I recently decided to go back on dating sites. Like a new addiction, the thought of having new conversations and possibly meeting up with new and different men seemed a little exciting. It pulled me back in like a black hole consumes matter. With all my coaching tools in hand, I decided to enlist my PMA – Positive Mental Attitude. It has helped me out in many a life-altering situation and so with a big PMA on my forehead, I started. Setting myself up for successful online dating is no small feat.
“This time is going to be different, and I’ll make it my hobby,” I said, lying to myself. My therapist followed my lead and agreed that it was a good thing. I decided to enlist the philosophy of my colleague, Elaine, who successfully found her husband this way. Her approach was very methodical. She had a spreadsheet for each man she dated. And she had a strict vetting process.
First, they had to have a job and car to continue having a conversation with her. Next, there was a phone call, then a coffee date and then when all the boxes were checked, they could go on another date, etc. Elaine’s best advice; Ask the prospect about his friends and family. The answer will tell you everything you need to know about him.
She also, said it’s a numbers game and gave herself 100 dates to find her husband. Ugh, 100 dates! I hate numbers! But more importantly, do I even have the stamina?!
So, with my therapist on speed dial, I hunkered down and decided to enlist a similar strategy. I clicked on my excel spreadsheet and started filling the columns. Name, Dating app, Stats, First Date – where we went, what I wore, etc. Debrief, No or Go, the Second Date. Overall Rating.
This isn’t enough for me. What are my real goals with finding, not just a “LOVER” but a shiny new “LIFE PARTNER.” I developed a rating system based on three characteristics that I thought were essential for my ultimate life partner to have. I called it the 3 C Rating System. Communication, Chemistry, and Confidence. So, I started…scared out of my mind.
Luckily, I had already set up profiles on two sites. They don’t let you leave, ever!
I updated some photos and changed some of my answers, clicked save and off I went. I was swiping left more times than right. Not too impressed with my selection, maybe I should go younger? Yeh, that’s the ticket. Addiction is getting triggered, and I re-establish an appropriate age range, 42 to 59.
A little confession here, I spent the last five years, playing around with much younger men. And although there was tons of learning and fun going on, I found the instability of a “casual” relationship a bit disconcerting. Not having a consistent partner started to wear me down emotionally. I need stability. Ok, ok, I know. It means that I need to be stable in my life to attract that type of partner. So, I ask myself, am I stable in my life right now? The answer.. kind of.
You attract to you that which you send out.
My Rasta friend Bobbi, from Jamaica, rings in my ears, “what goes around, comes around.” I know this. I live this mantra, but yet I’m still “kinda” ok? More work needed, but I’m still Gungho.
Starting a conversation is critical. So I pick out something in the profile and try to be smart.
Here’s one of my first convos:
ME: Hello, so are you saying that you are Clark Kent in disguise?
HIM: It’s the glasses. Does it every time. How are you Wonder Woman, I mean Diana. ?
ME: Yup. The glasses every time. I have been known to do Wonder Woman type things.
So, Mark, instead of doing the texting thing, how about we have a conversation on the phone?
HIM: Sounds like a plan. I’m at work now. We’ll figure out when.
Then, I never heard from him again. I remember when researching loneliness and attachment styles, that I came across a study that revealed a majority of people on dating sites have an avoidant style of attachment. So, what are the chances of me finding my Life Partner, in this heap of avoidants? And how do I change my odds?
I looked to the advice of TED and Master Online Dating Hacker – AMY WEBB. She brilliantly found out the scoring combination that worked for her and successfully matched herself with her husband.
Amy’s key points when online dating:
- Wait up to 24 hours when texting or emailing to respond, no middle of the night communication.
- Use optimistic language with words like fun, girl, love.
- Use non-specific language. Don’t reveal the specific movies or books you like because this could limit your responses.
- Pick photos that show a bit of skin.
With this great advice, I start adjusting my profiles and go back at it. Elaine found her husband after 85 dates. Amy found her husband after a couple of months. Maybe this is a numbers game after all. 😉