3 Powerful Relationship Lessons From A Dating Expert

So, you’ve met someone special. Now what?

Truth is, dating & relationships share this in common: to have success, you need to make an effort. But if you want to achieve a LASTING relationship, be sure you’re focusing on the right things – here are 3 of them:

  1. Best friends forever:  the happiest marriages are between best friends. In fact, a 2014 National Bureau Of Economic Research study concluded that friendship could help explain the strong relationship between marriage and life satisfaction. In other words, the things you think are important on a first or second date (looks, job, conversational skills, etc.), aren’t the really important things. Think friendship first, and love will follow.
  2. Your news is our news:  if you get excited about your partner’s good news, you’ll have a better relationship. In multiple studies, couples that actively celebrated good news (instead of dismissing it) have a higher rate of relationship well-being. If it matters to them, it should matter to you too… and vice versa.
  3. Older and wiser:  if you wait until you’re older, you’re less likely to get divorced. A 2014 University of Pennsylvania study found that couples who cohabitate or get married at 18 have a 60% divorce rate. That rate drops in half for couples who wait until they’re 23, and drops further when other factors like educational level are factored in. Contrary to what you’ve heard, lasting marriages have made a comeback!

10 ‘Can’t-Miss’ Vancouver Summer Date Ideas

The Vancouver summer is here.  Time to make your dating life sizzle! The best thing about the summer dating season is the abundance of great, low cost date ideas sure to make a positive impression on your special someone.  The key is to get outdoors and let Mother Nature be your matchmaker!

Here are 10 “Can’t-Miss” Vancouver summer date ideas!:

  1. The picnic date:  nothing says summer lovin’ like a picnic with your special someone. Pack some snacks and a bottle of wine and romance will soon follow.
  2. Go fly a kite:  take your date to Granville Island to buy a kite, then head to Vanier Park and watch it fly. Having fun is always a good dating strategy.
  3. Summer cinema:  spend a warm summer evening watching an outdoor movie at Stanley Park’s free ‘park after dark’ series. Click here for show times.
  4. Festival fever:  summer means festival season in Vancouver… the Folk Fest and Jazz Fest are can’t-miss summer dating classics. Click here for the full schedule.
  5. Bard on the beach:  Shakespeare, a beautiful outdoor setting, and a wine bar make a perfect dating combination. Click here for the full schedule.
  6. Music under the stars:  head to Deer Lake Park or Malkin Bowl for an outdoor concert. Bring a blanket for optimal cuddling.
  7. Farmers markets:  for the healthy and community minded couple, a visit to a local Farmer’s Market feels good, and tastes good too.
  8. The PNE:  yes its cliché, and yes its fun! Scary rides, cheesy games, and stuffed animal prizes. You’ll both be smiling all the way to your next date. Click here for more info.
  9. Lighthouse Park:  a true Vancouver gem! Take your date for a romantic walk, complete with breathtaking views of our city. Click here for more info.
  10. Nat Bailey Stadium:  hot dog fan or not, watching a baseball game at “The Nat” is an old-school date that won’t let you down. Click here for tickets.

6 Scientifically Proven Ways To Make Someone Fall In Love With You

Everyone wants to fall in Love. But what to do if you’re tired of waiting for your Prince or Princess Charming to sweep you off your feet?

A common misconception among singles is that Love simply ‘happens’, like a bolt out of the blue. You simply wait for the right person to come along then – ‘bang!’, chemistry happens and you live happily ever after.

The truth is that you can INCREASE your chances of having someone fall in Love with you – here’s how, in 6 easy steps (Source: Harvard University):

  1. The eyes have it:  maintaining eye contact with someone 75% of the time is a sure sign of Love. If you’re glancing around the room and checking out others, you’ll soon watch your romantic evening fizzle.
  2. I’m listening:  being a good listener is the key to any good social interaction, and particularly if you’re with someone you care about. Practice ‘active listening’, ask follow up questions and take a genuine interest in what your partner’s saying. If you don’t find them interesting, it might be time for you (and them) to reconsider things.
  3. How you make me feel:  making your partner feel special and appreciated is an essential element of a strong Love connection. If spending time with you makes your partner feel like a winner, you’ll likely be spending a lot more time with them in the days and years to come.
  4. A simple smile:  the most simple of all gestures – a smile – sends a message of confidence, success, interest and positive charm. Here’s a test: when you’re dreaming of your perfect match, I’ll bet you’re both smiling? Lose the frown and you’ll soon lose your single life too.
  5. The touch that says so much:  in Love, words can only get you so far. Touching your partner often increases intimacy and, more than words, shows them exactly how you feel about them.
  6. Make an effort:  taking an active interest in your partner’s passions builds trust, and validates that person’s feelings about you. In other words: sharing a passion builds passion.

