I've been seeing a girl for a month now, I'm new to the dating game after a 14 year absence.
The online dating community can be good as long as you weed out the weirdo's and yes there are a few of them, but in todays busy world I've known several folks who've hooked up this way and are currently in long and happy relationships.
To be honest I wasn't much cop at dating back in the day, maybe getting with the times is an opportunity rather than not, now I'm navigating towards divorce with 2 young kids it makes the challenge harder.
But you know what, I've found it to not be as intimidating as I first thought.
One (or two) of the key aspects is self confidence and self belief, - If you know you have these things it reflects outwards and potential suitors can (and do) pick up on that, trust me they do.
If you don't feel to self confident there are things you can do to improve that.
Improve your style regime, spend 50% more time preening yourself.
Go to the barbers and change your hair style. Hey, I've grown some trendy stubble, my Ma said "the George Michael look went out in the 80s but the ladies I've dated around my age love it".
Ditto improving your threads and pulling some weights. It all gives you a little ego boost and I'm telling you friend a little goes a long way.
I agree with @jorgegene
that overthinking is your enemy, try not to do it and go with the flow as much as you can, like a job interview a "date" is a chance to get to know you and visa versa.
I'm no expert here after being out the game for 14 years one thing doesn't change, - people always like to talk about themselves.
I worked as a guest relations manager for Hilton for a few years and I found a bit of patter always goes well. The girl I've been seeing suggested a meet up after about 10 days of chatting, we were getting on well via text and whatsapp so I agreed to meet - we deviated from the norm we met at a local starbucks and had a coffee and proceeded to chat more about our jobs, kids, families, likes and dislikes followed by an hours walk in the forest.
It was a great first meet and better than the usual bar or restaurant as you cant really gauge a feel for the other person, nor bale quickly if things don't go well.
I must admit I was pretty nervous, I deliver presentations on stage with a mic to 100 people on various projects I work on, but this is a different level.
But nerves soon dissipated and I settled in to the zone.
Good luck to you mate, and remember don't overthink things to much, be breezy and go with the flow