man texting smiling

The Do’s and Don’ts of Digital Dating

What is etiquette?

According to Emily Post (the Queen of Manners, herself) etiquette is simply the “consideration for the rights and feelings of others.”

However, a lot has changed since Mrs. Post’s day. Navigating the considerations of others has gotten a bit more complex in the electronic age–especially, when it comes to dating.

To help clear up the confusion, we talked with one of The Setup’s star matchmakers, Marie Glover. Here’s her expert take on the do’s and don’ts of digital dating.

Don’t: Overshare

It’s only natural that you want your partner to know the real you. However, if you tell all early on—especially intimate secrets—your date is likely to feel overwhelmed.

Studies show that oversharing is a turn off. When someone divulges excessive amounts of personal information to a relative stranger, listeners experience “airplane syndrome,” mentally tuning out of the conversation.

Oversharing, or just being honest?

Either way, beware. Research has also found that listeners tend to view over-sharers as untrustworthy because they tell all without knowing the other person first.

“Your date is not your therapist,” Marie says. “If you want to build trust and be liked by a new partner, disclose personal information gradually over time.”

If your date is right for you, there will be plenty of time to share personal details later.

Do: Be authentic

When it comes to expressing yourself in dating, Marie suggest viewing the glass as half full. “If a new partner texts you and asks how your day is going,” she says, “try to focus on the positive.”

Highlighting the good parts of your day is a great way to express yourself positively without sacrificing your authenticity.

Being authentic also goes for how you represent yourself in the digital world. “I have so many clients who enter matchmaking because they’re scorned from online dating,” she says. “Lying about things like height, weight, or age, is not a healthy way to begin a relationship.”

Misleading others about physical appearance says a lot about a person’s values. “It shows that you’re okay with a little dishonesty,” Marie says, “which is not something most people are willing to risk in a relationship.”

The solution?

Get out and date in the real world. “Don’t hide behind the screen,” says Marie. “You deserve to date as your authentic, true, and amazing self.

Don’t: Only text at night

“Texting should be sporadic throughout the day–not just the booty call hours,” Marie says. “It’s important to be respectable.”

Even wholesome intentions risk being misinterpreted if the only time you reach out is after dark.

According to Marie, late-night texts say more than just the words you type. “Nighttime texts send a certain message,” she says. “Either you’re only interested in hooking up, or that you only think about them when you’re alone and bored at home.”

Recalling old school etiquette is a good rule of thumb. “Back in the day, it was considered bad manners to call someone past 10 PM,” she says. “The same rule applies to texting.”

The only exception? A text goodnight.

“Reserve the after-hours texts for saying goodnight,” says Marie, “That way, you’re the last thing they think about before going to sleep.”

Do: Text throughout the day

Avoid only texting your partner at night. Instead, keep up contact at various times of day. Even if it’s only handful of messages, sending them throughout the day is a nice gesture. This tells your date that despite being apart, you’re still thinking about them.

However, it’s not always realistic to expect you or your partner to maintain constant communication.

“Communicate to your partner if you’re going to be busy, and won’t be able to chat for some period of time,” says Marie, “especially if they are expecting to hear from you.”

At the very least, Marie suggests sending a ‘good morning’ text. “Texting first thing when you wake up is a cute and romantic way to start the day.”

Don’t: Limit your communication

The communication theorist Marshal McLuhan once said: “The medium is the message.” How does that apply to dating?

According to Marie, the means in which we communicate with our partners says more than most people realize. “If texting is the exclusive method of communication in your relationship,” she says, “that could be a sign of a weak connection between you and your partner.”

Despite its convenience, Marie warns that texting is a breeding ground for mixed messages, especially in the early stages of a relationship. “It really eliminates the personal aspect of dating,” she says.

“With texting, you can unconsciously start to build a false sense of security with someone, misinterpret messages, or believe they’re something they’re not,” says Marie. “You risk being disappointed by the time you actually meet in person.”

Avoid this by making sure that your relationship isn’t entirely based on text messages alone.

Do: Mix it up

Mix up how you communicate by incorporating texts, voice messages, phone, and video calls when you’re apart.

As always, in-person conversations are preferred. “Real connection requires physical presence,” says Marie. “Nothing beats having a conversation while looking into each other’s eyes.”

Don’t: Come on too strong

Have you ever been messaging with a WhatsApp Romeo but, when you met up for the date, he was a total dud?

“It’s easy to be bold through a screen,” Marie says. “But, sometimes that disconnect makes people say things they otherwise wouldn’t in person.”

Remember that feeling comfortable with a partner takes time. When the only way you communicate with someone is through text, you might forget how little you actually know them.

Do: Flirt

Flirting a great way to dial up the romance. But, make sure you keep authentic to your personality. “If you’re a total flirt in real life, then let that show on text, too,” says Marie.

If flirting’s not your thing?

Start with compliments. Marie suggests shifting your focus away from their physical traits. “By complimenting their personality,” she says, “you show them that you’re really interested in them as a person, not just their hot body.”

