As working single parents with dependent children, dating is put way back in our minds. It’s something considered to be an unnecessary extra project. With our already busy schedules and routines, we think, how in the hell can we fit in the time to swipe, match and text, let alone meet new people.
However, it’s important that all areas of our lives are met. This includes the sexual relationship area of our life.
Back in my single days, before marriage, I was part of the minority. It was taboo to be online looking for love. I was considered desperate and I even wore the label ‘man eater’, just because I was emailing many men a day and would meet in person a new man each week. What they didn’t know was, it’s a process that is required for online dating. I was two steps ahead. These days, people are paying for advise from online dating coaches. There are many workshops, seminars and programs available now. But back in 2006, when I was single and online, social media was only just starting to take over peoples lives.
Whilst looking for love, I met my ex husband through a friend. The cliche, ‘I know a guy for you’ comment you get from a work colleague who secretly is a match maker. We were given each others numbers and I initiated contact. We texted and then met. Sounds like online dating! However, the difference was, we didn’t bullshit each other and waste each others time. We dated, we got married, we even had a child and then, obviously, we divorced. We did the full circle.
In those years of marriage, Tinder launched the number 1 dating app with the famous “swipe right” notion. When I first separated, I was under the impression that online dating apps like that were all about sex with no strings attached. I kept myself away from that world until settlement came through. I gave myself the space and time to work through my stuff. Though, when I was ready and created my first profile, within two weeks, I was in a long term relationship. My impression of online dating changed instantly. I started hearing similar stories when I would introduce my match. It’s no longer taboo to meet your future husband or wife with the flick of a finger.
It’s evident that my Tinder relationship didn’t workout, though, it helped me to understand the strategy I used back when I was single and why it needs to be applied today. Especially if you are looking for love; something real and amazing.
I’ve only ever followed my own idea’s when it comes to dating. The no bullshit one! However, this time, I teamed up with Melina Macdonald, Dating Coach and founder of sacredpotential.com. She helped me cut through more bullshit, ween out the fake profiles and got me to be real with myself in what I wanted.
With this new strategy in place, I have been able to meet men, real men and master the first stage to online dating: Match and Meet without my life being compromised.
I’m not here to tell you how to make your profile look more appealing, what to write in your bio or how to initiate a discussion once matched. I’m going to go through a simple, yet effective way to cut through the bullshit to allow the authentic connections to come through.
MATCH TO DIGITS!
So, you’ve decided to try a new strategy to find love. Keep in mind, each person you match with, your goal is to meet them: without expectations. The first two days are crucial. You want to get them and yourself offline. The trick is to get their number or you offer yours. It doesn’t matter which way it goes. It’s still early days to know what the relationship will be like based on the first few messages. I had to change my mindset and belief around it being up to the man to ask for my number, to speed up the process. If I didn’t do this, I would be bantering on for too long and from my experiences, I was noticing I was wearing myself thin. It’s actually the first meet that sets us all apart. That’s where the real magic begins.
Once you move from one platform to the next, the chances of meeting is higher. Though, you want their digits. Not their snapchat ID!
For those matches that are text happy, you’ll find yourself chatting away for days on end, going nowhere. You’ve basically become pen pals. To prevent this from happening, show your match you are interested in them and suggest to meet for a coffee. Casual. No expectations. During the day and limit yourself to an hour. If you are enjoying your meet, stay as long as you like. But lets not jump too far ahead of ourselves. Let’s just focus, for a moment, on getting their digits.
DIGITS TO DIAL!
Congratulations, you did it! You have their number and you’re about to go from one platform to the next! What can go wrong? Well, you can go from texting to texting and become pen pals. So, its important to get yourself dialling the number and speaking to your match on the phone.
This can bring up a lot of fear and it’s common. Hearing someones voice for the first time and them hearing yours is daunting. The first time I did this, I stuffed up. I didn’t know there was an etiquette when calling someone. I was told, by the match, I should text if it’s ok to call first. With my old school style, the opportunity to meet this person became non existent. I’m glad I got the chance to hear his voice, his mannerisms and the way he held himself in the situation. He reeled off his deal breakers and it was evident my stuff up was not a mistake. It was a blessing. The guy hadn’t met me and he verbalised his check list! Phew, I dodged a bullet and saved myself time as well. It’s fair to say, five months on, the guy is still online looking for love.
DIAL TO FIRST MEET!
