More “About Me”

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

A JDating® friend of mine that I’ll call Jay asked me for help writing his JDate profile. The thing is, Jay’s current profile comes off as someone who is quiet and reserved while on the phone and in person his voice emits energy, enthusiasm and gobs of personality. This is a huge problem for people who simply are not good at typing or not good at conveying themselves on paper. But when it comes to JDate – or any online dating forum – you don’t really have a choice.

Jay needs to figure out how to let his personality come across in a way that would attract the same amount of women online as he does in person. But I wasn’t going to be writing the paragraph for him, because he needed to learn how to do it himself so when he does contact women via email he won’t run into the same problem.

I explained to Jay that this isn’t a business proposal and didn’t need to be so stiff and conservative. Although dating may feel like a job interview you can’t treat it that way. I told him to lay it all out on the line because he had nothing to lose. In this situation it was better to go too far and then edit and reel it in a bit rather than not go far enough. You can’t expect someone to read your blurb in the tone you wrote it, so you need to exaggerate and emphasize. Write your profile as though you were talking to your best friend – casual, relaxed, funny, friendly – but times 10.

Remember my tip about making sure the first few words are good ones because they will show up on the searches. Saying “I’m a vagabond” is not a great start (actual profile I found) because even if you have a really awesome explanation afterwards you first need the person to click on your profile.

This is the time you need to sell yourself. If you’re funny, don’t just say, “I have a sense of humor.” Instead say, “I promise to keep you laughing all day long.” If you’re smart, don’t say “I’m a genius,” but rather “I’ve never lost at a game of chess, but I’ll let you win.” If you’re successful, don’t say “I’m rich,” say “I’ve worked really hard but now it’s time to settle down.” (Or any variation of these phrases.) Try not to use (or overuse) clichés. Everyone is “looking to share the rest of my life with someone,” but how can you say it in a unique way that expresses your personality? Maybe “I want to fall in love with my best friend, someone I can golf with, watch “Top Chef” with and root for the Mavericks with.” This shows your interests and hobbies without just listing them and conveys the same message.

Simply put, you need to stand out – starting with the first few words and going from there. Keep the energy up, have someone who will be honest with you read it and allow them to critique and edit it if necessary. And remember, this isn’t the time to get offended – your loved ones want nothing but the best for you!

New Year’s Resolutions

by jpompey under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

With 2011 being a New Year, it is a great time to make some New Year’s resolutions to get your dating life on track.  While New Year’s Resolutions are common and generic, let’s focus on online dating resolutions.  As you start this year, think about making the following improvements that will help to improve your online dating life.

Put up some new pictures – Put up some profile pictures that show your best assets.  Your photo album should be treated with care and carefully created.  The idea is to tell the story of your life through pictures.

Fix that profile – Writing an online dating profile requires a lot of effort and skill.  Look over that dusty old profile of 2010 and come up with a new profile that will help to build attraction and generate interest.

Improve your humor - The biggest way to generate interest in both males and females during an initial conversation is through humor.  Start finding ways to make your potential dates laugh through your emails and Instant Messages and rid yourself of repetitive small talk.

Improve your inner and outer health – Improving your physical health will not only make you more attractive to the opposite sex, but will increase your mental health, as well. This will provide you a tremendous boost in self confidence.

Follow these New Year’s Resolutions and you may just find your online dating life heating up for 2011.  So get to work!

Rule of Thumb

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I’m having problems with what to include in my “About Me” paragraph. I know what I’m looking for and what I want in a potential partner, but I can’t describe myself well enough for fear I will be judged the wrong way. What would be your best advice? I’ve tried including my love of sports, hiking, camping, the outdoors, and I’m getting nothing! It’s frustrating. Also, if I see someone that I’m interested in, what’s the rule of thumb when sending the first email to a girl? I’m having a hard time getting responses. Thanks for your help!

Dear Rule of Thumb,

I think the best thing you can do for yourself right now is to stop worrying how you’ll be perceived and to start sending emails. You’re not going to get any responses if you don’t make the first move. That said, if you know the description of yourself will offend the majority of women, then please do edit it and, while you’re at it, think about why you have to do so. Make sure your first line is catchy and I recommend having a sister or female friend read the paragraph to make sure you won’t be judged the wrong way. As for sending the first email, it’s never a bad thing and it never hurts. In the first email it’s imperative to let the woman know why her profile caught your eye, compliment something about her photos and mention 1-2 things you have in common. Finally, ask her if there’s mutual interest. Try to think about what you would want to read in the About Me paragraph and in a letter and apply that same concept to your repertoire. Good luck!

Profile Help

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I’m having a hard time writing the “about me” section on my profile. I’m not really sure what to say. I want to sound interesting but at the same time also fun and cute. Can you help me on what I should say? Thank you!

