how to fall in love

This Week at Linx

Lische

As Memorial Day quickly becomes a distant memory, I hope you all had a tremendously relaxing and special holiday weekend. Perhaps some of you headed for the beach for days filled with BBQs, cold beer, sandy toes, and sun-kissed noses, while others of you hopped on a plane to see family or to hit some exotic destination. Or maybe it was good down time just chilling, while others packed in socializing, shopping, and fun brunches out with friends.

Every time I started to write a new blog entry over the weekend, I somehow get completely sidetracked by an urgent client email that required an immediate response, or a new match that I needed to make. Such are the realities of running a small niche business.

It’s been a whirlwind last few weeks at Linx as we have onboarded some truly exceptional new clients – interestingly, a heavier concentration of 45 + individuals in the last few weeks – all extremely successful in their own right, refreshingly down-to-earth, candid about what they seek in a match, and ready for love now! I look forward to doing some new blog entries in the coming weeks to announce a few of these key searches.

I have also been squeezing in some date coaching and even a wardrobe consultation, and I believe there are lessons for everyone in these sessions.

During this particular stretch, though I worked with my clients on a variety of techniques, we focused primarily on early stage dating. For one young woman in technology, I discussed the art of “Flirting 101.” My main lesson was that being too eager or overly sexy can lead a man to discount you as a potential mate and love interest, but not enough flirting can leave even the most intuitive guy confused and unclear about how to proceed. I find it very surprising that so many people see this as a black and white thing. It’s actually very gray. As a woman, you don’t have only two choices.   It’s all about subtlety – each individual has to build an awareness and confidence that allows her to almost unconsciously calibrate a situation and then react naturally in a way that smoothly and metaphorically telegraphs what she is feeling. I’m not saying this is easy. In fact, it is hardest for my clients that come from very analytical backgrounds. Tapping this art means being in touch with your softer, more emotional side and also getting experience across a wide range of interpersonal situations (whether it is at work, with friends, family, or ideally dating.)

For another client, I helped strategize about how to combat shyness. One of the hardest things about building dating confidence can be overcoming stranger anxiety…  you know, the stuff that sets in when we’re about 18 months old, and (for most of us) never really goes away?  The ultimate goal is to build enough confidence to approach strangers you find attractive AND to carry that undeniable confidence over into real life dating. I gave this client homework where her goal was to have small, simple interactions each day with people she does not find attractive, for example asking for the time, making chitchat while waiting in a grocery store line, etc. Seem counter-intuitive? Well, the stakes are low and it is a lot less pressure especially for an exercise like this that can be pretty nerve-wracking regardless of how “hot” or “not” someone is.   Start on the easier end of the spectrum, build up, and don’t immediately try to boil the ocean.

So I can sit here and preach all of this advice and speak in generalities… but I can just hear a reader saying, “that’s great but how do I actually DO this stuff and improve?”

Well, one option is to let me date coach you. LOL. And then you get a ton of individualized attention and narrowly tailored practice. Another client who is doing coaching work just sent in this feedback this morning, “all these efforts have been wonderful in putting my focus on the future, and rediscovering the happy person I am naturally. The coaching process has been very helpful to dig into what is real and make sure that my best self is visible.  It feels good to make an investment in myself.  I appreciate all your help.” It is always nice to receive emails like this where the effort and hard work clients are putting into this process are not only rewarding but they feel as if they are entering a new chapter in their lives with the gusto and confidence required.

A cheaper option to Linx coaching, and I know this may sound corny, is to watch emotional movies (they could, but need not be, romantic comedies) or to read a classic romantic novel, even if you aren’t getting a lot of practice in the real world. My husband uses, to great effect, literature and movies in his Stanford courses on entrepreneurship and leadership because those topics have so much to do with people and even fictional material like movies or books allow a whole class to experience the same people and situations with their diverse real life lenses and to have a productive discussion about all of it. I believe the same thing applies in improving in your artistic dating skills.

On a lighter note, I also did a quick wardrobe consult for one client this week. This 30-year old entrepreneur needed some nice dress shirts, a sport coat, and some pants that were alternatives to jeans. He mentioned that he had a gift certificate to Nordstrom so I headed over there and spent a hour pulling a few select items for him with the help of one of their personal shoppers. I think my client will be pleased with my picks – classic yet with a youthful modern twist- Hugo Boss, AG pants, J Brand pants, and a few dress shirts too.

Beyond all of the coaching this week, we also have screenings for new prospective clients, a couple of new client interviews, and… drumroll… a Dutch media company visiting Linx this week, flying out from the Netherlands to meet with me. Germany has always had a love affair with Linx and Silicon Valley but perhaps the Dutch are catching the virus as well. They will first interview me, and then (this is the best part) set up one of my young male clients with the host of the show – a gorgeous 24-year old who apparently is edgy, vocal, and hip! This will all air in August in a short documentary.

