Emotional Wellbeing


Mandy Kloppers

Top tips for online dating


dating photo

Top tips for online dating

Online dating offers access to all sorts of potential partners – people you might not normally cross paths with in your daily life. Novice online daters tend to be quite naive though with regard to their expectations, thinking they will find a suitable partner very quickly. However, once you have been on there a while, you can become ‘hardened’, seeing potential partners as objects (eg. this person isn’t perfect, I will just go back online for a new one) and become increasingly fussy and more of a commitment-phobe.

I have tried online dating several times and have learned a lot from my experiences and research (I ask lots of questions)…Here are my top tips.

Keep it short and sweet

Don’t write long messages (more than one paragraph) initially as it will seem as if you are trying too hard. However, too short won’t get you anywhere either. Try to put something in that ‘hooks’ the other person or intrigues them enough to reply. Many people just don’t stand out and write something very mundane. Show your wit and be original.

Check how long someone has been dating online

This one should be used with caution as someone who has been dating online for a while (more than 6 months without dating seriously)could still be a great catch. Just be aware though that someone who tends to spend a lot of time online, seems vague and evasive and has been dating online for a long time might be someone who isn’t dating seriously. They are probably more interested in playing the field than settling down into a committed relationship. Keep it in mind but use this one loosely.

Stand out. Use your sense of humour and originality

Show your humour and your quirky personality – it will hit the right spot with the right person. Don’t be too extreme in the early days though but don’t be afraid to stand out. So many people are bland and fade into the crowd. Make sure that you seem different. Are you a thinker? Add something in about this – eg. Have you ever wondered how an optimist hangs their toilet paper? or tell them a short anecdote or a recent funny story. This gives them more to reply to. Don’t use statements like “I enjoy going out or staying in with a bottle of wine” or “I like to live life to the full” – nearly EVERY profile has these sentences! Use your judgement but don’t be shy to be a little different. It can make the difference between a reply or being ignored.

Don’t try too hard

Match their messages and don’t keep sending messages if they haven’t replied yet. Show them that you have an interesting life outside of dating and that this isn’t your sole focus in life – that would be very off-putting if finding a partner was your sole aim in life! Remember that initially, most people while be writing to 2-3 other people, so keep it funny but casual initially.

Develop a thick skin

This probably sounds a bit negative but it is a good idea not to take rejection personally. Often, you will be writing to someone and they will disappear and stop writing. Don’t automatically assume that it was something you did/didn’t do. People can be very fickle when it comes to online dating and they may have decided to give it a go with someone else…or they could have decided they are fed up with online dating and do a disappearing act.

See your successes and failures as part of the dating process. It happens to everyone and is not a reflection on your value and love-ability. Sometimes we just aren’t matched to certain people. It’s about compatibility and not your worth!

Mandy X


Any other tips? Please comment!