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November 2013

Love in the Self-Help Aisle

Dating-by-the-booksSarah Showfety was just another professional single trying to find love in the all the wrong places. She’d get set up on blind dates, try her luck with speed dating and even tried online dating, but nothing seemed to be working. After celebrating her 33rd birthday, she realized it has been her ninth birthday in a row without a boyfriend. Refusing to belief that she was doomed to a life of perpetual singleness, Showfety decided to enroll herself in the home school edition of Love 101, and committed herself to reading one dating book per month and applying the concepts presented in each book to her own love life.

By the end of her “Dating by the Books” experiment, which turned out to be the title of her first published book, a humorous take on one professional singles quest for love through the self-help aisle. After reading nearly two dozen different dating books from a Buddhist healer and Harvard M.B.A. to Dr. Phil and the Millionaire Matchmaker, Showfety is thankful for the three valuable life lessons she learned that eventually led her to marrying her Mr. Right.

1. Quit the Blame Game.

If you’re still single for longer than you’d prefer, the only person you have to blame really is yourself. “Take a good look inward and get real with yourself about how your thoughts, choices and patterns have caused your dating situation,” says the transformational coach. “Forgive everyone, including yourself. Take full responsibility for your actions and results, then do something different to change them.”

2. Don't Date While Downtrodden.

Showfety believes that you get what you project when it comes to dating in the wrong emotional state. If you’re frustrated with dating, you’re going to attraction other singles who are as fed up as you and neither of you will have a very positive dating experience as a result. “If you're feeling discouraged or bitter, take yourself out of the game and institute a self-imposed dating detox,” says Showfety. “Spend a few weeks or months taking care of YOU and your emotional and mental well-being. Take classes, go on vacation, start an exercise regimen or spiritual practice. Do whatever it takes to generate an inner sense of joy, positivity and possibility, then get back out there. Woe is me is not sexy.”

3. Be an Active Participant in your Love Life.

This was the biggest lesson Showfety is thankful she learned through her “Dating by the Books” experiement. “Sitting back and waiting for "it" to happen is the kiss of dating death,” she says. “Use ice breakers to start conversations and open body language to get more men to come your way. Go out with the express purpose of meeting dateables. Be willing to go out alone, it's less intimidating. Practice flirting everywhere. Use your network - ask friends to set you up with great people. And remember that anywhere, from the ATM to your lunch line, is a great place to meet someone!”

Why Reading is Sexy to Professional Singles

Have you ever heard of sapiosexuality? It's an emerging trend in dating and relationships brought on no doubt by advancements in technology over the past several decades. When someone is a sapiosexual, it means that intelligence is necessary for that person to be sexually attracted to someone. Sapiosexuals are just as attracted to looks as most other singles, but they need to have an intellectual connection with someone to sustain their interest. It's a term that has been creeping up among many singles and has gained some new traction thanks to Randomhouse London video posted on YouTube that revived an old-but-not-forgotten-poem written and performed by writer, actor and poet Mark Grist.



Do you prefer dating people who are well-read?

How Facebook Can Predict Romance


Yes, you’ve heard every single’s online dating horror story (the no-show, the psycho, the loser). Despite algorithms, without question, dating a mix of anonymous strangers doesn’t always convert to a feasible and authentic romance. Following that logic, chances are the odds of meeting a mate in your own social circle would run even higher. When birds of a feather flock together, naturally compatibility ensues. Isn’t that how it goes? Not necessarily according to a recent study conducted by a Cornell University researcher and Facebook engineer. Based on data from 1.3 million Facebook users who declared themselves “in a relationship,” the study shows that more romantic connections blossom when both partners have a diverse group of friends, even if the connections within their circles aren’t very strong. In other words, the more friends two people have in common, the more likely the chances of a break up.

We as singles can learn a lesson from these findings. Stepping out of your network may require veering out of your comfort zone, but if you’re not encountering quality people and building lasting relationships, going the extra mile—and enduring some initial discomfort--will reap rewards. Try an activity or go to an event you may not typically join, say wander over to a museum even if you’re not a fan of Picassos or say yes to a happy hour with an acquaintance whom you don’t think you have much in common. A little exploration can go far; and looking in the most unlikely places may yield unexpected connections. 

