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Alan R. Stafford
Millions of men and women have signed up at online dating sites. The research indicates that there are few dates and even fewer marriages that take place as a result of meeting people online. Some of the responsibility for the poor results lies with the customers themselves. Too many men and women fill out their profiles and then sit back and wait. They expect the computers to match them with their perfect mates. And they really dont want to actually work at finding their life partners.

Are you living in a fairy tale? Some of the reluctance to take charge of your love life is the result of what I call the Fairy Tale Trap. This dating trap is an entrenched part of our culture. The Fairy Tale part of the trap says that we dont have to take responsibility for finding our soul mates. Indeed, our soul mate will just appear becauseits fate. Someday, our prince will come, if we just wait long enough.

Well, it doesnt work that way. The perfect employer doesnt call you with a job. The perfect car doesnt drive itself into your garage. And, your perfect partner wont magically appear someday to take you away from all of this. You have to get out there and look. Online dating services can help you look. They help you screen more prospects more quickly. But they wont find a mate for you. You have to still put in the effort. If you want the best results from your online search, try these proven tips:

Secrets to online dating success 1. Know yourself; be yourself. No phoniness. Be honest and demand honesty from dates. Or else. First email, first date, doesnt matter. At the first sign of untruthfulness, walk away.

2. Post several photos - with your clothes on. You catch fish according to the type of bait you use. What do you think you are attracting with racy photos of your T&A? If you want someone to love you for yourself, post photos of yourself, not your body parts.

3. Write a paragraph or two about yourself that no one else could write. Be unique. Most women fall within a fairly narrow range for height, weight, hair color, eye color. They are all nice, attractive, fun, good sense of humor. Tell the world something it doesnt know and cant get from a standard fill-in-the-blank profile.

4. Contact lots of people and answer lots of contacts. Its a numbers game. Besides, if you corresponded with only one man how would you know hes the best one for you? You never had a choice, did you?

5. Online dating safety tips 1) No personal email addresses. Get a new free one from hotmail, yahoo, or gmail. 2) Do not give out your personal phone or cell phone numbers. Instead, visit and get a free bridgeline. This is a private telephone number that exists in a computer far away. You give this number to a possible date, and tell him to call that number at a specific time. Then, both of you call that number at the agreed time to connect over the phone. Its anonymous and untraceable.

6. Most of your contacts and replies wont result in a match or a date, let alone a relationship. So what? Do you always watch the TV channel that comes up when you turn on the TV? You browse the channels, so browse your prospects. The more you do this, the better you will get at it. When you finally meet Mr. Wonderful youll be very good at screening and evaluating possible dates.

6a. On a scale of 1-10, youll want to date 10s of course. Youd be smart not to waste your time on 1s. But, how about those 4-5-6s? Personality can make up for a less than perfect face or body. Besides, the way to get good at something is practice, practice, practice. If you want to be comfortable at dating, conversation, and screening your dates, date a lot of people. Consider it good practice. Whenever Mr. Right does come along, youll be practiced, youll be polished, and youll be ready.

7. Dont think an online dating site will have your perfect date today, this month, even this year. People come and go a lot at these dating sites. Expecting to meet someone good on the first search is like expecting to meet your mate the first time you visit the grocery, the video store, or the coffee shop. The most useful tip is: be patient. You may spend months before someone compatible logs in and sees your profile.

8. Dont expect only one online dating site to have your perfect mate. Mr. Wonderful may have joined another dating site instead. If youre serious about finding a life partner, join the top 3-4 dating sites and visit them at least weekly to see if Mr. W has signed up yet.

Alan R. Stafford

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