Don’t: Immediately go ‘follow’

Nowadays, it’s pretty common to Google your date, or, at least, search for their profile on social media.

“After the first date, I’m creeping!” Marie says. “It’s just human curiosity.”

But, when it comes to the ‘follow’ button, Marie says to look–but don’t touch. “Once you send the friend request, there’s no going back,” she says. “Connecting online takes the relationship into an entirely new digital sphere.”

Of course, you can always unfollow or block later. Or, avoid that awkwardness altogether by being cautious about online connections. Before taking the next digital step, make sure there is a real foundation of friendship and trust with your partner in the real world.

Do: Your research

While you don’t want to get carried away with obsessive lurking, a little research never hurt anybody.

“It’s important to remember that social media is not real,” Marie says. “However, the way someone chooses to represent themselves online can say a lot about a person.”

Thankfully, The Setup screens all its members with background checks. So, you don’t have to be worried about your safety. However, a quick social-media scan can give you some insights on your date’s interests, hobbies, and lifestyle.

Don’t: Cancel last-minute

Canceling last-minute is a big dating no-no. It should be reserved for legitimate reasons. “Pre-date jitters is not a good enough reason not to show up,” Marie says.

Sometimes, emergencies happen.

If you absolutely must cancel, don’t expect a quick text to do the trick. “Call them,” she says. “Express how genuinely sorry you feel and set up another time to meet instead.”

Do: Confirm plans

It’s Friday, and tonight you have plans–at least, you think you do–for a second date with Rod. A couple days have passed since you’ve last spoken. Do you text him to make sure the date is still on?

“Confirming plans before the date is a polite thing to do,” Marie says. “Send a quick text the day-of to make sure you’re both on the same page before meeting up.”

Not sure what to say? Try this:

Hey, I’m really excited to see you tonight! 7:30, right?

Don’t get overwhelmed with the formality of it. “A little message is all it takes to lock in plans,” Marie says. “Don’t be afraid to make it cute and express your excitement about the date.”

Coaching: Is it right for you?

If the do’s and don’ts of digital dating still feel overwhelming to you, don’t worry.

At The Setup, we combine the expertise of the world’s leading matchmakers, love experts, and dating coaches, for a modern approach to matchmaking.

Interested in speaking with a dating coach? Join The Setup today!

Tinder Swindler

Ask a Matchmaker: How Do I Avoid the Next Tinder Swindler?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve likely heard about the latest dating disaster taking the internet by storm.

That is, of course, The Tinder Swindler.

In Netflix’s latest documentary, we’re told the story of a dashing, real-life “Prince of Diamonds” named Simon Leviev (at least, that’s what he called himself). Wealthy, handsome, and the son of the Russian/Israeli diamond tycoon Lev Leviev, Simon appeared to be the total package.

The only problem?

None of it was real.

Simon (who is actually Shimon Yehuda Hayut) lied about everything. From his name to his family ties–all of it was an elaborate front designed to scam millions of dollars from unsuspecting women that he met through dating apps.

Sadly, this tragic tale of lies and deceit is just the latest addition to what is becoming an all-too-common phenomenon of romantic fraud.

As a matchmaker, many of my clients come to me with stories that are horrifyingly similar to that of the victims within the film. Along with the immense financial debts and heartbreak, they are often left with a sense of deep emotional scarring. After such a betrayal, it can take years to learn how trust again.

The story of The Tinder Swindler and his victims was more than just a sensational story–it was a wake up call.

Want to avoid being swindled in your love life? Here's what singles in today’s modern dating market can learn from The Tinder Swindler.

Financial help should be off-limits

The Tinder Swindler chronicles the story of three victims–Cecile, Penilla, and Ayleen–as they recount their experiences of Simon’s emotional and financial betrayal.

After hearing their stories of love and loss, one thing becomes abundantly clear: the only thing worse than being heartbroken?

Being heartbroken and broke.

When Cecile first met Simon, she was whisked away into a wonderland of luxury. Between the designer clothing, 5-star hotels, and constant trips on his private planes, it was obvious that Simon was a man with money.

So, later, when Simon needed a little financial help in order to avoid the wrath of his “enemies,” Cecile had no reason to believe that he wouldn’t eventually be able to pay her back.

This request for money, however, was only a month into dating. At this point in their relationship, Simon and Cecile should have just been getting to know each other–not exchanging routing numbers.

While finances are important aspects of a relationship, actually giving money to your significant other is a slippery slope to slide down. If monetary support is ever appropriate, it should be reserved exclusively for when a relationship gets much more serious.

Someone who is new into a relationship would not feel comfortable making this sort of request. If they do, it should be viewed as a major red flag.

Beware the dangers of online dating

Despite the scary statistics reported about the dangers of online dating, apps like Tinder continue to thrive in popularity amongst singles.

Many feel it is the best way to find their own prince charming–a diamond in the rough, as it were. But, as we learned from The Tinder Swindler, even the “Prince of Diamonds” was nothing more than a sparkling online persona.

