Bay Area Dating Culture

Autumn is just around the corner…. are you ready to Fall in love?

September and October always usher in a very active season at Linx, and this time of year is actually great for dating in general. With summer travel over, the holidays not quite in sight, and evenings still warm, this is the perfect time to focus on your personal life! In order to reap the rewards use deserve this time of year (it is, after all, harvest season) it’s important that you do two things; be positive, and look forward. And here is a plan for doing just that.Autumn-Love

Before your next date, I’d like you to do 2 things.

1.) Make a list of all of your positive qualities. And ONLY your positive qualities. Make it a list of all of the reasons you think someone should want to date you. Yes, all of them. And write them as “I AM…” statements rather than “People think I am…” or a “Someone should like me because….”

This should just be a list of ALL of your positive qualities and attributes, even if they seem really minor or trivial to you. For example, here are a few of mine:

I am compassionate

I listen well

I make an outstanding chocolate chip cookie

I’m naturally affectionate

I have nice forearms (according to E. Jean Carroll)

I do not get morning breath

I am close to my family

I’m good with kids

I’m marriage-minded

I am loyal

I have a great circle of close friends

Note that this is just a small sample of MY list. Yours could (and should) be entirely different. And your list should be long, and exhaustive. It should a true inventory of the things you like about yourself, and absolutely know are the reasons someone else could value, respect, and love you. And once you’ve written the list, you need to read it. Out loud. Several times. You need to accept and embrace all of these things as facts about who you are, and you need to read it over and over again until you can say each of these facts out loud, and not let the little voice inside your head follow any of them with a “But….”

Once you start to accept these great things about yourself, it’s then time to face forward, and think about how you’d like to share these parts of yourself with someone else. Do this by making a list of things you either don’t do as much as you’d like, or don’t do at all, but would want to do in a relationship. For those of us who telecommute or consider ourselves homebodies, it’s really important that this be a list of things meant to take place OUTSIDE of your home. Again, here’s part of my list as an example:

I would like to hike more.

I would like to take weekend trips to Carmel.

I would like to spend more time at Ocean Beach

I would like to go to more romantic restaurants

I would like to see more concerts

I would like to have dinner with other couples

I would like to spend a few weekends in Tahoe and Palm Springs

I would like to plan some international travel

I would like to start cycling

I would like to take a couples’ massage class

I would like to go kayaking

I would like to let someone else get to know me.

This list is just as important as the first; the former is catalog of what/who we are, while the second is roadmap for what we want our lives to look like. When you make this list, you are, in many ways, describing what you want in your relationship. You are giving it shape. You are allowing yourself to visualize it. And once you can visualize it, so can the person with whom you’re on a date.

Often, people go on dates and simply describe their lives just as they are. They tell each other all about how they live as single people, they don’t talk about what they might want to be different, and they don’t allow their dates to see how he or she might fit into the picture. If you want someone in your life, you have to invite them in. You have to let them know what role they might take. And you have to give them the opportunity to be part of a negotiation around shaping a future together. So be sure to work on building self-esteem around all of your positive qualities, and invite someone you like into your life by telling him or her all about what you hope to see happen in your short- and mid-term future; if you believe in the quality of your offering and extend the invitation, how else will your date be able to R.S.V.P. for love?

If you’re ready to find your match, email us today amy@linxdating.com

Find Love There Are No Excuses

In my journey to find my husband, I often wondered if I would ever find true love and sometimes reached a deep level of concern within my conscious soul that I indeed might not. Back then, I did not like that feeling and found it empty, sad, and disconcerting. I needed an exit, an outlet, a way to see the positive from what was a void in my life… I seemed to be caught up in what society was telling me to do. I never really listened to my heart until I had a revelation one day – in wine country, at a pet parade, of all places!

In a moment of clarity, everything hit me. It was as if time and reality were suspended right in front of me – so I listened…

As I listened to my heart, I knew I had to make some changes in my life. Part of those changes for me, personally, meant moving and taking some time off from dating. Certainly I am not saying that everyone should move and take time off from dating. Yet what I am preaching to you today is to listen to your heart and to do what YOU need to do. As Hemingway once wrote, “I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.”

Take 15 minutes this week to have a moment within yourself. Get away from all of the noise surrounding you and create a sacred quiet place for just you. I know so many people who never spend alone time. Try it. During this time, close your eyes and block out all distractions. You cannot reach the state I am asking you to get to without removing all chaos from around you (roommates stomping around the apartment, dogs barking, cell phone buzzing, music playing…you get it). Get to a place of calm by closing your eyes and breathing deeply into your diaphragm and belly.

Try to reach a state of peace and quiet and once there you might achieve a clear state of heart and mind about what direction you should be heading in your personal life.

If you want to find love, then go find it, there are no really excuses. Finding your soul mate is one of the greatest experiences you will ever have. Do not wallow in your miseries or feel sorry for yourself. Only you can be an agent of change in your life. Why not pave the way for a bright and successful future? Too many people dwell on all of the negative garbage of the past and worry that they will never find anyone. Too many people also create so many lists of “must haves” in their mate that these lists actually become obstacles and block and progress in finding a partner.