The Top 5 Qualities Of Terrible Daters

In the world of dating, you’ll get EXACTLY what you put into it. In other words”: ‘good’ dating skills will lead you to success, and ‘bad’ dating skills will lead you to failure.

If you’re looking to meet your special someone, avoid these 5 chemistry killing dating habits:

  1. Not into it:  giving your date the impression that you’re not interested from the outset will likely end a date before it even begins. Even if you’re not feeling chemistry at first – remember that true connections happen over time, and are rarely built only on initial physical chemistry. Make an effort & be engaged, who knows – you may end up with a friendship out of it, or more!
  2. My time is more valuable than yours:  constantly re-scheduling or changing the date arrangements last minute sends the signal that you don’t respect your date’s time. You may think this shows how interesting and full your life is, in fact it sends the message that you’re not worth investing time in.
  3. The stories I could tell:  talking about your online dating & Tinder ‘horror’ stories on a date may seem like a good idea at the time. But it won’t take long before your date calls for the bill – to avoid being featured in your future dating stories.
  4. All about me:  there’s nothing more annoying than spending an evening with someone who won’t let you get a word in edgewise. Be self-aware and aim to spend roughly equal times talking and listening on your date.
  5. Checklist dating:  if your date feels like an interview, its a good sign that its not going well. Avoid asking too many ‘checklist’ questions on a first date (what are your relationship goals? Do you want a family? How long have you been single?, etc.), and put more focus on making the date a fun and enjoyable experience for both of you. There’ll be plenty of time for more serious questions once you’ve made it successfully through a first or second date.

The Most Important Trend That’s Changing Dating Today

Do you ever wonder what dating was like “back in the old days”? Was it easier & better, or harder & worse? The answer: all of the above.

Dating in Vancouver has always been challenging, particularly if you’re seriously looking for a RELATIONSHIP partner, not a casual hookup. The challenges facing today’s singles, however, are quite different than the challenges of dating eras past… here’s why, and what it means for you:

Dating Challenge Past:  it was harder for busy singles to meet anyone new, particularly if you weren’t interested in meeting people in bars. This was before the era of online dating, Smart-phone apps and modern ‘professional’ matchmaking services in Vancouver.

  • The Good:  because it was harder to meet someone new, singles tended to take dating more seriously and were likely to give someone new another chance, even if the first date didn’t go well.
  • The Bad:  because of the lack of good dating options, it was simply more difficult to meet someone compatible. For those with a large and active social network in the city it wasn’t so bad, but for those singles & professionals who were busy or new to the city, it was tough meeting someone new.

Dating Challenge Present:  with the advent of online dating & Smart-phone app dating, many singles are going on far more dates today than the average single in Vancouver 20 years ago. Today’s challenge is sorting through all the online or Tinder profiles and finding someone who’s serious, honest and looking for a relationship.

  • The Good:  in spite of the drawbacks of online dating (no screening, misrepresentation, safety, etc.), it’s still a better scenario than 20 years ago. Having more (or at least some) dates definitely beats having no dates at all!
  • The Bad:  the primary challenge in today’s dating world comes if you’re seriously looking for a relationship partner. Although free online dating sites like Plenty of Fish and Tinder are great for more ‘casual’ dating (read: hookups), they’re not suitable for finding relationship partners – particularly if you’re a busy single or professional who doesn’t want to go on endless (bad) dates.

What this means for you:  if you’re not looking for anything too serious, then by all means try the free online dating sites or Tinder (using suitable safety precautions as detailed in our previous newsletters).  If, on the other hand, you’re looking for a relationship – avoid the ‘free’ services and try the paid online dating sites, or a personalized matchmaking service such as Executive Search Dating. Like many things in life, you get what you pay for.

How 5 Best Friends Met 5 Great Guys In Vancouver

Once upon a time 5 best friends decided they wanted to meet 5 great guys in Vancouver. After a few online dating adventures, they succeeded… watch now to find out how!

Are Quality Singles A Dying Breed?

