8 Online Dating Mistakes You May Not Know You’re Making
Are you frustrated with online dating?
Maybe you’ve heard success stories of couples meeting online, but you’re wondering if online dating is even a good fit for you.
If your online dating profile is more of a source of stress and frustration than it is a point of connection to meet other Catholic singles, don’t give up. There are a few mistakes you could be making that are simple to fix and can make a world of difference.
Here are eight mistakes you should avoid at all costs in order to have a great experience on an online dating site.
1. Leaving your profile incomplete
So you’ve picked your profile picture, but the rest of your profile is totally empty? Empty profiles can be confusing to other online daters, and could be causing your profile to be skipped over. After all, how can they find out your personality and common interests if there isn’t anything to read through?
Set aside a few minutes to put some information into your profile today. If you’re wondering if your profile is headed in the right direction, ask a trusted friend or family member to read through it and give you their thoughts.
2. Skimming through profiles
Pages and pages of potential matches on online dating sites can be overwhelming. In an attempt to see as many people as you can, you may find yourself skimming through profiles.
But if you want to authentically connect with someone via online dating, you need to take time to read through profiles. If you’re not intentional, you may find yourself scrolling through pages of profiles, thinking of online dating websites an online potential spouse catalog instead of an opportunity to encounter others in an authentic way.
3. Lying on your profile
A University of Wisconsin study estimated that 81% of people with an online dating profile lie about things like their height, weight, or age in their profile.
Since a majority of people dating online lie on their profile, should you stretch the truth a little, too? Although it’s tempting to tell little white lies,lying on your online dating profile sabotages your dating and love life.
Dishonesty discourages vulnerability in a new relationship. Even though it may seem like telling a few white lies here and there couldn’t harm your chances at love, lying may actually keep you from meeting someone.
Ironically, lying about anything from your physical appearance to your financial situation could lead to less confidence in those areas.
But one way you can build your self-confidence is to stop lying about things you’re insecure about. Instead, simply show up and let yourself be seen by those who view your profile and reach out to you.
4. Never sending a message
One problem online daters can experience when looking through online dating sites is that there are so many options. After all, 66% of singles in the United States alone say that they use online dating as a tool to expand their dating pool. While it’s great to have options, the result can leave you overwhelmed, reluctant to reach out to anyone.
Break out of the cycle of analysis paralysis and send a message. Chances are, the person you’re wondering if you should message is also trying to figure out how to navigate through pages of of people looking for love.
For most women, the first rule of dating is to let the guy make the first move. Maybe you have an online dating profile and you’re waiting for the first message. But your parent’s dating rules have changed quite a bit in the last few decades. If you’re a single lady in search of a great relationship, here consider making that first move yourself. You may just end up going out on a great date!
5. Never getting off-line with dates
So you’ve found someone that you’re interested in and the feeling is mutual. Now what do you do? Don’t make the mistake of staying online when you could be getting to know your love interest in person.
If your match is local, choose a daytime place to meet up. You’ll learn much more about someone in ten minutes of face-to-face conversation than you would over dozens of exchanged text messages or e-mails.
Is your match on the other side of the world, or maybe a few states away? Exchanging phone numbers and taking your communication offline is a good place to start. Communicating with a phone call, Face Time, or Skype session is a great way to be intentional with your communication. You can’t stay on that dating site forever!
6. Dishonest or confusing profile pictures
Maybe you choose a picture of you outside in attempts to attract someone who values athleticism and fitness. But if you actually would much rather be inside reading, you’ll be disappointed when your date only wants to spend time in the mountains or on the trail. But in addition to leaving you feeling discontent with your dates, you’ll also be disrespecting those who are pursuing you.
7. Sending non-personal messages
It’s tough to decide what to say in that first message. If you’re reaching out to a few people at a time, it’s tempting to save yourself some time and copy and paste the same conversation opener into the chat box. But don’t start off conversations with generic and non-personal messages.
Instead of “Hey,” or “How are you,” start a conversation about one of their interest that you share or find interesting. This allows you to start a natural conversation between the two of you, which can lead to something more!
8. Giving up too soon
Are you experiencing a dating burnout? Avoiding your messages? Sick of being let down? Just tired of dating?
If you’ve been on quite a few bad dates recently, it may seem like your time and effort were a total waste of time. But those awful dates aren’t a waste at all! If the dating scene is wearing you out, take time to reflect back on the dates you’ve been on recently. No, this doesn’t mean critiquing your date for that awful choice of suit jacket or the way she couldn’t stop talking about herself. Instead, think about what you didn’t like the evening. What kept you from enjoying your time during the date?
Spending time in self-reflection (and prayer!) will allow you a space to fine-tune your desires and hopes for a good date. Without that time of reflection, it’s easy to spiral into a habit of lazy dating. Take time to think about what you’re looking for in a good date and don’t be afraid to share those desires with your next date!
If you’re worn out by the online dating scene, you may need to deactivate your dating profile for a while and take a quick breather. But don’t give up on finding that special person! You never know when your time will come to connect with someone (online or off!).
Chloe Langr is a very short stay-at-home-wife, whose growth has probably been stunted by the inhumane amounts of coffee she regularly consumes. When she is not buried in a growing stack of books, she can be found spending time with her husband, geeking out over Theology of the Body, or podcasting. You can find more about her on her blog "Old Fashioned Girl."