5 Reasons Why Volunteering Is Sexy


When all your single friends start getting hitched and the bar scene starts to get old, many busy professionals end up turning to speed dating events, online dating and even professional matchmaking as a means for meeting a partner in crime with long-term potential. While all of these dating options are wonderful ways to meet new people, It's Just Lunch has an alternative solution most singles may not have even considered yet-- volunteering. Need a good reason to start volunteering? Here are just a few:

1. Meet new like-minded people. 

Most singles want to be with someone who is kind and generous with their time and/or affections which makes volunteering such a great way to meet those kind of people for dating. The holidays are the  perfect time of  year to showcase those good samaritan qualities of yours. 

2. Propel your career forward.

The networking opportunities that volunteering brings can definitely help boost your career. It's a great way to increase your job prospects and give potential employers, clients and referrals the chance to get a feel for your work ethics. Someone who volunteers well with others is likely to work well with others in the workplace as well.

3. Get in shape.

Many volunteering opportunities require some physical activity like walking along a beach or hiking up a nearby trail to pick up trash. Some require lots of heavy lifting. Other opportunities include marathons or even triatholons. If you want to meet someone who is healthy, fit and looks great for their age, but you aren't looking so hot yourself, use this as a chance to mingle with your type and get motivated to look just as good for yourself.

4. Make a difference in the lives of others.

Nothing is sexier than someone who is making a difference in someone's life, maybe even yours hopefully. Whether it's coaching a local youth sports team or Christmas caroling at a nursing home, these small gestures of selflessness are likely to transcend over into personal relationships as well. It's really hot and makes you uber attractive when you are so giving of your time to those who need it most. 

5. Improve your love life! 

Did you know that being altruistic makes your more attractive to the opposite sex? Think about it. When you are giving of yourself to others, it shows potential dating prospects that you can be just as giving with your heart. Besides, volunteeering makes you happy which often translates into your dating life. 

What kind of vounteer work do you do or would like to do?

Six Fun Apps for Singles


We as singles lead busy lives. When we’re not pursuing our hobbies or gunning for promotions, we’re nurturing our social connections, and just plain juggling. Although we at It’s Just Lunch advocate that some things are better face to face —and away from the addictive distraction of smart phones and computers—there’s no doubt that our on-the-go lifestyles could benefit from some digital streamlining. Here are a few fun apps to help you check off some basic tasks (and prepare you for a little romance while you’re at it).

1.     Give a gift. In this tech-driven world, it’s easy to get impersonal. That’s why the premise behind Bond is such a precious one: Purchase a present from your device (a bottle of wine, chocolates, or cuff links, for example), and it will be delivered with a note digitally inscribed in your own handwriting—a human touch that underlines the true value of gifts: the thought behind them.

2.     Keep track of your social calendar. Ketchup! confronts the dilemma of having too many friends and too little time. When you send activity requests to friends (say, play pool with Brian), you build a roster that acts as a reminder or to-do list, increasing the likelihood of turning casual intentions (Hey, let’s have dinner sometime!) into actual outings.

3.     Plan date nights in. Some of the most intimate evenings with your partner are the ones chez soi. Cozy up on the couch and order nibbles for two from, which whisks delectables from local restaurants and food vendors right to your doorstep. It also has a plan-ahead service to time your deliveries and offers some romance-enhancers in select cities: bouquets of flowers, and wine and spirits.

4.     Get Inspired. Users of Snapguides share step-by-step visual guides in categories ranging from cooking and entertaining to sports and the outdoors. Some of the entries are just plain silly (How to Make a Starbucks Dog Costume), but there’s plenty of fodder for date ideas and creative things to do.

5.     Find activities. If you’re looking to be in the know of what’s happening in the moment, browse SpinGo, an aggregator of events in major cities in the U.S., powered by a network of local partners. The outings are presented in an eye-pleasing Pinterest-like grid of images. Concert or gallery opening, anyone?

6.     Stargaze. An augmented reality app, Star Chart interprets the constellations. Point your device at the sky—during the day or at night—and the Chart will identify any planet, astrological sign, or heavenly body in the universe. Zoom in a little closer: What do you see in the stars?