Profile Dos and Don’ts with The Muslim Hitch

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Bad profile pic

Contemplating taking your profile photo in the bathroom mirror? Can’t get enough of CAPS LOCK? You may be in need of some help from eHarmony’s self-styled Single Muslim Hitch, who this week offers up advice on creating the perfect profile.

Hello, salam and peace to all singletons. Let me introduce myself: I am the self-appointed online Muslim Hitch. Think “date doctor” Will Smith without the shellfish allergy. My aim is simple: to help people get hitched. I’m here to support, advise and guide you as you navigate the online quagmire of trying to find that wonderful lifetime partner – a partner who could be at the end of keypad click.

I may not be the relationship guru you see on daytime television, but after years of experiencing the ‘halal dating’ scene and traipsing through profile after profile on matrimonial websites, I’ve got a fair idea of what’s out there – particularly of what is desirable, and what is a downright turn-off.

For many Muslims looking for love, meeting a partner online is becoming an increasingly attractive and socially viable option. Those matchmaking ‘auntie’ type characters who thought that height, age and job title were all the information one needed when putting two people together, have taken a backseat along with their ‘biodata’ forms and instead online services are now very much the driving force in searching for a compatible partner.

I know that being a member of a singles website can be a little embarrassing and yes it can be daunting too. But by opting for online you are joining millions who, like you, are putting themselves out there – it’s a brave and proactive move, hopefully in the direction of the proverbial wedding altar. So, without further ado, let’s begin.

Your profile: Dos and don’ts 

I begin at the beginning – writing your profile. It can be a real challenge, but it needn’t be a traumatic experience. God knows, I’ve stared at my computer screen when starting up a new profile, stumped to write about myself. But we live in an age of marketing so it’s important to put in the effort– however please note on sites like these, honest marketing is what counts.

Below are a few points which may help you rethink some elements in your profile (or even prompt a rewrite).

Shirtless selfies, sunglasses, etc

First thing’s first, your photograph is the initial port of call, so ensure it’s a good one or you risk losing your ‘audience’.

Here are some tips to the gentlemen in particular:
a) Avoid selfies posing in front of the bathroom mirror where you have conveniently forgotten to put your shirt on. It’s really not appealing.
b) Stick to featuring only you in the photograph – I’ve seen several pics where there is a minimum of two people in it. One photo even had four guys grinning at the camera; aint nobody got time to figure out who you are.
c) Do not wear sunglasses. It’s not Miami Vice.

However, I have to admit, even all of the above is better than one particular member I came across whose profile picture was of a fruit cake.

The ‘lol’ acronym

Overusing the lol acronym, especially when it adds no comedic value to your words, is a particularly off-putting practice. Example: “I’ve not had much luck finding a girl, so that’s why I’m on here lol!”.
It projects the sense that you are either lol’ing from nervous laughter and/or you’re not taking it that seriously.

Don’t leave the Caps lock on

I can’t count the number of times people have accidentally/intentionally left the Caps lock key on when writing out profiles or indeed when sending me messages. One guy wrote: ‘I WANT MARRIAGE WITH YOU. NO TIME WASTERS’.
It’s scary. Don’t do it.

Make an effort

I’ve read some great profiles that are lively, informative and engaging. But sadly this is not always the case. When writing your profile, show that you are interested in your own life, otherwise, why would he/she be?

I’ve come across far too many profiles that are little more than a few words long. For example: ‘Ask me more’ or – shock, horror – ‘Looking for someone.’ You are shooting yourself in the foot with this – no one will be interested in even clicking to find out more. Invest time in your profile and you’re more likely to draw people towards a follow through.

Be engaging

Be polite and respectful, and show her/him that you find their profile engaging. This is more likely to prompt a response. Simply saying “hi how r u” isn’t the best form of engagement. Instead, pick out something they’ve said in their profile and comment on it – this alone shows you have made the effort to read their profile more closely. For example: “That’s so interesting you go abseiling at weekends. Would you consider someone with acrophobia?” Or: “Your favourite films are about zombies? I bump into the Walking Dead at the office water cooler all the time.”

Thus ends the first instalment which I hope you found useful in some way. Your profile is a window to the real you so take care over it, as it can open up a wealth of new possibilities.

Til the next time,

Peace out.

M. Hitch


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