Month: March 2013

The Dog Days Are Over | Guest blogger, 30 year old female, San Francisco

2012 was a turbulent year. It started with my college best friend getting engaged. Yes, I was insanely happy that my soul sister found what she was looking for in a spouse. But that and the collection of seven other weddings that I was attending over the next twelve months were starting to get to me. I was 29, hopelessly single with a string of dysfunctional casual relationships, and trapped in a job that was not challenging me. I felt like Bridget Jones – except I did not have a hunky version of Hugh Grant or Colin Firth in the picture.

I had never been one to judge myself against others – but I found myself questioning who I was and what I wanted. I didn’t need marriage – but I was starting to believe that happiness and real companionship were unattainable. I wanted more.

For a few months, I cried daily. I tried retail therapy, nights on the town with my girlfriends, marathon dating on eharmony and OKCupid and midnight food fests to distract myself. When I confided in my (married) older sisters – they gave me seemingly canned advice, “be open”. I laughed at them and pushed their words away.

Then I found out that a man that I once dated and still harbored some strong feelings was marrying someone else. I did not cry because of or over him – I cried because the fantasy that I constructed in my head of some planned future was shattered. And that’s when I really hit rock bottom.

But hitting rock bottom also made me find my truest self. My mother once told me that the only person you have to answer to is yourself. I looked in the mirror and did not like what I saw.

So the next month, I quit my job, started working out regularly (I wanted to train for half marathons, but kept postponing because of excuses) and spent two months in Europe. I literally took off. I needed to reset.

It worked. I turned 30 with a renewed sense of purpose and happiness. I did not love myself fully before. Like many women, I put up with female friendships and male relationships that were not good for me. It took time for me to recognize and change the negative patterns in my life.

Life is not always fair. The plans we construct in our youth or even in our twenties do not pan out. I’ve learned – through both my chaotic professional life at start-ups and in love – that you have to be open (yes, I hate that phrase but I am using it) to what comes your way.

And enter Amy Andersen….I met Amy during one of her VIP searches in 2011 and she has set me up over the past two years with various clients. Several of the connections were very good – some were lacking chemistry – but I gave all of them a shot.

In late 2012, I met my current boyfriend at one of her Linx events and he has changed my life. I had been toying with a business opportunity for some time – he was a major force behind me pursuing it with full force. My boyfriend has taught me so much about friendship, healthy relationships and what I am capable of. (He is also a year and a half younger than I am – so do not discount the younger man!) We are intellectual peers. Though we are enjoying the connection, we have our share of dating pains and candidly I do not know what the future holds for us. But I am sure that this relationship serves a purpose for me – to teach me respect, self-worth and that I can achieve anything I put my mind to.

This has been the most challenging and rewarding year of my life. I took a risk, changed the direction of my life and started to love myself.

So have faith and good luck on your journey! (And thank you Amy, for being a part of mine:-)

Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone……561208_10151481268975061_1591241665_nOur baby boy when he was just a wee little puppy last year. Marshall was not happy with mommy’s request of an Easter photo shoot. 😉

Easter is about family time. Yesterday we took Marsh out to the park for his daily romp with his friends. He found himself a new hobby and talent, enjoying a pickup basketball game with a new friend. Have you ever seen a pooch so talented? 

Announcing our latest VIP search

Linx is excited to announce a new search for a 31 year old Caucasian female residing in San Francisco. Perhaps you are eligible, searching, or if you are attached, know someone who might make the perfect match for our client. 

Physically, she is 5’6″, feminine with sexy curves, and keeps active with intense gym workouts. On the surface people might judge her as a whip smart, successful female in tech. For those in her inner sanctum, IQ meets EQ. Our client has a magnetism about her, coupled with being extremely down-to-earth, warm-hearted, open-minded, and funny too.

Although young, our client is ready for love now and wants to be able to connect emotionally with her match and build a life and family together one day. We’re not going to fabricate things, she works a lot. That said, she is ready to dial it back (some) and create a strong foundation with you built on monogamy, trust, and passion. Outside of work, she’s a true foodie and super knowledgeable about wine as well. Perhaps you would indulge her and share in this passion with her?  

