Love and dating apps: how to use them wisely

We are all increasingly aware of the fact that using a dating app is one of the principal methods of meeting potential partners.  As we all know, there are many types of criteria that can take precedence in these apps: some are more formal; some are geared toward a younger population, while others target a broader age range.

There is always more creativity and innovation when it comes to designing these apps, and no one can deny their popularity and utility in certain regards.  If we decide to use them, we should bear in mind that not all dating apps are equal.  Far from it!  They vary widely in terms of their intended audiences, and they differ greatly in the type of use that they promote.

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Moreover, we shouldn’t forget that not only dating apps are used as platforms to search for relationships.  Many people take advantage of their visibility on other social networks to put themselves on the radar of people whom they have never seen in person.  We are talking about Instagram or Facebook.

Sometimes, we can think that we already know everything about digging for dates online and that we have all of the information regarding the attitudes and precautions that we should take when it comes to using dating apps.  Nevertheless, we often make mistakes.  Sometimes, we haven’t taken into account some psychosocial details that we put into play each time that we enter into these networks.

Love and dating apps: how to use them wisely

The right applications

It isn’t always easy to know what type of app will best suit our purposes.  It is vital that we understand our desires and intentions.  What are we looking for?  Do we just want to meet people casually?  Do we very clearly know that we are looking for relationships with a certain level of commitment?  In any case, we will try to refine our aim in light of our particular wishes.

There are applications that clearly prioritize pictures; they devote 80% of a person’s profile to images, leaving little space for descriptions of the person’s personality or interests.

In other apps, however, we encounter lengthy personal descriptions, detailed profiles with musical tastes, hobbies, professions, etc.  The distinct emphases (visual information versus written information, etc.) of the different apps indicate differences in the crowds to which they cater.

Regardless, none of this assures us that we can’t find a more formal relationship in an app of a more relaxed character and that highlights more superficial qualities (like appearance).  The opposite can also be true; we can encounter a more casual relationship in an app that is apparently more formal.  In general, we find that the person matters more than the app, and different people turn to dating apps for different reasons.  Ultimately, experience and common sense tell us that our chances of success are higher when we’re honest with ourselves about our goals.

Following with that logic, not only the type of application gives us our first clue about the people we’ll encounter there, but also the type of profile of the user is key.  What information does the user seem to prioritize?  We should apply this reasoning as much to the profile that we make as to the profiles that we view.

Again, we talk about consistency and honesty.  If we want to seem worldly, but we only post photos that display us proudly flaunting our physical attributes, then we are clearly giving a mixed message.  We shouldn’t present a close-minded impression of what we are or aren’t looking for on our profiles; instead, we should provide general guidelines about the kinds of people with whom we would like to interact.

The information that we receive isn’t all true

Until one has a real date with the person, one has to assume that some of the information on his/her profile is incorrect or misleading.  They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, and in this case, a real date is worth more than a thousand pictures.  Experts have demonstrated that falling in love is a chemical matter that happens according to psychophysical guidelines.

We need to be near people to know if we really like them.  We need to hear the tone of their voice, see how they move, how they gesture.  Taste and touch, eye contact … When we only view people’s profiles, we really know so little about them.  For that reason, we can’t forget that we won’t really know whether we really like them and they really like us until we meet them face to face.

Love and dating apps: how to use them wisely

Responsibilities for them and for us

Just like on social media, lies abound on dating apps.  The desires to find a committed partner or accumulate sexual partners lead people to lie to others with whom they otherwise wouldn’t get along or have a true connection.

The most typical example could be the type of person who, knowing that s/he only wants fleeting sexual relations, still lies to people who seek more serious relationships and gives off signals that their desires are compatible.

Here, the most useful approach is to let ourselves be guided by our intuition.  Without a doubt, our instinct is informed by clearer signals.  What should signal the alarm for us is ambiguity between what a person says and what a person really does.  It doesn’t matter what a person says s/he wants if, in reality, his/her communicational behaviors always seem to have the same goal.  It can be that in some cases, the gap between words and actions only emerges in time, but if we are attentive, we will notice many conversational clues that reveal their true motives.  We can extract valuable information from when they contact us, what themes they continually bring up, if they show real interest in us or only seem intent to progress rapidly to topics of a more sexual nature, etc.

Just like we should be cautious, we should also act respectfully toward the other person.  Even if we don’t know him/her in real life, and even if we haven’t yet established a real bond, that doesn’t give us the right to disrespect their emotions.

If we ourselves are only seeking a casual relationship, one without commitment, we shouldn’t try to gain access to people who have expressed the explicit desire to find something more profound.

Above all else, if you decide to use a dating app, remember these pieces of advice and be honest about your desires.

 

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