Deciding to use an online dating site used to be something you’d only tell your closet of friends due to feeling as though you’d be labelled desperate and dateless if you didn’t keep it a secret. Today, the rules for online dating have been completely rewritten and I’m not ashamed to tell anyone how I met my partner. My own experiences with using dating sites tells me that the secret to women finding success dating online comes down to your approach and attitude.
Here are our top tips to help women navigate the windy road of online dating!
Many women approach online dating in a submissive way thinking that men will do all the work, which is generally true, but is the wrong way to approach online dating. It can be intimidating to admit that you are searching online for your special man although try not to forget, both you and your potential dates are both auditioning for the same role.
Show your date just how eager you are to learn more about them, be open and pleasant with your conversations, and bring your inner confidence to the date so they can see just how comfortable you are to be around.
There’s every chance they are just as nervous as you are meeting a complete stranger for the first time. Try not to focus too much on whether they’ll like you or not, focus on assessing whether you like them, this approach will definitely help to alleviate those nerves.
Try not to drag it out
When I first started using online dating sites, I would typically exchange messages multiple times with the guy before actually meeting up offline. Soon I realised how a lot of men were quite expressive and forward when communicating via electronic messaging or free online chat rooms. I also came to realise that these types of guys were often too shy to meet up offline where they felt more confident behind a screen.
Once I started to wise up to this pattern, it became clear that the guys who wrote extra- long messages were extra reluctant to meet in person as they knew deep down, they could not reproduce their writing ability in a face to face scenario.
After some further annalysing with the guys profiles and messaging patterns I made a conscious effort to switch to writing shorter and more direct messages and would also take steps to initiate meeting up for coffee.
As I expected, some never replied and others I would meet up with didn’t share any chemistry with me. I figured it’s better to not string things out with wasted back and forth messages when I could be out seeing what’s beneath the computer screen and making decisions sooner.
Why would I bother investing precious time and becoming emotionally attached to these guys through their online words when there’s no possibility we’d ever click in the real world. Establish whether there’s initial interest online first then set that initial meeting up to get it out of the way.
Further, it’s important that you don’t agree on a second date if the chemistry isn’t there just because you feel a little guilty or feel bad for him. If he tries to talk you around and is trying hard for a second date you simply need to tell him “you had a great time tonight but unfortunately I’m not feeling a romantic connection.” If you don’t feel it, you don’t feel it so cut the strings now and save your energy for another time.
Your sense of humour
Having the right attitude towards online dating is everything. I decided to blog my experiences in several states. Keeping a clear perspective was important so putting everything in writing kept things fresh in my mind and at the same time it kept my closest friends entertained with the events I was blogging about. On my blog, I posted some of the funny or weird messages I’d received or make comments (good and bad) about some of the dates I went on.
Any woman who is looking to try out online dating must know that you will have at least one bad date and probably more. For that reason, the advice I’d be offering you would be to keep your first dates very simple like coffee. When it comes to dating a guy for the first time you’ve just met online, you do not want to be stuck at the dinner table.
Being stuck in a one on one scenario, when there’s no simple exit plan, with a guy you clearly know you’ll never want to see again is why so many women fail with online dating. When I’d go on one of those bad dates, instead of blaming the online dating process, I’d just have fun with it and add a blog entry and share it with my friends, no big deal.
Know what you want before expecting certain attributes from others
It’s important not to expect more from others than what you yourself are willing to give. Does your dating profile say that you expect someone of a particular status, let’s say in terms of their career when at the same time you aren’t very career driven yourself. You can’t expect a certain standard from a guy if you lack the desire and discipline of what you expect others to uphold.
Avoid writing things like “I see myself on another level to most women and I expect my man to spoil me with fancy restaurants and gifts.” and then wonder why men with confidence avoid you like the plague.
