Update: Brand NEW Posts Coming Soon!!!!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

How Men Can Be More Successful Dating Online

After writing an open letter to single women, a friend of mine encouraged me to write a post that was geared more to the single male. Against my better judgement, or perhaps as my patriotic duty, I am here to offer men some advice if you are SERIOUS about meeting a woman online. Men on dating sites are constantly complaining that they send out tons and tons of messages but get few (if any) responses back. These tips will help place you head and shoulders above your contemporaries and make you a more successful online dater.

1) Your profile picture. Take 2 whole minutes and really really think about what picture to post as
Not a good idea for your dating profile
your main photo and what it says about you. Remember this is online dating. A person has a second to decide whether or not to click on your profile or to go to the next one. Your profile picture will literally be the deciding factor for whether or not someone wants to talk to you or keep it moving. I know that sounds shallow, but consider that online there are thousands of other profiles! You're a lil fish in a big pond (and, no, Plenty of Fish did not inspire that last line). You may be tempted to post the shirtless photo, but what kind of a woman do you hope to attract by doing that? The photos of you getting wasted, those pix of you holding a gun, the one of you in your Halloween costume, the one where your face is obscured, of you with another woman (who cares if she's your sister!) or with a woman cleverly (or not so cleverly) photoshopped out of it are not good bets. Other runners up for bad photos include the phone in the mirror selfie, the classic bathroom selfie, and the one with you standing with a large group of people. Have a close female friend select a nice photo of you looking intelligent and charming.  Then post a few more of you smiling, acting like a civilized human being, and fully clothed. (FYI you do not have to post a bunch of pictures of your international travel. One or two are cool, but save your scrapbook for the real dates).

2) Your profile. Where do I start? In a few words I need you to describe yourself, what you do, what you are looking for, and why we should care. Simple. Swearing makes your sound dumb. Poor attention to grammar makes you look dumb. Name dropping--Dumb. Trying to sound intelligent by using obscure words or antiquated language makes you look dumb. Talking about how you hated your last girlfriend(s), how there are no good women out there and how nice guys always finish last makes you look, you guessed it, dumb. Oh and for those of you hoping to come off as the strong silent type and refusing to fill in your profile, you not only look dumb, but you look like a douchebag too!

3) Honesty. We know you are not 6'2 and that you do not make over $100,000 a year. Don't even go there! In fact while we are on the subject, don't even post your income at all. If you feel the only thing you have to offer is your money, than you are only going to attract those women who are only interested in spending it. Besides in a real life, face to face interaction would you really tell a stranger how much money you make?

This was literally his first email. He just invited me to be his baby mama.
4) Cut and Paste. You think you are so smart cutting and pasting flirtatious messages then sending them to every pretty face you see. No, you are not smart and you will rarely get responses that way. First, use the search features to narrow down the particular kind of woman you are looking for. Then read her profile. Yes, I know it's tough, but I have full confidence that you are indeed capable of reading! Find something of interest to talk about. The one word "Sup" in a message, however poetic you believe it to be, makes you look dumb. "Hi, I'm John, I noticed you like the movie the Count of Monte Cristo too. It is one of my favorites. What's your favorite scene?" is a much better introductory message.  This shows that you read her profile (at least your skimmed it) and that you would like to engage her in conversation. Heck, even, "Hello. I'm Frank. How's your day going?" is a step up.
Another real first message. 

5)Integrity. I know it's a big word and sort of a lost art, but we should all strive to be people of

integrity. This includes online as well. Your character is not just determined by the large decisions you make, but by your day to day choices and how you treat other people. Live life by the golden rule: treat people the way you want to be treated. Seriously! It is easy for us to point to examples of morally bankrupt people and wonder how they got that way, but in doing so we forget that each of us has a huge propensity towards evil.  Choose to be a trustworthy person-- a person with bone-deep integrity. A person any woman, online or in real life will want to be with.

Thanks for reading,

For tips on how to evolve from general douchebaggery to charming gentlemen please see this article

Saturday, October 18, 2014

What We Can Learn From Makeupdoll: "Natural" Beauty In An Image-Obsessed Society

A while ago my friend showed me this meme. Like everyone else who has seen it, I was amazed. In fact I swore to my friend that the pictures were of two separate women. No way that's the same girl! A few days ago as I surfed youtube, I stumbled across Makeupdolls channel and watched her expertly apply her makeup. I am not one of her many fans or subbies. In fact, I was initially critical of the young lady myself. And then I stopped to think.

Since this meme went viral many men and women have had some ugly things to say which brings up questions about the role of beauty in our culture, whether cosmetic enhancements are inherently deceptive, and how women can cope with the enormous pressure of living in a world that expects them to look beautiful all the time. I want to try to address some of these questions as best I can here on the Purposeful blog.

Let me say that I feel conflicted. I mean on one hand I understand where Makeupdoll is coming from and no one can deny that she is a very skilled lady. Her make up application is phenomenal. On the other hand, I would feel uncomfortable looking drastically different than myself. I tend to be a minimalist. I didn't even start wearing makeup regularly (regularly being defined as a few times a month) until I turned 30. But suppose I had a major skin condition and behold here are some products that could make me look fantastic, I would take advantage of the products. That is what Makeupdolls has done.

What I do not understand are the haters. Everyone has a right to choose how they present themselves to the world. Everyone uses cosmetics to enhance themselves in some way. Whether it be skin correcting chemicals and treatments, fragrances and colognes, hair processes, products, and extensions etc. The question then becomes how much is too much? Is there a point where a person is being disingenuous? I cannot realy answer those questions because I grapple with them myself. In the case of Makeupdoll, I am not convinced that she is being deceptive--how deceptive can you be when you show your bare face to thousands and thousands of people on social media regularly?