In the film, Simon was quick to gather personal information. The women shared copies of their passport, credit card information, and even the phone numbers to certain family members. When his behavior eventually changed, the women felt vulnerable, knowing that he had their information at his disposal.

Avoid this situation by not sharing personal information or photos online.

Together is better

While the advancement of technology has provided tons of benefits for dating singles, it’s also introduced many unsuspecting risks.

Before, singles would need to go out on several dates before knowing if they wanted to pursue a relationship with someone. Now, there’s texting, voice messages, and FaceTime for that. For long-distance couples trying to maintain the spark despite being apart, these modern advancements are very helpful. It can be dangerous, however, if you’re falling in love with someone you’ve only met in person once–or in some cases, never at all.

In the case of the Tinder Swindler, Cecile and Penilla’s relationships with Simon were largely virtual. Simon used his “jet-setting lifestyle” as an excuse to avoid actually being with the girls. He only seemed to appear in person when it was necessary to maintain the romance (manipulation) within the relationship.

No matter how busy their schedule, someone who is genuinely interested in getting to know you will make time for you.

While messaging and phone calls are a great way to maintain a relationship, being physically together is the best way to get to know a person. Next time you start to fall for someone, make sure your feelings are rooted in reality–not Whatsapp.

Don’t rush the relationship

One of the most disturbing details within the film was the identical way in which his victims described their whirlwind romances with Simon.

In each relationship, his first step towards financial domination over his victims was to overwhelm them with love and affection.

From good morning texts, fine dining, to enormous bouquets of roses, Cecile, Penilla, and Ayleen all felt like Simon’s attention was like something out of a movie.

Although seemingly romantic, Simon was actually employing a common manipulation tactic is known as “love bombing.”

Often used by narcissists, “love bombing” is when a partner showers the other with over-the-top attention and affection. It usually happens at the beginning of a relationship as a way to ‘win over’ the other partner.

Remember that getting to know someone takes time. If you’ve only been dating for a few weeks and your partner is already asking you to move in with them, they’re rushing the relationship.

If you think your significant other is dropping love bombs, it’s probably time to take shelter.

Don’t fall for potential

Like many women, Cecile grew up with fairy tales and epic Hollywood romances. Although she knew life was no Disney movie, she couldn’t help but imagine that when she fell in love, it would feel just as magical.

Predators like Simon can sense this wishful thinking and use it to their advantage. A master manipulator, Simon knew that many women dream of meeting a dashing prince that will sweep them off their feet.

For the women he met on Tinder, he became just that. He pulled out all the tricks so that they’d fall for–not who he was–but who he could be.

By distracting his dates with his luxurious, jet-setting lifestyle, Simon cleverly blurred the lines between reality and fantasy. The women were quick to fall in love with the potential of him being a seemingly perfect partner.

By the time Simon started asking them for money, the women were already too deep in his deception to see the red flags.

Each woman described feeling extremely uncomfortable about the amounts of money Simon asked them to shell out. Despite this, they ignored their intuition and gave in anyway.

The lesson? Don’t fall in love with potential. Fall in love with reality. Remember that when something seems too good to be true, it usually is. Unfortunately, for the women scammed by the “Tinder Swindler,” they weren’t able to realize that until it was too late.

Avoid the next Tinder Swindler

Amongst all the real-life horror within The Tinder Swindler, the most terrifying fact is that this can happen to anyone.

If you have been victim to romantic fraud, don’t blame yourself. In today’s dating market, it’s increasingly difficult to know who is worthy of your trust.

Thankfully there is a tried and true solution to this modern problem. By working with a matchmaker, you can be assured that all of your dates will be with quality, like-minded singles.

All applicants at The Setup go through a thorough vetting process before being accepted as a client. Our members greatly enjoy the freedom and confidence that comes with dating in a truly safe environment.

Don’t get fooled again!

Swipe left to swindlers and join The Setup.

The Setup Matchmaking team

Behind the Scenes of Matchmaking

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be a Matchmaker?

We talked with The Setup’s star players: Genevieve Gresset, Heather Drury, Marie Glover, Jesse Turner, and Tian Wilynn, to see what it’s really like playing Cupid for a living.

What does a Matchmaker do, exactly?

Genevieve: As Vice President of Matchmaking, I oversee all our company’s operations. I’m also a Master Executive Matchmaker. That means one of my biggest responsibilities is training and supporting the development of other matchmakers both within the company and from around the world.

Heather: As a matchmaker, communication is key! We get in the office, check emails, texts, and return voicemails with our clients. After that, lots and lots of matchmaking. Sometimes we brainstorm amongst other matchmakers to come up with creative matches to fit our clients’ needs. We turn over every stone to find our client’s ideal match.

Marie: To put it simply, I do everything I can to find the right person for my clients.

Walk us through your day. What does a typical day in the life of a Matchmaker?

Genevieve: I often start my mornings by going over the previous day’s statistics. I check all the reporting and collaborate with other matchmakers to identify clients in need of extra support. Every day is different and is based on the needs of our clients. Part of my job also includes media appearances, like my weekly spot on the BBC as their resident love and dating expert.