Our client seeks a match who is between the ages of 25-45 of any ethnicity. You keep active, healthy, and balanced in your life. You’ve got a full life, amazing passions and creative hobbies that keep you stimulated and have so much to offer someone. Maybe you’ve done the online dating thing and perhaps have had a couple of serious relationships.
 
Like our client, this is “your time” to get serious. When you visualize your future, you can picture a true partnership on equal footing. You want kids, in fact…maybe you already have one at home (but would love another). You’re a non-conformist-type who has the courage to do what YOU want versus what society or family dictates. You lead your life with integrity, have a burning fire in your belly to excel at whatever you do professionally, are deep and not afraid of a philosophical debate, intellectual, and friends would say emphatic and caring. 
 
If you or anyone you know is interested in this very unique opportunity to see if you qualify to meet our client, please email me ASAP at amy@linxdating.com. There are zero fees involved. 
Follow me on Twitter @linxdating

Linx on CNN Newsroom Live Broadcast | March 20, 2013

Business Lessons | Indulge in your passion

This was a huge last week for Linx – a ton of simultaneous media coverage . All super crazy exciting!  Linx was featured in Fortune, CNN Money, CNN TV, and a venture capital/private equity news rag called peHUB.  I was slammed with hundreds upon hundreds of prospects emailing me about joining Linx from this fabulous outpouring of press. Now I have managed finally to come up for some air.  Ahhh… to breathe again.

Many people always ask me which publicist I use…I don’t have one. Let me share my secret with you. I’ve worked my tail off 7 days a week for the last ten years to build my business. I have bunkered down, completely focused on my mission, and maintained my same work ethic, principles, and mantra from the very beginning days of when I first started Linx.

When you remain anchored to your passions and don’t get worn down by the little hiccups along the way or distractions that are inevitable, people are attracted to that. Journalists are intrigued, they want to hear “the story” and learn all about of these high caliber and dynamic professionals that flock to Linx.  “How’d you come up with that?”

Sir Richard Branson (of Virgin fame) has a long list of important business and life lessons – here are two that I like and maybe you can relate, especially if you run your own company.richard_branson

#1: Entrepreneurship is not about getting one over on the customer. It’s not about working on your own. It’s not about looking out for number one. It’s not necessarily about making a lot of money. On the contrary, it’s about turning what excites you in life into capital, so that you can do more of it and move forward.

#2: When you’re first thinking through an idea it’s important not to get bogged down in complexity. Any fool can make something complex. It’s hard to make something simple.

I especially like point #2. It’s one of those “why didn’t I think of that” scenarios. A concept turned into actual product or service that is, at it’s core, a simple one. This point can be absolutely correlated to dating. Don’t get so strung out about how to act, look, what to say, etc on your first date. Slow down. Prepare. Stay true to yourself. Show up. Be gracious, be kind. Remember that your date is taking time out of his/her day to get to know you. It’s pretty simple when you think about it.

If you’ve gotten past the early stages of dating and are stressed about your relationship’s ups and downs, don’t loose sight of the end goal (if the end goal is marriage for you.) Although human behavior and relationships are, by definition, complex, you don’t have to make it so. In my coaching, I always use the visual of a horse with horse blinders on when dating. Don’t let the little stuff bring you down, get you distracted, or worry you. Stay level-headed. Pour your passion into your dating journey. That will create the foundation for a strong and healthy relationship. Lead your life with integrity. Never let anyone jeopardize your core values or extinguish your dreams, goals, and passions.

