Monday, March 3, 2014

My “Merry-Go-Round” Ride With Online Dating


Back And Forth With Online Dating?.…4 Things To Consider....

Online dating sites, dating apps, text dating, etc…etc.  I think we have complicated dating so much that the person we go on a date with isn’t even that important anymore.  In other words, we give technology much more importance than we should in dating.  Technology should only be used as a means to an end-not the end.  Unfortunately, many of us have become so dependent on technology helping us to find someone that we have become totally helpless without it.

As a late bloom Gen-Xer or early bloom Millennial, I often find myself reminiscing on the days when there were no cell phones, no dating apps, texting hadn’t been invented and online dating was but a blur.  In those days, outside of meeting someone in school or at work, you either had to schedule a week’s worth of events or activities to go to or you had to ask your family and friends for help in finding someone.  Both of which yielded great results because in the first case, you got to meet the person on the spot and you knew right then and there whether the person liked you.  In the second case, your family and friends were your best kept secret for helping you find someone because they knew your heart and would only do what was in your best interests.

It’s actually not the technology itself that is the issue but more so that we are still human beings learning to operate in a system that does not include chemistry, feelings, or even a simple gut feeling if someone isn’t right despite what the “algorithms” say is a great match.  Of course, if and when they do develop computer systems with feelings, then we’ll revisit this issue…LOL!  But seriously, nothing will replace our intuition and how our body language changes automatically when something’s not being said in a conversation with the person we just met.  No computer can compare to the spiritual intuitive capacity human beings have when it comes to picking the right mate.

So am I against online dating?  Absolutely not!  I would be a fool to “throw the baby out with the bath water” because there are so many great features about it that have proven to be a great alternative.  I believe the keyword here is alternative.  I don’t think online dating was ever meant to be the only method you use for dating.  A potential mate who lives a couple blocks away from you in your own neighborhood that you see every day at the local grocery store (or gas station or Wal-Mart or the local mall or at your child’s school or at church or at the library or at the gym) may not be on any online dating website.  If all you’re doing is online dating then you will have missed out on a great opportunity to meet someone in person who probably has more in common with you than anyone you meet online.

What I am advocating is that we challenge ourselves to go back to our roots in dating.  Here are 4 things to consider: 

·         Try doing it “old school style” by going out to places that interests you.  This way you will have a lot in common with the person you meet making the beginning conversations a lot easier to navigate.  Reflect on your hobbies or interests and see if there are groups and associations who share those interests.  If there are no groups or associations with those interests, start one and that way you will definitely have an advantage of meeting like-minded people.

·         Be more observant of the people around you.  I can’t tell you how many singles I see on a daily basis sitting alone, eating alone, or just casually waiting in line.  This is a perfect time to meet people.  If you’re a guy, this is the perfect chance for you to meet her because she will probably be more open to you when she is alone rather than with family, friends or co-workers.  As for women, I’m a little traditional and not a big proponent of women approaching men or being overly flirtatious with them but if you’re at least being open and friendly, then hopefully he will see you and want to strike up a conversation (which is why you should always look great!). 

·         Don’t be ashamed to ask your family and friends for help.  I know you’re a high powered attorney who does not want to call your mommy for help with dating, but what do you have to lose?  She will be quite happy to just see her daughter walk down the aisle.  And if her match for you works out, then she’ll have something to brag about and more importantly, you’ll have a husband or long term mate.  This is probably the best way to meet people other than college.  Your family and friends know you inside and out and are really your best dating advocates to find love.

·         Take time to just have great experiences.  Let’s face it.  Life is stressful.  We’re stressed on our jobs, stressed with our kids, and now we place stress on our dating lives.  Well, as you can imagine, it can be hard to date someone when you’re stressed out about it.  This is the one area of life where it should still be fun and relaxing.  When you put so much pressure on yourself to find someone, your potential suitors will feel that, and want no parts of it.    

Now, I know this is easier said than done.  But let’s think about it.  Anything in life worth having, you are going to have to work hard to get.  Relationships are not an exception to this rule.  Nothing comes easy.  Even married couples who have been married for 20 years or so can probably attest to the fact that it has not been without a struggle.  There are simply no real short cuts in life.  Sure, it may sound simple to post your profile online and then do nothing, but then ask yourself what have been your results?

As the seasons change, maybe we should consider changing our dating lifestyles too.  Challenge yourself to try meeting as many people as possible, even without the possibility of meeting that special someone.  I think you’ll find a true gem in this space because you’re now allowing God or the Universe to work for you.  The more you’re out and about experiencing life, you’ll find that people will attract to you for that reason.  And the more people that are attracted to you, the better your chances of meeting that special person.

Food for thought!

For more helpful dating tips, please check out my website at www.liveloveaspire.blogspot.com or you may inquire about my dating/relationship coaching services at www.liveloveaspire.com.

Please do follow me on twitter or on Facebook to find out the release of my new book:  Live Love Aspire

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  3. I think it's just that the online dating sites with free messaging are competing with all sorts of funky apps and social websites, and this has made them concentrate on the technology side of it more than perhaps the meeting part, though I found MeetOutside to be a good mixture of both of these aspects.

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