How do you put compatibility before chemistry? Did someone say “online dating”?

If you’ve been online dating for any length of time this will hit home… You read their profile, it looks great, nice picture; you hope it’s not their high school graduation picture. You determine you should meet; the anticipation makes you feel alive. You meet, and within 10 seconds, you know: nothing, nada, zip, zilch, absolutely no chemistry. How could this be? They even liked sky diving and Brussels sprouts.

Now, there you are in Vons, squeezing tomatoes.  Your eyes meet; BAM, the sparks are flying. Ok, I’ll admit, an unlikely scenario, but that could be the one you passed over in 30 seconds online because they like mountain climbing and you’re just not the outdoorsy type.

While the statistics around success are favorable, finding a long-term companion on line is truly a challenge. When you receive a response to your profile, the first thing you do, as you should, is check out their profile. Often their profile doesn’t lend much insight; it’s a string of subjective adjectives.

Unless their profile knocked your socks off, you have to rely on how many of the same boxes you’ve checked and that string of adjectives to determine if you should explore this person further. Not much to go on….

So how do you know if there’s going to be chemistry? In my experience, you have to meet. But who has time to meet everyone that piques your interest? I usually test the phone chemistry first. If the conversation flows, there’s good banter and you feel truly heard, that’s a good sign. It is not, however, the tell-all. I’ve dated lovely men that just didn’t give good phone.

I can count on one hand how many profiles I read that truly matched the man I met.  (I won’t even go down the picture road.) But I’ve been told I am just who they expected because my profile reflected my personality and my pictures were recent.

If you’re going to tackle the task of writing your own profile, write it from the heart. Don’t just tell them about your personality; show them.  And please, don’t forget to spell check!

Note: The first two paragraphs of this blog are an excerpt from my first online dating profile, written six years ago. Check out this recent article around the Science of Online Dating by The New York Times. It seems my early instincts weren’t far off from today’s truths.


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