Updating a new online dating profile is both a simultaneously overwhelming and underwhelming experience. Whether it’s your first time diving in or you’ve cycled through more apps then you can remember, you’ll be filled with hope, anxiety, and excitement all at once. Singleness and dating have changed exponentially since Tinder hit the scene in 2012. Allowing a person to swipe away in a nano second has created repercussions of the swiping syndrome. So how is a single person to find love today?
With more and more people juggling multiple dating apps, there is now a shelf life to your online profile. And it’s shorter than you think. Your success now depends on your online profile value. That is, the desirability your profile is worth to the opposite sex. There are certain positives and negatives which will add value or diminish it. And literally, time is money.
There are two main areas that will retract from your online profile value:
• You’ve been online for “a while”. This could be 6 weeks, 6 months, or 6 years.
• You’re on multiple dating sites.
Some additional “knock out” sub-categories that will bring the value of your profile down:
• Your profile is poorly written or outdated, ex: “It’s 2013 and looking to get out there!”
• You have way too many pictures. Ex: Landscape shots, fish pics, cat /dog pics, pictures of food.
• You take pictures of a picture and post them.
• Your pictures are obviously old, such as at an event where the date is posted or obvious.
• Your summary says “I’ll be finishing this section soon.”
• You start messaging people now that you previously messaged on another site.
Because of the rise of the “swipe” mentality, we have little tolerance for any profile that doesn’t leap right off the page. In fact, if it doesn’t take our breath away, we will dismiss it instant. This is further amplified if any of the above “knock out” areas also apply. So how do we stand out amongst the rest? How do we connect with another person with all of this stacked against us?
Online dating is just one way to meet people and it’s a very competitive marketplace. We must hold a mirror to ourselves, put together a superficial package, and call it our “profile summary”. At best, we must write about who we are and what we want. At worse, it becomes a monotonous monologue of our dating woes, or worse, a checklist of our ideal partner. When days and weeks go by without making a real connection, we are judged by it. It isn’t fair. It doesn’t reflect the true struggles singles go through to try to meet someone, but it’s there. You’ve judged others by it yourself, haven’t you?
We could all stand to instill a little humility and compassion to each other online. If being super choosy was reserved for the right of the select few, millions of us wouldn’t be online. If that method of dating frustrates you, there are other ways. Single people, who want a relationship, really want to find a connection to a special person. So the larger question is how do we connect? Being able to relate to a stranger is a muscle you can practice using every day. You can do this with random acts of kindness, in expressing generosity, or patience.
Finding love and being in love is as much a reflection of your inner state as your outer circumstances. If you judge someone you’ve never met simply because you’ve seen them on another dating site, imagine what they’re thinking of you? If all of this seems too overwhelming, call me. I work with hundreds of singles to help them get to the point where they’re not only accepting of others, but of themselves. Dating is a process unlike any other, but it can provide you with a tremendous opportunity for self-growth, and who knows? You may just meet the one!
Aimee Burke is a dating coach and matchmaker at LunchDates. Aimee specializes in date coaching for singles in the Boston area. She also serves as an executive matchmaker and recruits professional singles for her clients.
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