A French woman and personal life coach's outlook on self-confidence, communication and relationships. How to gain and manage them to get what and who you deserve.

Archive for the ‘Dating’ Category

Why to be stunningly hot or ugly can be your best bet

Yet another proof, in my opinion, the better you have come to terms with yourself and can shamelessly flaunt it, the better outcome you will get. Your flaws are actually your assets. They make you stand out. The most successful women are those who stand out. You love them or you hate them, they leave nobody indifferent though. They won’t be ignored, therefore will get the most valuable messages and contacts from really interested men than the “just cute” ones.

The article below demonstrates, from objective data, that :
– the more men as groups disagree about a women’s look, the more they end up liking her.
– guys tend to ignore girls who are merely cute.
– and, in fact, having some men think she’s ugly actually works in woman’s favor.

Curious to know why and to catch a glimpse of how the man’s brain works sometimes? Read below… ;)

What the public criticizes in you, cultivate. It is you.” (Jean Cocteau)

“http://blog.okcupid.com/index.php/the-mathematics-of-beauty/”

Your thoughts ? :)

Facebook: the future of on line dating ?

find me on FB

I started online dating even before the era of the Internet. At the time, only a happy few could use it: the connection was expensive and it was not socially admitted yet. I’ve met a bunch of very interesting people this way, many friends, and my daughter’s father, most of them I’m still in touch with after decades. Because it was somehow a “private club”.

Then came the Internet, as we know it now. So I moved on to dating websites, the most famous at the time being Match.com which still exists, though it has changed a lot since. There again, although the access was free, I’ve met great people because not anybody would go on-line to date. It took a while, a decade or so, for the majority to acknowledge it was a great new way to meet somebody and openly admit they tried it.

As online dating became more and more successful, websites went multiplying. More or less all similar. A few tried to stand out offering various features, soon copied by the others.
Nowadays you can find all types of websites, targeting all kinds of people (Christians, Black, Asians, So-called “selected” ones, etc…). Some, like E-Harmony for instance, even offer to help you go through the dating process.
Of course, the main ones would suggest you “matches”, based on your requirements and “so-called” personality and compatibility tests. How many did you find who were actually real matches to you though ? Not very surprising it doesn’t wonderfully work, since people are not machines and a computer, at least for the time being, can’t replace the human brain, even less understand your feelings.

I don’t mean you can’t meet your significant other on dating websites. Thank God, it can work ! :D And fortunately so, for more and more ask you to pay for a membership, so I guess the very least you can expect is to meet potential matches, right ? :) Yet, more often than not, the return on investment is rather low, isn’t it ?

Nowadays, those sites have become so crowdy that everybody, the best and the worst, is on there now. So you can’t even tell for sure whom you’re actually talking to. Scammers of all kinds, liars, pretenders, etc, etc… the list is endless.
And to contact those people, you would have to pay? Don’t expect the websites to do the cast out for you!
True that most scammers wouldn’t bother to become a member, although many do. They see it as an investment. But, even though, paying for a membership doesn’t protect you from all the others and there is certainly no guarantee of result.

On the other hand, four of my friends recently met on Facebook and are now married.
And, coming to think of it, I begun to realize Facebook (and other social media, but Facebook is the biggest) was actually a fantastic tool to date on-line, although differently, using different codes and processes.
As for me, I’m convinced, although it has already started, it will become more and more popular among on-line daters in the future.

So I thought of comparing the different “services” those sites offer versus what you can find on Facebook for instance. Which is the most effective ? Who can take advantage of moving on from dating on dedicated sites to Facebook. ? The pros and cons of each.

This is what I shall detail in another post. Stay tuned ! ;)

Americans date, French meet : one word, a thousand implications

Dating websites” in French is translated as “sites de rencontres”, literally “meeting websites”. We wouldn’t talk about “dates” here, but about “meetings”.
It may sound like a detail. Though it reveals much more than just a difference of language ; it shows a difference of mentality.

Different words, different implications, different influences on our approach of the other gender.

rendez-vous

French surf on “meeting websites”. When they make contacts, their primary idea is to exchange with interesting people, get to know them a little and see if they have enough in common to expect to spend a fun time together. If so, then meet up and take it from there. There are seldom unrealistic expectations on either side. No pressure.

