How to rewrite your dating profile for optimum results


 

Have you rewritten your profile many times, or is it something you did and haven’t looked at since?

What should your dating PROFILE say?

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After seven years of dating online myself, my thoughts on this subject are from experience and a special place in my heart for those in the dating game.

So – are you over 40 and looking to find your sweetheart?

It’s tough knowing what to say in a few sentences to capsulize your life, your hopes, and your priorities.  That’s part of writing an online dating profile.

There’s an expression –

“YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND ANOTHER PERSON’S EXPERIENCE UNTIL YOU’VE WALKED A MILE IN THEIR SHOES.”

So how do you give a written preview of YOU?

First, it requires that you know yourself.  What specifically are your preferences in a mate?

OK, enough about that let’s get started…You’ve got homework.

To-do List:

1) Make a list of 20-30 qualities in a future partner that you’d like to see.  Post it up in your closet or by a bathroom mirror.
2) Make a list of 20-30 aspects of your personality and life experiences that YOU bring to someone’s life. Post this one right next to it.  Reread it whenever you get down.  I mean it!
3) Ask yourself, what are the qualities I find the most offensive on a first date? What turns you off in a potential partner? Write it down.
4) Ask two of your dearest friends to look at your lists.  Then ask them to RANK what they feel are your top five qualities.

Couple in LOVE

Listen to what they say.  They see you in a different light, through their eyes.

Back to – how you go about expressing these qualities in your profile?

It’s not enough to say – “I’m honest – I love to play sports – Looking for my soulmate.” People need to visualize you.  Think about when you read a profile. What stimulates you, makes you want to know more?

My guess is that the profiles you like – feel REAL.

They are personal enough to give you a momentary peek.  So does that mean you have to be overly informative?   NO.

But, you do have to share with them a perspective on you that evokes curiosity and further exploration on their part.  Give them a reason to pull your profile out and read it.  Generic terms don’t draw.   As in advertising, people skim and ignore words with little emotional pull.

For example:

Athletic – really?  How so?
Pretty – compared to whom?
Slim – because you just lost 20 lbs and still have 20 to go?
Wealthy – by whose standards?  Maybe I don’t care.  Maybe I am too.  That doesn’t say a word to who you are inside.
Family-Oriented – how so?  Maybe you see your kids – once a year.
Mature – by whose standards?  Let me judge.  If you are, then I’ll see it.
Attractive – to whom?  Inside or out?
Handsome – isn’t that special?  That’s what all the guys say.
Religious – judgemental too?  No – seriously – can’t you let me see your values and find this out on my own.
Spiritual – meditative, are you zen-influenced, what exactly does this mean?
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Have you ever thought – “Why can’t I just find NORMAL?   What is that?  Is your norm, the same as your best friend?  No. You aren’t looking for someone like you!  They don’t exist.  We’re all such unique combinations of feelings, histories and standards.  Thank God!  How boring would it be if we weren’t?

So what makes you, YOU?

Potential mates want better clues as to who you are.

Your online dating profile is all they get!

We all know what these words are supposed to mean or do we just think we do?  We know what they impart to us, that’s it! They will not accurately describe you.  But, why can’t you just say it like it is?

OK, If I was to tell you that –  “I’m creative, fit, fun and love life” – what do you know now about me?  Blah blah blah…nothing!  

What would you think if I said that outright with no visual explanations of what I meant?   You might be put off.

Here are some examples of why these short descriptions simply aren’t adequate.Orange shirt couple

Examples:

1) Instead of saying “I’m fit,” how about this – “Getting to the gym makes my day go so much better!” or –  “Sometimes the best part of my day is when I begin my morning walk.”

2) Rather than saying – People describe me as sensitive, how about – “Sometimes I wear my heart on my sleeves, but I’m quite aware.  I cry at sad movies.”

3) I’m religious, could mean a variety of things.  Does it mean you never miss church?  Or – does it imply you believe in God and want someone who does as well?   Be careful, people compromise on things.  Don’t limit your options.  They may have likes and dislikes you never dreamed you would make a part of your life.

4) Guys – if people usually say, “You’re handsome.”   Telling someone right from the start, could come off as bold, conceited or self-absorbed.  How about instead – “Although my forties are gone, it’s important to me to look, feel, and stay current.”

5) Try to avoid cliche expressions, such as; “I’m FAMILY ORIENTED”  Make it more tangible for your prospective date. How about – “Nothing pleases me more than watching my grandson play soccer!”   Now they have a visual image of you enjoying your grandson play.

