Denise Levy is a Certified Life Coach & Professional Matchmaker. She is the owner of Matchmaker Gulf Coast and works with singles nationally (Photo Credit Dave Dexter of Dex Design Photograph)
1) How do you meet eligible men and women in our area?
The best way to meet eligible singles in any area is to unplug! Leave your phone in the car when you are out and about. Don’t hide behind your laptop at the coffee shop. Be fully present when you are running errands and stop using drive-thrus. If you need to make a deposit at the bank, walk in. In today’s society when we are out and about we are more interested in what is going on in the digital world than we are in the people around us. You could walk past your potential mate 10 times and never even notice them because you were too busy on your phone. Change this and your chances of meeting someone will increase. Let’s talk more specifically about where to meet singles. I remember reading an article a while back in Psychology Today that claimed the best way to meet singles is through religious, spiritual or educational activities and I couldn’t agree more. The reason is that similarities in values make for a deeper connection. When you share similar religious or spiritual values you have a foundation to start building on. Let’s say you have a passion for gardening. Sign up for a gardening class and see who you meet. Keep in mind that just because two people share an interest doesn’t necessarily mean they are compatible. However, bonding over something you have a passion for is a great start. You have a shared interest but more importantly, take note of the fact that when you talk about something you are passionate about it makes you more attractive to others! Your coupled friends are a great resource for making an introduction for you. Don’t be shy about letting your coupled friends know you are looking. Here is the thing, when we are young our social circle is large because we are in school. School provides us with an easy setting to make many friends and develop relationships. Once we graduate and go to work our social circle decrease because most work environments are not as big as the school you previously attended. As we age, we become more selective about the people we allow in our lives and this shrinks our social circle even more. So my advice is to grow your social circle but using some of these ideas: Consider doing some volunteer work for a cause you are passionate about. Again, when you talk about something you are passionate about it makes you more attractive to others! Meetups are another great way to meet someone that you would have a shared interest with. Networking events are another fantastic way to meet people. Consider joining your local Chamber of Commerce to not only help you boost your business but to meet new people. You would not be reading this article today if I hadn’t joined the local chamber.
(2) Does romance or chivalry still exist?
Let’s start with chivalry: Does it still exist? I think the medieval knightly system and social code of chivalry are not dead. I do think the definition has changed over time. When we think of chivalry nowadays we think of things such as a man holding the door open for a women. The values of medieval chivalry truth, loyalty and courtesy still exist for the modern man, we just label it being a “gentleman” in today’s society.
Does romance still exist? Absolutely! That is if both parties continue to create it. I think the notion of “romance is dead” is something we have learned to tell ourselves when we don’t have the skills to bring it back! This is one of the things I cover in my couples workshops extensively.
(3) Why do some men treat women with nicely but remain in the friend zone?
Men end up in the friend zone because the woman does not feel attracted to him, period. Therefore to make sure this doesn’t continue to happen I would recommend men work on becoming more attractive and there are several things you can do to make this happen. Start with wardrobe and appearance. Is your wardrobe outdated or too casual? Do you need to lose a few pounds to feel more confident? Examine your grooming habits. Do you need an updated hairstyle as well? What about body language? Is your body language helping to make you seem approachable or is it showing a lack of confidence? Bad boys are more mysterious and typically hold a higher level of confidence than the “nice guy.” Women find confidence extremely sexy so if you are a nice guy, work on building up your confidence and learn how to leave a little mystery. This is something I teach my male clients that had previously suffered from what I call Nice Guy Syndrome.
(4) Why did you choose this field of work and is there a demand for it?
I graduated from UWF with a degree in social work. At that point in my life, I thought I could save the world! Who didn’t? I worked in the social work field for a short period of time and quickly realized I was not going to be capable of the saving the world one person at a time but honestly it was more than that. I was overwhelmed with all of the emotion I was taking home each night and limited in what I could actually do in my role as a social worker. I decided to take a break and started looking for a job in the newspaper. Yes, I am aging myself here. I came across an ad for a matchmaking agency and I remember thinking “this will be fun until I find something else.” Here I am nearly 23 years later in the matchmaking and coaching world using all of the skills I was taught in school and the rewards of putting a couple together and helping them to learn how to make the relationship succeed is so much better than what I saw in the field of social work so many years ago.
(5) What’s the difference between love, romance, and sex?
Love is having feelings of respect, fondness, and admiration. It is a declaration that he/she is more important to you than anything else. Romance is the expression of that love.
Romance is the action used to show him/her that they are more important to you than anything else. When you have love and romance in an established relationship you get to experience both sex and making love.
Sex without love and romance typically stems from lust which is less likely to lead to a long-term relationship however, I must admit I have seen it happen on a few occasions.
(6) What is romance?
Romance is the feeling of excitement and mystery which can actually be present over the lifetime of the relationship. This another thing I teach in my couples workshops! Romance, however, is subjective and I believe romance is different for every couple. Romance to me personally is not about my husband bringing me flowers, chocolates or buying me expensive gifts on Hallmark holidays. It’s more about the little things in life that show you care about the other person and being fully present in the relationship