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Online Dating Magazine > Columns > Jennifer's Gems > Online Dating Good Start

by Jennifer Brown Banks

7 Ways to Get off to a Good Start with Online Dating

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”.

We've all heard the online dating horror stories:

- bad hook-ups through Craigslist and other online forums
- deception in dating profiles
- scams perpetrated against the clueless.

Truth is, online dating can be a beautiful adventure, or an accident waiting to happen.
It all depends on how you approach it. Tread carefully.

On a positive note...

A friend of mine met a good guy through an online dating site that turned out to be a really sweet deal.

This “eligible bachelor” was college degreed, had no baby mama drama, was gainfully employed, and even owned his own home.

And dig this---not only was there a “love connection” with this online hook-up, but they've had a solid relationship for almost four years, and have even discussed tying the knot.

How's that for “net proceeds”?!

It could happen to you too, with a little help from Cupid, and these timely tips on finding love on the Net.

    Know what you're looking for.  Your goals will determine your game plan.  Are you seeking marriage? A boy toy? Friendship? Make it known. It saves time for everyone.

    Never divulge intimate, personal details, your physical locale, financial status, or vulnerabilities through casual exchanges on line.  It's always better to be safe than sorry. Practice a little healthy paranoia in the early days.

    When in doubt, check him out! Do the details of his life and success story seem too good to be true? Is he overly mysterious? Alibis seem more like lies? Be your own P.I. With the advent of the Internet, detective work is easy through an array of online sources and software. Practice due diligence in online dating.   

    For obvious reasons, you should probably not choose a cell mate for a soul mate.  But, if you do, know that your choices have consequences.

    What are your expectations? Are you convinced that you'll find Mr. Right right away? Do you think that all your guys/girls should be a “10” in order to make the cut? You may need to reprogram.

    True love and compatibility takes time, not to mention some sacrifice.

    Are you ready for the emotional, spiritual, and psychological work required  for dating and mating? Make sure that you're not on the rebound or carrying excess baggage before you engage others in the arena of your life.

And here are a few additional important pointers...

BE A BLESSING, not a burden---Carry your weight in relationships. 
One person shouldn’t have to do all the compromising, or all the cooking, or all the cleaning, or all the sacrificing.  What value do you bring to the table?  Selfishness is a definite turn-off!

If you’re having trouble with finding or keeping a mate, consider that you might be the problem.  Perhaps you should seek the advice of a trusted female friend for greater insight.  Don’t let your pride prevent progress.

n yourself and in the possibility of finding the love and happiness you so richly deserve. The better you feel about yourself, the better the quality of mates you'll attract, and the better your dating experiences will ultimately be.

REMEMBER----you reap what you sow.  Treat folks the way you want to be treated whether it's online, in love, or as you cultivate friendships.

And keep your options open. Don't date desperately and settle for the first person that shows you potential interest.   If at first you don't succeed try try again! 


Jennifer's Gems is a weekly column written by award-winning poet and writer, Jennifer Brown Banks. It is published every Wednesday. Click here to read her welcome letter.


> - The best approach to find the one. <

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