What is it about Valentine's Day and anniversaries that can have you either sleeping on the couch or being swooned over for the next few weeks? Effort.
My favourite date idea is one that sees a little effort go a long way, and can be adapted and used again and again. Although it's fantastic for those special occasions, you can also simplify it and apply it to a regular date night. As a female myself, I know that it can impress both girls and guys alike. You need to try this at least once because you're sure to have almost, if not more fun than your date. I call it "You Choose", because your partner essentially has the final say in every part of the day. Your job is to ask the questions. Let me explain.
In preparing for this date, you will produce a flowchart of ideas of things to do, eat, see, etc. The more details, the better. Your date is responsible for deciding on which option they prefer. The twist? You ask them to choose between two abstract concepts that represent the finer details of the date, while keeping the specifics a mystery. That way they have no idea what they are actually choosing between and it will build up high levels of anticipation in the lead up to the date.
Here is a basic snapshot for what your date could end up looking like:
Initially, it is helpful if you brainstorm some activities and dining ideas that your date might like. Try to think of pairs of activities that differ by a key characteristic. Such as, hiking or a theme park vs. a book reading or a massage. The first two can be considered active or adventurous, whereas the second two fit better under the category of relaxation or passive. You will construct the flowchart as you go so don't stress too much about coming up with ideas in the early stages.
Step 1. Find yourself a date and set a day (if they are only free at a certain time you will need to factor this in).
Step 2. Inform your date that you will be asking them a number of questions over the next few days (or longer if you like).
Step 3. Ask your first question. I like to start with "Black or White" and use it to signify "night or day". Posing the questions via text at random intervals works well, but you can mix it up however you like. Write the first question at the top of the flowchart and circle or highlight their answer (try and get your hands on some big paper as you are going to need the space).
Step 4. From there you begin to ask questions to determine location, activities, food and any other details you can think of. The more questions, the better. Keep them to two options and try to make them abstract.
Step 5. Once you think you've collected enough details, tell your date the minimum amount of information they need to know for it to run smoothly. Attire is important, especially if you're going swimming, to a fancy restaurant, or somewhere really hot or cold. It is ideal if you can pick them up, otherwise choose a convenient meeting location that doesn't give too much away.
Step 6. Date time! With all the anticipation and excitement built up, it is sure to be a memorable day. They will probably enjoy trying to match up the questions to the activities, which you can choose to enlighten them on or keep a mystery.
Here are a few sample question to get you going. I'm sure you will come up with fabulous ideas of your own!
Whole or Half? - Whole or half of the day (alternative to black or white).
Hot or Cold? - Can be related to food or activity (such as paintball or ice skating).
Blue or Green? - Can be linked to a location based around water or grass.
Together or Apart? - Make food together or buy it/prepare beforehand.
Asian or Western? - A broad food question that can be used as a starting point.
Near or Far? - Good for deciding between two locations of varying distances.
Fenced or Framed? - Museum or art gallery (there are great alternatives to these places that come and go throughout the year).
Silly or Sensible? - I like to use this as a finer detail within a broader activity as it helps to set the tone. It is especially useful if you don't know your date very well. For example, when my date selected the "silly" option, I prepared a game of fruit bowling for us to play at one of the locations.