Ask anyone active in online dating what the most terrifying aspect of dating is and you’re likely to hear “rejection.” As relationship experts know all too well, potential rejection has the ability to stop men from contacting a woman with an irresistible profile. It prevents women from potentially meeting a would-be “perfect date.” It paralyses eligible folks, hindering them in making a love connection.

Why is rejection so devastating? Because it challenges every view we have of ourselves. It can rock our very identities. Without a firm grasp on our own self-worth, a single rejection can send us running from our and back into the caves of our empty bedrooms.

So, how are today’s savvy digital daters battling the demon that is rejection? With wit, awareness, and some nifty psychological tactics, that’s how! Want in on the inside scoop? Keep reading and prepare to be seriously brave.

 Optimism Meets Realism

Here’s a typical online dating scenario:

Man spies a killer profile. She’s stunning, engaging, and whip-smart—the proverbial dream girl. Man spies said lady in the chat rooms, and starts plotting the icebreakers, imagining the first date, the wedding, and the way their kids will look. Then, man gets rejected by Miss Dream Girl and the spiral into darkness begins.

This kind of instant attachment catapults the online dater straight out of reality, and with dire consequences. All relationship experts will tell you that attitudes like these get crushed on a regular basis.

 The Solution

Take it slow. Stay grounded; planet earth isn’t such a bad place. Craft an opening email or chat room howdy that is friendly, citing specific things she mentions in her profile. Accept that you might not be her perfect match. And most importantly, don’t ever forget there are a gazillion other profiles to drool over, should the perfect girl shoot you down. That’s the beauty of online dating.

 It’s Not Personal

If you have a regular habit of hanging out in dating chat rooms and taking every man/woman/bitter pill’s opinion as fact, you’re a prime case for the repeated heartbreak of rejection. Another trick employed by highly successful daters is to always remember that insults are really, in essence, never personal. Relationship experts are keen to remind us that when others hurl nastiness in our general direction, it’s just a reflection of their inner experience. In other words, if an online dater thinks you’re a loser, they likely have issues with their own productivity and success. Adopt the “water off a duck’s back” approach.

 Silence Does Not Mean Rejection

Online dating is a numbers game; you’re going to have to cast a lot of bait before you get a few bites. Many of your most crafty, perfectly-written missives will go unanswered. If this is happening to you via profile emails and in chat rooms, take note, it may not be about you. It could be as simple as they are currently dating someone else and haven’t hidden their profile, they are busy with life or any number of other reasons.

Don’t take a non-response as rejection.

Yes, rejection hurts. But your self-view needs to be stronger than a random person’s uninformed opinion. Work to cultivate the understanding that dating is serious business. Meeting your match requires a time investment and though sometimes disheartening, remember to have fun along the way. If you don’t, online dating will make a mess out of you. But if you can keep your head high and your eye on the prize, online dating can be your perfect avenue for true love. Or at least a crazy good time.