Does this make sense?  Give them a glimmer of you by describing your life.   Visual images are critical.  Just as when you’re trying to remember someone’s name when first introduced.

And, PLEASE when you do write your profile check it for grammar mistakes!

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If you haven’t discovered GRAMMARLY, then check it out!  It’s FREE and makes editing a dream!  Another neat tool is HEMINGWAY EDITOR, which critiques your word choices and sentence structure.  If you write a profile with little concern for writing style – how will you attract others with the level of intelligence you want?

Have several of your friends read your profile.

Ask them – “Does this describe me?”   Does it sound like me? – Have I left anything out?  If they say – but – “You’re a crack-up!”

Then you left out that you love to laugh and feel terrific when you make others do so.  That’s a special gift.

Remember- your goal is initial SUCCESS!   Success means finding quality people to start the process.  Yes- this is a long process unless you’re one of the rare ones who find their special someone on the first date.  That is not the norm.   Let’s don’t go too fast here.  Stay with us, we are on step one, not the finale.

You first need to get out of the house and have fun!  Sealing the deal will come later.

Patience is a virtue in dating!  If you expose yourself to enough quality people, the results will speak for themselves.  It truly is a numbers game.  Who’s right for you, will not be the right one for your friend.   Judge for yourself, with no sense of hurry and a confidence in your self-awareness.

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Whatever you do – don’t:

1) Brag about your accomplishments – how boring!
2) Lie about your age – because YOU don’t feel you look 60.  Let me be the judge of that.
3) Put old pictures of you in your profile – it’s deceiving!  The jig will be up as soon as you meet.  Why put yourself in that position?
4) And, don’t put too many photos in – 3-4 are enough – too many is overkill.
5) You don’t want to close doors i.e. saying “someone without a dog or a cat, is not acceptable.”   You run the risk of losing someone exceptional.

6) Don’t reminisce about your past love’s or spouses – You’re over them – right?
7) Don’t TMI – health issues, performance, life disappointments, limitations, or your out of the box attitudes – best tell these later down the line in person.   Be discreet, an open box isn’t worth investigation.  But always be truthful.

Otherwise, the prize will slip through your hands.

Here’s an example – if you get migraines or have allergies etc., wait and ask yourself – Do I need to unload all of that immediately?  Might I be better off giving them ample time, before setting out roadblocks.  Give them something concrete first.  Why would you throw in the kitchen sink with all the other goodies!  YES, we all have faults, limitations – good grief.  We’re TRAINWRECKS at this age, but, to expose every detail on the first few dates – is premature.

Remember:Couple exercising

1) Don’t waste time on the phone.

Meet in person in a public place, as soon as you feel comfortable.  People’s manners and demeanor will lift the fog.  Not much becomes evident on a cell phone.  Have you ever interviewed a potential employee and thought – WOW they’re terrific!  Can’t wait to meet them for the in-person interview.

Whoops, big mistake!

2) Emails are easy to interpret incorrectly and time-consuming, and, you don’t hear inflection, tone, and or if they have the ability to actually listen.

3) The person reading your profile is nervous too, possibly lonely, frustrated with the endless cycle of looking, and deserves as clear a picture as possible.

4) Why waste time?  Maybe this sounds cruel, but don’t do breakfast, lunch or dinner.   If, after meeting them, you want to – then go for it!   Set it up like that.   Your time is valuable too!   Wouldn’t you rather cozy up and read a good book or watch a movie?  Isn’t your time more valuable?  Besides, you don’t want to feel indebted to anyone.  There’s nothing wrong with a nice quick email later saying – “Thank you for the time.  I enjoyed meeting you and getting to know you a bit better.  At this time, I’m going to keep looking.  I wish you all the best in your search!”

You can even tell them in person in a very sweet way.  People get it if they are healthy and balanced.

5) Dress the way you feel comfortable!  Be yourself, always. If you like a more casual look, then dress it.  If you want to wear a dress or collared shirt and tie, then go for it.  If you’re unsure, ask if they’re going casual or getting a bit dressed up.

6) Finding a mate is much like – “Finding a needle in a haystack!”  But you’ll never find them watching TV eating ice cream.

7) Every time, you put yourself out there, you increase the chance of bumping into Mr or Mrs. Right.  They might know someone or introduce you to someone that will change your life forever.  I know people say this all the time, but it’s true!

Why?  Because – it Couple piggyback ridehappened to me in this manner.

