How to protect your self esteem when online dating
Urgh – that feeling when you’ve just been ghosted by someone you really fancied. It sucks, knocks your self esteem and can even make you want to throw the towel in with online dating. But fear not, there are steps you can take to protect yourself. We’re all only human and our self esteem is fragile – use our top tips to make sure you’re doing all you can to protect yours.
Have you come back from a date feeling low because the conversation didn’t flow and there was no spark? Chances are it had nothing to do with you, it’s because you weren’t choosy enough about your date. Make it a priority to date only people who tick the right boxes for you based on their dating profile. Take a close look at their dating profile photos and see what clues you can find about your compatibility. What stuff are they into, what clothes do they wear and what does their body language tell you about the sort of person they are? You don’t want to waste time on people you won’t have a fun date with, as bad dates will knock your self esteem. From now on you’re only interested in fun, positive dates with like minded people.
Feel great about your dating profile
It’s super important to feel happy with your dating profile photos, and that the whole package of words and images on your dating profile is a true and honest reflection of you. If you feel good about your personal brand, it makes the knocks easier to stomach. Next time you get rejected, you’ll know it’s genuinely because the two of you aren’t compatible. Your dating profile is authentic, and so if people don’t connect with you, that’s their loss. Putting together a really great dating profile will also lift your self esteem in itself. Going on a dating photo shoot might seem daunting but it’ll actually pay huge dividends in terms of your confidence (and you’ll feel great about showing off your super hot dating photos).
Prioritise self care
You’re seeing your friends much less often, you’ve neglected your hobbies and your neighbours think you’ve moved out of your flat because you’re never there. Ringing any bells? If so, it could be time to take a step back and make some time for yourself. Self care is an important part of protecting your self esteem. After all, there’s nothing like a great laugh with friends who know you really well to make you feel good about yourself again. Try having a couple of date free nights every week, where you can focus on having some ‘me time’ – whether it’s a nice soak in the bath with a good book, hitting the gym for a really great workout, or some drinks at the local boozer with your pals.
Have a little respect
You rightly expect to be treated well when online dating and for people to respect your feelings, so it’s only fair that you should have good dating etiquette yourself. Think of the things that knock your own self esteem – things like ghosting, not replying to messages for days, or sending mixed signals – and make sure you’re not doing them to others. When you are seeing multiple people at once, it’s all too easy to be less responsive with the people you’re less interested in, but just be considerate and call yourself out if your behaviour is falling short. The energy you put out into the world is what you’ll get back.
Trust your instincts
Sometimes you meet someone who’s really hot but the chemistry is just all wrong – their messages leave you feeling low, or you always come back from dates feeling down on yourself. These are warning signs that your self esteem is at risk. Similarly, if you’re out on a date and your gut instincts are telling you that something is off, it’s totally fine to end the date early and politely but assertively walk away. So if you feel the need to end a conversation online, call off a date, leave during a date or break if off with someone you’ve been seeing, trust your instincts and go right ahead. As long as you’re polite, there’s no need to feel bad. You’ll thank yourself later on when you’re dating someone who makes you feel really good about yourself.
Choose the right dating app
If your dating is getting you down, ask yourself whether you’re using the right app for you. It’s fine to accept that Tinder is not for everyone. With Bumble, for example, only female users can make the first move with a match. If you want something a bit more traditional, you might prefer Eharmony, where you have to complete a compatibility questionnaire before getting matched. Clikd is all about personality, where you set other users a ‘test’ using three questions of your choice to determine your compatibility. Do your research, shop around and you might find that your online dating experience becomes a lot more pleasurable when you’re on the best app for you.
Boost your self esteem with a dating photo shoot from the experts and feel good about your online dating – book with Hey Saturday now.
Cool words by Lauren, fun dating profile photos by Saskia and Anna for Hey Saturday, London and Los Angeles.