The idea of finding the “right person” is not our #1 priority at all. We actually don’t even think of it. That dream of “instant chemistry” and “love at first sight” can entertain us in movies ; we don’t systematically hope, even less expect it to come true in real life. We don’t go to “dates” with the secret expectation of meeting our “soul mate”. We certainly expect no miracle to happen over a quick cup of coffee or even a dinner.
It may not sound romantic, but the French are realistic people. :)

I’ve found out it was somewhat different in the USA. I’ve found out women, as well as men actually, when they go on a date, often hold higher expectations than just “meeting someone nice and friendly”. This, in my opinion, not only puts an undue pressure on themselves, but also a heavy load on the date.
Such pressure shatters the self-confidence. It becomes difficult to act naturally. Difficult, under those circumstances, to look one’s best. Too many projections and questions going on… This often leads to the mistake of focusing more on themselves than on the other person. They lose focus of what the real deal should be : to meet another human being.
It is harder to be rejected by someone you expected a lot from than by just anybody. And this, should the person suit you or not. It leads you to question your power of attraction.
Therefore, many either daren’t even go for it.
Many others don’t fail to be disappointed when they meet somebody they’ve started to date on-line. Of course, nobody, ever, can be up to a fantasy! Therefore they would soon get discouraged and throw the towel off. :(
The higher the expectations, the bigger the disappointment.

The realistic French know that. So they take and make meeting via websites easier and lighter. We would go to the “date” we actually don’t call “date” in a relaxed state of mind. No big expectations and certainly not the one to meet our life partner.
As long as the other person is polite and educated enough, a good and fun conversationalist, we’re quite able to enjoy the meeting, even though the chemistry is not there.
We may never see each other again, set no other meeting, even less fall in love, but this is not a pre-requirement. Therefore we seldom feel we’ve wasted our time and get discouraged because we’ve not met our “soul mate” or “other half” or “the one”. We have enjoyed a nice evening and that’s fine. :)
Because we seek to meet another human being first.

I’ve met people on-line for decades and never, ever, experienced any disappointment. People were always who they said they were and very close to whom I expected to meet. I can perfectly meet people who don’t seem to meet my requirements as far as romantic relationships go, only because I find their personality interesting, fun, unusual, even sometimes fascinating. So what ? Life and relationships don’t boil down to finding Mr or Mrs Right, do they ? Life can be full of surprises and you may meet the right person when you expect it the least. Online profiles seldom gives you a 100% accurate idea of who the person really is, and certainly doesn’t tell ALL of him (her).

A quick poll among my friends shows I am not an exception. :)
They all clearly stated they’d never been to a “meet up” with anything else in mind than curiosity, openness and the desire to get to know somebody a priori interesting.
Sure, men often expect to get at least a one night stand, yet not all of them. Should things happen not to end this way, there is no hard feelings because, after all, no promise has been made and no definite expectation set. If some sort of positive connection takes place, chances are you can become friends or at least keep in touch. At any rate make the most of the meeting and turn it into something positive for both. And if it doesn’t work out for some reason, no drama.

Just a little switch in terminology can bring quite a different outcome. How does it sound ? :)

How your presentation can sabotage your chances in on line dating

Most websites offer the option to give general info about you, your situation, hobbies, etc… beside the introduction text. Make sure you’ve filled it out. Of course, you don’t need to answer ALL the questions. Yet, although it will not always systematically rule you out, no answer or a blank one may not always play in your favor. Avoid anything which can lead people to think you’ve got something to hide.
It can also look like you didn’t take it seriously enough. If you can’t even find enough time to correctly fill a profile out, you allow people to question your level of investment.

Although of course you’d better choose the right bait to catch the right fish (please see : https://getthefrenchtouch.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/first-steps-to-settting-an-efficient-on-line-profile/), a few elements will prevent you from jeopardizing your chances to attract somebody interesting.

Perfect spelling, grammar and punctuation are a must. You have plenty of time to reread it, have it reread, etc… So, no excuse there. You writing in a foreign language is not an excuse for mistakes either, in that context, for the same reason.
No text language. Beware of online translators as well.
The page formatting is also important. Make paragraphs, please! Your text will be easier on the eyes and your ideas will look clearer than the average. This is for the form.

Put whatever you have to say in a nice, clear and positive way. (see: https://getthefrenchtouch.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/reformulate/ , please).

