My number one cardinal rule for secret-keeping is to avoid the topic as much as possible. If you aren’t talking about presents, or what to do for your next date, then you can’t shoot yourself in the foot and ruin it. Sounds simple, right? Well that’s what I thought, and that’s where I have failed miserably in the past. Not only must you try to avoid talking about it, but when you are with the surprised-to-be, don’t even think about it. Banish the topic from your mind - if you aren’t thinking about the hat you are crocheting for their birthday then you won’t start talking about it absentmindedly to them (believe me, I’ve been there). So, constant vigilance! Don’t even think about it!
2. Half lie
The topic of presents or anything connected to the surprise could come up, and for this situation we have to be prepared. As an atrocious liar myself, and when I have to cover my back, I find it easier to pull off lies that are simply part of the truth but not the whole truth. For example, returning to my crochet-surprise-disaster, I would tell my partner I was trying to crochet a scarf for my mum (this was before I prematurely revealed it was a hat for them). So, if your partner is questioning where you are, what you are doing - give them a little bit of the truth, but twist it. Half a lie is a lot easier than a full lie, especially when you’re put on the spot.
3. Get help!
My third and final top tip is to enlist the help of friends and family, especially if you’re organising a bigger surprise like a party or a big date. Not only can they help with the organisational aspect, but they can also be an outlet for your excitement and emotions surrounding the surprise - and prevent an overexcited outburst around the wrong person. You need a support network for these things, both emotionally and organisationally.
With these three top tips, your surprises should hopefully remain a secret, and hopefully go off without a hitch!