Digital dating can be great, but it can also take a lot out of you. It’s not uncommon to experience digital dating ‘burnout’ that leaves you feeling like the whole thing is pointless.
It’s important to remember that dating sites are businesses first and foremost. As much as these sites would like you to believe that their singular purpose is for you to find your soulmate, they’re more concerned with generating revenue, first and foremost.
That’s why many sites force you to pay extra for the most sought-after features. And if you refuse to pay, you’re left to roll the digital dice and hope the algorithm gods match you with someone you’re compatible with.
If you’re feeling like it’s time to give the online dating game a rest, it may be a good idea to seek out in-person connections.
At the same time, if you haven’t done that in a while — say, months or even years — that can feel like a tall order. (Perhaps you’ve never even done it all.)
Remember, dating is a skill. No matter how you cut it, it takes time and dedication to master it. That is true whether you prefer to find connections in-person or online.
So, assuming that you want to give digital dating a rest for a while, this article will help you get back up to speed so you can learn how to rekindle in-person sparks as soon as possible.
Various nuances make real-life connections quite different from digital ones. And if you try to approach the real world with the same strategies you use online, you may struggle to find success.
Thankfully, with proper guidance and a clear mindset, you can avoid many dating pitfalls most men struggle with.
Here are 7 ways to overcome digital burnout and rekindle in-person connections.
1. Get Your Head Straight — Make Sure You’re In A Position To Date In The First Place
One of the major differences between online and in-person dating is that when you’re out there in the real world, you don’t have a screen to hide behind.
If you’re having a bad day, week, month, or year, you can still create an online dating profile that makes you appear happy and content with your life. (I’m not saying this is the right thing to do, but it does happen quite often).
However, in-person dating is an entirely different ballgame. If you have something in your life that’s making you seriously miserable — maybe you’re unhappy with your job or current lifestyle — it’s difficult to hide that fact.
And even if you can go out there for a date or two and put up a facade, the truth will eventually catch up with you. And no woman wants to date a man who is miserable with who he is.
So, if there’s something about your lifestyle that you need to work on, do that first before going out there and trying to meet new women.
The biggest trick that so many guys overlook is that just being yourself and being a genuine person who is fun to be around is half the battle. Being comfortable and confident in your own skin can go a long way.
The problem is that so many men think they must find a girlfriend to fill a void in their lives. If they find that elusive soulmate, everything else will fall into line.
Sorry, but this just isn’t true. Contentment must come from within, not from any external sources.
If you’re not feeling good about who you are as a man, there is little you can say or do that will make women attracted to you. As cliche as it is, confidence really is one of the most important factors when it comes to dating.
So, instead of trying to be someone you’re not, put in the work to change the things about yourself that you don’t like.
Always wanted a six-pack but have more of a keg? Stop feeling sorry about yourself and start hitting the gym.
When you go out with the guys to try and meet girls, do you open your closet and spend hours trying to figure out what to wear? Put some energy and effort into creating a wardrobe that makes you feel comfortable.
Is your life one big cycle of financial ruin dictated by failed get-rich-quick schemes? Create a clear career path and insert some stability into your life.
None of this stuff is rocket science, but you must be willing to put in the effort and do the work to better yourself as a man.
Remember, when you go out there and try to meet women, you’re indirectly competing with hundreds of other men out there. You need to communicate your value and show women what you can bring to the table.
2. Use Common Sense And Put Yourself In Places Where Your Ideal Partner Hangs Out
This is another deceptively simple principle that so many men often overlook. You can devote all your effort and energy to meeting the woman of your dreams, but you’ll never find her if you’re looking in the wrong spot.
Think about it for a second. Let’s say you routinely go out with your pals on a Friday night to try and meet women. Sometimes you hit a bar, sometimes you hit a club, but wherever you end up, there is usually alcohol involved.
Now, deep down, you very much would like to spend your Saturday on a day hike with the woman of your dreams. You can’t do that, of course, because a) you don’t have a woman, and b) even if you did, you will have a severe hangover tomorrow morning.
So, tell me: How does hitting the bars and clubs make any sense? The women who are right for you are not going out drinking on a Friday night. They’re at home, sleeping because they have to wake up at the crack of dawn tomorrow.
So, ask yourself: If the women you’re interested in don’t go to bars and clubs, why are you?
Because you’re comfortable (more on this in a bit). And because you’re used to going out with the boys to try and meet new women, that’s what you continue to do.
And sure, these outings might result in a hookup or even a short-term relationship here and there, but deep down, you know that this road will get you nowhere.
So, instead of banging your head against the wall, start thinking about where you will most likely meet your ideal woman.
