I’m a twenty-something, multi-passionate entrepreneur who works long hours deeply submerged in doing the things I love. Unfortunately, this means that while my career thrives, my dating life takes a dive. After breaking up with my fiancée two years ago, (Yes, girl. Long story. Email me for the dish.) I took the opportunity to hibernate during the winter. But now that we are seeing warmer weather and some time has passed I am ready to open myself up to love once again. I feel a mixture of excitement and nervousness, but I also think that’s what makes this adventure both fun and very interesting. Since I don’t get out much due to a full schedule, I opt for online dating. Some of you may be for it, some of you may be against it, but in my opinion it’s a smart way to screen and meet men who you probably would have never stumbled across if it wasn’t for the virtual world. I don’t know about you, but I like having options.
“An estimated 30 to 40 million North Americans now use online dating sites. The 1,500 sites comprise an industry worth over $1.5 billion,” Katie Engelhart, Reporter, Macleans Magazine.
I will totally keep it real with you, I have had some hell dates but on the flip side I’ve also met some amazing people who are now friends and yes, I also met my ex online too. The key is to be optimistic. Look at virtual dating as a pool of options right at your finger tips. For those who are still skeptical, trust me, it’s easy, it’s not time consuming and think about it, what do you really have to lose? You are smooth, savvy and successful and connecting with a great guy (or gal, depending on your preference) would just put the icing on top. If you are single and not looking for love, then please, enjoy yourself and do it up this Summer! But if you are like me and open to new possibilities then read on. Having experienced online dating, I’ve learned a thing or two about how to make it worth your time. Nothing is guaranteed, of course, but just like with anything else in life, you have to keep an open mind and heart in order to attract the things you want.
FIND YOUR SITE
There are many sites available to you. So it is in your best interest to take a few moments to Google search the ones which are most recommended. There’s a difference between the type of men you will meet via POF and Tinder (which are free, convenient and where most want to just hook up) versus eHarmony, Match.com (which are paid and tend to attract singles who are more serious). I know people who have found love on all four. Everyone will have a unique experience. You even have the option of narrowing your search for love within a specific religion, race or other commonality such as a dating pool for single parents, long-distance, persons with disabilities or interracial relationships. Choices, choices, choices, It doesn’t have to feel overwhelming. Ask yourself, what you are looking for and what qualities are most important to you. Then hop on Google and find a site that aligns with your desires
CHOOSE A GREAT USER NAME AND HEADLINE
Your aim is to be memorable. I see this a lot when people post pics on Instagram accompanied by cool song lyrics or a reference to a movie or something funny. The same thought should be placed into your user name and headline. It can even be something simple and cute as long as it’s catchy.
A PICTURE IS WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS
Just like you’d take time to craft a resume, put your best foot forward when creating your online profile. This is your platform to showcase how awesome you are. Choose recent photos. Especially your main image. It should be a clear headshot. Smile! This image will appear in the search results and you only have a few seconds to make grab his attention. Sarah, POF, Dating Coach & Product Manager says “It’s been proven that women with 10 photos receive 8 times more messages. So one just isn’t enough.” Use photos that showcase your lifestyle and add variety. I like to add sporty action shots in the mix. I may be a beauty, but I’m a tomboy at heart. Oh! Remember, if you only post bathroom selfies or show a lot of skin, you will only attract men who are looking for something casual. How you treat yourself will set the standard for those who approach you.
‘Even if you do like “walking on the beach” or “drinking wine in front of a roaring fire” leave it out – everyone says that,’ warns eHarmony.co.uk’s relationship advice expert Jenni Trent-Hughes. ‘Think of something interesting that could be a conversation starter.’ Your write up should showcase personality; highlight your best qualities and what you are looking for. Be upfront and honest. If you are seeking a relationship say so. Having trouble finding the words? Call a girlfriend to help you. Sometimes our friends know us better than we know ourselves. But keep it short and sweet. It’s only an introduction. ‘People have to imagine how they’ll fit into your life, so describing yourself as a “bookworm and internet addict” makes them feel they’d never see you,’ explains match.com’s relationship expert Kate Taylor. ‘Play up your love of anything sporty, outdoorsy or public – like concerts and exhibitions.’
WHAT MAKES YOU INTERESTING?
The more he thinks you have in common, the easier it will be to ask you out. Filling out your interests also gives him an idea about who you are, what you like, may jumpstart a conversation and gives him first date ideas. POF research shows that members who list more than 10 interests receive a 50% increase in messages.
CHECK YOUR GRAMMAR
Instant turn off. Check and double check to ensure your message is clear of spelling and grammatical errors.
THE SKYPE DATE
Some people do coffee, well my ‘first date’ choice is Skype. I will video conference a guy once or twice before actually meeting him; even if it’s just to say a quick hello. Mainly to feel out if he’s creepy lol and to be honest sometimes the cutie you connected with online is not so cute up close (just being real) and that initial chemistry is important. So I rather find out if his reality matches his picture and if he can hold a conversation via Skype than waste my time and a killer outfit when meeting him face-to-face
REMEMBER TO HAVE FUN
Like I said before, nothing is guaranteed, but whatever happens it will make for great stories and laughs you can share with your girlfriends over a glass of wine and reruns of Sex & The City.
Did I miss anything? Have you had success online? We want to hear all about it in the comment section. XO
Peace & Love,