Jesse: The first thing I do is check for new enrollments. This is my favorite part of the day because I start to think about whom I could match them with and the creative juices start to flow. I welcome them and then, I touch base with existing clients. Throughout the day, I’m constantly checking emails, returning voicemails, and attending to the needs of my clients.

What’s your favorite part about working for The Setup?

Tian: One of the best things about our company is its investment in matchmakers. Every week, all the matchmakers join for a meeting where we learn new tips about how to service our clients. Genevieve has been great about keeping things fresh in those meetings. She regularly hosts workshops with guest speakers who have taught us everything from breath work to vision boards. Every week, we learn how to improve our skills as matchmakers and encourage each other to succeed.

What are some common hurdles you face at work? How do you overcome them?

Heather: The biggest hurdle is when a client is unwilling to compromise. Sometime’s they get stuck in the checkboxes—but falling in love is more finding a partner with the perfect job, body, etc. We often tell our clients to “break up” with their deal breakers. Sometimes, those ideas could be holding them back from finding true love!

Marie: Oftentimes, the biggest hurdle for our clients is themselves. It’s human nature to love what’s comfortable, but that’s usually what keeps people in a dating rut. Everyone wants to stay on the tree trunk because it’s safe, but you gotta get on the branch because that’s where the fruit is!

Tian: It’s tough when clients take the process too seriously. In my experience, the clients that end up falling in love are the ones that have the most fun with it. I try to remind my clients to just go out and take a chance.

What’s the craziest dating horror story you’ve heard?

Marie: I set up a pair of clients that seemed like a good match. My only concern was their age difference. He was in his 60’s. She was quite a bit younger and much more active. They were hitting it off, and he found her incredibly funny and charming. That is—until his teeth fell out. She made a joke that made him laugh so hard that his dentures fell out of his mouth and onto the table! There was a moment of silence and he was embarrassed, but she found it endearing. In the end, there was no love connection but they are still friends to this day.

Heather: All I’m going to say is don’t get your mom involved in your matchmaking! It never turns out well.

What are your favorite love stories from clients?

Genevieve: I was recently on UK’s hit show, Married at First Sight. All of the couples that I matched are still together, married, and one just welcomed in a baby!

Marie: I had one client who had kind of given up on the idea of love. She made her intentions very clear: she didn’t want love or marriage—just a friend. I started searching for her, but something in the back of my mind kept pushing me towards another client of mine. He was a firefighter, a bit older, and the opposite of what she wanted. After several weeks of me encouraging her to just try it out, she agreed to go out with him. Later, she called me telling me that she couldn’t stop thinking about him, and was head over heels in love. Not long after that, she proposed to him! Now, they’re happily married.

Tian: Even though I tell my clients that nothing good happens overnight, sometimes it does! One of my female clients found the love of her life on her first date! But the guy? He was on his 17th date. Thankfully, he never gave up. He trusted the process and was rewarded in the end. It was love at first sight for both of them. Not long after that, they got married!

Heather: My favorite part of my job is when our clients send us their love stories. I always love reading them, but I recently received a special thank you note from one of my coaching clients. Thanks to our guidance throughout her dating journey, she had started to feel like herself again for the first time in years. I found this so beautiful because we were able to help her fall in love with herself! That is something that most people forget when dating, yet it is so important.

What’s something that you tell all of your clients?

Marie: A lot of times, our clients will start their dating journey with a mental checklist of necessary qualifications for their partner. I try to remind them that going on dates is not like a job interview! There is no black and white when it comes to love.

Tian: Nobody is perfect. So, there is no shame in asking for help from time to time. I always tell my clients, if the Dali Lama and Oprah Winfrey need coaches and mentors, then so do we!

What’s something you want your clients to know about you?

Genevieve: My experience at Married at First Sight showed that, even under pressure, I was able to find successful matches for my clients. This is especially relevant during the pandemic when dating seems more stressful than ever. Therefore, no matter how unusual the circumstances, I’ve proven that I can still find successful matches. I feel confident in what I do. My clients can feel confident, too.

Jesse: When I’m speaking with a client, I want them to know that everything is coming from an authentic desire to help them find love. Matchmaking can be emotional at times, so I try to make sure my clients feel heard and validated when we speak.

Marie: I’m a sap. I want people to know that this isn’t just a job for us. My day does not end at 5 o’clock. Love never ends! I’ll be at home, in the shower, and think: “Oh! What about Larry with Sally?” There have been times when I’ve been out with my husband, will see a single man who could be a good fit for a client, and I’ll go approach him. Every matchmaker has a story for why they do this—and it’s not for the paycheck. For me, it’s because I genuinely believe that, at the end of the day, nothing matters but love.

What makes The Setup different?

Genevieve: What sets us apart is the ongoing training and development that we invest in our staff. Not only does it make for a better team, but it reflects in the success rate for our clients.

Heather: We are more than a matchmaking company. We are all-encompassing love and relationship educational provider. We want you to reach your full potential as a partner so that when you do meet the right one, you’re the right one for them, too.

