When you’re a busy professional, carving out time for a date is a challenge. Nobody wants to feel like they’ve wasted their time, but this is even more important when you’ve got to be awake at 5am tomorrow morning. It’s tempting, then, to turn the first date into an interview of sorts. While this is a great way to find the one in a pool of job candidates, it might actually be a harmful approach to dating. Here are a few ways to tell if you’re inviting your new flame to a first date or a job interview:

You SHOULD seek out a compatible partnership. You SHOULDN’T create a strict list of required experience and skills.

Take some time to become familiar with what your values are. Spend a moment thinking about what you truly need from a partner, and keep those things in mind when you’re dating. However, it won’t help you to create an extensive list of requirements. It’s very important to remember that “husband” and “wife” are not job titles, nor do they entail a specific list of duties. You should look for a partner whose values align with your own, but you shouldn’t allow minor differences to stop you in your tracks.

When you find yourself becoming the interviewer on a date, take a moment to remind yourself what is happening. A first date doesn’t need to entail more than a friendly conversation. You won’t be evaluating someone’s fitness for a role based on preset qualifications. When you approach dating from an interviewing perspective, you lose the chance to define the terms of any future relationship together. Every relationship is unique, and it will serve you to remember that you are looking to build a life together, not fill a subordinate position in the office.

You SHOULD be aware of any potential hurdles. You SHOULDN’T let them stand in the way of a great partnership.

When you’re single, it’s easy to view any potential new relationship from the outside in. You study every detail and possible future of the life you might live together. When a relationship starts to get serious, this can be a helpful exercise. However, when you’re just dating, picturing the future together often leads to creating a list of reasons “why not”. It’s a good sign when you can picture your life with your partner. But before you’ve decided to emotionally invest in a relationship with someone, this kind of thinking can instead serve to keep you single.

You might look at their career, their home, or even their neighborhood, and wonder how you could ever be happy together. The obstacle standing between you won’t disappear, but for the right person, they’re worth overcoming. Twenty minutes sounds like a long drive for a date with someone you haven’t fallen for. But for someone who makes you feel on top of the world? It’s no time at all.

You SHOULD choose a meeting time and place together. You SHOULDN’T treat your date like a business meeting.

Showing up on time is important in both the dating and business worlds, but that’s usually where the similarities end. When you meet your date, there won’t be an itinerary printed out and waiting on the table. You’re not selling anything or trying to bring in an important client. You’re just there to get to know someone new, and the only thing on the agenda is to spend time together.

Longing to be deeply in love makes it easy to dread the dating process. When you don’t feel a spark on the first date, it can be tempting to view the whole endeavor as a failed contract bid. Thinking about any potential relationship is a complete non-starter. This mindset might help you out at work, but it won’t help you down the aisle. Relationships develop, and it takes time to fall for someone new. If you shut down negotiations every time you realize you’re not already in love, you’ll never get to experience the falling.

You SHOULD put your best foot forward. You SHOULDN’T lie about your background to get a callback.

Do you ever feel like you’re the interviewee on a first date? There have been hundreds of articles and advice columns about what you should do to make your night – and yourself – memorable. Some of it is genuinely good advice: you should wear an outfit that’s well-fitted, comfortable, and appropriate for your date; you should make an effort to be pleasant and charming; you should be willing to step a little out of your comfort zone. This is all great stuff to keep in mind, but it can become overwhelming to focus on being perfect.

On a date with someone who seems perfect for you, it might sound like a good idea to overstate how much you love dogs and scrapbooking. This might work fine for a casual fling, but it won’t benefit you, in the long run, to lie about the parts of your life that you’ll share in a relationship. We often hear people talk about their partner being everything they ever dreamed of, but the truth is no relationship is completely perfect. There will be boxes you don’t check off for everyone you date, even the person you’ll eventually marry.