Striking out online? Here are ten online dating faux pas that might be holding you back from love.
1. Your profile photos are sketchy
When online dating, photos are everything. It takes a guy less than 10 seconds to glance at your photos, so it’s crucial that they make a great impression. If your pictures are blurry, old, or solely consist of snaps of your dog, a guy might hesitate to message you simply because he doesn’t know what you look like, and worse, he’s afraid that you’re hiding something. The most attractive quality you can have online (or off!) is confidence. Upload photos that show you in your best light, smiling, having fun, living life and enjoying your hobbies. It’s not about being a supermodel it’s about showing off how attractive YOU are.
2. You ‘like to have fun!’
Online dating sites have thousands upon thousands of members, so you’ve got to make sure your profile stands out. Just about everyone walking the Earth likes to have fun, enjoys laughing and spending time with family and friends, so there is no need to include it in your “About Me” section. Instead, take it one step further. What specific things or hobbies do you do when you’re having fun? What is the last thing that made you laugh so hard you cried? If your profile is generic and boring, a guy is going to think that dating you might be the same.
3. You aren’t putting in the effort
Many women sign up for an online dating site, sit back and simply wait for the sky to start raining hot men, when in reality, online dating is a lot of work. From setting up an alluring profile, to messaging back and forth with prospective suitors, putting in effort will yield the best results. If you receive an email from a guy who interests you, you don’t need to drop everything to respond right away, but writing back within 24 hours is standard online dating etiquette. Schedule time to tackle your online dating inbox everyday, whether it be first thing in the morning with a cup of coffee or while flipping channels at night, wine in hand.
4. You’re too picky
If you find yourself clicking through pages of online dating profiles, declaring that there is absolutely nobody you’d want to date, the problem might be you, not them. Analyzing each guy’s profile with a fine toothed comb, looking for reasons not to respond to a message or meet him for coffee isn’t doing you any favours. A profile is just a digital snapshot of someone, and does not tell the whole story. Who cares if his favourite movie section is full of flicks you think are dumb, or if his profile says he’s 5’10” and you prefer guys who are six feet tall. If something about him sparks interest, meet him for a drink. It’s a cocktail, not marriage.
5. Your profile is one long list of deal-breakers
After going on one too many bad dates or getting yet another ‘ur hot’ message in their Inbox, some frustrated women jump on the defensive, turning their profile into a laundry list of things they do NOT want in a guy. This might work like a charm in keeping the shady characters at bay, but you’re also cutting yourself off from some great guys in the process. When a man reads a profile full of deal-breakers, he assumes the woman is looking for the world’s most perfect guy, and if he doesn’t deliver, she’ll be a nightmare to deal with. No one is perfect, so instead of wasting profile space on the qualities that turn you off, spend more time sharing the things that you are looking for in a future partner.
6. You are afraid to make plans
You can spend hours creating an incredible online dating profile, and hire a photographer to take the most beautiful photos of you, but if you can’t commit to face-to-face plans with a guy, you’re just spinning your wheels. Online dating is a means to an end, and that end is a date, which will hopefully develop into a lasting relationship. So eventually, you have to come out from behind the computer and meet. Yes, it’s nerve-wracking, and yes, some dates won’t live up to their online persona, but at least you won’t be wasting anymore time getting wrapped up in a fantasy.
7. You don’t initiate any messages
Women have it fairly easy in terms of getting attention online – whether it’s the right kind of attention is another story. Men aren’t shy when it comes to sending the first ice-breaker, wink or message, but it’s quality over quantity that matters, and sometimes you’ve got to take matters into your own hands. The easiest way to change your online dating luck is to take control. Don’t hold back when presented with an opportunity to initiate a conversation with a guy you find intriguing. Chances are, he’ll be flattered and immediately respect that you aren’t interested in playing games. Plus, if you don’t talk to him, somebody else will.
8. You stick to the same type
It’s totally normal to be attracted to a certain type of man, and there is nothing wrong with liking what you like. The internet is a vast place though, and it can’t hurt to venture out of your bubble a bit. This is not to say that you should accept a date with every Tom, Dick or Harry who sends a wink your way, but don’t limit yourself -take a chance or two. Let love surprise you by going out for coffee with a guy who is absolutely nothing like the guys you’ve dated in the past, but the few messages he’s sent you have made you crack up laughing. Branch out and see what happens.
9. You treat online dating like a social network
Unlike Facebook or Twitter, an online dating site exists to serve one purpose – to find you a date! Don’t lose focus and treat online dating like a social network. It’s not the place to update your profile with your every thought and feeling, search for a new job, or even establish platonic friendships. Save the drama for Facebook and respect your fellow online daters by keeping your eyes on the prize: Love. Or at least a good date or two.
10. You’re scaring him off
When dating, online or off, men are wired to be wary of one thing – a clingy, needy woman. If a guy notices you exhibiting any of these behaviors before you’ve even met in person, he’ll likely block you and never look back. Messaging a guy five times in a row or obsessively checking to see if he’s logged in and read your emails is a sure way to scare a potential date off for good. It’s also never a good idea to email a guy ‘Hi, did you get my message?’ Trust us, he got it. The same rules apply online as they do in ‘real’ life. Some guys just might not be that interested in you, and vice versa, so don’t waste time trying to force someone to write you back or meet you in person. Just keep moving on to the next.
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