Jesse: The Setup is seriously changing the game of matchmaking. There’s no glass ceiling for what the company can do. We will continue to build client relations and be the most relevant, successful, and cutting-edge matchmaking firm in the world.

Marie: The Setup is the end-all, be-all that people have been looking for. It’s a safe space to meet new people with long-term intentions. For singles looking for real, lasting love, The Setup is the smartest choice.

Cuffing Season

How to Make It Last Past Cuffing Season

Well, Valentine’s Day is over. With that comes the official end of the year’s best season for cuddles.

No, I’m not talking about winter–we’ve still got a bit more of that to go.

The season I’m referring to is the most infamous season in the dating calendar. And, that is none other than cuffing season.

What is cuffing season?

Young or old, big or small, cuffing season affects us all.

winter changing to summerJust preceding “spring flings” and “single girl/guy summer,” cuffing season refers to a period of time where single people switch gears into relationship mode. Single people actively seek out partnerships as a way to pass through the fall and winter months.

The season generally lasts from October, when the weather begins to dip in temperature, to March, when things start to heat up again.

And, just like the season comes and goes, by the time Valentine’s Day wraps up and the infatuation wanes, cuffed-up couples tend to go their separate ways.

But, not always.

If you’re lucky, sometimes you can cuff yourself a keeper during cuffing season. When you find someone special, it’s important to strengthen your relationship so that it lasts the test of time.

While cuffing season might be coming to a close, it doesn’t mean your relationship has to end, too. Here are our top three tips for helping your new relationship last!

Don’t rush things

sign post representing the ways to get through cuffing seasonDespite what The Beatles have to say about it, for a relationship to pass the test of time, love is not all we need.

While it’s true that love is the foundation of a good relationship-–love can be fickle. Just one accidental peek at your partner picking their nose like an adult toddler and you might begin to question everything.

Love, or at least what feels like love, can happen fast. But, true, lasting, love comes with time.

It is also important to recognize that “love” is only one component of a larger whole because it requires other ingredients to be solid and healthy.

Couples that last the longest attribute their success to qualities like respect, romance, and regular quality time as being the foundation of their longevity.

So, if it’s been a few months and neither you nor your partner has confessed your undying love for each other—don’t worry. In the early stages of a relationship, it’s more important to notice qualities that can foster love in the long run.

Instead of focusing on blurting out those three little words ASAP, make sure your partner shows signs that they can handle your love in the long run. Someone that consistently treats you with respect, patience, and kindness is someone who is capable of sustaining a loving relationship, even in stormy weather.

Actions speak louder than words. If your partner is treating you with love and respect, that’s their way of saying “I love you” without words (for now).

Make time for romance

Couples who couldn’t make it past cuffing season often cite a lack of romance, as the reason for their split. If you’re noticing the spark begin to dwindle between you and your partner, it might be time to rev up the romance in your relationship.

However, amongst the hustle and bustle of daily life, that’s easier said than done. It can be easy to get caught up in the same old routine. But, becoming a creature of habit can be a bit of a turn off.

If you want to keep the romance alive in your relationship, it’s important to maintain a balance of both physical and emotional intimacy. Stealing kisses throughout the day, giving massages after a long day of work, or buying a new set of lingerie for yourself or your partner are surefire ways to dial up the heat.

However, keeping the romance alive within your relationship goes beyond the bedroom. Lasting romance thrives on building deep, emotional intimacy between you and your partner.

Even if your schedules are hectic, try to carve out some quality time for the two of you. One of the best ways for you to connect is through regular and meaningful communication.

Couples who dedicate part of their day towards connecting with their partner are more likely to go the distance. Whether that means eating breakfast together before work, or going for a stroll around the neighborhood after dinner, your partner is sure to appreciate the quality time.

If you want your relationship to withstand the test of time, it’s important to take some time for romance.

Communicate openly

Couple talking after cuffing seasonWhile each couple is unique, when it comes to disagreements, it usually boils down to one common culprit. A lack of communication is one of the most common causes for failed relationships.

There’s nothing more heartbreaking than being unable to open up with the person who matters most to you. But, when you’re unable to express your feelings from the heart, seeing matters eye to eye seems impossible.

In order to maintain open and honest communication with your partner, it’s important to be truthful to one another.

Even in the early stages of a relationship, it’s important to set a precedent of honesty (without oversharing, of course). Opening up about yourself and sharing your feelings lets your partner know it’s safe for them to do the same.

While some privacy is important in a relationship, secrets often lead to hurt feelings and mistrust. Sharing your private thoughts and feelings with your partner is a great way to build trust and make the relationship stronger.

If you’re unable to trust your partner with your innermost feelings, it will be difficult for you to communicate–especially when problems arise.

Even when emotions are high, try to speak to your partner with love, patience and respect. Remember that it’s you two against the problem–not each other.

Relationships that last the longest are when the partners understand that being happy is better than being right. Learn how to make decisions with your partner, even if it goes against what you think is best.

For a relationship to make it past cuffing season, being willing to compromise is key.

Even more important?