When I was a young entrepreneur originally living in the Silicon Valley and in a serious relationship at the time, I developed the concept for Linx. I was so in love but unaware that I was in a possessive and very controlling relationship. My boyfriend told me in so many words that I was “not allowed to start Linx” back then. My hopes and dreams felt shattered. I felt like a puppet on marionette strings and he was orchestrating how my life should be. I knew something wasn’t right.entrepreneurship

It’s so hard when you love someone yet it feels like he/she is sticking a dagger through you. After he broke up with me it felt like tear gas had completely engulfed my life. I couldn’t see what my new future would hold. I couldn’t really feel anything either. Maybe you can relate after a tragic breakup that flips you upside down. At the time, I felt like an inch worm scooting around with very low energy and so small in the big world from being made to feel like crap for a long time.

With the help of family and dear friends, I rebuilt my strength and began to see the silver lining in all of it. I remembered what had excited me so much before the big bad breakup had happened. I had witnessed an interesting and rather odd disparity in the ratio of eligible men to women in the Silicon Valley (lots of guys!!) and saw all of my female friends in San Francisco struggling to make sense of the dating scene.

I left the pain of the breakup in the past but remembered three things back then: 1) I knew there was something there with my dating concept and I had a burning desire to figure out how I could capitalize on it;  2) I now knew what I didn’t want to find in a future husband – i.e. controlling personality; and 3) never let anyone jeopardize your core values, or extinguish your dreams, goals, and passions.liberated_health1

The partner you choose should make you feel the best you can be, not the opposite. Being together should feel like a miracle not a nightmarish situation. Everyone has a fire somewhere in their belly. I encourage you to look within today and focus inward about what your burning desire is in life. Journal your thoughts, create an action place, and go after your dreams. After all, you’re the only one who can hold your own self accountable and know what your true passion(s) are. Now go indulge in that wondrous experience. P395683-2-1_richard-branson-2

Last Week in Perspective

This past week, we completed two intense and inspiring days of individual interviews at our Spring casting in Palo Alto. Meeting after meeting, we met exceptional women and men of all ages coming out to see if they have what it takes to meet some of our current VIP clients. 49_191_popup-1I always learn so much from these candidates. One funny woman shared enthusiastically the Shanghainese tradition of gifting 18 hams to the matchmaker who has successfully matched you. Being Shanghainese, she said “Marry me off and you’ll have 18 hams coming your way! I hope you like ham.”

images
So, what are these high caliber, successful single professionals saying? A lot! Here are a few nuggets of wisdom from our meetings we’d like to share with you:

I’ve been on a ton of dates, the men only seem to be interested in their own time table and agenda.

The well for getting set up from friends is shrinking by the minute!

I feel like I need to stop doing online dating. I don’t want to become jaded. I need to take a break, breathe, and get a fresh perspective.

I love flirting! I try to make eye contact in my everyday life and never look at my cell phone as a crutch when walking down the street.  Make eye contact, you just never know.

I am a modern woman who appreciates traditional values. But that means monogamy and a partnership. A relationship where it is one man and one woman. Not multiple partners.

The girl I was really into just did nothing all day and her life revolved around mine. It is so important to have a match who has her own thing going on. She would wait for me to come home, like a puppy dog, and just glum on. It was stifling. She had no life outside of mine.

People need to stop being hot and cold in relationships. Finding someone who is emotionally predictable is important. I hate always feeling like I am walking on eggshells.

It is a gift to put a woman at ease when dating. I love a man who is a gentleman and kindhearted.

My mother recently said just find any husband. As long as he has a pulse, the whole family will be delighted!  😉

The BBD

I was around 28 years old living in San Francisco at the time and was quite taken by this San Francisco bachelor who was pursuing me.  It was a setup from a friend.  On paper he was perfect. Mid 30’s, good looking, stable job in finance,
funny, and athletic. 600-01043220We had had many fun dates together and, up until this point, in my mind, I thought everything was going just fine. I was dating others, I’m pretty sure he was dating others, but it felt good, it felt right.

