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Dec 06, 2010

Spiritual Growth

 The world of dating in the United States is undergoing a palpable change in focus.  Whereas recent decades were defined by more superficial and secular values during courtships, today's singles -- both as individuals and in their relationships -- increasingly returning spirituality as a guiding force in finding Mr. or Mrs. Right. The reason? 

 Many singles have regained an awareness that prioritizing the spiritual in their quest for a life partner will lead them to a more giving, caring, and loyal relationship.  That's for two reasons.  First, those qualities are rooted in one's inner self rather than one's materialistic or physical drives.  Deep down, everyone desires above all to feel loved and respected for their unique inner being.  Second, most Americans believe in a Higher Power, and that this Power, that many call God, commanded us to treat one another respectfully.  While viewing another as a means to satisfy one's physical or materialistic pleasures will inevitably lead to disrespect and hurtful behavior, a spiritual connection necessarily will elevate the bond.  Simply put: to find a soul mate, singles must connect with their soul.  And thank God, that's just the trend we see today.

Jan 05, 2010

 What Exactly Is Compatibility?

Being compatible does not mean that you both like puppies, lasagna, and Wyclef Jean. Those are shallow interests that you have in common. Common interests are a bonus, but by no stretch of the imagination do they make two people compatible. It’s also a bonus—but again not a measure of compatibility—if you come from similar backgrounds.

Compatibility has more to do with whether or not your future goals line up, what his religious values are compared to yours, and whether or not you have similar views on family and more.

Don’t delude yourself into thinking that your Prince Charming will be flawless. Everyone is flawed. The question is: Are his flaws manageable or are they deal-breakers? For example, if you want children and he hates children, that’s probably a deal-breaker. If he has a tendency to get drunk and abusive, that’s a deal-breaker. If he chews too loudly or interrupts when he gets excited…well, those are probably things you can work on.

Jul 21, 2009
  1. Look at him while he talks. Don’t glance around the room, play with your hair, or root through your purse.
  2. Don’t answer your phone. Whoever it is can leave a message.
  3. Look him in the eye.
  4. Nod encouragingly and ask questions, so he knows that you’re not just staring at him, spacing out.
  5. Squelch the urge to interrupt. You should be listening to him, not thinking about what you want to say next.

Jul 06, 2009

Ever wonder why the most gorgeous girl you know can’t hold a guy’s attention in conversation? There’s a good chance it’s because she’s lost touch with her natural, feminine ability to listen. That’s right, as a woman, you were born with the special gift of communication, but like the sweater you got for your birthday last year, sometimes this gift gets tucked away in the back of the closet and forgotten.

Your special communication abilities, particularly your listening skills, are a huge advantage when it comes to men. If you listen well, he will want to open up to you. That dynamic creates a sense of connection for both of you.

The truth is, most men don’t sit around with their buddies hashing out their feelings. You, on the other hand, have your girl friends, who will hold your hand and let you cry. You have your sisters. You have your mother. Many studies prove that women communicate with each other all the time. Women are encouraged to communicate. Men, on the other hand, are not. So imagine the great relief you’re providing when you listen to a man: In a way, you are single-handedly becoming his entire support network. If you let a man open up to you, if you listen and empathize, there’s a good chance he’ll never want to let you go.

Jul 01, 2009


Once you know that he has two older sisters and he knows that you grew up in the suburbs, it’s time to go deeper. He is no longer a complete stranger. You can reveal a little more. Who are you?

You are not your career. You are not where you grew up. You are a composite of your life experiences, your strengths, your weaknesses, your goals, your dreams, and your fears.

Jun 22, 2009

Connecting Stage 1: Getting the Bla Bla Bla Out of The Way

This is a necessary stage, but one that, hopefully, won’t take more than a meeting or two.  Of course, at first, you will want to tell each other where you grew up, how many siblings you each have, what your college major was, etc. But make sure you do it!  This is one of the reasons meetings that allow for talking (as opposed to, say, going to a movie) are crucial—especially at the beginning.

At the risk of sounding too clinical, you are kind of on an interview. Just accept that and ask yourself the right questions (and know that he’s probably wondering, too):

1.     Do I like how he looks?

Jun 15, 2009

As a matchmaker and dating coach on Manhattan’s upper east side, I found myself charmed by an article and television clip of Oak Harbor, WA., bride-to-be Rachel Welch, 21, and her fiancé, Todd Ritter, who committed to not kiss until they are bound by marriage. The couple, engaged since December, plans to be married this summer and will share their first kiss only after they are legally pronounced man and wife.

This has been the philosophy I have come to recommend after counseling thousands of singles who find themselves unhappily ensnared in sexually addicting dead-end relationships that are in every way, besides the intimate aspects, unsatisfying and incomplete. In fact, my advice to the singles I work with is to take the no-kiss rule one step further and to adapt a “Hands-Free” policy—no hugging, no stroking, no hand holding!

When I get the anticipated pushback, usually from the men, I answer that these loving gestures are “appetizers” that can lead many people to lose resolve,  detracting from the whole point of dating—namely, to hone in on the one person you will want to live with for the rest of your life. My question to those who protest is, if you had reservations at the finest restaurant for dinner, would you down a bag of Doritos before you left the house? Some things are just worth the wait.

Jun 09, 2009

I constantly hear single women say, “I’m so over dating.” But at the same time, they are clearly still hopeful. Even after a thousand unsuccessful dates, they still put on their makeup and do their hair when they are about to meet a new guy for a drink. They still fantasize about this date being different from all the others, about this guy finally being “the one.” How can there be so much hope after so much disappointment?

It is because although most women will not give up on the dream of marriage, “dating” is chronically, undeniably dissatisfying. It often leads to disillusionment, frustration, and heartbreak. It is a broken system. So instead of trying to fix it, why not try something new?

Forget dating! Forget the late nights in loud bars, the awkward moment where you’re wondering if he’s going to kiss you, the long, torturous conversations with your girlfriends about whether the guy is a player or a serious prospect. Let’s eliminate the awkwardness and the ambiguity.

Jun 04, 2009

If you’re dating, you might meet up with a guy at a bar, late at night. If you’re connecting, you will meet him somewhere at a reasonable hour without alcohol.

If you’re dating, you might evaluate each other’s looks and bodies, subjecting yourself to his attempts to have physical relationship as quickly as humanly possible. If you’re connecting, you will be evaluating each other’s personalities, values, and visions of the future.

If you’re dating, you might wind up back at his apartment after a few too many cocktails. If you’re connecting, you will never enter each other’s apartments, unless there are plenty of other people there (i.e. a party).

Jun 02, 2009

It is important to be upbeat and positive. No one likes a complainer. Don’t show up for your first date and unload all your work struggles on the person you date. He/she does not need to know yet that your boss is unfair, that you got passed over for a promotion, that you hate your company. I am not saying that you should lie…but try to focus on the positives, rather than dwelling on the negatives. Smile. Don’t speak badly about anyone! You don’t want him/her to think you would do the same to him/her.

No, I am not asking you to be fake, but it’s important to remember that if you focus on the things that make you happy, you will start to feel happy. Behaviors cause feelings just as much if not more than feelings cause behaviors.

One recent study proved that “people aren’t happy because they’re successful…they’re successful because they are happy”! So start appreciating what you have, not lamenting what you’re missing!

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The Art of Praying
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