Being able to say “I’m sorry.”

No matter how great you or your partner are, nobody is perfect. At some point or another, someone will make a mistake. When that happens, try to avoid stubbornness. Being quick to apologize–and actually meaning it–will help your relationship overcome the blunders.

Going the distance

couple laughing after cuffing seasonWith these tips in mind, you and your partner are sure to make it past cuffing season stronger than ever. As the weather gets warmer outside, let the love for you and your partner heat up, too!

Above all, remember to treat your partner with the same level of affection as when cuffing season began. Make them a priority in your life, even when your schedules get hectic.

Want more love and relationship tips?

From cuffing season to single summers, The Setup offers personalized dating coaching for every time of the year. Get expert tips on how to make your relationship last by joining The Setup today!

Frustrated dating app user

Ask a Matchmaker: 10 Reasons Why Matchmaking Works

It’s tough out there for singles.

In today’s digital dating scene, singles are still finding it harder than ever to settle into long, lasting relationships.

Thankfully, there’s hope. Since the dawn of time, matchmakers have been playing cupid and coupling up singles into perfect pairs.

Nowadays, it’s no different. Matchmaking continues to be the most efficient and effective way for singles to find love.

Here to break down the benefits of matchmaking is Master-Certified Matchmaker and Vice President of The Setup, Genevieve Gresset.

With ​​over 25 years coaching, mentoring, and matching single professionals all around the world, Gresset knows a thing or two about matchmaking.

Thinking about joining The Setup? Here’s Genevieve Gresset’s top 10 reasons why Matchmaking is the right move for you.

1. You’ll have a higher chance of finding love

With a dating pool filled to the brim with emotionally-unavailable partners, the search for suitable singles seems impossible nowadays. Thankfully, matchmaking makes finding love easier.

“Singles who choose matchmaking are three times more likely to find a worthwhile partner than if they were to go about it on their own,” says Gresset.

Unlike other forms of dating, matchmaking cuts straight to the point. For singles who are serious about commitment, it’s the best way to go.

2. You’ll save time, energy and money

Between swiping, ghosting, being left on read–modern dating is far from fun. Finding a quality partner on a dating app or online service takes forever, and all the work is left up to you.

“For singles, the dating process goes something like this,” explains Gresset. “They’ll spend hours swiping left and right on dating apps, selecting matches mostly based on superficial qualities. If they do match with someone, they will text for a bit, and then, if things seem to be good, schedule a real date.”

Simple enough, right?

Well, no.

“This process can take weeks, if not months,” says Gresset, “leaving singles discouraged when there turns out to be no chemistry in person. This method of dating is simply a waste of time and effort.”

According to Gresset, singles are tired of spending so much of their time, energy and money on lousy dates.

There is a solution. “Matchmakers are scheduling masterminds,” says Gresset. She’s right. Once signing up for The Setup, your personal matchmaker takes over all the details of dating so you can sit back, relax, and focus on being in the moment.

What do you have to do? Gresset puts it plainly: “Just show up!”

3. All your dates will actually look like their profile pictures

They say that there are a lot of fish in the sea, but it doesn’t help when the sea is polluted with dirty, slimy catfish.

There’s nothing worse than investing time, energy, and emotional labor into someone, only for them to turn out to be a liar. Did you know that 53 percent of Americans lie on their dating profiles? Even scarier, a large chunk of those fake profiles are designed to scam singles out of their money, private pictures, or other tricks that could come back to bite you.

Tired of catching catfish? It’s time to hang up the fishing rod and go out with singles who have nothing to hide.

4. You don’t have to go through dating alone

Getting back into the dating game after months (or years) spent out of it can be challenging–especially if you’re naturally introverted or shy. If you’re having a tough time getting back out there, a matchmaker might be just who you need.

According to Gresset, the biggest hurdle many singles face is getting over the fear of dating. “Meeting someone new can be stressful,” she says. “My job is to help my clients feel comfortable enough to actually enjoy the dates they’re on.

As a matchmaker, Gresset takes the awkwardness out of introductions.

And if the date goes well?

Matchmakers like Gresset are still there to help singles as they progress throughout all stages of their relationship. “As personalized dating coaches, we’re there to hold your hand throughout the entire dating process,” she says. “We can be as involved or distant as you prefer us to be.”

5. You’ll meet people outside of your normal social circle

“When you’re single, everyone has an opinion,” says Gresset. “Friends and family are quick to share how, who, and why you should date certain people–whether or not they are actually right for you.” For singles just trying their best to find love, being set up with a ‘friend of a friend’ might seem like the easiest way to go.

According to the experts, going out within your tired and true social circle only keeps you stuck in the same old dating disasters.

“While the advice of others can often be very helpful,” says Gresset, “too many unwelcomed opinions tend to muddy the playing field and usually don’t result in finding lasting partnership.”

Though well-intentioned, the advice of loved ones often conflicts with itself, leaving singles confused and wasting too much time dating the wrong people.
“Matchmakers, on the other hand, are neutral,” says Gresset. “Unlike family members or friends, matchmakers have no vested interests in who you date.”

