As I mentioned in my blog post “The Purpose,” I think relationships are the most important things you can build in life. Therefore, I write a lot about them. Going through my drafts this weekend, I discovered quite a large back-log of posts about romantic relationships in particular. With Valentine’s Day coming up and all, I figured I’d break a few out and polish them up – so you might notice a similar theme over the next few weeks…just a heads up!
I have a confession to make. Prior to meeting Captain America, I was on a dating website. I won’t go into any details about which one or how it worked, but I will say that within 15 minutes of signing up and perusing matches, it became clear why 90% of the people were there. And after having conversations with some of them, it was even more apparent.
So, for all of you folks out there, sitting at home in front of the computer, wondering why you’re still single this February – here are a few tips. Just a note: although it comes across as mostly directed at guys, much of what I mention is equally applicable for the ladies – but since this is my blog I’ll write how I want to dang nabbit! :P
– First and foremost: If you can’t be bothered to read, or at least skim through, someone’s profile – don’t bother starting a conversation. You’re clearly not that interested in what they have to say already, and your lack of interest will be immediately apparent when you ask a question they’ve already answered. Also, if it’s obvious that you only messaged someone because you think they’re attractive – well, that’s why you’re single.
– Use pictures of your face: The reason you don’t have a girlfriend is because you’re wearing a darth vader mask in every picture…need I say more?
– Sex doesn’t actually sell: Is every picture you post one of you with your shirt off? If you feel the need to flaunt how hot you are, or constantly talk about your sexual escapades, nothing will turn someone off faster.
– USE. PUNCTUATION: Odd, I know, because I just used it incorrectly there by making everything all capitals – but seriously. If someone’s first impression of you is going to be based off a message you send them on the internet, and every word is misspelled, you can bet they won’t be responding. Those red squiggly lines are called spell check. Use it!
– Don’t over-share: And save sharing those things that you’re worried people are going to judge you on, for the first (or second, or third!) date, when you have a chance to explain. Don’t just throw things out there willy-nilly that are hard to digest. Most people won’t respond well to certain admissions without understanding the context.
– If you’re still turned down: At the end of the day, be respectful with your responses. If your automatic reaction is to write back and insult the person, or even try to argue with their decision, you will only compound their belief that they made the right choice in denying you – and that’s why you’re single.
Obviously, basically everything I just said is irrelevant if you understand the concept of making a good first impression. Unfortunately, I’ve recently discovered that not very many people do – at least not very many 20-somethings.
What it really comes down to is this: self-expression is very important – and realistically, a good first impression can’t be made unless you’re able to express your personality. But it’s still an infinitely better reflection of that personality if you manage to follow some basic rules on etiquette and personal interaction along the way.
Have you ever tried online dating? Do you have any interesting stories to share with the class? What tips do you have for people trying to make a good first impression, in general?