted mood. If you’re feeling confident, try telling a story of your own.

Sharing a few life goals can also be a great way to make a connection with your date. But make sure the topic isn’t too personal, as this can be off-putting.

1. Family

Getting to know your date’s family history can reveal much about their personality. However, experts recommend steering clear of trauma and other serious topics on a first date.

Instead, focusing on lighthearted questions like where they feel most at home can help you suss out their character and their compatibility. Besides, these questions are more fun than asking them about their exes.

2. Breakups

Discussing breakups can be a compelling topic for conversation. It allows your date to get to know you better and can also be a great way to calm nerves.

Avoid asking about their exes or trauma on the first date though. This can feel too heavy and can make the other person uncomfortable.

Instead, try asking about their interests and passions.

3. Work

Working can be a great conversation starter, but it’s also important to remember that people are much more than their job titles. Try asking about all the things that make them light up — like the latest podcast they can’t stop listening to or the astrology and crystals they love to dabble in on the weekends.

Elaborate dates are great for creating a memorable experience, but stripped down dates, like coffee and a walk, can feel just as intimate.

4. Travel

If you’re both fans of travel, you can talk about exotic locales and favorite tourist attractions. Getting into specifics can help paint a picture for your date and create an engaging story.

For an ice-breaker that doesn’t feel like a job interview, try an escape room together. You’ll have plenty of topics to discuss as you work together to solve puzzles.

5. Movies

Movies can be a great date night option for couples, especially when they’re a fan of the genre or actors. It can also provide plenty of fodder for conversation afterwards.

If you’re feeling a little more thriller-y, the Safdie Brothers’ Uncut Gems will keep your date on the edge of their seat. Or try this drama that centers on a closeted teenager and his love for another student.

6. Sports

Sports can be a great first date for many reasons. They’re electric and lively, which can help you break the ice and bond over the thrill of competition.

However, going to a live sporting event may be too overwhelming for some people. The cheering, singing, and chanting can get loud, making it difficult to talk.

A baseball game, on the other hand, is a more laid-back option.

7. Food

The food you eat is an integral part of who you are, so this can be a fun and informative topic to discuss. Try to avoid talking about your dislikes of specific foods or restaurants though as this can come across as petty or even condescending.

Instead, ask about their line of work and who inspired them to pursue it. This will reveal more about their personality and boost your connection.

8. Music

Music is a great first date activity, especially if you’re both fans of a band. Plus, talking about music can be a great way to learn more about your date and find out what interests them.

It also helps you weed out people who have annoying or rude opinions. Plus, watching people interact at events like concerts is fun and a good way to see how they react in stressful situations.

9. Art

Art may seem like a boring topic to discuss on a date, but it can actually be super sexy. Museum dates are romantic and museums often have night tours that are even more intimate.

Just make sure you know your structure and keep it paced well. A good story has a beginning, middle, and end. The ending is what elicits the emotion, whether it be laughter or a chorus of “awws.” That’s what makes a great story captivating.

10. Sports

Whether you’re watching local college or professional athletes, sports games can be an exciting and memorable first date. It also gives you the opportunity to ask open-ended questions and really get to know your date.

You can bond over shared passions and create memories that will last a lifetime. Just be sure to avoid the kiss cam! It’s not for everyone.