Looking to be set up with someone totally different yet totally right? It’s the matchmaker’s job to make that happen.

6. It’s discrete

Have you ever been swiping through Tinder just to see the profile of your co-worker? Or even worse, your boss? (Be honest, you swiped right, didn’t you?)

You know those “meet cutes” in romantic comedies when the guy and the girl happen to accidentally run into each other on the street?

Well, virtually bumping into your coworkers, or other IRL acquaintances, on a dating app is the exact opposite of that. Basically, it’s the definition of awkward.

Thankfully, The Setup is different.

“Unlike online dating where your information is shared all over the internet,” says Gresset, “our process is completely discreet and confidential.”

7. Every date is designed for success

Picture this: you’re on a date and you two seem to be really hitting it off. You’re two hours into conversation and laughing, flirting, and having a great time. You’re already planning your wedding day when suddenly they say something that catches you totally off-guard.

Sound familiar?

“Traditional dating often doesn’t give couples the opportunity to share their thoughts on politics, religion, or life goals, until it’s far too late,” says Gresset.

With a matchmaker, this disappointment can be easily avoided.

“We do all the digging on your matches so you don’t have to,” she says. “That way, clients can show up to their dates confident that they have every chance to succeed if the feelings are there.”

A matchmaker does all of the research ahead of time so you don’t waste energy with someone who absolutely could not be a potential partner.

8. All your dates are safe

Whether online or in the real world–dating is dangerous. Ever heard of Ted Bundy?! Whether through the screen or face-to-face at a bar, it’s not exactly safe to be talking to a stranger.

With matchmaking, that fear can be relieved from the dating process. “All of our clients go through a thorough screening process before being approved for our services,” says Gresset. “Everyone is vetted and safe to date.”

9. We challenge you to push go outside of your comfort zone

Look, we get it. Dating is not easy. According to Gresset, pre-date jitters are one of the leading reasons singles stay stuck in dating ruts. “Sometimes, just the idea of meeting someone new will make my clients feel anxious,” she says.

For matchmakers like Gresset, moments like these are simply opportunities for growth. “We want our clients to progress past the obstacles that were holding them back before,” she says. “At The Setup, we give singles the security they need to date with confidence, to believe in the process, and to believe in themselves.”

10. Working with a professional dating coach helps you become a better partner

“In order to find the right one,” says Gresset, “you first have to be the right one. That’s our motto at The Setup.” She has a point. Studies show that relationships have a higher chance of success when both partners are emotionally prepared enough to be in them. According to Gresset, working with a dating coach is one of the best ways to grow as a partner. “Coaches help you attract a quality partner, break free from bad dating habits, and so much more,” she says.

Who better to learn from than an expert on love? Each coach at The Setup is certified by the Global Love Institute and the “Love Doctor,” herself, ​​research scientist and therapist, Dr. Terry Orbuck.

“Our entire coaching philosophy is backed by science, based on 30 years of research on real life couples,” says Gresset. “We use science to help our clients find love and grow within healthy, lasting relationships.”

Matchmaking works

If you’re single and tired of mingling, a matchmaker is the best bet to finding lasting love. As a dating service that combines coaching, matchmaking, and an exclusive member's portal, The Setup is in a league of its own.

Ready to have better dates, fall in love, and find The One? Get set up and join The Setup today!

setup banner new year

New Year’s Resolutions? 5 Dating Habits to Drop in 2022

Did you hear the news? The iconic Times Square Ball Drop is back this New Year’s Eve, allowing in-person guests for the first time since the pandemic.

Like many years before, viewers from across the country will be tuning in, gathering ‘round, and counting down the seconds to the live ball drop. Commemorating the past and celebrating the future, this cherished event is a wonderful way of welcoming in the coming change of the new year.

In honor of this iconic annual event, we’ve come up with a list of resolutions to drop–that is, to eliminate–out of your routine for 2022.

Based on the scientific research within Dr. Terri L. Orbuch’s book, Finding Love Again, we’ve rounded-up a list of five common culprits that are proven to either make or break a date.

Ready for this to be your best dating year yet? Here are our top habits to DROP in 2022.

Drop: Believing in Relationship Myths

Even Aphrodite herself would agree with this one–when it comes to setting ourselves up for relationship success, it’s important to face the facts.

According to Dr. Orbuch, there are some relationship and dating myths that are just as harmful to achieving our dating goals as they are widely accepted in society.

Often reinforced by Hollywood, the media, or well-intentioned friends, these popular misconceptions often cost us the opportunity to form long-lasting relationships.

This new year, stop setting unrealistic expectations for your love life by dropping the myths.

Drop: The Emotional Baggage from Your Past

Every new year is a subtle reminder that, whether we like it or not, time is moving on–and we should, too.

Whether you can’t stop thinking about your ex, or still hurt from the pain from past relationships, carrying the weight of what was will only get in the way of accepting the good that is still to come.

Take time to heal the mountains of hurt in your heart and stop checking up on your previous partners. These habits only get in the way of finding happy, healthy relationships in the future.

