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The promise of making it easier to find your “ideal” companion by letting you add filters to hone in on specific requirements has actually had the opposite effect, diminishing your pool to the point it becomes almost impossible to find anyone!

Before online dating existed, finding a compatible fit was far less clinical; you’d meet someone in real life, and if you enjoyed their company you might decide to on another date, maybe more.

And it gets worse the more prescriptive you are about your requirements.

Suddenly there was a different way to find a partner, one that promised practically infinite possibilities, where an algorithm could find you the “right” person without you needing to do the hard work of ever actually talking to them in person.

And if you don’t like what you see, you can always click on to the next profile – there is always another candidate just around the corner!

To answer this, let’s take a look at some of the main reasons online dating doesn’t work. Researchers in the UK recently calculated the odds of finding a compatible partner if they used the average person’s requirements (in terms of desired age, physical requirements, location, and so on).

They found that just over 84,440 people in the UK fit the average person’s requirements, from an adult population of 47 million. In other words, applying the average person’s filters when it comes to finding a compatible partner gives you less than a 1 in 500 chance of being successful.

Unfortunately, when you’re reading the profiles of other people, it’s easy to forget that this rule applies to them, too.

You know that what you’re seeing isn’t an accurate representation of them, but it doesn’t stop you from judging them on it anyway.

To make matters worse, most people suck at selling themselves, and do a terrible job of their profiles.

And, of course, the ones who good at selling themselves generally do so by misrepresenting themselves to some extent.

Your reasons for finding someone are often broader and more diverse; you may not even be really sure if it’s romance you’re looking for at all.

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