Is online dating too much like work?
With so many new dating apps and sites, it’s easy to forget that quantity of online dating platforms used and time spent using them will not always equate to a quality dating life. Some people are starting to think of online dating as a part time job.
“So many people spend their workdays sitting in front of a screen, doing some blend of mind-numbingly dull data entry and analysis with the occasional challenges, that when they come home at night and find themselves in front of an online dating screen and they have to do mind-numbingly dull data entry and analysis with occasionally charged moments, they are just repeating the drudgery,” said Eric Klinenberg, a sociology professor at New York University, according the Honolulu Star Advertiser.
For example, the article recounts the online dating plight of Jonathan Zwickel, a magazine editor who said he feels that spending more time on dating sites and apps helps him feel “proactive” about his dating life. But it also causes some problems.
“Though Zwickel is looking for a serious relationship, with so many options, it’s easy to be distracted. A few years ago, while waiting for one OKCupid date at a bar, another woman he’d been texting, but hadn’t met, started sending him salacious pictures, enticing him to a Bellevue, Wash., hotel. After the original date, he rushed to the Eastside and realized he couldn’t go through with it. ‘The whole thing just felt so contrived and forced and uncomfortable,’ he says.”
Here’s a tip if the abundance of online dating options has you feeling overwhelmed: Avoid falling into the paradox of choice mindset.
The paradox of choice is when you have so many options that you struggle to make a decision; then once you finally do make a decision, you second guess your choice to the point that you might regret it.
There are so many dating apps and sites that you might feel you’re missing out if you’re not on all of them. Or you might find yourself in Zwickel’s situation and struggle to balance your options. Don’t overburden yourself.
Also, online dating should serve as a supplement to your dating life, not the foundation of it. Online dating had a bad reputation for a long time because sites were filled with users who couldn’t get dates in real life even if they tried. Now everyone uses one app or another, but online dating shouldn’t be a substitute for having an actual social life.
About Luke Harold Luke Harold is a journalist who has written for publications including the Philadelphia Inquirer and Orange County Register.