Love can be found anywhere in the world. If you are open minded, online dating can facilitate access to a greater pool of potential ideal partners. The trick is having some sense of what you want out of the venture.
Here are the five lessons I learned from online dating.
1) Know yourself.
The most important thing to take into any venture is self knowledge. When dating online, you have to go into it knowing what you want out of a relationship and what you expect from a potential partner. Beware of getting swept up by the lure of something new and exciting and loosen your priorities.
2) Is the juice worth the squeeze?
We all have that Hollywood idea of the romantic guy who finds that one gem, that diamond in the rough that he just knows he will never find again. This compels him to either completely revamp his whole life view to capture the prize or lose his one shot at true love forever. Is this a true depiction of plausible reality? I thought it was for me. Although, I’m not so sure of the outcome now. Maybe I need to watch more of those movies to get a clue on how to proceed.
3) Easier text than done.
Don’t believe everything you hear. Likewise, don’t believe everything you read. It is easy for people to write about themselves in strictly positive terms. How many times have you come across a profile online where a person describes him or herself as temperamental, egotistical, cheater, or in some other negative sense? Few times if any at all. Take it all with a grain of salt and imagine what character flaws might be there based on your interactions.
4) Pictures are worth a thousand words, not a thousand actions.
It is easy to get carried away by a pretty face. We are programed by nature to be attracted to beautiful people, and this attraction disables our sense of self-preservation. We look at a pretty face, a nice body, and we equate it with goodness and virtue. Nothing could be farther from the truth.
5) If it’s too good to be true…
We are all familiar with some variant of the saying, “If it’s too good to be true, it probably is.” We are all great sales persons when it comes to making ourselves look great online. Just like one person will say they’re a non-smoker, but in private they unwind with a cigarette or two after a busy day, most people keep a lot of their true behaviors or inclinations private.
So the overall message is be careful who you love online. And if you see a red flag, don’t be afraid to just bolt. Because if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck; it’s probably a duck…or a nut job with multiple personalities; one of which is a duck.