There’s a big difference between expecting high standards rather than insisting or demanding them. With this attitude, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how people’s opinion of you will be a positive one. Something else I experimented with when writing my dating profile was to ask a friend if they could guess the type of guy I was hoping to attract. If they are unable to, think about tweaking and updating your profile information so there’s a clearer message you’re trying to put out there.
Tell the truth on your dating profile
It’s one of the biggest no-no’s with online dating – never lie about what you look like, your career, your marital status or your family situation. If you’re overweight don’t even think about hunting through your old photos when you were 30 kilos lighter and posting those as your current profile photo’s. If you have kids, ensure you make this known, and don’t say you’re an outdoorsy type of person just to make yourself sound interesting.
If you never intend on meeting people face to face, then knock yourself out and lie all you want to. But it doesn’t take a genius to figure out you’re simply setting yourself up for mass rejections if you show up to dates kidding yourself that you’re the same person as your dating profile suggests. Just be you, I can’t stress this enough.
Online dating can be difficult for men too
It’s pretty common that when it comes to online dating, men need to work a bit harder. Women generally get bombarded with messages as soon as their profiles go live. Men have to deal with far more rejections than you do given the amount of attention women receive. The odds of men receiving responses to messages from women are much lower. Given that it’s common for women to receive over 50 messages each day from men, you need to figure out the best way to shortlist these guys.
Eventually, you’ll workout some shortcuts. Things like who puts the most effort into their online dating profile, or who has taken the time and effort to respond by asking you questions that relate directly to your profile.
As you know, women love humour so if they spot something funny in a guy’s profile this could be part of your profile shortcutting strategy too. If you’re new to online dating, it’s normal to feel overly flattered by all this attention, try not to let it go to your head. Try using the suggested shortcuts to narrow down who you’ll respond to and stay true to your own values when assessing who you’d like to meet in person.
Online dating is not a sprint it’s a marathon
Unless you’re one of the lucky few, it’ll take quite a few dates until you find that click. Online dating is a marathon, so be prepared for a series of fun, interesting and frustrating experiences. Finding that spark online will come down to the law of averages, sooner or later your number will come up. Just be prepared for a journey not a sprint.
Try different dating sites
Depending on your age or generation, there’s always something new and quirky with dating sites and apps for you to explore. Each new website or app seems to target a certain demographic or culture or a certain emphasis on different types of relationships. Don’t think you’ll get the same experience with every dating website you try, you’ll need to do some experimenting to decide which one fits your desired outcome.
Are you looking for a relationship-based dating site, or something geared more towards casual relationships or a friend with benefits? Even things like changing location or cities (like I did when I moved) I found my experience different even though I was using the same dating site, I noticed that the style of men and overall quality of my first dates was noticeably different between different cities.
Don’t’ stress about the mismatches
Some women who come home from bad first dates take it to heart thinking they’ll never meet anyone. If you continue to stress about bad first dates, you’ll also start bringing in a bad attitude towards the online dating process, and some women start to feel desperate and will start to attract bad dating candidates.
As soon as you start complaining about bad first dates, you’ll start thinking of online dating more as a combative experience thus effecting your judgment. And from one girl to another I’m telling you that desperation is not attractive. Remember, try to remain classy in your approach every time, and move onto the next date.
Remember to keep an open mind
You’ll need to come to terms with what you consider are deal breakers and what rules aren’t quite as important when going on first dates. The thing is though, these rules and little deals you’ve made for yourself about what you’ll except and what you won’t can quite easily go right out the door when you meet someone that’s a great fit – finally!
When I met my now-boyfriend, I did in fact break most of the rules I set myself – I gave him my phone number after the first time he messaged me, I met him late one night when we had our first date, and slept together after our second date – all of which I refused to do with any of the other men I’d met through online dating.
Fast forward 3 years we’re still together and in love. He has turned out to be one of the most inspirational and supportive men I have ever met. Although I still stand by these essential rules for women dating online and to have your own set of ground rules, but at some point when the time is right, you’ll need to let go and follow your heart.