There you are in front of your computer getting ready to hit the sign up button on a dating site. Are you really ready for dating online?  Knowing your answers to the following questions can make the online dating more enjoyable and successful.

Why are you looking for love?

Do you get pressured by family and friends asking if you’ve met that “someone special” yet.  Is it because of that feeling you get in the pit of your stomach every time you hear a sappy jewelry commercial on the radio explaining you aren’t complete without love and a diamond in your life?  Or are you simply lonely? We’ve all been there, we’ve felt the pressure to find love and our “better half”.  For the record, you are your own “better half”.

Take what “they” say with a grain of salt.  In fact toss out “their” opinions of your love life altogether and focus on how you feel about it. It’s more important to ask yourself why you are looking for love and if you are ready for it. Are you excited to meet new people and eager to invite someone into your life?  Or are you still angry at your ex, terrified of putting yourself out there and convinced the dating pool is full of sharks? To find a great match you have to  not only want it (“it” being love) you’ve got to be prepared for it’s arrival.  Otherwise you’ll be settling for second best and into a situation that isn’t really ready for love. You deserve better than that.

What do you expect the dating site to do?

It would be nice to think that online dating sites have some magical calculation that will find your love match and deliver them directly to your inbox.  But that isn’t really how it works.  Dating sites provide you with potential matches.  I personally don’t put a lot of faith into the logarithms

behind dating sites. They do help you see similarities between you and your love targets, but there is so much more to attraction than what can be conveyed in a survey.

If you can keep in mind that dating sites are really a research tool, you’ll keep your frustration to a minimum.  It’s a online resource where you can meet people you wouldn’t come across in your everyday life. It helps you fine tune what you do and don’t want. The responsibility of the dating website ends at the introduction, the rest is up to you.  That’s where your own common sense, boundaries, expectations and in person chemistry come in.

What are you looking for?

When you were young you started forming a picture of your ideal partner and what love looked like. Odds are you’ve been dragging that same picture around with you ever since.  We have to start somewhere.  Our own starting point allows us to grow, change and have experiences using those filters and expectations.  Now that you’ve lived a little you need to change it up, really consider what’s been working for you and what hasn’t and adjust accordingly.

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. – Albert Einstein

If you keep blindly using the same criteria to find love, odds are you are going to get the same ineffective results.  Before you set up an online dating profile really think about what you want in a relationship and partner. What’s been working for you and what hasn’t.  Consider your past relationships and how they could have been better and also what you really liked about them. All of that introspection is going to give you a much better picture of how to tweak your date and love finding filter.

The bottom line is you have to look for love on your own terms, for your own reasons and the outcome is your responsibility. Don’t be pressured into looking for love by anyone or anything else. View online dating as the research tool that it is, rather than a magic love finder.  Finally, look for love online because it’s what you want and you are excited about the potential.  So are you ready to date? Then get out there and prove it!


0-1Cija Black is a dating and relationship expert, author, speaker and educator. Her dating and relationship expertise comes from 20 years of in-the-trenches experience safely using personals both on and off line.  She is the author of Modern Love: The Grownup’s Guide to Relationships & Online Dating and creator of the online class: Sorting Your Love Baggage. Cija is dedicated to helping people sort their relationship baggage, and find real love.  To find out more visit: