Modern dating is different from anything else we’ve ever seen.
Back in the day, if you wanted to meet someone, you had to go out to the club, to the bar, or to the party thrown by some friend. People would set up their acquaintances with one another if they felt they could be a match.
…And that was pretty much it.
Meeting at work, meeting at school… Why was that so popular? Because there wasn’t much of a choice. And today… today there’s plenty of options, almost too many.
You don’t have to leave the house to find someone cute to talk to because they are just a few swipes away from you online.
But at the same time, it often feels like finding a match on a dating site and actually succeeding at online dating is an impossible task.
Lots of happy couples found each other online, and it doesn’t matter where you meet as long as you like each other.
Even if you’ve had a couple of bad experiences with online dating, I wouldn’t demonize it as something innately “bad”. There are some ground rules of dating on the internet, and you have much higher chances to succeed if you follow them.
So how to actually succeed at online dating?
The following tips are going to help you increase your chances to find a match online.
1. Use sites that you like.
The selection of online dating sites and apps is really big and most modern dating sites have some differentiators.
There are dating platforms for young adults and for seniors, for those who are looking for a serious relationship and those that are in for a casual hookup, sites for successful busy entrepreneurs and for people who love fitness. There are also sites only for women or only for people of some specific race or sexual preferences, even sites for finding partners for the night or “sugar” type of relationships.
The choice of which online dating site you choose is immense.
So what does it mean for you? It means that you don’t have to hang out in places that don’t feel comfortable. So, for example, you don’t have to use Tinder for online dating if you don’t like it.
The best piece of online dating advice about which site to use would be to do some research to find out what your options are. You will be surprised at how many alternatives are available at the moment.
2. Your bio and pics should be about you.
Since your bio and your profile picture are the first things people see about you on an online dating site, these are the things that shape their first impression.
So first and foremost, make sure you choose the right picture. That would be the one which gives others a clear idea of how you look, what body type you have, etc. Your main photo should also be fairly neutral. In other words, photos with cats or dogs, photos with other people/ photos at the bar with a glass of beer, or at a costume party in a Jack Sparrow outfit are not a good idea.
That said, don’t make any artificial adjustments to the way you look. The temptation to photoshop a few pounds away is really big, but you’ll be better off if you resist it. Make sure that your online profile reflects your true self. Yes, you may attract fewer dates, but these are more likely to be the right ones.
And, here’s few things about succeeding at writing a good online dating bio. Try to stay away from suggestive jokes, dark humor, and other things that can potentially be misinterpreted by people on the other side of the screen. To be on the safe side, it’s better to write something about your interests. After all, not everyone may be able to understand jokes in such a limited context.
3. Play in your league.
The happiest couples are usually the ones in which partners resemble one another not only in their values and interests but also in their appearance. That said, studies show that most men and women who are looking for a partner online tend to pursue people who are 25% more attractive than themselves.
It’s hard to pinpoint what causes such behavior, but it explains why you might have had all those rejections – because you could have reached out to people who are objectively more attractive and thus, who are hoping to land someone who is even better-looking than themselves.
We all agree that physical looks are the least important thing in the relationship, but since we can’t get to know the person first, we need to make judgments in the most accessible way. So being realistic about yourself and understanding that the cutest people aren’t necessarily the best fit for you significantly increases your chances to succeed with online dating.
4. Always remember your personal safety.
Now, we’re all adults but it wouldn’t harm to leave a little reminder that we need to stay safe. Whereas we can be less cautious when we go on a first date with “a friend of a friend” or go out with a colleague whom we had known for ages, you can’t be sure that your online date is a sane and adequate person before you meet them.
Common sense rules like “always date in public places” and “don’t give away your home address to the strangers” apply here. Don’t take them home on a first date and don’t go to their place. It will wait. You are responsible for your own protection. And listen to your guts. If you feel that something is wrong, it probably is.
5. Be patient and remember that you have a choice.
Patience is key when it comes to online dating. Some people are lucky enough to succeed at online dating immediately and they find the love of their life from the first match, but let’s be realistic about it.
Chances that the very first person that texts you will become your future spouse are not very high. You might have to go to quite a few first dates to finally find someone who you can be with, and that’s fine.
Just remember that you don’t have to keep dating the person you do not like. Some people feel a responsibility to continue talking to someone even if they feel that this is not it. Let them be happy as well and don’t continue the communication that doesn’t go well from the start.
It’s also important to be considerate about other people’s feelings in situations like this. You don’t have to be mean or ghost people, but polite honesty is the best policy. Find the right words and part your ways like good pals. Who knows, maybe destiny will get you back together someday.
6. Enjoy it!
The last piece of online dating advice I have to share would be to not take this whole online dating thing too seriously, and generally not to stress over different life situations too much.
Looking for a partner should be a fun and enjoyable part of your days, not the only thing you can think about ever since you’ve created the dating profile.
Remember to be yourself and have fun. Don’t worry too much about how you look or what you say. You will eventually meet your special someone, be it on a dating site or not. Relax! We’ve only got one life, so we’d better enjoy it.
Good luck with your dating game online and off! And thanks for reading!