You’ve swiped. You’ve matched. So, why not meet? I’ve had the pleasure of a man telling me, after texting for weeks, I am not bat shit crazy! They tell me they need to suss women out and make sure they are a nice person. Weeks and months, of texting back and forth “How was your day?” But once numbers are exchanged, the conversation of meeting starts to hit truth. The honeymoon season is over and all flaws start to appear.
I’ve had a man walk out during our brunch meet, a man asking to meet later in the day just hours before, a man cancel on the day and a text message two minutes after our arranged time telling me he had just woken up. This is not unusual. It’s called not being responsible and accountable. This is a blessing. Each epic fail brings you closer to meeting a real and amazing person. Don’t beat yourself up over it. Trust in yourself that you are keeping your word.
To the people who have to suss others out at each instant match, it’s a clear sign you have your own bat shit craziness to acknowledge.
THE FIRST MEET!
Casual. No expectations. Short and sweet. Keep those words in mind when you are preparing yourself for your first meet. If things turn out well and you’re enjoying yourself, this gives the perfect opportunity to arrange your next meet, the first date. If people start thinking this way, we wouldn’t be wasting our time swiping and texting bullshit to fill in the space (more like filling the voids). If you don’t like what you see, hear and feel, you would have saved yourself so much effort. With each first meet, you will become more empowered, confident and experienced.
This one takes some getting use to in knowing it’s not a real match. Though, anyone who starts to make you feel uneasy can be considered fake. I’ve matched men with stolen images to cover up their real selves because they were in a relationship and wanted to start an affair. The key to know which are fake is to look at their photos, carefully. Let’s say you like what you see and missed the fact that it’s a stolen image. Once you match with them and they start to talk in a way you don’t feel comfortable with, go back to the image. Most stolen images are pixelated, have a line on top or the bottom of the image or they look too good to be true.
Though, if you follow the simple strategy I outlined above; Match, Digits, Call and Meet, you will find yourself blocking the fake profiles very quickly without feeling annoyed.
My first match with a stolen image was devastating. I cried when I read his email saying he couldn’t lie any longer and wanted to show me what he really looked like. The second time, I laughed and told him if he was upfront within the first day, I would have remained in contact and helped him through his voids, at a cost. I don’t know of any other fake profiles I’ve accidentally matched based on attraction, but I do know when one shows up. I generally block those without a thought. Whilst researching for this article, I came across a fake profile and swiped right. I matched. I followed the strategy and within minutes the person told me he was in bed naked. His pictures were pixelated and not cropped properly. The bio read that he was 27, not 37 which was stated next to his name. This clearly shows he has gone to the effort of creating a fake Facebook account to link the dating app.
I would have blocked this person after his inappropriate sexy talk, but for the sake of this article, I proceeded to call him out on his bullshit. I went from match, getting his digits and then finding out he was fake when he sent real photos of himself. Within a short text thread, I saved myself a heart-ache.
BRING LIFE BACK TO OLD MATCHES!
Those dreaded moments your match goes stale making you wonder what to do next. Simples! I spoke with Catherine Lyell about this one and with her expertise in men; founder of Integrated Men’s Health Solutions, she said to just text “Hi, how are you?” I have brought life back to old matches with this simple move. As soon as the banter starts, the intention to meet is back on. Not all old matches jump from app to phone. Some ignore the message, whilst others become stale again. The next step from this is to delete them. Cleaning up your potential date list is something I feel important when matches repeat this stale behaviour.
The best part about online dating is learning about yourself and knowing what you want. Be bold, share your plans and ideas. Be adventurous and don’t take yourself too seriously. Keep your boundaries in mind, just throw out the check list. Be patient with yourself. The strategy I slowly mastered took lots of practise. Give yourself the same chance. With each match, start fresh with the intention to meet. The next stage from this would be, First Meet to First Date (second meet). I am yet to master this one. When I do, I will keep you in the loop with an updated article of how you can master it too. For now, enjoy your experiences, have fun and don’t forget your intention is to meet, not to marry.
Based in the northern area of Melbourne, Australia, Lisa Jane is an aspiring humanitarian, with her magnetic smile and charismatic nature, she educates and entertains with her stories bringing balance to any life experience.
Lisa Jane hosts a quirky podcast show with life mentors a-like making sense of what it means to be a parent, partner and lover in modern society whilst staying true to yourself.
Lisa Jane has a workshop; Retreat with Lisa Jane, both online and live. She bridges the gap between Science and Beauty. With hands-on activities, simple strategies and techniques that helped her to get to where she is today; she shares with you a way you can get to where you want to be too. She never forgets self-care, so with that in mind, once you step into her workshop retreat, you are taken care of as if you are a guest in her own home.