He invited me out one school night evening to Harry’s Bar on Fillmore Street in the heart of Pacific Heights. Heading into the date, I got my hopes up that maybe, just maybe, he would bring up the exclusivity conversation.  homelogoThe date was really casual. I don’t think we ordered food, just a glass of wine. He seemed pretty distracted that night and more serious than on other dates we had had. My hope of getting serious with Mr. Perfect-On-Paper boy seemed to be slipping away very quickly in watching his behavior that night – mannerisms, verbally, etc. Keep-A-Guy-Interested-Man-Looking-At-Woman-300x222Was my hair out of place, did I wear the wrong dress, did I have something in my teeth? He started looking around the room and looking “over” me, almost as if he were looking for a friend who was meeting him later.

“What are you doing?” I asked him….

“Ahh….(smiling), the BBD” he stated in confidence and almost rehearsed.

“The BB, what-uha?” I inquired, nervously……

“The Bigger Better Deal” he said.

As I started to sink into my chair, shoulders tensing up, heart fluttering, and all dating confidence down the drain, he then had the nerve to explain what it meant. It was the pervasive mentality amongst these perfect-on-paper San Francisco bachelors that they could be out with someone who was great, but in their mind, the grass is almost always greener. There just HAS to be someone skinner, funnier, smarter, happier, more interesting, and goodness knows what else. imagesThat night, it was literally like an episode of ABC’s “The Bachelor” – he said to me that “he has been dating many others” and the chemistry he felt towards me was SO POWERFUL and amazing yet he felt that his connection to one of these other women in his “harem” was more of an intellectual one. Thus, I was “eliminated” from his dating game. Sean-LoweI was no longer one of the girls in his bevy of ladies living up to eagerly go out with him. I had been rejected. Sadly, there was no rose at the end of this
night. I headed home, poured myself into my work further and knew there had to be some silver lining in all of this  dating in San Francisco.

That night was absolutely one of the nuggets of dating wisdom I needed to propel me to give notice for my little studio, get out of dodge, and head back to the Silicon Valley where maybe, just maybe, these “good guys” who had been too busy with work to date wouldn’t have a clue what the BBD was, nor never would.

Date Ready on a Budget

I just picked up a copy of ELLE and discovered some new fashion sites to browse. One in particular piqued my interest called Closet Rich. A site coined as “Curated Fashion Resale.”  As I am always thinking about how my clients can look fabulous for their exciting dates and at the same time appeal to the ever visual male creature, the notion of curated resale, isn’t a bad one…especially if you like designer and a little trendy on a budget.

I am totally new on the site but did notice one little sort of annoying thing as a potential customer. A lot of cute things my eyes zoomed in on are “sold out.” A site as such should constantly replenish sold out pieces with new inventory. Please note, I have not purchased from this site, so cannot speak to the experience. Anyways, here are a few date appropriate items I found for you readers.

1b9269e5484f4314894e2ca10e71e0a6_820x820This could be super cute with fab black pumps and simple Kate Spade gum drop earrings…some bangles…and a little clutch. 
Whitley Kross

Geo print strapless knee length w/ ruffle waist

Size: S
Condition: Excellent

Questions? emailorders@closetrich.com.

SKU: KK034$96 $85

b1c642eceac84937af1edd54d7de6441_820x820ee696aea2613445cb6b27dcb2468dd53_820x820 A girl needs to use good underpinnings aka Spanx if you are over 30….squeeze it all in dolly…pair sexy stilettos or metallic heels, fun chandelier earrings. 

Kelly Wearstler

knit front and silk Dress
Size: S
Condition Excellent
Questions? email orders@closetrich.com
SKU: CZ010
$13012dca73ee03d4692a0275ae3d1063a64_820x820

This is a cute look  for date two or three. Pair with chic flat boots for winter. Perfect for a casual day date where you are doing something like a farmers market stroll with coffee or sightseeing together. 

