What Taking A Break From Online Dating Has Taught Me | CLiKD

What Taking A Break From Online Dating Has Taught Me

  • taking a break

    Photo Credit: Total Shape

    Meet/Eat/Love (MEL) #11

    Swipe, Message, Meet, Repeat. Barcelona.

    Swipe, Message, Meet, Repeat. Cyprus.

    Swipe, Message, Meet, Repeat. Mexico City.

    swiping through messages

    I guess you can call me an active online dater since I use online dating apps every time I travel… and I travel A LOT! So why did I decide to go on an online dating hiatus? Did I stop traveling? Not exactly. Did I find the love of my life? Nada. The truth is I actually wanted to do a social experiment on myself. I was curious to find out what it would be like to take a break from it all and then what it would be like to rejoin the online dating world after that.

    taking a break

    Would my mentality be different the second time around? Would my expectations be different or the same? What would I do less of or more of?

    Let’s fast-forward to now -> post online dating hiatus.

    I’m back in my favorite city in the world, Barcelona, and it’s been 2 weeks since I have rejoined the online dating world.

    Read on to see how my perspective has or hasn’t changed from taking a break and then rejoining the digital dating world again:

     

    1. Profiles are still important (duh)

    Profiles are the first thing someone sees when making a decision about if they want to continue getting to know you or write you off right off the bat. Harsh I know, but that’s the way it works! What you put out there should be your best self(ie). Going through profiles this second time around, I found that duckfaces still bother me, posing with comatose tigers still bothers me and misspelled words DEFINITELY still bother me. (For a refresher on creating a killer profile, check out MEL #3: How to make it to your first date!) So yes, spend time on your profile because they are still as important as ever, even the second time around!

    Jimmy Fallon pretending to take a selfie

     

    1. There is a human being behind the profile (no way!)

    I tried to remind myself this time around that online dating apps are not online games. It’s actually an online people connecter that helps facilitate meeting new people you normally wouldn’t cross paths with. Sometimes, it’s tempting to treat online dating as a game because the dating apps are created with simple functionalities but try to remember there are actual human beings behind each profile. It’s good to be nice and treat people online as if you would offline (karma points!) Online dating shouldn’t be a game, but if you treat it like one, it will become one. Which brings us to #3 below…

     

    1. Don’t turn online dating into a job (having one job is already enough!)

    Dating is supposed to be fun. Online dating just makes it more convenient and connects you with people that are normally out of your usual social circle. Constantly checking your phone for messages or new profiles can cause unnecessary stress. Chillax! It’s good to not let online dating consume you. So, this second time around I’ve definitely been practicing this new vibe.

    Rihanna -

     

    1. Say no to overscheduling (and yes to ME time)

    Yep, that’s right. I don’t go on 3 dates in one day or even 2 dates on one day anymore (pssst, check out MEL #2: Three first dates in 24 hours if you haven’t already.) It’s really amazing what freeing up your time is like, you could… um, I don’t know… like read a book, learn Spanish, see friends? Having quality time for yourself will make you a more rounded, and rested, person. So, this time around, one date per day please vs. stressing out about how to make it to the next one in a few hours!

     

    1. Remain open to new experiences (not cliché!)

    One of my first dates this time around in Barcelona was discovering a hidden local wine bar. It was so hidden that even my date (a local) forgot how to get to it because it’s in the old town, where all the narrow winding streets look the same! It was literally “go down this narrow street after you cross the street light, make a left, then another left, then right. No left… no right!” We did eventually find the bar at the end! So, yay to first dates that you can’t find on TripAdvisor.

    flamingoes walking together

    Taking a break from online dating DID change my perspective, but in a good way. Overall, I’m still a fan of online dating, especially while traveling. I’m looking forward to connecting with new people and discovering more hidden local gems. I’m back, just doing it a bit differently this second time around.

    Happy dating! Ms. Mel