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Is Paradox of Choice Ruining the Dating Game?

Sonal Dharmadhikari Jan 6, 2019
The paradox of choice is said to happen when we think we have infinite options to choose from, and therefore become less satisfied with any one option. Has this feeling secretly stolen into our dating game too? Apparently yes, and it is driving some people up the wall!

Having Way Too Many Options

Open any dating website or app and you are faced with a deluge of potential dates! It looks as though all the young people around you have gathered at once and are vying for attention.
These choices, though, are driving many people to the point of inaction, who think there are too many options to choose from and cannot arrive at a decision of which one to pursue. Thus, they end up not meeting anyone at all. Which is sad, because meeting and getting to know people is what dating is all about.

Fear of Missing Out

This widely used marketing term has slowly seeped into our daily lives, because seemingly, there is an abundance of 'each new thing better than the earlier' in the dating scene as well.
We fear we may miss out on someone 'better' by settling for a 'good' choice right now. Which, more often than not, becomes a never-ending cycle of choice, because newer choices are always rising at the horizon. Are we going to keep waiting for the 'Best One' till the sun and moon shine on? Hopefully not.

Your Choice, Their Choice

You spot someone (online) who looks interesting and send a request to meet up. The other person declines it. Someone else expresses their interest in you; you decline.
This loop goes on for a long time because of our 'quest' for the best possible date and our indecisiveness of choice. There comes a time when you have rejected requests more than you have accepted, and then start wondering what went wrong. The problem started long ago in the process, only you didn't realize it back then.

My Perfect Date Should Be Like...

Most of us don't have a clear idea of the kind of person we'd like to date. We thus end up giving out vague descriptions of our desired match.
As expected, this throws up a wide result range. This, in turn, triggers the paradox of choice where infinite options offered drive a person to be dissatisfied with any one option. Needless to say, the person searching for the date grows anxious with each passing option.

Choose With Care

All the frustration and anxiety due to the range of choices offered by online dating can be easily avoided by a little more specific approach and the classic 'keep calm' attitude.
Paradox of choice occurs when the person is confused and eternally in search of a greener pasture. If you get down to think on serious terms and specify the type of person you are looking for, half the chaos falls in order. As for the 'quest for a greener pasture' part... you know that it is a mind game, don't you?

Get Real!

One way to get out of this seemingly infinite loop of paradox of choice in online dating is to 'go old school' - before logging on to a dating site, take time off to go out there, meet new people (for real!) and see if they interest you.
This may ease your apprehension of not finding anyone at all. And who knows, it may happen that a person you met once may also be on the dating site you are on, and he/she won't be just a 'profile' then, but an acquaintance already, imagine the perks of that!