There are a million reasons that people can struggle with online dating, and the good news is that almost all of them can be fixed. If your profile is no good, we can help with that. If your photos aren’t getting any attention, we can almost always tell you what you can do to improve them. We can even help when it comes to figuring out how to start a conversation with someone online and how to decide if the person you are looking at is a good enough match for you to make an effort. What we can’t do is change geography.
A week doesn’t go by where I don’t get at least five calls from singles complaining that there are not enough singles in their area. Not everyone lives in a city like Manhattan, LA, or Chicago, and that means that a lot of singles are faced with the problem of just not having a deep enough dating pool where they live to find a good match. So, what’s the answer to a problem you can’t do anything about?
This was a tricky situation for me for a while. Ideally, I don’t recommend that anyone look for potential dates further away than you’d be willing to drive twice a week. Any further, and it can not only be harder to grow a budding relationship, but it also puts you at deeper risk for romance scams. But, just because that’s the ideal, doesn’t mean that it is going to be the reality for millions of single people across the US and around the world. So, with that in mind, here are five tips on how to be more successful at online dating when there’s no one around you to date.
This sounds like an oversimplified answer that doesn’t fit most people’s lives, and you know what? It is. This is not something that a lot of people could even consider, but with the increase in remote work and the number of people who now work from home, home can be wherever you make it.
So, let’s say moving is an option, how do you decide where to go? Research! Forget about the dating aspect of things for a moment and just focus on the things that make you happy. What cities have the climate that you want to live in? Who has an arts and culture scene that excites you? Where can you get the food that you know you’ll want to eat?
Think about all the things that you want from a city, then narrow the list down to your top ten. Now you can bring dating back into the conversation. Hop on to a searchable dating app like Match, POF, eHarmony, Jdate, ChristianMingle, etc… and do some searching in those cities. See what the dating life is like and if those cities have the people you are looking for.
Make Video Part Of Your Dating Life
Moving is just not an option for most people, but that doesn’t change the fact that there still might not be enough people around you to meet. That means it might be time to search a little outside your comfort zone. Just remember, I said outside your comfort zone, not outside your time zone.
If you have to start considering long-distance as a way to find the people you want to meet, you shouldn’t open up the whole country all at once. Start as close to local as you can. What’s the biggest city that’s closest to you? What are the cities near enough to you that catching a short flight won’t break the bank?
Here’s the big part. When you start online dating in those areas that you can’t get to easily by car, it is important that you move the conversation to video as quickly as possible. That doesn’t mean that every conversation has to be a video chat. You just need to get something more real than text or voice. You need to see that the photos are accurate (and be able to show them that your photos are accurate as well). Furthermore, you need to see what it looks like when they laugh, how they react physically to your conversation. This will not only protect you from people who are not honestly representing themselves, but it will also really help in growing a connection between the two of you.
Define Your Dating Goals
When you are using a dating app locally, it can be very easy to get into the mindset of “let’s see what’s out there and go from there.” If you do this with long-distance online dating, you are going to burn yourself out. The bigger you make your dating pool, the more defined your goals need to be.
I’m not talking about making a wish list of your fantasy match. No, we’re talking about the non-negotiables. What are the things that every one you date has to have for you to consider them a potential long-term partner? What are the things they can’t have if you are going to give them a serious look? And, what is your end game? Why are you doing this? What type of relationship are you hoping to get out of this?
Honesty is The Only Policy
Lying is the easiest way to take a great potential match and turn them into someone who never wants to talk to you. There are going to be people that you like, but who aren’t willing to date someone too far away. You have to let them go and look for the people who are. The worst thing you can do is lie about where you are located in hopes that your connection will be strong enough that they will understand why you felt you had to “bend the truth.”
In reality, all they see is the lie. It makes them wonder what else you’ve lied about and what else you will lie about in the future. If someone isn’t willing to date you because of where you live, that doesn’t make them bad. It just makes them incompatible with you. I see too many people getting their heart broken because they get lied to about stuff like this. Do not be part of the problem. You will not only lose the potential match you are talking to, you may get reported and banned from the dating platform you are using.
Be Wary Of International Opportunities
The idea of looking overseas for love is nothing new. With online dating, it’s become almost as easy to search for a partner in your town as it is to seek out love 5,000 miles away. My advice would be… don’t. For every one person I’ve seen have luck meeting someone overseas, I’ve seen 25 who either got scammed or found themselves in a relationship that was more about what they could provide than who they were. This includes the recent advent of the “Passport Bros,” trend where people are temporarily moving overseas to try and find love among the local populations. The risk far outweighs the rewards, and going overseas to find love doesn’t fix the fundamental problems that are keeping you from maintaining a long-term relationship domestically. I’ve spoken to several people who complain about the men and women in the US, but their complaints usually have more to do with a lack of self-awareness and growth than they do with the people they want to date. It’s a subject for another post, but 99% of the time people think they can’t find someone good domestically, It’s usually more about unrealistic expectations or other issues keeping them from connecting with people.
Online dating can be hard, and it can be especially frustrating when you live somewhere that doesn’t have a good dating pool. The good news is that it doesn’t mean things are hopeless. It just means that you are going to have to get a little more creative in your search for love. If you have been struggling with finding a date or a partner through online dating, give me a call at 888-447-7634 ext 1, or send me a message HERE. If you need help creating a dating profile that helps you stand out from the crowd or strategic coaching to help you connect with the people you want to meet, check out our services HERE.