How to write effective online dating messages

One of the advantages of online dating is that you are capable of carrying on several asynchronous conversations, fielding responses from persons X and Y while also sending out an introductory message to person Z. Focusing on one single person – even if you’re at the “meeting in person” stage – puts far too much importance on them and makes it sting worse if it doesn’t work out the way you’d hope. Everyone has heard it a thousand times before they saw your profile and they didn’t believe it any of those times either.

In the great chain of credibility, being told something is the least believable.

We’re able to process all of these signals so rapidly that we’re often unaware of it; to our conscious mind, we’re just eliding over the ones who we read as “nope, not interested” while we narrow our focus on the people who do it for us.

All of this subconscious presentation and filtering is lost in online dating; all we have are our words and our photos, so we have to consider how to craft as attractive a snapshot of ourselves as possible.

You have to treat your dating profile as an advertisement; you are, after all, selling yourself to others.

In the physical world, unless you’re Jack Harkness, flirting with several different people simultaneously is a major faux-pas and likely to leave you going home alone – possibly wearing several drinks.

Don’t call attention to it, just work it into your “About Me” section or “What I’m Looking For”.

If your brand of humor trends to the physical or being silly, then post that picture of you as the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man from last Halloween or doing something wacky.

Even for people like me who the whole dance and the chase and the thrill of the new, there will be points when you really just want to take a step back from it for a while and catch your breath and let your ego recover from the beatings that tend to come with it. But just as when you’re trying to meet your future snugglebunny the old-fashioned way, it’s important to understand the potential headaches that come with those marathon OKCupid sessions.

Many of the things that drive people away from online dating can be headed off at the pass with some preparation.

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