Dear Profile Help,

My suggestion would be for you to start with making a list of your best qualities and a list of what you are looking for in your beshert. Now, many of these things are mentioned later in your profile in the fill-in-the-blank and multiple choice sections, so make sure you don’t simply repeat those things but expand upon them. Make sure your first line is catchy but not corny and make sure to mention things that make you unique and set you apart from the pack. Double check your grammar and spelling and make sure not to write too much, this isn’t your autobiography. You want to sound intriguing but leave them wanting more. Here’s an example:

I’m a 27-year-old journalist who loves having fun and being funny, even if it’s at my own expense! A guy who can’t laugh at himself is definitely not the right guy for me — and sarcasm is a plus! I like to go out but I also really enjoy a nice night just hanging out at home. I’m looking for a man to be my lover and best friend, a guy who will make me laugh every day, and someone who will bring out the best in me as I hope to do with him. I refuse to settle but am definitely realistic about my expectations. Oh, and a big bonus if you own the complete 10 seasons of Friends!

The Art of Opening a Conversation

by RollingStone9862 under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

There is an art to starting a conversation with someone online. With so many males and females saturating the JDate community, simply plowing into a conversation through some sort of generic, vague opening line or email probably isn’t going to get a response, or at least not one with much substance. This same theory applies to IM conversations, where simply saying “Hi” doesn’t really ensure a substantial response. 

With so many people emailing and Instant Messaging each other every day, you have to put a little time and effort into how you open a conversation in order to increase your chances of getting a quality response, and progressing from there. If you are really looking to get to know someone, and potentially go out with them, then you have to a take a little time to read through their profile and look at what elements are attractive to you. You can then use what you’ve learned and include those items in an engaging email, or a clever opening line in an Instant Message.

Personally, I like to skim through women’s profiles and look for words or phrases that peak my interest, and then use them to formulate questions, where the responses will offer me more depth and insight into the other person. Additionally, I try to include a few things that we have in common, and then use those commonalities to interject pieces of information about myself which weren’t necessarily included in my profile. While everyone on JDate is looking for something different, and will respond uniquely to each person who approaches them, you can’t go wrong with a more personal approach.

I truly believe that people appreciate others who take a genuine interest in their lives, which usually helps them to lower their guard and open up about their own life and personality. Therefore, if you are like me, and are looking to send emails and Instant Messages with the intention of starting meaningful conversations, then please skip cranking out those same generic messages to every person who looks like they might loosely fit what you’re looking for and take a little extra time to read through their profiles and get to know something about them first.

Back in the Game

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I’m ready to meet someone special and after a long period of self reflection, I’ve refreshed my JDate profile to try again.  My profile is packed with information and the best photos I have of myself. I’ve even recruited my good female friends, who know me well, to check my profile and make suggestions to show myself in the best light. My messages to other members are personalized, upbeat and I try my best to refer to something I find interesting in their profile, but I’m still getting almost no responses. It’s becoming discouraging and as my confidence is fragile, I’m losing heart fast. What else can I do to make a positive impact and encourage others to reply? I’d really appreciate some advice. Thanks.

Dear Back in the Game,

It sounds like you’re doing all the right things and have the right motivation, but patience and not letting rejection get the best of you are important traits to have in the dating game. You are getting some responses, so it’s not like your efforts are going unnoticed, but there are some things you need to be made aware of. For starters, if a JDate member is not a paid member that means she cannot access her mail and therefore, has no idea that you contacted her to begin with. Secondly, reassess your approach — are you coming on too strong too quickly? Did you repeatedly view, Flirt, Click!, Hot List, etc. before sending an email? Try using that approach first as it is similar to hitting on a girl at a bar (eye contact, smile, waiting for the hair flip, etc). Don’t give up hope and don’t stop trying — yes, you will get rejected but the more you try the better your odds will be at finding your beshert. Good luck!

Embrace The Opportunity, Don’t Run From It

by RollingStone9862 under Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

It doesn’t feel good when someone doesn’t respond to your email, accept your invitation to chat via Instant Messenger, or call you after a first or second date, however, these are inevitable parts of not only the online dating experience but also dating in general. Over time, and through experience, we all might get better at letting these disappointments roll off our backs; however it is human nature to feel a sense of rejection in each of these situations. This feeling is the price we pay for putting ourselves out there, and giving ourselves a chance to meet someone special.

The alternative to this proactive approach is that we sit back and wait for someone to find us and sweep us off our feet, but is that really a likely scenario? Even if a more passive, “wait and see” approach was a viable option, does that really guarantee that we aren’t going to incur any negative feelings from the dating process just because the other person found us and put themselves out there first? With the ball in our court we still stand the chance that our response won’t be perceived well, either via email or on a first date, and that will abruptly end the interaction.

Furthermore, waiting around for people to contact you limits the number of people you meet, and leaves you at the mercy of those who randomly stumble across your profile. This is in stark contrast to someone who puts themselves out there by continuously looking for people that attract their interest, and then attempting to begin a correspondence with them, who in the process might run more of a risk of getting hurt or disappointed. But they also have a much higher chance of meeting a lot of interesting people and having an abundance of new experiences in the process.