This is the present, relish in today. Listen to what your heart tells you.

P.S. If this all sounds a bit contrived and like a meditative yoga class, here might be another way to get to the same place. My husband read this blog entry and really loved the message, but asked if he could add the following for another perspective 😉 :

I certainly agree with Hemingway that most people never listen (rather, they hear but often don’t listen.) But in my experience, at least, you can’t just decide to listen. You need to be ready and in the right place to listen and you can’t control that – you just need to be aware enough to let it happen naturally. I don’t recommend you force it – just be open to it.

Be open to finding big insights about yourself in what might seem like the small routines in life. Maybe rather than creating artificial silence and peace in a chaotic environment and consciously trying to reflect, you should just take time (whenever it just seems to hit you) to think about what really makes you happy. What do you look forward to? What do you not? How can you make it a point to do more things that make you happy? If tradeoffs are involved, how might you reconcile the different competing forces? Grappling with these important questions will likely give you many insights into what could be really important qualities to look for in a soulmate and also ways that you might better put yourself in position to meet that person. Remember, if you are in a good place yourself, you have a much better shot at attracting your perfect match.

Mary Had a Little Lamb

Have you ever started dating someone and made the infamous trip to their pad, all excited to maybe cook together, chill for the night….the candles are lit, the wine is open, the hot make-out has happened UNTIL you see their bedroom covered in stuffed animals?

That’s right, stuffed animals, teddy bears, and creepy dolls in a doll case? Although your new love interest might be biologically 30 years old, it is almost as if you are in his/her parent’s home in the old childhood bedroom. iStock_000022311896Medium

This stuff happens all the time. It can be a serious BUZZ KILL and put a damper on the evening. Why have the oversize teddy bears, droopy eyed larger-than-life fuzzy puppy dog, stuffed random toys, creepy porcelain dolls, Cabbage Patch Dolls, and the like gracing the bed, bookshelves, and what seems like a hallucinogenic nightmare for you.

I’ll admit I still have some of my absolute favorite fuzzy friends from childhood- but tucked away safe in a large box (or two!) at my parents home. These friendly little faces used to be my best buds- they listened to me when I really needed them, never talked back when I was bratty, tucked me in safe at night when I hated the dark, and even were my “best students” when I used to play school all throughout middle school. I packed fake lunches for them at night, begged my mom to take me to a real teachers supply store to purchase the teachers essentials (like a #1 Teachers mug, the perfectly sharp pencils, crisp paper, rulers, a marker board, smelly fruity markers, and of course..the grade and role book. )

Although I don’t play school anymore and hang with my buds aka my: “Ready Teddy bear” , “Rolo bear”, “Dancer Bear, “Nigel Murphy Cabbage Patch Doll”, “Kay Amie Cabbage Patch Doll” , or Rolo bears child aka “Small G ”…I do think of them on occasion. We shared SO much together. That said, I grew up, I moved on, I tucked them away safely in a storage box and knew they would be very warm and cozy in their new crate home.

I wonder sometimes why adults who are on the dating market still have their stuffed friends widely displayed in their apartments and homes? I’m talking displayed across the entire bed. Don’t get me wrong, it is one thing to have a cute bear on a bookshelf or maybe a sweet fuzzy hippo, baby lamb, duck, doggy, rabbit, or koala from your alma mater with the alma mater tie on it or sash from graduation but not your whole collection. Young man in pajamas thoughts seated on sofa at home

From a dating perspective, I believe it sends the wrong signal. Thoughts that go through your new love interests mind could range from:

Bed wetter issues, does he/she still suck their thumb too, mommy or daddy issues, issues and more issues, can’t let go of the past, what else is messed up with this person?

Your stuffed doggie can bring you serious relief from a crappy day at work and be a well deserved source of comfort for you- even when you are an adult. Or that little lamb can distress from you from an anxiety ridden situation or cradle you after a shitty break-up.

Now to throw an interesting twist to the scenario, Harvard Business School published information which reveals that “Adults are less likely to cheat and more likely to engage in pro-social behaviors when reminders of children, such as teddy bears and crayons, are present.”

So maybe we all keep the bear, buy some crayons, and throw a little tea party to boot?

What’s Happening in Silicon Valley & Beyond

Silicon Valley and the world is buzzing with last week’s FB acquisition of WhatsApp for 19BB! That’s right, 19BB – each founder is walking away with approximately 4BB. Talk about a nice payday.

WhatsApp has been around 5 years and is the most popular messaging app for smartphones. It is believed that the WhatsApp acquisition will secure Facebook’s already leading position in the crowded messaging world.1392860067000-GTY-470487009

Last week I had the pleasure of being treated to an amazing night at the exclusive and chic Battery in San Francisco by three amazing, awe-inspiring male clients. These guys all referred one another into Linx, were co-founders of a tech company together, and have had great experiences with Linx, choosing it as another strategic option in their arsenal of dating resources.

