One of the tips I always get about cooking is seasoning meat before I put it in the pan for a sear, but one of the other tips I get is to keep the meat dry so it can actually brown and develop a crust. I know that salting meat draws out moisture to the surface, and that tends to prevent the sear I want. Dabbing the steak with a paper towel before I put it in the pan seems to take away the salt I added, and that seems counterproductive too.
Is there a way I can still keep meat I want to season dry so I can get a good crust?
You should salt the meat either long enough in advance (this will depend strongly on the cut of meat, but I have seen recommendations for salting up to two days ahead) so that the salt has time to penetrate the meat, then dab off surface moisture with a paper towel, or right before searing, so there is no time for moisture to be drawn out. Or you could use a combination of both, but be careful not to over-season.