First Impressions

25 Sep

We make assumptions about people, based on first impressions, all of the time, but when it comes to dating how can we look past the aesthetic and consider the whole package instead?

Anyone in the modern world looking for a partner has at some time or another tried the plethora of online dating options. Match.com, eHarmony, or OkCupid the google of the online dating world. Millions of people spending hours looking through images and hoping for a spark. Romantic window shopping in a space, which doesn’t always tell the truth. So tricky is the online space, that people employ assistance to have their profile curated and written in order to increase their chances.

Since the advent of the smart phone, there is now the dating or instant sex options of apps like Tinder in which the lottery is merely a case of swiping left or right. Once upon a time people went to bars and clubs to meet real people in real time, now we all float about in cyber space tapping away at tiny screens looking for love, or maybe just sex. The one critical component in all of this is the photo, or photos plural. You have literally seconds to make an impression otherwise you will be swiped, ignored or deleted. It’s a cruel world out there in cyber space and your photo says it all.

Psychologists have found that women are more interested in the overall package and not just the singular image. What a man says in his profile needs to be as attractive as the photo. Women like men to look manly and be doing manly things. They like a little intrigue and witty words to catch their attention on the first connection. For the female it’s generally more of a complex choice. Men on the other hand are driven aesthetically as a first impression, no surprise here. Sadly it’s a given but men and women who look attractive tend to be treated better by others and are often better adjusted as a result.

So why is a professional matchmaker a better option than the wide range of options and immediacy of looking for love on line? It’s about not just how you look, but who you are, the whole package. People often don’t put their best face forward in cyber space either in terms of their photo, or what they say. Your professional matchmaker is profiling you and potential mates so that the likelihood of being introduced to someone where the first date might lead to another is vastly increased. The candidates are vetted, so you’re not about to meet a serial killer.

Photos are important in professional matchmaking as clients want to see and know something about the people they are being introduced to. So it’s very likely that your matchmaker may halt you at the first hurdle over your photos. Are they too staged? Men do you look too soft or vacant? Women do you look too dynamic or strong? What were the photos you have taken for in the first place? Were they professional shots for your corporate career? A good photographer has the skill to capture the essence of you, and it’s that inner sparkle and your natural self that needs to emanate from that image.

It’s important to note that in reality personality will overtake looks. You can have the most attractive man or woman in the world, but if their beauty only runs skin deep then the interest will past as quickly as a Tinder swipe. You can see a smile in a photo but you can’t get a person’s sense of humor until you spend time in person. Gentleness in someone’s eyes can be a preview of the kindness and warmth in their heart. Your professional matchmaker will be looking to introduce not only to someone who you’re physically attracted to, but someone who they know psychologically will be a great match. That way you’ll have a chance to fall in love with a person and not just a 2 dimensional image.

Erudite professionals are beginning to see the wisdom of confidential and private advice in their quest for a life partner. First impressions definitely do count, so make sure your photos capture a touch of your soul and the beauty of your personality in every dimension. The beholder of your image will be intrigued and then in person see you through the lens of their minds eye.

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by Rachel Vida MacLynn

Founder & CEO

Rachel Vida MacLynn is reputed as being a world-leading matchmaking and dating expert. Registered as a Chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society, Rachel advocates a professional matchmaking approach based on psychological principles and professional consultation. Rachel also sits on the Board of Advisors for the Matchmaking Institute.More by this author