They commiserated about how the scene is tough for guys, that filtering online profiles is extremely time consuming, and how they are committed to making 2014 “their year” to each find the woman of his dreams. These good solid guys are late 20’s to early 30’s, each super fascinating.

I ran into a ton of familiar faces at The Battery – former and current clients, friends, and new connections. Definitely a who’s-who sort of establishment – folks having dinner, people drinking late into the night upstairs, playing cards, and encouraged not to talk about work…in fact, no photos are allowed (that’s right, not even “selfies”…man, I loathe that expression!), and the membership is curated to bring together like-minded influencers from all sorts of unique backgrounds – many not in tech. Computer use and business talk is discouraged in favor of discussions about the arts, current affairs, culture, and travel. 628x471 Photo: Ken Fulk, Inc.

The five-level, 58,000-square-foot club at 717 Battery Street is a very unique one-of-a-kind elite club-designed by Ken Fulk and with the most spectacular interior filled with modern art, sculptures, terraces, restaurants, a wine cellar, and much more. This impressive establishment is the creation of Michael and Xochi Birch. This cool couple sold the social networking site Bebo to AOL for $850 million in 2008 and later were inspired by the private social clubs of London as they conceptualized The Battery. I encourage you to tap your network of friends to see “who” might be members and ask a friend to check it out….

Happy Valentine’s From Linx

Happy Valentine’s to you all……I hope you have fun plans. If you are without a date for tonight, I hope you are going out with the girls for festive drinks or heading to your best GFs home for some good wine, potluck, and The Bachelor on Tivo.

I have my money on him choosing Courtney, although I wish he would pick Lindsey. They seem to have a very good lifestyle compatibility connection and are better matched physically and emotionally too.

I‘ve been tweeting like a passionate cupid today and if you aren’t following me on twitter, please do @linxdating and tell your friends to follow too. Here are some of my tweets from today that I will elaborate more on…..

Both men and women can overcompensate when dating. Dial it back. See what happens.
I think both men and women can do this all the time. For the guy who buys the girl he likes all her favorite candies every time he sees her, stocks his fridge with all her favorite vitamin waters, and submits to all her crazy requests and demands…is asking for trouble. She will take advantage of you.
For the woman who bakes the guy she likes chocolate chip cookies and her grandma’s apple pie on date two is asking to get bulldozed. Guys love food and what guy won’t eat the cookies and granny’s pie- they all will. Yet it is trying too hard in the beginning and doing too much too soon.
My advice would be to stock the fridge with the vit waters and get her the candies, bake him the cookies ONCE exclusive and in a monogamous relationship.

– Develop an edge. Whatever that edge may be. Reveal that edge when dating. It’s sexy.
There are some people (i.e., Ben from the Bachelor) who lack an edge. I hear from a lot of clients that both men and women desire meeting a potential mate with “something” there worth exploring.  
Even Ben said he likes Courtney because she has an edge- which she does. An edge could be an internal strength, a confidence, some random interest that you are crazy wild about, or the fact that you are out there dating a few prospects and don’t always accept a date on a Saturday (leaving some room for mystery).

-Consider a firm handshake when meeting. A cold fish and weak one is such a turn off. That is a matchmakers first data point about someone!
Child, there is nothing worse than a handshake that is like a cold, wet dead fish in your palm. No one likes this. I always use a new client or prospective clients handshake as a benchmark of who they are. Weak ones give anyone the willies. Firm it up. It speaks of your confidence. Couple that with good eye contact. A winning combo.

-Call your match! What is with some guys? They ping me for an introduction then let 10 days go by before calling. Get on the clue train!
Like seriously? I get so many emails each day from clients requesting “match me.” As I follow through with a new match, I am often taken aback by a few of these super desirable guys who just forget to call. Sorry Amy, I was sick. Amy, I had to go to Europe last minute. Amy….this and that. An unspoken truth is that women love a man who calls period. Match that to calls when he says he is going to call. A winning combo.
-Don’t force a connection. Allow a connection to unfold naturally and organically. You can’t manufacture love.
I have a friend who is extremely eager to find love. Before she even has met possible matches, she is already planning the wedding. Men pick up on that frenetic energy and will close the loop before even meeting because it is “too much.” She will send long emails even before meeting for date one about why they are great together and a data dump of her life. This is a total turnoff. Stop the long emails, the data dumps, and just be casual about it. If you feel the frenetic clutter in your mind building up, go workout, or call your best GF.  
-Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
I say this all the time. It just happened again how someone I know is literally casting away every other potential opportunity and connection because she had ONE good date with a cool guy. He did all the things a gentleman and good guy does on the first date and actually seems like a very nice young man. That being said, to close off every other opportunity to meet other potential suitors because she is banking on him being her husband has disaster written all over it! For all she knows, he is out there courting 5 other women (doing the same thing, saying the same thing, etc etc).