Have a spectacular weekend ahead!

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

Call Me….Maybe?

The timing of when a man calls to ask you out can indicate so much about how he feels about seeing you, and where he thinks the two of you are potentially headed. I am a big believer that carefully managing the early stages of dating is critical in establishing a pathway towards the relationship you have dreamt of.

I recall having many highs and lows during my single years while looking for my match; in my constant struggle to understand “boy world,” I noticed a familiar pattern surface around when guys I was dating would call me. This new awareness led to great clarity and insight that really helped me figure out my confusing dating life.

Every woman – regardless of age – should strive to be part of a man’s coveted A List… aka his “Dream Team” bucket. Being on this “it” list means a man is in hot pursuit of you, and it can be incredibly empowering and reassuring to know he’s so interested. A guy this engaged might actually call you on Monday to ask you out for a proper Saturday date. In doing so he is making the effort to plan, to think ahead, to get on your calendar, and to recognize that you have a busy life and are a girl in demand! Saturday dates signal something more serious- especially those that are reserved in advance! Ask yourself, are you on his dream team? iStock_000042037726Small

Another scenario is when a man calls (or texts…let’s hope he is not texting to ask you out) on a Thursday for a Friday or Saturday date. This guy has most likely a) been clocking long hours at work and is living in a state of delirium so it is unclear if he has legitimate time for a relationship, or b) is dating multiple girls and his A-Lister just cancelled on him, so you are simply on his back-up B, C, or D-List. We all know B-list, C-list, and D-list actors…those who have never made it to the top of the heap. If you were an actor in Hollywood, would you be ok being placed on the same level as “that guy” or “that girl” whose name you can’t really place but know you’ve seen in some film? Wouldn’t you want to aim to do what it takes to be a bankable star? The same principle applies to dating.

Ladies, wake up and check yourself. I want you to put yourself on the A-List today and believe that you should and can be on any man’s dream team and hot list.

If a man calls you on a Thurs for a Friday or Saturday date, remember my advice and make a hard decision about whether or not you want to go out. You can take a bold stand and turn him down and politely share that you’d prefer the following Saturday. If he is serious about you, he will listen and comply. If he is wading around in the kiddie pool and is not serious with his intentions, move on. Remember to not reprimand him for not calling sooner or being so unavailable; that always turns a man off. Follow your intuition, but be courteous and lady-like when you do.

Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure that at some point we have all agreed to the offer above, and have compounded that mistake by clearing our schedules way too soon in the hope that this guy could be Mr. Right. No no no! Stop in your tracks. Do not go there! Most men (especially Linx guys) find it incredibly desirable to find a woman who has an active and busy schedule filled with many activities, hobbies, friends, travel, and fun. This signals she has a great, happy life… the sort of life that he might eventually like to share one day! call-me-maybe-gif

One final scenario to which I don’t want you to fall victim is (I admit I might have given in one or two times to this “play” bucket) the “booty call.” You know what this is like… you know all about the sneaky guys who text you after you’ve come home for the night with some cute little emoticon and a “hey girl… watcha up to?” Or maybe “would heart to see you.” You and I both know nothing good comes from this other than some fun play and romping around in the sheets. I suppose… if you’re needing a little something-something… then go ahead. But just know that chances are very slim that he’s ever going to be kneeling down in the future and asking for your hand in marriage. Instead, you might be doing the solo walk-o-shame down Chestnut Street in smeared make-up and his baggy sweatshirt (if you’re lucky). We’ve all seen that person. Do you want to be that person? Do you want to be the C- or D-list actress who probably isn’t going to get the starring role? NO! You do NOT!

So ladies, I implore you to start tuning in to when a man calls, and become extra aware of the motivations for this. And for any men who are reading, we do appreciate when you call! And ultimately (despite some of the mixed signals you’ve probably gotten from us girls) we love it when you court us and behave like gentlemen. We applaud and value that sort of courtesy and chivalry… and we look forward to your next call.

How to Be A Completely Unforgettable Woman & Seduce Your Man…

What’s your style and unique way of being completely unforgettable when it comes to romance and seduction? Some women tell us it’s a having inner confidence and that nothing is sexier than a woman who knows what she wants and goes after it. Others say it’s a woman who let’s him guess and discover more and more about her each time they see one another- in other words…being mysterious always tops the list.

One friend of Linx recently shared she loves being dominant sexually and taking control. When he’s least expecting it, she finds great pleasure in surprising him with what she wants and wanting it now! We know lots of women who use their ambition as the ultimate tool of seduction. It goes back to a woman who knows she she wants, isn’t afraid to express herself, yet the delivery and actions of this is done in a masterfully sexy way.

Many women agree it’s what she wears in the bedroom- silk, black lingerie, or…..

And the way she smells (think figuring out your signature scent) or having your own look and sense of style can be very seductive for a man.

