Make your first date a great one with the help of these tips:

• Leave your past in the past. In college, the motto my friends and I always lived by was what happened at college stays at college. The same goes for your ex on a first date. Leave him out of the conversation, other than to say you were married and divorced. Men consider ex-bashing, or troubles with the ex, too much drama to deal with at this early stage of the dating game.

• Don’t give out too much information about yourself. Often we think we are doing ourselves a favor giving a man lots of information about ourselves on a first date. First dates are nothing more than meet-and-greets to determine if you’d like to get to know each other better.

• Be sure communication is equal: When people are nervous, they have a tendency to jibber-jabber. Be sure to ask a man a lot of questions. If you find yourself talking continuously for more than a minute or two without him saying a word, then be aware that you are probably overtalking. A first date is a time for sharing a lot of surface information about your likes and interests on different topics. Your goal is to find common threads to see if you want to take this to a second date.

• Be “present.” Put your cellphone away so you can engage in a conversation. A man wants to feel as if you are interested in getting to know him. Plus, as we age, multitasking is a lot harder to do. You’ll probably find you didn’t hear a word he said if you’re on your phone texting during your date. And it’s pretty embarrassing to look up over your reading glasses and say, “Could you please repeat that?”

• Put your most feminine side forward; let him be the man: As women, we are so used to taking care of others that we forget and automatically start trying to make life easier for the man sitting across the table from us on a first date. Let him take care of the bad service, don’t tell him how he should have handled a situation and for sure don’t criticize him for what he eats or how he walks or talks. If you find you don’t like this man, then walk away.