Ladies, if your photos look attractive enough, many men won’t even bother to read your introduction, no more than the rest of your info, beside maybe your age and location. You can easily tell they would take every chance hoping somebody good-looking enough will reply.
An easy way to see if they’ve read your info and intro is to ask a specific question or mention something very specific about you they shouldn’t miss and they can refer to in their first message to you. If they don’t, chances are they’ve just skipped it and are not that interested in getting to know you specifically. No need to waste your time on them then.

Gentlemen, women, unlike you, will pay much attention to details and what it is you have to say, regardless of how good you may look. They are sensitive to words and won’t jump into a story only because your photo is attractive. They will want to know more and make sure your personality matches your looks. Most women will go through all the different categories so that they can pick as much as possible info about you.
Remember the attractive ones get tons of email every day. To catch their attention, you need more than just good photos. If your intro is not up to the rest of your profile and doesn’t stand out nor make the ladies feel like getting to know you, you’re doomed.
Should you look like Apollo reincarnated, if your text is not up to your photos, you jeopardize your chances with the worthy ladies.
Whereas, if you look just average, but your intelligence and your personal qualities show through your writing, they may think twice before casting you out and send you a note because, at the very least, they can expect to communicate on an interesting enough mode.
So, to attract the best ones requires a little effort and work on your text.

Show some creativity, please.
Unless it is very unusual and a big thing in your life, all that is otherwise mentioned in your profile is often not worth being repeated. It looks as if there is nothing else you can talk about and lets expect no real fancy conversation. Not very appealing, is it?
Too strict requirements about who you seek you may believe show you know what you want, if sounding like warnings will only show your lack of flexibility. As an outcome, they may make you miss good opportunities.
As can a big hiatus between your requirements and what you’ve got to offer. Keep your expectations realistic, please. :)

Bragging is no better than complaining. Histrionic or depressive personalities are not the most appreciated. Show your best face. Don’t lie though if you seek a lasting relationship.
Try to sound balanced, with a slightly wild side. Humor is good if subtly handled.

Stick to the essential and leave room for further discovery. No need to write your biography ! ;) A long text will discourage many to extensively read it. 10 to 15 lines are far enough, in my opinion.
Show what makes you different from others. Why should people contact you? What makes you so special they should pay attention to you? Your text should tickle the reader’s curiosity and interest, make him (her) smile. Create something of your own, keep your text understandable though.

OK, this is an introduction. A few gentle and engaging words about who you seek can’t hurt though. To show interest in the other person and open doors are always welcome. Ask few questions about her (him), for instance.

If you’re not a good writer, ask a coach or a friend for help. Every man and woman is different, yet few things are complete turns off to almost all of them.
Make sure to reread your text with a critical eye.

And last but not least, end your intro with something which will help your potential contact to bounce back and start a conversation. :)

To look your best, focus on your best !

Too often complexes women (and men!) carry about their physical appearance shatter their self-confidence. How sad, when it could so easily be otherwise!
We all have something about it we don’t like or would like different. Nobody’s perfect, right ?
I could make a whole lecture on self-acceptance, etc… to solve that issue. All good pieces of advice.
But there is a truth that works better and every time : what you focus on about yourself, others notice. What you forget about, they overlook. So basically simple! :)

Most of the time we wrongly assume that others see us with our eyes. Of course, it is not true. They are not us and come from another place. They don’t think with our mind, but theirs, their tastes, priorities and criteria are different.

I shall write another article about projections, because projections are a key issue.
Once you will have understood how they work and why they are so effective, you will see how easily you can improve your life, relationships and communication in many ways.

But for now, a few simple tips :
– Remember you are not a matter of only one or two physical features, you’re much more than that. What may look a big thing to you often appears as a detail to others.
– Never mention what you consider a flaw of yours when you seek to charm someone. Why deliberately bring his (her) attention to anything you would like him (her) to forget about unless you seek to self-sabotage.
– Focus on what you like instead. Yes, there is something in your appearance which you like. :) Think again… Your smile? Your eyes? Your hair? Your hands? Your feet? :D OK. So, from now on, think: “I am my smile”, “I am my eyes”, etc…. This is magic. Because it will change your own perception of yourself, thus the others’ perception of you.
– Of course, you’re not a matter of that only either. But if you catch somebody’s attention, better it be on what you consider the best part of you because it is what they will remember. ;)

When you focus on just one or two things in your anatomy which bother you, you implicitly send out the message that this is what you are. Deep inside, you know this is not true, don’t you? So, why not focus on what you like instead and send out the message you’re the best part of yourself? :)

It may require a bit of conscious thinking before it becomes a reflex and a second nature. It will happen sooner than you may believe though. Particularly when you can see the outcome of this simple switch in your thinking and perception.

