Saturday, 30 July 2016

Online dating - the dos and dont's

“Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates and guys are just people to have fun with.”
― Candace Bushnell,
Sex and the City

Online dating - two very scary words! After many failed dates (and a few good ones) the boys in London are no longer something to fear - this is a list of my definitely yes and hell no things to do.

Firstly - your profile - please choose a good picture, a clear one, showing you looking excellent and having fun.
Don't choose an out of focus, or over filtered, or very old picture - you don't want to be a real life disappointment. The amount of pixellated, sunglasses wearing, skiing action shots I see is unbelieveable.

Make sure you engage - I spent a long time being passive and getting nowhere, the whole point is to find and make opportunities. Be brave, message first, start a chat and see how it goes - it's good for the ego I promise.
Maybe this is a good opportunity to go for a different kind of partner, or at least explore the possibility? Chat to people you perhaps wouldn't normally and see what happens!

Use the block button - if someone starts sending those lovely dick pics we all like so much or just won't get the hint....BLOCK THEM #byefelipe

Try a few different sites. See what works for you. I think if you're looking for a relationship you're perhaps more likely to find someone taking it seriously on a paid site, but I know many happy couples who've met on Tinder and Plenty of Fish which are free. Bumble is the new gimmick - putting girls in the driving seat... not sure I approve of letting the date be passive from the get-go.

Only exchange numbers when you feel comfortable to.  I've had lots of guys who chat for weeks and don't make a move and others who invite me over the night we start chatting. Do what you're happy with.
Try to go with the flow! I have a few deal breakers, that if I see in a profile I will move along (like smoking) but don't be too focused on a certain goal, you never know who's round the corner if you can be open minded.
Try not to feel too nervous - You're expecting a confident, chatty fun date so try and be one too!  The more dating you do the less scary it will be (I promise). Easier said than done for you shy people, personally I can't shut up and probably talk way too much!  Make a mental list of things to talk about, what have you been chatting about online? Ask lots of questions and conversation should follow.

Suggest a fun first date. A coffee is all well and good but it can feel like an interview - and I've been on many bad 'interviews'. I suggest you go for a walk, or to a museum or to crazy golf (some ideas here) bonus - it's something else to talk about it you are feeling shy.
Ideally don't get hammered - whilst a cocktail or two may help relax you, getting smashed probably won't.

As Christina Aguilera would say 'trust the voice within' - you can't fake it. If it doesn't feel right for whatever reason, then it probably isn't.  I've been on several dates recently where the guy has been keener than me (first time for everything!) and I've debated continuing dating them to see if anything grows, but unfortunately I think this is easier when you meet someone organically and get to know them over a period of time. In the online world I think that instant chemistry is vital. Without it, you're probably not going to get very far.Take it at your pace and they should understand and accommodate. If they don't - ditch them. Don't be pressured into anything you don't want to do.  I recently ended things with someone who wanted to push and push me to go at their speed.. Bye Bye Mr Clingy
Have fun! (or try to) A friend of mine used to tell me how much fun dating was and I just couldn't understand what she meant. However after a few dates with someone you click with you realise it is fun! I think it's only first dates that are the worst and once you're into multiple dating (with the same person) then it gets a lot more exciting and less stressful.  When you start looking forward to seeing them, you know you're on to a winner.

Never chase someone who's not worth your time. 'Busy' is an excuse. If someone wants to be in your life, they will be there. I'm all for chasing up a slow replier, BUT you can't make someone like you so don't waste your time trying to. 
Don't worry. Most important of all. You're brilliant and you deserve to meet someone brilliant. As the saying goes you have to kiss a lot of frogs to find your Prince so don't panic if it takes longer than it took your mate, or than you thought, or you're still looking. Hopefully you'll have some fun along the way!

I'm sure some of this sounds like the most obvious stuff so let me know your top tips please, I definitely need all the advice I can get

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