When we are in a long-term relationship and the pink cloud has long sense disappeared, the real work of relationship begins. If you are fortunate enough to have found that special someone, be aware that Phase II is worth the work if you love them.
If you are still in the dating “adventure” stage and online dating is a choice you made to have more options, good for you! I believe deeply that as we get older and no longer have more natural gathering places like school events, our kid’s soccer games;etc. finding a partner can be much more challenging. But, there are a plethora of huge landmines in the online dating playing field.
Choice is a wonderful thing and online dating certainly provides us with endless photos of men and women of all sizes, shapes and interests. I’ve often said how nice it would be if we could cut and paste the perfect mate from that buffet of choices. Alas, we can’t and if we aren’t careful, we develop what psychologists call “cognitive overload”.
One day we see someone who really interests us. Who knows what it is? Perhaps it’s the smile, those eyes, the photo of the dog…but something says, “I want to meet this person”. So, we screw up the courage as they say, to send them an email. If you are sending winks or nods or handshakes or likes or rose icons, you’re not communicating that you really want to meet them. You’re just fishing and hoping they will do the risk-taking. So, email them! It really says what you feel and, of course, there’s never a guarantee they feel the same. But one day, you hear back from him/her and yep, there’s something happening. Both of you email a few times, then decide to meet for coffee, lunch or a walk to see just what’s up with the attraction thing. And, you’re off!!!
But wait! You’ve got 48 hours before you meet them and who knows? There might be someone else better online today in those “matches”! Back on you go and sure enough, two more faces that make you curious…and on and on and on. You go back to check out their profile to “reevaluate” the person you’ve agreed to meet and there they are, screen screaming, “Online Now!”. How does it feel? Yes, you’ve been online too, but somehow, it just feels bad to see that they’re still looking.
Dating sites provide choices galore, but beware of the addictive nature of endless choice, and of cognitive overload. When you find someone you think is worth meeting, be courageous and contact them. Get together as soon as possible to check out your intuition, and then stop to appreciate the feeling of having found someone with mutual interests and attraction. Be aware of the temptation to overdo it at that love buffet. Stop and savor the moments and the people you’ll meet along the way.