You will seldom get a second chance to make a first good impression, so why not try this right away ? :)

Want to be treated like a lady ? Behave like one !

Audrey Hepburn & Grace Kelly

I guess we all, women, appreciate men to treat us like ladies. Actually most, particularly in the USA, from what I’ve seen, simply expect it as a given.
While French women too like it, most believe to get it, they must behave ladylike first. Plus, they know it is an efficient way to attract men and win them over.
This, too, is part of the “je ne sais quoi”. :)

Please, carefully listen to the lyrics of the famous song below. A man tells you who he considers a lady and how she makes him feel. :)

A lady is clearly conscious of her self-worth, so doesn’t need to throw who she is at everybody’s face nor to flaunt any of her qualities, physical assets or achievements. This could only show latent insecurities or presumptuousness, both are not of a lady. A lady is humble and discrete because she can afford it. No risk for her to go unnoticed and she knows it. ;)

She is genuinely respectful, caring and well-mannered. Well-mannered means she knows how to appropriately behave and react under any circumstance.
It is easy, provided you keep in mind to put others’ comfort before yours.

Show equal consideration to everybody, regardless of their social status, appearance, intelligence and culture, etc…
Manage for the other person to feel great and valuable, comfortable and at ease and don’t embarrass him in any way, even less make him feel inadequate.
Don’t criticize, despise or even only look annoyed, particularly in public. Compliments and appreciation will lead you further than criticism and complaints so subtly and discretely help if needed, just to show you care, not more.

Should you wish something specific, don’t demand. Suggest or graciously ask. Take no service for granted, thus never forget to give smiling thanks for whatever is done for you, even minor things.

Remains calm, unruffled and pleasant whatever the circumstances. Not because you’re a wallflower, but because you can adapt with ease and without complaining. Don’t sound harsh, and weight your words up before you speak.
A true lady is also a positive, indulgent person who can see humor in the worst situations, avoid dramas and knows how to lighten up the mood.

Others, particularly men, highly appreciate that. It is not that common they would take it for granted. What a refreshing change from what they too often experience! :D
An easy way for you to score points and attract them even more. ;)
They won’t consider you less than who you are: it will be the opposite. Your attitude will give them room to be themselves and boost their self-confidence. It will take nothing off of you, will bring a lot to them though, consequently to you, for they will feel like pleasing you and up to it.

A true lady doesn’t compete with men on their ground. She has her own specific assets and uses them. Therefore men feel safe with her because neither do they feel belittled nor threatened.
To behave like a real lady will bring you gratefulness, respect, appreciation and even admiration from them. This will make you utmost attractive in the eyes of many and, even better, they will like you for who you are, not only for what you look. And, who knows… even love you ? :)
For, as the song says : “What she’s got is hard to find, and I don’t want to lose her”. :)

How photos can sabotage your on line dating profile

Depending on your target, you may personalize the following advice a bit. I assume in that post that you’re looking for a serious relationship and to attract quality people. Yet most rules apply to any profile, should you be a man or a woman.
Profiles with photos get more answers than others. Resist the urge to post any picture at hand that could go against your purpose though. Better post none right away than any which wouldn’t fit. A judicious choice of photos is paramount. Most, particularly men, will skip your profile if your image doesn’t appeal to them. So, to take photos especially for your profile is well worth the (little) effort.

