Navigating the online dating world can be overwhelming.

But, it’s the go-to way of finding your next date or hopefully potential partner. Here are 10 tips that will save you time, energy and the pain of sitting through long, boring dates that leave you feeling defeated.

1. Post a recent photo of yourself that’s flattering and actually looks like you.

Post pictures that were taken within the last 6 months and that actually look like you! You want people to know what to expect when you show up for your date. Be honest about who you are.

2. Be unique and specific in your profile.

Everyone “likes to have fun,” & “hang out with friends,” Tell people something they don’t know about you, something unique. Being specific helps you stand out and also gives an easy conversation opener.

3. Avoid negative language in your profile.

Negative language (ex: “I don’t like,” “I hate”) sets a bad tone. Turn negative statements into positive ones (ex: “I prefer”).

4. Keep your emails brief.

Don’t write a novel. Respond to things that are shared with you, share something new about yourself— but leave plenty to talk about on your real date. It’s more fun to learn about each other through something called face-to-face conversation. Remember what that is?

5. If there’s interest, meet in person quickly.

Respond to messages within a day or two (three tops!), and make plans to meet up in person after you’ve exchanged a handful of brief messages. If it’s longer, you’ve hit a dead-end.

6. Meet in public and tell at least one person where you’ll be and what time you expect to be home.

7. Plan a first date that can be short, sweet, and low-key.

Use the first date to see if there’s a spark. If there is one, you can extend your date or plan something more intimate for next time.

8. Keep your options open!

Just because you’ve had a few great email exchanges — or even a couple awesome dates with someone — doesn’t mean you should cancel your account. Keep your options open until you’re both ready to be exclusive.

9. Take a break if you’re feeling weary.

If you start to find yourself discouraged by online dating, take a break for a bit. Regroup, try something new and then try it out again.

10. Try different sites.

Spread your wings, try different sites on for size. Dating sites are like shopping stores–some of them have better merchandise than others. Keep browsing!

You can do this!

What are your best online dating tips?  Do you have an online dating success story?  Let me know here!

Chat soon!