And here’s a hint: You might have to go to places you’re never been before.
If you’re serious about finding that hiking partner/soulmate of your dreams, that might mean signing up for a hiking group and driving two hours to meet with people you have never met before.
Many men like to complain that they’re trying as hard as they can to meet women, but they’re actually just doing what makes them comfortable.
Don’t mistake ‘trying’ with putting in real effort. Real effort often requires you to do something that will force you to leave your comfort zone and make yourself vulnerable.
And sure, that can be scary at times, but that’s also what makes the payoff so great.
3. Learn How To Get Comfortable Being Uncomfortable
When speaking to a woman for the first time, the real world is very different than the world of dating apps.
You send a message online, and if that message doesn’t resonate with the woman on the other end, you just get ghosted.
And after that, nothing happens. You just go on with your day like normal.
In the real world, if you approach a woman and deliver your best ice-breaker line only to have her shut you down, it will sting. And the embarrassment of getting rejected will linger for quite a while after it’s over.
And if you’ve been using the internet to connect with women, this lingering pain might be something you’re not used to and are not prepared for.
That’s why it’s so important to warm up to the fact that the best thing you can do for yourself (not just in dating but in all walks of life) is to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
But what’s the easiest way to make yourself more comfortable around these awkward situations? Practice, that’s how.
If you strike out with a woman and then don’t try again for another two weeks, you’re not doing yourself any favors.
First, you will overanalyze what you did wrong and beat yourself up over something that probably isn’t even true.
Second, you will dwell on this failure to the point that it seriously affects your self-confidence.
And third, you’ll start forgetting what happened in the first place. You’ll relive the whole experience over and over in your head until the reality of the situation becomes distorted.
In other words, you can’t learn anything by doing it intermittently. You have to practice it — daily. And dating is no different.
If you devote 20 minutes of your day to approaching and striking up a conversation with women, I guarantee you’ll get better at it in just a week or two.
No matter how stressful the activity may be, simply repeating it daily will lessen the sting.
4. Embrace Authentic Conversations And Take A More Organic Approach To Talk To Women
You’ve probably heard this at some point in your life: True love finds you when you’re not looking for it.
I’m sure that has happened to millions of people throughout history, but thinking that the love of your life will literally fall out of nowhere and into your life just isn’t logical.
If you want to find a girlfriend, you need to be looking for a girlfriend.
But at the same time, I want to challenge you to examine the connections you make more organically.
Think about how you approach a woman in the first place. If you’re trying to strike up a conversation, ask yourself why. What is it about this woman specifically that is causing you to approach her?
Instead of using a generic one-liner, try discussing something that shows genuine interest. Like everything else I’ve mentioned so far, overthinking is your enemy.
If you have tattoos, like tattoos, and like her tattoos, just say that.
If you’re standing in line at the coffee shop and she orders your favorite frappuccino, just say that.
If she’s reading a book by an author you like, just say that.
Hell, if you have no reason for talking to her other than that you think she has a pretty smile, just say that.
Be honest. Be genuine. Show genuine interest.
Don’t approach it with the mentality of, “I have to nail this line because I really need to get a girlfriend, and this woman is perfect for me, and I really, really don’t want to mess this up, and, and, and… ”
Relax a little bit and take the pressure off yourself because otherwise, you’ll never be able to be yourself.
The reason so many people believe they find love when not looking for it is because they’re completely fed up. They’ve given up on finding love and are just going through the motions.
When you only expect the worst, finding good fortune is easy. No one plays the lottery thinking they will hit the jackpot; if this were true, people would stop playing.
Dating and romance function much the same way. Yes, you have to devote the time and energy to finding romance, but you can’t get your hopes up whenever you meet a new person.
5. Learn How To Speak Without Saying A Word
In online dating, the large majority of initial communication happens through text. So when it finally comes time to meet a woman face-to-face, you’ve already broken the ice.
However, in-person dating is a whole different ballgame. Online, all you need are words, but in real life, there are other variables at play — the main one being body language.
If you want to become a master at kindling in-person connections, you need to attune yourself to the subtle signals that people send out via body language.
You need to master not only your body language but also learn to read other people’s.
And don’t be too quick to assume that you’ve got body language all figured out.
With the rise of technology and the work-from-home era, we have less and less in-person interaction than ever before, and because of that, our social skills are suffering as a population.
Have you ever been out with a group of people — friends or family — and found that half the people there are glued to their phones?
Next time you see this happen, do yourself a favor: put down your phone and start observing the body language of those who are actually carrying on a conversation with someone.
You can follow the flow of the conversation without even hearing what the people are saying. Body language tells a story all its own. And if you want to capture a woman’s attention, you need to learn how to use body language to your advantage.
Take eye contact, for example. Too little eye contact, and you’ll come off as insecure or self-conscious. Too much eye contact, and you’re going to make your date feel awkward.
You can say all the right things at the correct times, but if your body language doesn’t match the words coming out of your mouth, you’re going to fail. Saying you’re a confident man doesn’t mean much if you’re sitting there biting your nails, sweating, and fidgeting in your seat.
Master alpha male body language and use it to your advantage. Understand that the energy you give off can influence the emotions of the people around you.
If you meet a woman for a date and she is obviously nervous, you must use your body language to set the mood. If you keep a calm demeanor and crack some jokes, you’ll give her the space and energy she needs to relax.
In a way, the non-verbal language we all speak is a language in and of itself.
Attractions, connections, and even disagreements often stem not from the words themselves but from the body language that accompanies them.
Master the art of body language to build more profound, intimate, and meaningful connections with those around you.
6. Unleash The Power Of Friendship With The Right “Wingmates”
Got a great group of friends who would go out of their way to do anything for you? That’s wonderful, but remember that not all men make suitable wingmen.
It’s common for guys to go out with another single friend or a group of friends to try and meet women. This is fine, but you must ensure you have the right man (men) in your corner.
First off, the wrong wingman can do more harm than good. You want a companion who will not just tag along with you but who can provide real support.
Think of the famous bar scene in Good Will Hunting when Ben Affleck’s character is getting embarrassed by a pretentious Harvard student. Will, the genius, steps in, saves his buddy and gets the girl’s number in the process. That’s what a real wingman should do.
Wingmen should be social catalysts. They should know your strengths and weaknesses and understand what moves you.
But they also have to know what they are doing in the first place.
Your friends might have the best intentions in the world, but if they don’t have the necessary skills to assist you with meeting women, there’s no point in bringing them along.
There needs to be a mutually beneficial relationship between you and your buddy or buddies. Remember, in real life, there are no algorithms to send women your way, so you need all the assistance you can get.
When looking for your ideal wingman, you want someone who is:
- Has good social skills
- Is respectful
- Maintains a positive attitude
- Is discreet
- Has situational awareness
- Is loyal
Again, dating and meeting new women should be a fun experience. Put yourself in the right place at the right time and surround yourself with the right people to achieve success.
7. Get Acquainted With The Lost Art Of Chivalry
Ever heard this one before? “Chivalry is dead.” Sorry to break it to you, but it’s not. Not by a long shot.
Still, many men are completely oblivious to how simple, polite gestures can go a long way to express affection and build a connection with women.
The important thing with chivalry is embodying the energy of being a gentleman. Don’t just hold the car door open for your date — open it for all the women in your life.
If you see an elderly woman struggling to get her shopping cart to her car, help her. Hold the elevator door for people. Say ‘excuse me’ and ‘thank you.’ Be courteous to those around you.
Get into the habit of making these seemingly small, insignificant gestures daily, so they become second nature.
Put another way: become a genuine gentleman, not just a man who just puts on an act in front of his girlfriend.
Do you know why it’s great to be this type of man? Because there are so few men like this out there.
Being a gentleman narrows down your competition. You don’t have to take my word for it; just look around you.
Keep track of how often you see a man open the car door for his girlfriend or wife. Next time you go to a restaurant, see how many men (who don’t work there) pull out the chairs for their dates. You’ll probably be shocked at just how rare these simple gestures are.
It’s not hard to stand out as a genuine gentleman in this day and age; all it takes is a little bit of effort. Be chivalrous, treat the women you date with respect, and you will automatically put yourself ahead of 99% of the men out there.
Spending your life hiding behind a screen is easy, but that doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Why not try something different instead of burning yourself out with online dating?
Courting women in the real world might be more complicated than online, but it can also be much more rewarding.
Instead of sifting through dozens of profiles and sending hundreds of DMs, only to meet up and find no real-life chemistry, you can skip all that and go straight to the things that matter.
When it comes to meeting new women, there are pros and cons to both methods. In the end, only you can decide what’s right for you.
Either way, if you’re struggling to navigate the tumultuous waters of the dating world, it might be time to enlist the help of a dedicated men’s coach.
Instead of repeating the same mistakes repeatedly, a coach can provide guidance and direction to help you achieve the results you’ve been chasing.
At Knowledge for Men, my expert team of coaches and I have years of experience dealing with the same issues you face today.
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If that sounds like you, there’s no better time than now to take the next step.
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