Wear clothes you feel comfortable in, which will enhance your physical assets and skilfully hide your flaws. I don’t mean “cheat”. I mean “be smart”. :)
Gentlemen, look neat. Women have an eye for details. :D Bare chests, big golden chains, sunglasses, hats, open shirts, anything looking mannish in the old-fashioned way can be fatal. Photos of you in the mirror are of poor quality and poor taste. Better ban them absolutely ! A fashionably casual look is probably the safest choice. :)
Ladies, keep those sexy pics for your man when you’ve got one. No doubt they will attract the men’s eyes. Should they seek a long-term or serious relationship though, they may not appreciate half of the planet could have used a photo of you in your bikini as a screen saver. Be subtle. Suggest, don’t show. It is much more effective ! ;) Avoid overdressed attire, big jewels and heavy make up. Keep it simple and as natural as possible.
For God’s sake, don’t stereotype yourself ! People seek to get an as accurate as possible idea of what you look like in real life. Better be a good surprise than a disappointment when you eventually meet them in the flesh. ;)
Look lively. Standing like a picket fence in front of your garage door is not the most appealing. Shoot a lot of photos. If you’re not familiar with pausing, you will relax as the shooting goes and get better and more natural snapshots and have plenty to select from in the end. A natural daylight on a nice day, in the morning or end of the afternoon, is the best. The noon sun flattens the image. Flashlights harden the expression. Beware of unwanted shadows! Hire a friend or use a timer or a remote.
Eventually choose the photos which show your personality the best. The purpose is not for him (her) to mistake you for a fashion model. You should eventually look like a NATURALLY attractive REAL person.
When it comes to the selection, step back, ask for trusted friends’ advice, preferably of the other gender, and use your common sense. Think of what turns you off in others’ profiles and don’t make the same mistakes !

The viewer rightly expects:
Recent good quality pictures If you’ve got no decent camera, better borrow one. Cell phones and 5 minutes photo machines usually give poor results.
You may regularly update your photos, by the way. They will attract new people, plus those who may not have noticed your first ones, may have a second thought and check your profile again. The photos don’t need to be professional, though ruthlessly discard any over or underexposed, blurred, out of focus or centring ones.
Ideally, you would display: a portrait, a full-length picture and, though optional, a few ones of you enjoying any activity you’ve mentioned in your text.

dot steven

The portrait : usually and logically, your main photo. That little thumbnail people will see when browsing profiles is what will make them “click”…or not. You seldom get a second chance to make a first good impression, so carefully choose this one. :)
The viewer should feel you’re looking at him (her) and speaking to him personally. The most efficient is to look at the camera and smile. Attractiveness doesn’t lie in made up perfection, but in what I call “the twinkle in the eye”. Picture the man (woman) of your dreams standing right there in front of you and seduce him. It will show through the photo, just like you can hear a smile on the phone. :)

The full-length picture : pay attention to the background. You may slightly touch it up to remove something unwanted. Make sure though you’re skilled enough to smartly and properly do it. If you’re not, ask someone more competent or pick another photo.
Carefully mind obvious mistakes like somebody else’s hand on your shoulder, around your waist, or a bit of somebody else’s hair or foot on the edge. Cropped pictures are seldom a good option, unless it is to improve the centring and even though, be cautious if you’re not an expert.
If you take the photo inside, particularly in your home, choose a somewhat neutral background. Your interior decoration can tell a lot about you and not always for the best! A bit of greenery can’t hurt, or an open background, in your garden or some not too crowded place. A cluttered background will compete with the main figure. It will distract the viewer from what you want him to focus on : you.

Other pictures : You can display several photos of you enjoying activities. This is where you can show different facets of you. Beware though, it can be tricky! Better make them match your profile assertions. Beware of inconsistencies and mixed messages.
In my opinion, to display photos of you with your children is not a brilliant idea. You never know where they will end and you may save them for the persons you’ve already connected with.
Gentlemen, regardless of how much you can cherish your car, mansion, motorbike, yacht, truck, know that they will not convince many women to contact you. Such a display looks fishy to most, as if you had to make up for a lack of anything they consider more important than your social status. It may well be interpreted as narcissism, beside by gold-diggers. If this is who you seek, then, perfect. :) To the others though, it is a total turn off more often than not.
Ladies and gentlemen, photos with persons of the other gender usually puts off any potential partner. If your other photos show your attractiveness, your contacts will soon assume you can pick your choice any time among all your suitors. No need to hit it on the nail! :D

The key word is, as always: balance. Don’t show too much, only what makes you different in a positive way and is the most representative of who you are in real life.
If you can find nothing definitely positive and representative to show in the last category, abstain.
Too many photos are not always a plus, in my opinion. Better three or even only one very good portrait of you, than half a dozen of so so pictures. Remember people will be able to watch them closely, at leisure and every bit of them can reveal something you’d rather not display for all to see.

Wouldn’t it be handy to have photo-checkers, like we have spell-checkers ? :D