Maybe my more proactive approach to dating isn’t the norm.  I know that guys are the ones who are typically supposed to take the lead in these types of situations, but I say regardless of your age, sex or past dating experiences that we all owe it to ourselves to embrace dating as a fun and unique challenge where each experience is different and an opportunity to develop into something great. So please don’t sit back and wait for the perfect situation to fall into your lap when you can take control by going out and finding it for yourself. Sure, along the way there will be some disappointments and agonizing moments, but there will also be ones of pure joy and satisfaction, which in my opinion makes it all worthwhile many times over.

Death to Dating

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Month after month, the same faces seem to gaze upon you from the computer screen as you peruse JDate, searching, hoping that the discovery of a new face will appear. And you hope and wait and pray that this find will be a perfect match, both of you Hot-Listing each other, sending Flirts, messages and finally exchanging phone numbers only to meet up and unearth your beshert. But month after month this is not to be and your JDate prospects seem to be thinning as quickly as your boss’s hairline. Frustration sets in.

Date after date, the faces sitting across from you begin to all look alike, memories of those dates turn into a redundant void, lacking chemistry and stimulating conversation.  Even still, you hope, wait and pray before each date that this time will be different; this time your interest will be piqued, and there will be instant attraction, and you won’t want the night to end. But date after date this is not to be and the possibility of finding your beshert seems to be disappearing faster than the alcohol at an open bar wedding reception. Frustration turns to indignation.

So what’s a single Jew to do? Before you become so cynical you can’t see straight, I suggest reevaluating what YOU want out of life, out of a mate. Talk to any of your single friends, of any gender, any age, in any city and you’ll be quickly comforted by the fact that you’re not alone in your misery. Reevaluate your priorities: where do you want to go in your career? Are you spending enough quality time with family and friends? Are you eating well and exercising? Take a step back and take some “you” time and then give your JDate profile a facelift.

Once you’ve put everything into perspective and finished your profile makeover (new photos, new screen name, new paragraphs and most of all, new attitude) you’ll not only begin attracting potential dates like a moth to a flame, but you’ll be the *NEW* face on the screen and faces that once blended into the background will now stand out. Try it and good luck!

So Which One Are You Now?

by RollingStone9862 under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Since a majority of people on JDate have four or five pictures of themselves posted on their profile it is only natural that they aren’t going to look exactly the same in each picture. Different environments, times of the year and styles all contribute to a certain degree of variance between each snap shot. Over the course of six months or a year, even though a person’s physical features may not noticeably change, their hairstyles (and amount of facial hair for men), style of clothing and settings where their pictures are primarily taken might change, creating a different look for each picture.

Recently I have been asked by several lovely ladies with whom I have been emailing on JDate which one of my pictures I currently look the most like. This repeated question caused me to re-evaluate my aesthetic look in each photo in order to determine which one most clearly indicates how I look right now. The funny part of this analysis was that two of the pictures I had posted were from the spring, but due to the lighting, how I had my hair styled and the clothes I was wearing didn’t depict my current “look” as well as an older picture I also have up on my profile from last summer.

Even though I have the same hairstyle and am wearing similar clothing to my current style  in the photo from last summer, I was lazy in the days leading up to the photo and therefore have way more facial hair than I would ever normally have. Unfortunately, in the two other pictures I have posted my head is buzzed, which I used to do quite frequently.  Even though I think they are good photos of me in general, they don’t come close to illustrating my current look.

Ultimately, the pictures we choose to represent us on dating websites are important since they are the first thing we notice about a profile, which serves as the gateway to whether or not we proceed to read through the rest of it. In the end I think that it is essential for our self-confidence that we project a positive initial impression, and the only way JDaters® can do that is online. So why not post pictures that you feel good about? As long as you aren’t completely misleading people, I think it’s important to always try to put your best self forward.

Stop Loss

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

Hi Tamar,

I get a lot of responses from great guys, who seem really excited to meet me and all enthusiastic, but then they just stop talking to me. This happened recently. A guy was really excited to meet me and was supposed to call me that night, but I never heard from him and then he stopped talking to me. I couldn’t have possibly said anything wrong between the time we met and when he said he was going to call so I’m wondering what happened?

Dear Stop Loss,

Unfortunately, this is not unusual with Internet dating. The men you’re talking to are probably talking to a few other women as well, and if one of those connections turned serious, he’s likely to no longer correspond with you. He figures he doesn’t owe you anything because he hasn’t met you yet. I once received an email from a JDate I hadn’t yet met and he told me he was getting serious with someone and could no longer make plans or communicate with me. To be honest, I felt it was a little overboard. He didn’t need to go through such extremes writing me a lengthy email, but on the other hand, it was better to know than to be left in a state of mystery like you’re in right now. As for the man you were supposed to meet, just chalk him up as a coward and move on. You will need to weed through these losers until you find your beshert, but believe me, women are pulling the same stunts with men. We’re all in the same boat. My suggestion is not to spend too much time corresponding before meeting.  As I’ve said before, your JDate profile already supplies the information you would normally exchange on the first date, so try to keep the pre-date communication to a minimum or else risk creating expectations that neither side can meet. Good luck!