Vintage
Red white and blue long sleeve button up dress

Size: Small
Condition: Great – one front button missing, reflected in price, see image for detail
SKU: NV002
$75cb4b23082abc4582a1b132844741c0a5_820x82080b130940138416c8ef98c92d0bd3394_820x820This is sold out but a super hot dress, right? Love the strappy elastic back and white skirt by Alicia and Olivia. This is a great first date dress. Pair it with any color fabulous heel- think bright pops of color like yellow, pink, green…anything really and a fantastic pashmina with a little subtle sequin embellishment or with an edgy leather jacket. Remove jacket or pashmina when you sit down for dinner. He will be drooling with hopes of a second date when you wear this! Also the back lends itself to the perfect place for his hand to touch your skin walking down the street.  

Engagements and Happiness at Linx

Announcing another amazing Linx couple who is newly engaged! Both are in their mid 30’s, Ivy League MBAs, execs, and extremely dynamic people. He popped the question a little over a year after their very first date in Aspen right after Valentine’s Day! They have a wonderful love story and are in the midst of a lot of exciting planning now. Her ring is one of the most stunning and dramatic sparklers I have ever seen. I called it her “ice cube” on her finger as it is that impressive. Lucky girl! Perhaps they will get married in Aspen?Aspen-Wedding-21

They had both dated a lot on their own before coming to Linx. He was VERY skeptical of Linx before he became a client (even though he was referred in by a former client and trusted source). This gentleman had been in one very bumpy relationship that sort of took the wind out of him, had worked too much, didn’t have any balance in his life, and made excuses along the way.

The day of his meeting with me, he cancelled, sharing, “I lack the time for a relationship and don’t have the interest to move forward.” Was I initially disappointed? Absolutely. Being in business 10 years now and having a deep insight into humans in general, I knew there was much more to the story than that.

I knew I could help him – it was only a matter of shifting his focus and giving him the clarity he needed. Luckily, he agreed (with quite a lot of doubt and huffing and puffing) to simply “take a meeting” with me. We shared stories and instantly clicked, talking for over an hour at my office.

At the end of the meeting, he said something along the lines of, ok what is next, how do I sign up? I had been a catalyst in restoring his faith in love and helping him see that his bar should be set high (to stop dating ‘down’) and to aim for the stars because he is worth it and I knew I could help him.

He took the plunge and did Linx, hit the jackpot with introduction #3, and 13 months later from the time he joined, proposed to a woman who radiates beauty inside and out. He just wrote me, “life is great. :)”   This is just one of the many stories of clients that I have seen over the years at Linx.

Today I received an email from a smart young woman who cancelled her appointment with me as part of our casting week mid week, next week. She said she is tired, in a dating slump, not in a good mental place, and just drained from putting herself out there on dates with “nothing to show.” I told her I can SO relate to that frustrating feeling and sentiment. The honest truth is she isn’t ready at this EXACT moment. I believe if she takes some time off, she will have the mental agility and freshness needed to take a leap forward in the right direction. As they say, it is all about timing!

I brought a brilliant- yes literally- brilliant young woman into Linx today as a new client. 25 years who who went to college at ten years old!  When I was ten, I was still convinced a monster was under my bed at night and I obsessed over My Little Pony and my Pretty Cut & Grow! il_fullxfull.375446842_2az5I was definitely not focused on selecting the right college courses and fretting over advanced calculus!

We also met with a young Silicon Valley engineer today who needed some date coaching. My husband sat in on the meeting to speak guy-to-guy…hoping that might sink in a little bit more for our client. It did. My husband’s sage advice was (and this can absolutely carry over for women when you date):

1. Show empathy on your date. Try to get at the essence about what makes your date tick.

2. In preparation for your date, channel something (this could be anything) that makes you laugh and feel giddy! Carry that energy into your date. Lead with that light hearted, carefree spirit.

3. Stop being mechanical and going through the motions of being on a date. When you let go and dance through the conversation, it will flow much better. My client explained he felt tripped up and stressed when the waiter was late to take the order. I told my client I want him to try to work on a feeling of lingering through the date. Be so enraptured by your date you don’t even NOTICE if something is wrong. When my husband and I had our very first date- get this- the waiter took 2 hours to finally take our order. We laughed, smiled, and rolled with it. We were so engrossed in one another, we didn’t care for a second.