Digital Dating: Online Tips for Looking for Mr. or Mrs. Right

woman hugging man

The dating scene has changed a lot thanks to the Interwebs. It used to be that the best place to find a date or even just a random hookup was down at the local bar. But, that crowd is getting a little long in the tooth. In fact, some of those people don’t even have teeth anymore, right?

What you need is a fresh way to find interesting people fast, fast, fast without wasting your time or compromising your safety.

Take A Look In The Mirror

Before you do anything, take some time to introspect a bit. Where are you in life? What do you really want from a relationship? Do you want a relationship or just a hookup?

Most people are terrible at introspecting because they don’t do it very often. In fact, there was a recent Harvard University study that shows that many people would rather inflict pain on themselves than spend 15 minutes alone with nothing but their thoughts.

Researchers from the University of Virginia and Harvard did 11 experiments to see how people would react to “alone time.”

Here’s what they found: of the 200 people that participated in the study, two-thirds of the male subjects gave themselves at least one electrical shock while alone when given the option to do so.

Most men involved in the study would shock themselves between one and four times. There was one individual who shocked himself 190 times. A full quarter of the women in the study shocked themselves between one and nine times.

These people had the option not to shock themselves, but they did anyway, rather than sit alone with nothing to do but think about things and their life.

Shocking, right? Disgusting? Maybe. What’s interesting is that this study shows that a lot of people don’t feel comfortable with their own thoughts. Unfortunately, in the dating world, you have to do this if you want to be happy.

If you’ve ever gone speed dating, been on blind dates, had a seemingly endless string of one-nighters and yet you’re still unsatisfied with where you are, there’s a reason why: you need to introspect more, understand your feelings better, and take some time to decide what you want. That will solve 80 percent of your dating “problems.”

Prioritize Your Wants

Once you’ve done a little introspection, it’s time to prioritize your thoughts and wants. Get out a spreadsheet (yes, this matters), and make three columns.

The first column should be titled “essentials.” The second column is “dealbreakers.” The third column is “negotiable.”

Start making a list of everything you think is essential in your ideal relationship. Take this seriously. The more serious you are about it, the more clear your thoughts will be on the matter and the less heartache and headaches you’ll experience later when you dive into the dating world.

It’s OK to use sites like Absolute Hookup to find flings and non-serious dates – just makes sure this is what you want. If that’s what you’re looking for, do it and don’t be ashamed or confused about it.

Don’t Be An Open Book – At Least Not At First

Don’t be an open book with everyone that you go out on a date with. There’s no need for that. Yes, you want to get to know them, but do it in stages.

Let Your Friends And Family Know When You’re Going Out On A Date

Let your friends and family know where you’ll be when you go out on a date. That way, if the unthinkable happens, someone knows where you are (or should be).

Drive Yourself To And From The Date

Again, this is a safety measure that probably applies more to women than men, but these days, there are some crazies out there in both gender camps and you don’t want to be the victim of a female stalker either.

The best way to protect yourself is to stay anonymous without being overtly defensive. Defensiveness is a major turnoff. It makes it difficult (sometimes impossible) to get to know you.

When you show up in your own vehicle and expect to leave by yourself, you are erecting a natural barrier between you and the other person. Now, this doesn’t mean you don’t have to give them the benefit of the doubt that they are a good person.

You can, and you should. At the same time, be honest about what you know about them. Sometimes, it’s not about safety (though this should be at least in the back of your mind). Sometimes, it’s just about efficiency. If you don’t click (he or she likes you but you don’t like them), you’ll want to make a clean break and that can only happen when the other person doesn’t really know anything about where you live or your daily schedule.

Put yourself out there, but don’t make it easy for you to become a victim.

Miles Rampel is an American internet entrepreneur and founder of Miles has been focused on developing new products in consumer mobile and enterprise SAAS space. In his spare time Miles likes to play ping pong, hike, and BBQ with friends and family.