Are you describing yourself compellingly?

“To say something nice about themselves, this is the hardest thing in the world for people to do.” —Nancy Friday

If you are online dating, how do you describe yourself in your profile? Does it really reflect who you are? And if you’re not online, you might consider writing a description of yourself and what you want, just for the practice. But be prepared to experience some frustration. Most people have trouble describing themselves compellingly.

My dating neighbor asked me to review her online profile and suggest any changes that would help her get more appropriate responses.

This is an amazing women. In addition to being a top Stanford grad, a loving and patient mother of three teenagers, she is a top doctor who loves her work and patients. She is one of those special people who never flaunts her accomplishments or intelligence, and instead has a gentle demeanor, easy smile, and down-to-earth presence. She’s fit, energetic, athletic, slender, and pretty. She looks ten years younger than her 48 years.

So how did this special woman describe herself in her profile? Pretty pedestrianly. She emphasized her girl-next-door characteristics and that was it. She didn’t mention her profession, nor her enthusiasm for life.

While I don’t consider myself particularly gifted at writing other peoples’ profiles, here’s how I rewrote her description:

High-achieving gal-next-door wants to meet a similar nice guy

Do you love your life? I love mine. But I’d like to have that wonderful connection with a special man that fulfills each of our souls. Just like you, I have a full life already. Yet I know I want to invest the time to develop a relationship with someone special.

My life involves a busy and fulfilling profession, three amazing teenagers, regular exercise, interesting travel, and extraordinary friends. I’m down to earth, with an easy smile and inquisitive mind.

I’m looking for a men who is kind, thoughtful, intelligent, and has achieved his own successes and has a life of his own. He loves spirited conversation with someone who has thoughts of her own. He’s looking for a partner, an equal, to share life with, whether that’s travel, dining, theater, or just a quiet evening reading together or sitting in the hot tub.

If you’d like to explore if we might be a good match, please contact me.

Once you’ve written your self-description, run it by some friends, both male and female. The men will think you should include different things than the women. Listen to them!

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One response to “Are you describing yourself compellingly?”

  1. […] The concept is to take something not commonly considered good and reframe it as a positive, injecting a dose of humor when necessary. We’re going to explore how to do this in midlife dating, as most women have trouble moving past what they see as their flaws. (See “Are you describing yourself compellingly?“) […]