OkCupid’s definitions of “casual dating” and “hookup” do not refer to the same concept.

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We’ve collected the best online dating advice, tips, and stories to get you started. When you’re chatting with someone on a dating site or app, your message is like a first impression. But if your message doesn’t include a few things—like a good introduction, specific advice on what to say, and information about yourself—it’ll turn that person off more than it’ll attract them.

A good introduction is a conversation starter, but when someone is trying to introduce themselves, it can feel like you’re talking to someone you already know. A good introduction starts with an intriguing question or, better yet, with a statement about yourself, rather than with a description of yourself. For example, rather than: “I’m very small with green eyes, and I’m seeking a person with a cute dog,” ask: “Do you have a cute dog? I’d love to meet someone who shares my obsession.”

Like a good introduction, asking for what you want puts a potential partner on the spot to make a decision about your worthiness as a potential match. But it also puts you on the spot to make sure you ask for what you want. If you’re looking for a relationship, that’s probably where you want to start.

To ask for what you want, you need to ask for what you want. It’s not about being bossy or thinking you’ll show off how great you are later when you’re on the receiving end of that person’s response. It’s about making a genuine, thoughtful request. Here’s how to make that happen:

Make It Easy

In a casual conversation, you may be able to backtrack and apologize for asking for something. But on a dating site or app, you need to be clear. When you’re trying to ask for what you want, follow these three simple steps:

Step 1: Give Yourself Credit

If you’re trying to ask for something like a blind date, you may have to think about a lot of things before you make that request. For example, you might ask for a date that starts at 6 p.m., or you could say that you’re looking for something “relaxing” and that you’re flexible with the date. Depending on the circumstances, you may need to apologize for wanting to make a request, or you may want to offer a small token of your appreciation when the person you ask agrees to let you come on the date.

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Dealing with Real-Life insecurities Can being sexually aroused by a hot guy feel like being a teenage girl all over again? A study by the University of Arizona and Duke University shows that women commonly experience a hot guy-like feeling around the time of ovulation. When faced with such a situation, women are often unsure how to act and whether to approach the guy or walk away. While we’re certainly not encouraging you to skip your dose of birth control, these tips can help you figure out how to deal with this mind-numbing feeling while waiting for the right time to act.

Be Calm

Being calm and composed when you’re in the heat of attraction will help you make a well-thought out decision. After all, if you’re caught up in the moment and your head is full of the kind of thoughts that lead to awful language, you’ll be a less-than-friendly person. Fortunately, there are ways to think more rationally when you’re feeling hot and bothered.

The first step is to step outside of your head and get in touch with your body. It sounds like it shouldn’t be too hard, but it can be easy to feel like you don’t know your own body well enough to act sensibly, and if you ever end up in a situation that is a clear-cut no-go, it’s easy to rationalize why it’s okay to walk away. But this is the key to being a good human being.

Keep your head in the game by paying attention to your body and what it’s telling you. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or uncomfortable, move on; if you’re not, be thankful that it’s you who has to make the decision, and enjoy the moment.

Ask Yourself Real Questions

If you’re worried about being rejected, ask yourself some real questions. Are you looking for a relationship? Do you want to hook up? Do you want to be in a relationship? Whatever the case may be, it’s okay to ask yourself these questions when you’re feeling unattractive and uninterested.

If you ask yourself if you’re interested in being in a relationship and act on that answer, you’ll make a more confident decision. If you like the person, you’ve just avoided a lifetime of insecurity. If you don’t, at least you won’t pretend to be interested in being in a relationship when you’re not, which is useful if you find yourself in situations that you know are good-to-

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