The Gay Man’s guide to creating a profile that speaks to who you are. Plus: two profile red flags to look out for.
I’ve been dating online since I came out at 19. At that time, online dating was the primary option for gay men to meet other gay men. There may be more options available now, but I still find it to be my go-to dating method.
My preference for the online dating pool may be because my social circles don’t bring me into contact with an abundance of single gay men, or because it’s interesting to meet people who are outside my everyday experience. It is, as they say, what it is.
The debut of www.meetmindful.com—a website that promotes mindful dating—is exciting. I wonder, though, if what we are being mindful about will be open to wide interpretation. To me, mindfulness means being aware of and engaged in the Universe and respecting its laws, and in improving oneself in harmony with those laws. To others, “mindful” may mean something different. The meeting of these minds, though, starts with a profile.
Take mine, for example:
Hi everyone! It’s nice to meet you.
My name’s Joe (Joseph if you’re my Mom) and I am a 31 year old gay male, six foot, 190 pounds, and if you know anything about the gay-lingo this should be familiar – masculine and athletic.
I enjoy long runs on the beach, reading, video games, the gym, yoga, meditation, and cross fit. I spend most of my time working on a few businesses, playing with my dogs and being with friends and family. I don’t go out too often, but I enjoy myself when I do.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is my two-paragraph spiel that I have honed to online-dating poetry. These two paragraphs describe everything that could ever need to be known about me.
Well, no, of course they don’t; but my spiel does do a pretty good job of saying what I look like and what I am looking for.
Using the Tools Available
You have three tools at your disposal to catch the eye of Mr. Future Wonderful:
- your photo (naturally taken in the best possible lighting, from the right angle, fresh out of the gym)
- your stats (6’1″, 190, masc, musc)
- two paragraphs
That’s it. Intimidating right? While exploring who you are and capturing it in such a condensed form can be daunting, there are two things you can easily avoid to make your profile more attractive.
Two Types of Red Flag Profiles
First we have the guy who lists everything you must do to meet his standards. The profile for Guy #1 may go something like this:
I am an athletic jock looking for fun. You must spend two hours daily at the gym—like I do. You must have a job. You must brush your teeth. You must practice ballet beneath the full moon when the new moon falls on a Tuesday…
Second, we have the guy who states everything he is not looking for. Guy #2 will often rock bullet points in his profile:
I am not interested if you:
- do not floss
- do not go to the gym
- sprinkle sugar on your morning coffee
Frankly, both types of profiles wave red flags. Guy #1 and Guy #2 may have nice photos and stats, but both speak in ultimatums and mandates. If that’s how they’re writing, then how are they thinking?
We become what we think about.
Now go back and read my two paragraphs. I’d be lying if I said that a guy who doesn’t go to the gym regularly would be a good match for me, but I offer my preferences in a far-less exclusionary manner.
Do you see the difference between how I stated my preference and how Guy #1 and Guy #2 did? I frame everything in positive affirmations. I hit the gym. I practice yoga. I spend time with my family. I list what makes me happy—neither as judgment nor ultimatum—as simple, joyous affirmation.
If we attract what we are and if we become what we think about, I’d like to manifest the gentleman who is simple and joyous.
[photo: Martin Strachoň / Wikimedia Commons]
Joe Valero is a meditating and yoga-practicing entrepreneur in the Denver area. You can often find him at the gym or writing fantasy novels in a coffee shop.