Friday, 27 April 2012

Dating Seeking Love Online

This is a totally unscientific rant based on my own observations of people both in real life and on dating sites. By direct observation, I have seen dozens of people succeed in finding a solid life partner using online dating sites, but I have also seen many more fail.  I joined several dating sites some years ago and ended up getting caught up in how it is that people interact online versus real life. I have also tapped into my own extensive circle of friends and acquaintances in this same time period and also witnessed most aspects of the offline dating world as well.

So what have I found?
Interestingly enough, not much that has not already been discussed before.

Offline dating has been going on for thousands of years, and I doubt if anyone today could actually find much to add to the existing literature. I will therefore not try to pontificate in any manner on that aspect of dating, other than to note that most people tend to date within an extended community of friends for the most part. 

Internet dating, which is a higher tech offshoot of the matchmaking services that have been around for hundreds of years, is a relatively new beast, and as such, there are some insights that can be passed on that most people have yet to learn.

So lets start with some popular misconceptions:
Dating Sites Have Fool Proof Matching Formulas
False – The second is that people do not really know for sure what it is that they are looking for in a mate.  They may think that they do, but if you look around and talk to people you will often find people in very successful relationships that have trouble understanding why it was that they first clicked! What it comes down to is head and heart – no matter what your head says, your heart will overrule successfully every time. Your head rules by logic, your heart rules by chemistry. I defy you to define the chemistry of your perfect match!!

I Do Not Have To Work As Hard On A Dating Site To Find Someone I Like
False – To make a long story short, it takes a lot of time getting to know anyone that you hope to be your life partner. You just cannot take any shortcuts here. In fact, for this aspect of using a dating site it takes more effort because of the anonymous nature of the environment. Everyone is using made up handles, so it is not as if you can check with a mutual friend to see what they are really like.

Internet Dating Sites are a Great Place To Find People to Date
True – If you are a person who uses dating to interact with someone that you are interested in; then a dating site is likely to connect you with many more people than you can possibly find via your own means offline.

Dating Sites Are Better At Connecting You To Your Soul Mate.
False – Maybe false is too harsh – it is a definite perhaps, and it depends on your attitude. If you are willing to look outside of your normal comfort zone, you have a better chance finding someone on an internet dating site that you would through your own personal network of friends.

So What Good Are Dating Sites Anyway ? Well, they are really good for people who are open to discovering more about what they are really interested in. They are good for people who have not been successful finding their soul mate in real life because quite frankly they are looking for the wrong type of person in the wrong places.  If you approach online dating with an open mind, you will likely be able to interact with many more disparate people then you normally hang out with, and in that process, discover more about what you like in other people, which may just change your mind about who you need in your life to complete you.

You should approach using a dating site as you would approach using any new tool that can improve your productivity. It is possible for someone to use a tool incorrectly and end up being hurt. It is possible to be sloppy how you use a tool and end up getting inferior results (don't blame the tool). If you take the time to learn the advantages and disadvantages of the tool, and employ that tool correctly, then you have the optimal chance of finding your perfect match.

So, open your heart and give online dating a try.

You can start here: