We always want what we don’t have, right? The younger want to be older, the thick want to be thin, and many singles are always looking for their perfect soul mate. I have become comfortable living alone, but that doesn’t mean that I want to be alone. It has its merits, sure, and fellow singles will know what those are. But we are not made to be alone, and there lies the problem.

Our modern, fast-paced lives dictate that we must find a quick way to meet someone – dating sites. They’re not as intimidating as they used to be, and much more mainstream now.

If you use your common sense and learn some basics, you should be able to navigate throughout the cyber dating world. Here are the basics, so you don’t have to learn them the hard way:

1 . Read their bio very carefully. Are they separated? Divorced? The literal text does matter, but learn to read between the lines. Not all singles online are deceitful, but in many circumstances, they are telling you what you want to hear.

2. A picture speaks 1000 words. If someone only has only one photo up, ask for more or be wary. You may hear “I am hiding because of my work”, “I don’t take a good photo”, or “give me your email or cell and I will send you some”. You need to decide how gullible you want to be in those situations, but proceed with caution. And if they do have pictures, always ask how current they are. You might be surprised.

3. Read between the lines in their bio. I have come across some that read like a revenge novel! You can tell that they have been hurt in the past and are dragging their insecurities with them into the next relationship. If they sound too angry, needy, or perverted, I have one word for you: run!

4. Always check where they are from. Heed the ones who live across the country. I have done the long distance relationship thing and it’s not for everyone. How far are you willing to go for a date? Set some boundaries and remember that if it does work out, someone will have to move. Would you be willing to give up your job, friends, and life?

5. Always have first dates in public places. Never let them know your address, buzzer number, or other personal information. Meet at the destination instead of getting picked up in a car. They are still strangers at this point, after all. Until you get a good feel for them, have seen them a few times, and your Spidey senses stop tingling, keep your private info private.

6. Make sure you’re on the same page regarding kids. If they say that they want kids, they do. If you don’t, it might be a doomed relationship from the get-go. That’s not always the case, but keep it inmind. WWW.METROLIVINGZINE.COM NEWS IAMGE CREDIT: http://bit.ly/24ryrkn

7. Have someone call or text you mid-date. First of all, if you are not enjoying the date, it’s a way to get out of it without being awkward. Second, you can let your caller know you are safe and alright. It’s a good practice to have while out with someone new.

8. Always have confidence and try not to come off as needy, desperate, or jealous. Independence is alluring and intriguing to others.

9. Make a list for yourself of five “Rule Breakers”. List five things that you will not tolerate in your new relationship and stick to this list. You can also make a list of five qualities you want in a partner, but be prepared for the consequences of your choices. No one is perfect.

10. Leave baggage where it is: in the past. Never talk about your exes unless they ask you to. Be particularly careful to avoid trash talking exes. It’s a huge turn-off.

11. If you are serious about a relationship, look for relationship material. That means an appropriate age gap; aim for within five years of your own age.

12. One trait that has kept me in the dating game is my sense of humour. You need it; it makes everything more palatable. Avoid taking anything too seriously.

Everyone can get swept up in the dating game at times. I find that you will get let down 4 out of 5 times . Maybe they weren’t as attractive as you thought they were, there was no chemistry, or they turned out to be a jerk. You might even get stood up, but don’t give up too quickly. Dating is a job. It takes time to see results, and you have to keep faith that you will meet someone.

There is a saying, “There is someone for everyone.” I truly believe that. If you are searching, don’t stop trying. Sometimes you have to go through a lot of thorns to find that rose.