Happy New Year!!
Today is known as ‘Dating Sunday’… basically all those single ‘New Year’s Resolutioners’ (yes, I’ve made up that word) are more likely to sign up to a dating site or app today. They’ve had a week to think about it, settle back into life without daily mulled wine, mince pies and Quality Street and they are ready to see what’s out there.
This WILL be the year they will find love.
Or will it?…
Singletons have hopes and dreams of finding “the one” in time for Valentines Day… 2018 wont be the year of angrily scrolling through Facebook looking at all the lovely romantic things that smug happy couples are doing for each other. We WILL be involved and doing it ourselves…..
An old school friend of mine has recently got in touch since the launch of my book, and we’ve been chatting loads about the online dating apps, dates we’ve been on, etc… she tells me my book has inspired her to get back out there and date again which makes me very happy – I am also however amazed as I thought my stories would have been enough to put anyone off for life!
For anyone who is brand new to online dating, or for anyone who is returning to online dating, I thought I’d give you some tips that I think have helped me on my journey- not that I’m in ANY way an expert- these are just my own personal thoughts.
My first rule is: you MUST be ready for it. Don’t go on there because you’ve recently split up with someone and are looking for an ego boost or a distraction. Yes, both of those are a great way to get over someone, but make sure that you are emotionally ready for what you’re about to enter. The rejection can be pretty grim- you need to grow thick skin and also be prepared for some absolute loons. But if your head isn’t in it, and you actually meet someone who is 100% ready for a relationship, it’s not fair on that person- pulling them into your life to then have to say sorry you’re not ready, isn’t great. If however you are however just looking for some fun then that’s cool. You will find others are too, but you must just be honest from the start. To be ready, you must love yourself. If you don’t love yourself, how do you expect anybody else to?
Which leads me onto my second rule: always be honest. Be honest with what you’re looking for. Be honest with your photos. Don’t just use selfies that you’ve taken hours to perfect and only taking them from your “best” side- the right person will like ALL your sides. Don’t be afraid to show who you are. When you’re proud and happy with who you are, you’ll realise what you deserve and start to attract the right people. Make sure your photos show a full reflection of your life. Selfies with pouts 6 times over doesn’t really give much away about yourself… unless that’s literally all you do all day everyday. Try and show the variety of your life… give something away about yourself. It’s hard to judge someone if every photo is pretty much identical. (not that judging is a good thing at all on dating sites but let’s be honest… we all do it as photos are pretty much all we’ve got to go on!)
When it comes to what do you write… I know some people do just go off photos and don’t read the info but I think you may as well write it as best you can in case someone IS interested in what do you and what you like. But don’t just write the standard “I like going out for drinks to bars with my mates but also like to snuggle up and watch films on the sofa and I like holidays” because pretty much 80% of the people online write this. I wouldn’t suggest writing loads as online daters don’t really have the time to sit through everyone’s life story, however a few short concise sentences about things you’re into may help you find a date with someone with similar interests.
Something else I’ve discovered (after 4 looonnggg years of online dating) is to try and meet up with someone as soon as possible. Ok, I don’t mean after “hi, you’ve got a nice face, meet me for a drink in an hour?”… you can tell within a good few messages if someone is your kind of person. Give it a few days of chatting then suggest meeting. BUT just meet for an hour. For a coffee or something that you know is short and there’s zero pressure. You can tell from just an hour if you like someone and want to see them again- in fact you can tell within about 2 minutes! Even if there’s an instant spark and you want to stay longer… make sure you have something planned that you have to go to afterwards- meaning you definitely leave as it then makes date 2 more exciting. Leave them wanting more! The problem that I’ve found with chatting for weeks on end is that you build something up in your head. You get on really well on text message and maybe even on the phone. You decide that this is it and when you finally meet it’s going to be amazing. However more often then not… for me anyway… it’s a disappointment. And you’ve spent all this time investing in someone, learning about their lives… to then not want to see or hear from them again after the date. Disappointment is the biggest thing I’ve learnt about from online dating. Try not to put yourself in a position where disappointment may be on the cards.
The other thing that I’ve learnt is to just be honest after a date. Or even after a few dates. If you know it’s not right… don’t cling onto it hoping they’ll turn into the person of your dreams… don’t be afraid to say that you’re sorry, it’s been lovely but if your not feeling the “spark” then just say so. It’s good for them and it’s good for you. They’ll move on pretty quickly.
You also can’t make someone like you. If they are showing signs of kind of being interested but also not really all that bothered then move on asap. Don’t waste time, don’t keep texting asking to see them. If someone genuinely likes you and wants to see you, you’ll know about it. Have some self respect and know it’s not good for you and they could be blocking you from meeting “the one” so let go and move on. Do not settle just because they are nice and you both like going for walks and drinking coffee. There needs to be more.
I’m also not a big believer or fan of games. If you want to text someone… text them. If you sent the last text and they haven’t yet replied… it’s totally ok to send another… so long as they aren’t ghosting you and so long as you aren’t saying “hello? Why are you ignoring me?”… Again, if someone likes you, they aren’t going to judge if you sent 2 texts in a row. But at the same time, if someone doesn’t respond instantly… remember that you don’t yet fully know how their lives flow. They may be busy. Stuck in a meeting. Seeing friends and being mindful of not getting their phone out of their pocket. Try not to over think it- as hard as it is! It can drive you crazy. Especially if you’re a “Whatsapper” and can see their time stamp!! I’ve tried to become much more relaxed about this in recent months.
Like I say, I’m really no expert but after a 4 years of learning how all this works, making all the mistakes, falling for all the games… I think I’ve finally worked out how it works for me, I know everyone is different but hopefully some of what I’ve learnt will help you on your journey.
Just remember to be 100% yourself and the right person will want to date you. Hopefully forever!
Enjoy and GOOD LUCK!xx
‘It Started With A Swipe’ the book is available to buy now online here: http://amzn.eu/84ZdGNZ