My Take on Online Dating and Recent Research

February 21, 2022

It is not uncommon for me to be asked do you do online dating?’ My emphatic response is no, but that doesn’t mean to say I am against it for others.

Personally, it all sounds too hard. I cannot be bothered going through the whole filtering process where people swipe left, swipe right, then finally meet up at an agreed safe location following (according to my friends) copious text conversations and flirtatious innuendos.

That in itself turns me off, I would much prefer to allocate my time and efforts into writing or creating a craft project in the comforts of my home.  

It seems I am not alone. According to a recent article, countless users find online dating to be frustrating, tedious, or even altogether pointless. Yet more than ever, online relationships have become the norm.

It was the title How to Excel At Online Dating that first caught my eye. I was curious and immediately scanned the research and information for the friends who may be in need of advice. In this day and age, it seems to be the way to meet people other than by chance meetings like you see in the movies or dream about. 

The researcher found that an optimistic mindset makes it easier to meet a mate online. I faintly share the same type of optimism. But, my tolerance level for uninteresting inactive people is low and I’m not into the Claytons counselling sessions unless there is a genuine need to take on this role. I would prefer to be doing other things.  

 Maybe I am too old and grumpy. Well, I’m not really too old for dating, as my dear friends remind me, but maybe the grumpy bit has an element of truth to it. 

I can already visualise the scenarios. Sizing each other upon first meeting, the mutual interrogation as we look into each other’s eyes searching for potential threats, or the flirtatious eye to see if they can get lucky. It all sounds too hard for me and I have had my fair share of stalkers.  

But never mind me, as I have many friends in successful relationships who met their partners online.

Let’s get back to the research, 1300 online daters were surveyed to determine whether their approach to relationships was promotion-focused, thinking about what they may gain, or prevention-focused, looking at what they stood to lose by picking the wrong partner. The latter sounds like me. 

It was found that the more promotion-focused people were the easier, more engaging, and more successful at the online dating process than those with a prevention focus who found it less engaging and much more difficult. 

The daters were only asked about their perceived success and it was not proven that mindset was related to actual success in finding a relationship, albeit possible.

This is probably where I would fail as research also found that because of the high degree of investment and effort needed for a successful outcome, one’s mindset could play an especially important role to achieve this. My mind would be drifting like an inner tube on water thinking about what I could be doing elsewhere.  

The final suggestion, rather than digging for deal breakers, trying to see each profile as a potential partner could be the difference between giving up on love and finding it. I may be optimistic about many things in life, but this isn’t one of them.  Happy hunting to all the online daters.  

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