Getting back into dating can be hard when you’ve been out of the game for a few decades. In fact, some would-be romantics are so self-conscious about their age that they never even try! In honor of Valentine’s Day, we’ve rounded up some expert advice on dating at any age.

Don’t fear online dating.

Online dating is a great way to meet people outside of your social circle, and there are many dating sites and apps specifically for singles over 50 who are ready to mingle. Julie Spira, a relationship expert with senior dating app OurTime, says that “Authentic dating profiles get the best results.” Basically, don’t lie on your profile. Use a picture of yourself from this year and be proud of your age. That’s the best way to find people who will love the real you.

Go to 26 different places.

Prefer to meet people in person? Lisa Copeland, a dating coach who works exclusively with women over 50, recommends creating a list of 26 different places in your area, one for each letter of the alphabet, then going to those places. While you’re out, Copeland says, “You want to smile. Make eye contact. Ask a question. Give a compliment and put a question behind it.”

Be present when meeting new people.

Dating as a senior means coming to the table with a lot of baggage. Dating is when people get acquainted, so be careful about sharing that baggage right out of the gate. This doesn’t mean you should never talk about heavy topics, but remember this advice from the popular dating site, eHarmony: “Early on, focus on enjoying each other’s company here and now.”

It doesn’t matter if you’re 26 or 62, dating is always hard. You have to step outside your comfort zone and trudge through a series of terrible first dates. But in the end, it’s all worth it when you find that special someone with whom you can spend your golden years. Just remember, you’ll never meet that person if you don’t make the leap.

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