Unveiling the mystery of online dating

With an influx of online dating apps, dating online is becoming more and more a part of our culture. People go online to find their dream home, dream car and dream job, why not try and find their dream man (or woman)? However, there’s still a bit of a stigma surrounding online dating that makes some people think twice about creating a profile. Here are a few tips that may help pull away the shroud around online dating.

1. Dating is complicated

It doesn’t matter if you’re dating people traditionally or online, dating is a difficult, complex and sometimes messy experience. Finding matches online doesn’t make it any easier, it just changes how you go about meeting and getting to know someone.

2. It takes time and effort

One of the biggest myths about online dating is that it takes up less time than trying to date through traditional means. This is completely false. Online dating offers up a wider range of people to choose from and so you have to spend more time evaluating who might be a potential fit and who doesn’t make the cut.

3. It’s not all about the hookups

While there are a fair share of men and women simply looking for a hookup, there are also a lot of individuals looking for something more serious. The beauty of online dating is that it’s usually evident based on their profiles where they stand.

4. Don’t be afraid to be awkward

The reality is, meeting someone new and trying to figure out if they could be right for you can lead to some pretty awkward situations. Don’t let yourself be daunted by the possibility of fumbling over whether to split the check or whether a handshake, hug or a kiss is the right way to end the evening. Roll with the awkward punches and you’ll realize that it’s perfectly normal and can lead to some pretty great bonding moments or at least, great stories.

5. Know what you’re worth

Before you walk into a date, give yourself a pep talk. List off the things that are great about you and remember how amazing you are. Not only will it boost your confidence and make you more comfortable, but it will also give you a better perspective regarding your date. If you keep in mind how exceptional you are, you won’t settle for someone who isn’t your equivalent.

6. Diversify your portfolio

On a recent podcast discussing online dating, one of the guests on the show referred to online dating as “diversifying your portfolio.” Online dating is not the end-all, be-all to finding your soulmate, but it is a way to open yourself up to new experiences and new people you may never have encountered otherwise. That being said, if you’re online dating, don’t limit yourself to the profiles you find online. Instead, stay open to the possibility of meeting people in your day-to-day life.

While online dating isn’t for everyone, it’s a great way to put yourself out there and learn the ins and outs of dating in a low pressure situation. Simply giving yourself the chance to figure out what you really value when it comes to a significant other is a worthwhile experience.

Iris Proctor
Iris is the director of ArborWoman.