Burlesque dancer, model, and actress, Dita Von Teese, shares her thoughts on the art of seduction.

What’s seduction mean to you?!

To Love or Not?

Some people have never fallen in love and don’t know what it means to be in love. They ask questions about what it “feels like.” Unlike many people out there who have their first high school love, their serious college love, and maybe one or two real loves post-college, these ‘outliers’ haven’t experienced that yet. hunk flirting with profile of woman

Others fall in love easily. They love a lot. They fall fast and hard. Sometimes their definition of love crosses over from their current boyfriend, to loving their new Kate Spade tote, and loving their Peet’s latte. So, in other words, they love many things from humans to intangible objects. This sort of person can be very emotional as well and constantly express themselves through their outpouring of happiness and love for all things and people in their inner circle.

But what about those who haven’t felt love before? Is it fair to say that someone who has loved many times and experienced the sensation of being in love is a higher evolved human than someone who has yet to experience love?

Have you met someone who was in his/her early 30’s and admitted in a moment of vulnerability that he/she has never had a boyfriend/girlfriend? This happens. I see this in my line of work. When he/she shares that, what do you think? Do you feel sorry? Do you draw the conclusion that something is wrong? Or if you’re both living in the Bay Area, maybe you assume he/she has been 150% on work and hasn’t even come up for air to contemplate dating. Or maybe these folks have just never had their luck in love and the timing hasn’t been right.

There are no right answers for the case of the individual who has loved a lot or never loved at all. To love a lot can raise the question of someone having a less filtered selection process in mate choices and, in some cases, perhaps settling. Some people hate the thought of being alone and would much rather be in a relationship than be by themselves. The thought of being solo for friends’ dinner parties, work functions, or the holidays can make that person spiral into a crazy head space. In this mindset, to be alone and single can feel like being a societal misfit.

Others are inherently private and take cautionary steps towards letting someone into their lives. In a similar vein is the type of individual who has loved hard once and got really burned from a terrible break-up. He/she builds a very strong defense mechanism to self-protect from hurt again and, in the interim, starts to build a very long list of mate requirements. The ideal match list is so long that it hinders he/she from actually finding someone. The list, as a direct result, is a protection from finding love. This person can live their life in a state of fear and would almost rather be single than fall for someone with the risk of getting hurt again. Arab casual couple flirting ready to kiss with love

Where do you fall? Have you loved hard before or are still searching for that special person to feel love and be loved by someone else in a romantic relationship for the first time?

Are You Open to the Possibility of Real Love?

Blog written by: Linx staff member, Michael NormaniStock_000023385179Small

If you’re a Linx member, you know that finding true love can be difficult under any circumstance, and especially challenging when trying to navigate work schedules, family obligations, travel commitments, and, of course, personal preferences. At Linx, we always encourage seeing someone at least two times if you feel even a hint of a spark, and to be as open as possible when thinking about the details of what you expect your match to be/do/look like.

While it’s true that our physical type is often something we cannot control (or even influence) it’s also equally true that you can be surprised — and extremely satisfied — by a relationship with someone who doesn’t look like every one of your exes. (Those relationships didn’t work out for a reason, you know.)

Make sure you know the difference between what you need and what you want; you may want tall, dark, and handsome, but do you need all three? You may like natural blondes with small waists and high arches, but is the character of a woman ever really linked to the size of her waist or the shape of her feet?

In my circle of friends, many of the deepest and most fulfilling relationships actually started with a connection that was barely on the warm side of ambivalence. And believe it or not, that can be a good thing. When someone doesn’t fit your preconceived notion of what makes an ideal mate, it’s easier to relax, throw out your expectations and projections, and get to know them. You can find yourself drawn to their inner qualities instead of being mesmerized by their outer attributes. You give them a chance without realizing it, and you can find yourself comfortable and and connected in a way you couldn’t anticipate.

At Linx, we do out best to bring you a match who is ideal on all fronts. But occasionally, we ask that members stretch themselves, and be open to someone younger or older, darker or lighter, shorter or taller than they requested. We do that because we know our members very well, and we often see opportunities where two people make sense together, even if it’s unlikely to be a case of love at first sight.

We also ask people to be open because it’s practical. We have thousands of people in our database of all shapes and colors and sizes, but we don’t always have the match you want in the package you expect. The more narrow you are about your physical type and restrictions, the harder it is to meet someone — and that’s true whether you’re a client of Linx, or not.

Here is a video that breaks down the odds of love for one single 25-year-old woman in New York City. The numbers might surprise you, and when you watch, keep in mind that hair color, eye color, height, body type, shoe size, graduate degrees, minimum salaries, past relationships, and favorite sports team are NOT part of this equation. 😉 We don’t know the odds for the Bay Area, but maybe a quant-minded Linx member would like to provide the answer for us?

Are you really open to the possibility of true love? Or are focusing on a lot of tiny details that stand in the way of having your emotional needs met?

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.