Some people believe that everyone should just be natural. That's easily said, but I want to go on record saying that naturally I look a hot mess. Yes my hair is natural in that it is unprocessed, but don't get it twisted, I go to a stylist at least once a month. I also benefit from a variety of wigs and hair extensions. I wear contact lenses (can't see without em), use acne meds when my skin flares up, brush my teeth with baking soda to make them white, and hit the gym when a few pounds creep up. Naturally, I also smell pretty bad too. In fact when I wake up and look at myself in the mirror--smelling bad, looking crazy with crust all in my eyes, and hair all over my head I can admit I am "naturally" a mess. I do what is needed, albeit minimally, to present a polished version of myself to the world. WE ALL DO. But we point fingers and name call, and get all up in arms on the interwebs to judge someone else. Shame on us.

I have written quite a bit about beauty on the blog.  In one post I commented, "first a society decides that all women should be beautiful in order to have worth and then we shun those who don’t meet the inflexible standards we subject them to. This is most tragic!" Women are under pressure to always look good. So if a young lady chooses to enhance her appearance she's maligned and insulted, but if she does nothing she's still maligned and insulted for being thought "ugly". Some of the same people throwing stones at Makeupdoll would be saying, "Dang, girl you need some makeup," if they saw her clean face in public. I am not immune to the beauty standards either. It is impossible to have naturally perfect everything; perfectly manicured nails. long thick tresses and eyelashes, flawless skin, a knock-out physique, and a gorgeous wardrobe. How does any real, natural woman pull these standards off with out some assistance? If she gives in and purchases the products that make her socially acceptable, people ridicule her and say she is inauthentic! No! Inauthentic is the male-driven standard that exists in the first place!!!

And while we are on the topic, so much of the mudslinging against Makeupdoll was done by men. Men need to get over it! I say that wholeheartedly. Either a) accept that women are not perfect and be willing to love a natural woman for who she is or b) accept a woman that meets your standards by utilizing the full array of her cosmetic options! There is no choice c.

So how can women survive and thrive in a world that marginalizes us. Previously, I thought the answer was in throwing out cosmetics altogether and refusing to yield to the status quo. Yes, there is power in going against the grain, but I think the answers are deeper than that. This is a societal problem. It requires a rethinking of how we define beauty in our culture. It requires a revolution in how we view women as a whole! That's beyond the scope of this blog. However, I would encourage women to stop defining themselves by the way they look and to discourage the next generation from evaluating their worth based on their appearance.

Lastly, I want to reiterate that there is nothing inherently wrong with looking nice and using whatever is at your disposal to present yourself as beautiful. As a feminist, however, I do not believe that a women's # 1 motivator for taking care of herself should be a man's opinion (or to compete with other women over a man's opinion). Look nice for yourself! Create your own definition of beauty. And don't forget to be beautiful where it matters the most: inside. A generous spirit, a kind nature, and a compassionate character will do more for you than any color pallet or foundation regimen ever could.

It takes skill that's for sure. Can I really fault someone
for trying to look good in an image conscious society?
(Can't see vid? View it here)

As always leave your thoughts below in the comment section!!!!!

Bonus Material:

 Both of these women have skin problems. Both use make up to transform their appearances. One woman gets praises, a modeling contract, and appearances on the daytime tv. The other woman gets trash talked on the internet and has demeaning memes made about her. Hmmmm. Kinda makes you wonder. Can't view vids? Click here and here

Saturday, October 11, 2014

I Hate Fall

This post needs no introduction. I loathe fall. I have always hated fall. I always will hate fall. Let me count the ways.

1) Fall reminds me of "The Fall" as in the fall of humanity. Imagine Adam and Eve leaving their pristine garden home and thrusts into a world where things literally die. Sorta reminds me of fall. Dark, dreary, rainy, Oh and things are dying!

Me in the Summer. See how I glow!!
2) My favorite seasons are Summer and Summer and more Summer. Some people like Spring, but where I live spring is more of a fascinating idea--a nostalgic longing, than it is an actual season. I like almost everything related to summer: warm weather, cuter fashions, longer days, beaches, and beautiful beautiful sunshine! As a warm weather freak and sunshine addict, I have a hard time adjusting to the darkness, sadness, and cold that accompany fall.

3) The main reason I hate fall so much is because it is a prelude to winter. I debate which one I hate the most: winter with its piles of snow and ice and treacherous travel conditions or fall with is a long cold, dark introduction to winters' snow, ice, and treacherous travel conditions. Winter brings a tiny bit of hope because towards its end the days get longer again and we start seeing signs that "Spring" (see reason number 2 for why it's in quotation marks) might be on its way. Fall on the other hand has no such hope. 

4) I stay cold. I am one of those heat on in the summertime, electric blanket using, sweater carrying people who just cannot get enough warmth. In my view, weather in the 70's is ok or great depending on humidity, 80's are perfect! 90's are nice, and 100's are a bit warm but still better than any cold alternative. 

5) I tend to get a little sad this time of year. "Weather" or not (I know bad pun) I have true Seasonal Affective Disorder is up for debate, but this part of the year I have to try extra hard to hold on to my happy. 

6) And the final reason for my strong fall bias is that fall is not summer. In fact, this year it hijacked my summer by coming early :-(

But regardless of the season, I hope you will live blessed. Keep your head up and keep tuning into the blog for more of my particular brand of madness. 

PS: Leave me a message in the comment section and let me know what you think about fall. Or if you share my hatred of fall, how do you cope with it?