After having been single for six months, I’ve had enough time to take a rational assessment of things and to think about what I want in a relationship. I know in my “Getting Through a Break-Up” entry, which is now deleted, I mentioned that I really wasn’t wanting to get back into the dating game for a while. I’ve been enjoying my autonomy, but it would be nice to have someone cool to go on dates with, bring to work parties, and sleep next to at night. Unfortunately, finding that is a lot easier said than done.

With the advancements in modern technology, it seems that online dating is the new norm. Although it really isn’t my dream to meet my spouse through a dating app, meeting nearby locals online works for me at my age.

I enjoy going on dates, but my time and efforts aren’t things that I share with just anybody. When swiping left and right, there are a few things I take into consideration.

1. Do they have a fairly recent picture of themselves? – As a rule of thumb, the default photo on your Tinder profile should be a recent photo of yourself. It should be representative of what you like to do on a regular basis. For example, if your picture is a LinkedIn-style head shot, I can tell that you probably carry yourself in a professional manner. If your picture is of you on your mission trip to Africa, I can tell that you are selfless and charitable. If your picture is a webcam selfie, I can tell that you’re probably the type to stay indoors and play video games all day. These conclusions are not necessarily accurate, but this is what I’ve gathered from my experience.

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2. Does their self-description make them seem interesting? – When going through people’s profiles, I look to see what their hobbies are, I look to see if they put any effort into describing themselves, and as petty as this sounds, I look for any sort of grammatical errors in their profile. Looks can only get you so far, but detail orientation, insight and creativity are things that I value. Also, having a sense of humor is a major plus. One time, there was this guy who’s profile read “Ready to lie to your parents about how we met?” I thought it was hilarious and instantly swiped right. Unfortunately, I deleted the app between then and now and lost all of my matches, so I no longer have any connection to this funny fellow.

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3. Are they looking for the same thing? – For one to say that they’re only on Tinder “to find friends” is like saying that they only watch porn because they enjoy the storyline. Honesty is a valuable trait to possess, and I respect people who include that their “not looking for anything serious” in their profile. However, if I do find someone attractive enough, I will swipe right regardless because I might as well have some fun while I’m still in my prime.

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4. What do they do outside of school and work? – You can tell a lot about someone by the pictures they choose to share. “Do they go out a lot?” “Do they have any friends?” “Are they involved in any organizations?” “Are they family-oriented?” If I’m scrolling through someone’s profile and I see that their pictures are all selfies, I assume that they don’t really get out much. Adventures in a relationship are a must. I’m not really the type to “Netflix and chill”, nor do I really want to be in a relationship with someone who doesn’t do much outside of work and school.

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Now I know some of you are reading this and thinking “well, look at this motherfucker, his expectations are too high, no wonder he’s single”. However, everyone is entitled to their preferences, and I am in no way shaming anyone’s interests or lifestyle.

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