8) After 45, it’s not the same as our twenty-something dating days.   All things take a little more time.  You know that! Remember your priorities.  Your must-haves in a mate.  Can you find this out in a 10-minute phone call, sometimes, but not usually.  On the other hand – LISTEN!  Nothing is more irritating than going through your life story and you realize they weren’t listening.

9) People tell us who they are by what they do – not what they say. Watch and notice, if they think about you in various situations and if they care where you’d like to go.  Does it matter at all to them, if you’ve got a conflict or issue with an agenda? Can they be flexible?  Do you want similar things?  Don’t hide your feelings and needs from the start.

10) Do they constantly blame someone else for their problems? Is it always the ex’s who made their life horrible? Do they ever speak to THEIR ROLE in their last breakup?  Do they sound like a martyr?  You see, if they haven’t taken the time to evaluate, then they haven’t done the work to make better choices!Couple walking on beach  Besides, didn’t they pick that person as well?  No one forced them to fall in love with that nasty guy or gal!   They chose with their free will.  We all drive our ships through the storms of life and if we continually choose the same captain, how can we expect smooth sailing?

11) What can you compromise on and what not?  Face these and be honest with yourself.  If you want honesty from them, then give it back!  But, be careful, as we age we get narrower in scope.  Fear takes over, and we can get into a habit of putting up walls that are clearly superficial.

12) Take an attitude that EVERYONE you meet might end up being a friend for life. Possibly not a lover but, a new friend to spend quality time at the movies or for dinner. Some of your dearest friends can come from this online dating process. Be open to that objective. You’re out to MAKE A FRIEND. Who doesn’t need more of those?

13) Back to the issue of time.  Be direct but, not caustic.  If you want to be married, again – be frank.  It’s OK.  Why waste two to three years with someone who NEVER wants what you want?   If you ask the question, it doesn’t imply you’re desperate or in a huge hurry.  It puts it out there that you are choosing for you, not “hoping they pick you.”  That you’re not about to go along with their needs, their priorities and forget all about your own!

14) For your sake – follow the golden rule.  If they ask, you – “Are you dating several people?”  Be honest.  If they ask if you’re having sex with anyone else – be honest.  If you’re still married, but in the process of divorce or separation, make it clear. Anything started with dishonesty has a weak foundation.

15) If you feel more comfortable not allowing them to pay or if you want them to pay – again – put it out there.  If they are offended by it, then you’ll know, and that’ll tell you more about them.  Maybe they’ve been burned and can’t risk being vulnerable?  If they can’t, then how can they ever risk loving again? Maybe they haven’t healed.

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16) People in transition are usually looking for a band-aid for the pain. Don’t put yourself in that position, unless you have no needs yourself!  Someone who’s ready to love again will act that way.  They’ll have set their priorities and also be clear about what they want and don’t want.

17) Our lives are about the choices we make.  If we keep choosing the same people with the same issues, then why do we expect different results?  Ask yourself after a date – “are they similar to my typical attraction?”  Does this dating situation feel healthy?  When I come home am, I energized or let down?  Do I laugh enough?  Would I want to introduce them someday to my children or my dear friends?  Would they get along with the people I cherish?  Trust your GUT!

18) Keep your profile succinct and not too long.  Keep it upbeat and positive.  Be introspective enough to give them a snapshot of your life, your goals, and your needs.  Read others profiles.  Study the ones you like!  What do you like?  Why?  Does your profile hit you the same way?  There are people you can pay to help you write yours.  Here is an interesting read – What I learned from writing other people’s profiles.  Here’s a great catch-all for mistakes on profiles – What not to write from E-Harmony.

19) Don’t give up!  Many times, it seems people try dating for awhile and decide it’s not working.  They’d rather meet someone in the fruit isle of the grocery store.  That’s fine, but the possibilities are slim.  Don’t give up on yourself!

20) Be kind to yourself.  It’s ok to be let down, disappointed by another dead end.  Reevaluate.  Did you jump the gun with this person?  Did you leap too fast?  Did you bother to ask any pertinent questions or were they just “too hot” to let go?  It’s your life. Life is long, and this is the BIGGEST challenge and decision you may ever face!

We attract the right person when we become our best.  Do what makes you the best you can be and fall back in LOVE with that person.  Be yourself always.   Stop the – should of’s –  You do attract what you project.   Solid people want healthy souls.

Here’s wishing you luck in LOVE and more FUN in your quest!

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