Creating an online dating profile is not an easy task. How can you possibly sum up your entire life in a couple short sentences in a way that will be attractive and captivating to the prospective partner of your dreams? In short, you don’t – and shouldn’t. While you may be tempted to pack in as much information as you can, brevity and succinctness are key.
A co-worker recently decided to get back in the dating game and approached me to assist in setting up her online profile which got me thinking about how I view online dating profiles. Admittedly, I do make snap judgments based on the language, tone and images a woman uses to present herself. I’m probably not alone in this.
Regardless of what online dating site or smartphone app you may favour, visitors to your profile aren’t looking to write your biography, they are looking for the Coles Notes version of who you are. You can spare the stories about the friends you made at summer camp or how embarrassed you felt to have braces in junior high school. Nobody cares.
I’ve dabbled in the online dating scene in various places and spaces (Plenty of Fish, Tinder) with varying success, but was constantly amazed at the full-disclosure-crazy some women let out of the bag. You can practically smell the bunny burning on the stove before first contact is even initiated. Casting judgments on previous partners and placing strict limitations on future ones is a pretty quick and easy way to cull the herd. If you document a lengthy and unreasonable list of “must have” attributes that potential suitors should exhibit before contacting you, then you may as well start investing in comfy slippers and cats.
My advice for my attractive and intelligent, but admittedly jaded co-worker was as follows: You should outline your interests and passions, be honest in what you are looking for but also be open to new things. There are certain acceptable terms one can use to describe what you are looking for without sending would-be beaus running for the hills. For instance, saying you aren’t privy to casual encounters is better than saying you want to be married - yesterday.
As far as choosing ideal images to accompany your profile, be cognizant of the type of person you want to attract. Posting bikini shots, mirror “selfies” or spring break booze-ups will result in nobody taking you seriously and only looking for one thing - so class it up. Finally, a simple smile can go a long way but you’d be surprised how many profiles feature grimaces and frowns.
More than anything, keep it positive. Everyone has past experiences and idiosyncrasies so there is no reason to drown someone with your baggage before you even meet.