Thanks to dating apps like Tinder, we are now in the “Golden Age” of bad dates. In other words, there are more bad dates happening today than in the history of the world. Ever.

But its not all bad. 20 years ago, singles complained that it was hard to meet anyone at all. Today its easier to meet someone casually, but do you feel like there’s less ‘relationship-minded’ singles out there? The truth may surprise you:

  1. Quality vs. quantity:  the number of people dating today has definitely increased – which is a good thing. However, the number of singles looking for a relationship has remained about the same, whereas the number of people looking to date ‘casually’ has increased (largely because of Tinder).
  2. Location matters:  if you’re serious about finding a relationship partner, prioritize dating methods where you’ll find more ‘relationship-minded’ singles vs. ‘casual daters’. Try meeting people through friends, or at events that interest you (concerts, art galleries, festivals, etc.), or hire a personalized matchmaking service (like Executive Search Dating). Avoid limiting yourself to dating apps or free online dating sites, which are mostly geared towards casual daters.
  3. Get offline:  one you have met someone – through whichever method – spend time with them in person. Avoid lengthy email or online exchanges – real chemistry happens in the real world.
  4. Focus:  avoid dating others once you’ve met someone you really connect with. If, after seeing that person for a while, you decide they’re not what your looking for then you can start dating new people again. Mega-dating will only distract you, and you’ll likely miss out on that one ‘quality’ person that was truly compatible with you.


Meeting the ‘right person’ is an important element in establishing a successful relationship. Equally important, however, is your own ‘readiness’ to meet that someone special.

Here are 7 classic signs of relationship readiness:

1. Dating burnout:  does dating begin to feel like ‘groundhog day’, repeating the same old stories about yourself over and over to someone new that you have just met?

2. Quest for meaningfulness:  do you feel an increasing desire to share meaningful moments with someone special?

3. Future planning:  do you start thinking about sharing the future (home, family, summer holiday plans, etc.) with someone special?

4. Tired of the bar scene and online dating:  do you start to think more about quality vs. quantity; ie. dating less but dating more compatible matches?

5. More than just looks:  do you desire a romantic partner that not only physically attracts you, but who also has other qualities that draw you together (shared family values, intellectual curiosity, education, etc.)?

6. In your thoughts:  do you find yourself thinking about someone frequently, and consciously making plans which involve them?

7. Mutual admiration:  do you admire someone and truly value their opinions on important matters in your life?

Video: Are Vancouver Women Too Picky?

A recent survey ranked Vancouver women as the pickiest daters in Canada. In this Global BC interview, Executive Search Dating President Paddi Rice offers his opinion, and gives some simple, common sense tips on how to meet new people in Vancouver.

7 Signs You Can Stop Dating

Who wants to date forever? Answer: virtually no-one.

Dating can and should be fun. And its an essential part of finding your special someone, and fine tuning what you’re really looking for in someone. But the central purpose of dating is to meet that one person you truly connect with.

If you’re dating with the sole purpose of going on more and more dates, you’ll find dating will become less fun, and much less effective.

But how do you know when you’ve met ‘the one’, and can stop dating and focus on them alone? Here are the signs:

  1. Fascination street:  do you find someone so intriguing that you’re already making a list of things to talk about when you see them next? If so, prioritize them above others.
  2. Off your chest:  if you’re excited to tell someone about your day/week/inner thoughts and fears, its a sign that they’re not ‘just another date’.
  3. Missing person:  do you find yourself thinking about someone even when you’re on a date with someone else? Note to self – stop dating and call that person. Fast.
  4. Blandness:  if you’re finding that all the people you’re meeting seem the same, no matter how great they appear on the outside, it’s a sign that you’re looking for a deeper connection beyond just looks and initial chemistry.
  5. Talk for hours:  the desire and ability to have long, interesting conversations with someone about a wide variety of topics, even after seeing each other a number of times, is a great sign. Whereas initial physical chemistry becomes less important as time goes on, your ability to connect with someone at a deeper level becomes more important.
  6. Make it stop:  if you’re having to fight the urge to cancel dates last minute because you can’t bear the thought of another first date, then stop dating. If there’s someone you’ve connected with, great. If not, you should still take a break.
  7. When in doubt:  if after all of the above, you’re still not sure if someone is ‘the one’, it’s worthwhile putting a temporary pause on dating new people and see that one person a few more times. Consider it a wise investment in your future happiness.