New Year's Kiss

6 ways to get what you want out of dating in 2013

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Beth Cook is a dating coach and throws private dating events for San Francisco’s most awesome and unattached. She also writes and draws about her own dating experiences. Want advice? Have advice? Send her an email.

Ah, it’s that time of year again...when we reflect on a year past and are freshly committed to all our shiny new goals and intentions for the year ahead.

If you’re single and looking, it’s also the time of year you’re probably thinking “I swear, if I have to troll around online dating sites for one more year, I’m gonna lose it.”

So, what was your New Year’s dating resolution? I’m guessing theres a good chance you want this to be the year where you get what you want—the year you meet a stellar plus pne.

One way to get closer to that goal is to give yourself an online dating profile makeover. New year, new you, right? Here’s a few things you can do to get closer to that reality.

1) First things first, update your profile photo. Pick something recent, smiley (perhaps a cute holiday party pic?) and from the waist up (no extreme close-ups or here’s-me-next-to-a-mountain pics).

2) Update your profile description. You’ve probably described yourself inaccurately. Don’t worry—most people do. Why not ask your friends for a little assistance in this department? Ask them to sum you up, pick out what they think makes you unique, and tell you their favorite stories about you. Use this information to write a more realistic description of yourself and your lifestyle. And of course, the more fun and positive you make yourself out to be, the better.

3) Remove anything from your profile that is holding you back (i.e. notes of judgement or negativity). Start with these six.

4) Change the way you search. Looking for a handsome man approximately 2-4 years older than you? Searching for Scorpios or women who love wind surfing? Loosen up and expand your search. Don’t advanced-search-limit people by age, race, animals, hobbies, astrological signs, or height. Perfect doesn’t exist and, as I always say, the person who is right for you probably won’t show up in the package you think they will.

5) Send messages to lots of people and reply to lots of people. Be kind, courteous, flirty, and get things offline ASAP. I’m asking you to go on a date with anyone who shows interest and doesn’t completely repel you. This is because a) you might be surprised what this person has to offer, b) you’ll learn something about what you’re looking for, and c) it’s good practice—you’ll want to have your shit together when Miss or Mister Dreamboat comes along.

6) Lastly, get into the right frame of mind. Make dating a fun adventure or a human experiment, not a torturous chore. Be excited about meeting new people, going new places, and about the possibility of love. If you approach online dating half-assed your results will be the same. Live like the fun and positive self your profile now makes you out to be. Make this year the one you give your all.

Happy 2013.

Photo by ...love Maegan