By Elizabeth Glasband, Author of Are You Kidding Me? A Journal of First Dates, Flings, and Finding Love
Have you considered signing up for Match.com, eHarmony, or any other dating website, but fear it will be just one more chore to do? Or are you already on there and you just don’t like it as much as you thought? Sure some dates can be disastrous, but some can be AMAZING, and the process doesn't have to be painful.
It's all about streamlining, planning out your timeframe, and having the right attitude. Will every date be romantic and magical? You can guess the answer to that is no. But even if it isn’t that great, sometimes you walk away with the funniest stories to tell, and it is all worth it. I have experienced that many times before and I just published my first book about my dating experiences. Are You Kidding Me? A Journal of First Dates, Flings, and Finding Love details my journey of five years of dating in the city and all the ups and downs of looking for “The One.” Online dating is a big part of my book, and I learned many tricks on how to make it more enjoyable.
5 Tips for Better Online Dating
1. Don’t feel guilty about not responding to all emails. What do you do when your inbox is flooded with emails from guys/girls that you have zero interest in? Just thinking about responding to every one of those is so stressful. Do you have to put everyone else down and say you aren’t interested? The answer to that is definitely not. Everyone always says how much they love honesty, but to get a rejection email every time you send someone a first email is worse than just being ignored. Most people know that some people on there aren't active or aren't paying so they can't respond, etc. So in my opinion, unless the person sends five emails begging for you to tell them why you aren't responding, just let it go and respond to the people you think you might have a connection with.
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2. Set a time limit beforehand for dates. It is important to plan ahead and tell your date that you can meet for an hour for a drink, or whatever activity you are doing. That way if you want to get out of there, you can easily. And if you like the person (and hopefully you do), you can always stay. Your date most likely isn’t going to say anything about the fact that you only said you have an hour, and if he or she does say something, your plans could always change.
3. Think of a great first date as just that - a great first date! Don't think of it as a new potential girlfriend/boyfriend, or wife/husband, or lifelong partner. Rather, view it as a way to tell if you want there to be a second date. First dates can be amazing, but jumping to conclusions of where the relationship may end up, is never a good idea.
4. Don't be afraid to share your entertaining stories from your online dating experiences. It can actually make it less awkward to be able to talk about online dating, rather than just avoid the subject altogether. I wouldn't talk about past relationships, but a lot of people have funny stories and they can be amusing to share. For instance, I met up with this guy at Starbucks and I knew right away he wasn't for me. We sat at a table and talked for a little while, but I wasn't into him at all. When I got home he sent me this message, "I HAD AN AMAZING TIME AND I REALLY LIKE YOU!!!!" (and yes he wrote in all caps). I told him I didn't think we were really a match and then what came next was shocking. He said that he really wanted to hang out again and offered me $100 to hang out with him again. I said "no way" and he upped it to $200, as if I was saying no because of the amount of money, not the situation itself!
5. Have fun! Always remember to relax and have a good time. Don’t act like you are on an interview, and just start firing off the questions. Don’t think of it like a job where you are just searching for your match. Rather enjoy yourself and all the experiences you will gain from meeting new people, because you never know how it will all turn out.
More from Galtime.com:
- How to Deal with Online Dating Rejection
- Do You Call After You Sleep Together?
- When You Friend Flirts with Your Guy: 5 Tips
- The Secret Ingredient to Boost Your Dating Confidence
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