Ahh, online dating. A strange world of which I knew nothing about up until a few weeks ago when I created my profile and signed up for a subscription on Christian Mingle, a popular online dating site for Christians.
As I’ve been learning to navigate my way around Christian Mingle, I’ve lovingly compiled a list of six tips I wish many of my Christian brothers and fellow Minglers would put into practice to increase their hopes of finding that Proverbs 31-kind-of-gal.
1. Select pictures with care. Let’s be honest: sometimes we do judge books by their covers, because first impressions are really important! Take care when selecting what images a girl sees while browsing profiles, especially your all-important main profile pic. Avoid using pictures with poor lighting, bizarre props, or selfies taken in your bathroom mirror. Ask a female in your life her opinion on what photos you’re going to use before uploading them. Or head outside and ask a buddy to take a few pictures of you.
Also, I know you love your wonderful pets, but Christian Mingle is not the place to show off how cute Fido and Whiskers are—unless you’re also in the pic cuddling with them.
2. Take the time to thoughtfully fill out your profile. If I, as a female, click on your profile and see you’ve written the bare minimum on your page, or you’ve neglected to use any kind of punctuation, or your answers are so generic they could be on any guy’s profile, I am automatically not interested. The least you can show a girl is that you care about taking this online dating thing seriously. That communicates to her you probably have the potential to care seriously about her, too.
If you’re paying for a subscription, it’s a waste of your money NOT to invest the time in writing a good profile! You can even ask someone who knows you well to read over your profile and make sure it sounds accurate (and is free of lazy spelling errors).
3. Just say no to sending “smiles.” Personally, I am not that impressed you took all of five seconds to press a button and send me a prewritten message that I’ve already received from a half dozen other guys today. Rather than sending a smile, try the next tip…
4. Send short, personalized messages. You automatically win major points when I receive a message that proves you’ve taken the time to read my profile. Ask about the picture of me overseas I uploaded. If I said I love to read, tell me you noticed that and ask me what the best book I’ve ever read is. (Hint: just please don’t ask me a question I’ve clearly already answered on my profile.) Additionally, avoid requesting to “chat” with a girl if you haven’t at least messaged her first to see if she’d be comfortable with that. I am not very likely to accept your random chat request if I don’t even know who you are.
When sending a message, “Hi, how are you?” is better than sending a smile or chat request. But take it a step further—show a girl that you have taken an interest specifically in her.
(And asking her what super power she’d like to have does not count as a thoughtful, personal message.)
5. Have confidence! We women already deal enough with our own feelings of insecurity. Don’t apologize for sending us a message, or assume we probably don’t want to talk to you. Online dating is hard, and maybe we won’t choose to message you back—but even if you aren’t feeling confident, we won’t know that if you don’t show it. Just as I’ve heard it that it’s attractive to guys when girls exude confidence, the same is true for us: guys with confidence stand out.
Please note though that confidence is NOT cockiness. Be humble, and be comfortable with who you are. That being said…
6. Be yourself. Those of us on Christian Mingle are pretty much all there for the same reason: we want to meet someone! But that doesn’t mean you have to try to make yourself look better than you are, or make yourself sound like the perfect Christian guy. This goes right along with having confidence and being comfortable with who you are.
Few women are interested in guys whose profiles say they have a perfect relationship with God, volunteer every weekend at church, go on mission trips each summer, want to work in ministry, and love John 3:16 and Jeremiah 29:11. Girls can pick up on when a guy isn’t being genuine and is trying too hard to say all the “right” things. We aren’t expecting you to be perfect, because we certainly are not perfect either. So be yourself, and be patient as you search to find someone who can appreciate you for you.
In all seriousness, I share these tips not to berate or belittle the men putting themselves out there on Christian Mingle. I’ve come across some pretty solid guys on this site, and I wish more guys were aware of what actually catches my attention as a female. I hope this post, more than anything, is helpful, whether you’re a guy thinking of giving online dating a try, or you’re looking for ways to improve your profile on whatever dating site you use. Thank you to the men out there who know how to treat women respectfully and kindly in the crazy world that is online dating. Men and women Minglers alike, I wish you all the best!
Major thanks to my BFF and fellow Christian Mingler for her help in writing these tips and for contributing her own advice based off personal CM experience. I couldn’t imagine attempting online dating without our “buddy system!”