If you’re still holding on to emotional baggage from your past, 2022 is your year to let go.

Drop: Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places

Contrary to popular belief, the best place to meet someone is not at a bar or a party.

According to the research in Dr. Orbuck’s book, Finding Love Again, the majority of the married couples she studied met while going about their normal, daily routines. Whether through mutual friends, work, social settings–like church or sports games–or serendipitously bumping into one another at the grocery store, the most compatible couples tend to meet in everyday circumstances.

While online dating has risen in popularity over the years, it still remains a risk towards users’ safety, energy, and money.

Our advice?

Stop wasting time swiping left and drop the disappointing dates for good. You’ll have a higher chance of finding love by skipping the bars and, instead, simply focusing on yourself. However, if you really want to increase your odds at finding love, call in the professionals.

Drop: Your comfort zone

Research shows that in times of stress, sadness, or unhappiness, our brains find the most comfort in old routines.

Viewing the familiar as safe and secure, it’s easy to slip back into old habits that aren't necessarily in line with the future we imagine for ourselves.

If you’re just coming out of a breakup or a tough period, and find yourself slowly slipping into a rut of familiarity, it’s time to make a plan of action.

So, instead of unwinding after a long day by binging your favorite shows on Netflix, take a moment to reflect on your life and the goals you’d like to achieve this year. List them on a piece of paper, along with the specific steps you’ll have to take to achieve each goal.
For example, if your 2022 goal is to make more friends, write down some activities that will help you to get yourself out there. Volunteering, attending workshops, or trying out for an amateur sports league are all great ways to network.

When you’ve finished your list, pin it somewhere in your space that’s highly visible. That way, each time you pass by, your list of goals will be impossible to miss.

As the year goes on, try to take a few minutes a day to reflect on the goals you set out for yourself. Be sure to hold yourself accountable. Are you taking the steps that you promised you’d take?

If you want to make the most out of 2022, create a plan of action and stick to it.

Drop: Finding your own dates

We’ve already covered where to stop looking for love–but what if you stopped the search entirely?

Look, dating requires a lot of work–from getting ready for the event, to getting to know the other person… not to mention just finding someone to go out with in the first place!

What if you could stop swiping, stop searching, and still go out with quality, like-minded singles?

Matchmakers make it possible. We do all the work for you, allowing you to drop the dating games and dedicate all that extra time and energy for yourself.

Stop exerting your emotional energy with players who aren’t interested in anything more than casual dates. All of our clients at The Setup are commitment-minded and serious about finding the right long-term partner for their lives.

With a matchmaker, you can date with ease, knowing that each potential match has been screened, interviewed, and hand-selected based on your core values and preferences.

New Year, New You

Whether you’re watching the Ball Drop, celebrating with friends, or counting down for a kiss with your special someone, be sure to reign in the new year with your intentions set clearly ahead.

This new year, it’s time to date smarter, not harder. Don’t stress yourself out with making momentous resolutions. You can make just as big of an impact on your love life by dropping a handful of harmful habits and switching them out for something better.

couple walking into sunset

How Covid Changed Love and Dating

How the Pandemic Changed What We Value in Love

A couple years ago, if you would have asked any one of Savannah’s friends who was the biggest “party animal” in their group, with no hesitation, it would have been her name boldly declared. Wild, playful, and a self-described “social butterfly,” Savannah was proud of being the go-to girl to call for an impromptu night on the town, a last-minute road trip to the beach, or just a round of drinks after a grueling day at the office.

Though she dreamed of one day falling in love, between work, friends, and the occasional fling, there wasn’t much room left for meeting real, serious men. Plus, ‘settling down’ sounded a lot like being ‘tied down,’ and she valued her independence far too much for that.

Then came COVID-19. Savannah’s daily routine changed drastically overnight, permanently shattering the spontaneous and lighthearted life she had loved to live.

Thinking things would eventually return to “normal,” Savannah kept up (as close as she could) with her old habits--however, girls' night on Zoom just didn’t feel the same without the stilettos.

After seeing the sickness and struggles experienced by friends, family, and the world, Savannah’s philosophy of “work hard, play harder” suddenly stopped making so much sense. Trapped alone in her apartment and with more free time than ever, she began to reflect on her values, goals, and how to create a fulfilling future.

After what seemed like an eternity, life began to resume to some level of normalcy. Curfews lifted, work returned to office, and all her favorite spots were up-and-running, again. The city called her to step back out into the hustle and bustle.

But, Savannah’s priorities had changed. Now, she craved connection, hoping to find someone special, safe, and real.

Shaking Up the Dating Game

Every year, Match releases its study, Singles in America, surveying thousands of singles like Savannah, between the ages of 18 and 98.

In the midst of a pandemic, this year’s report revealed some revolutionary insights into the psyche of the singles.

To say that Savannah, and others like her, experienced some changes during the pandemic would be the understatement of the century. Marking a monumental shift in modern history, COVID-19 has given way to nearly two years of instability, loss, and fear of the unknown, forcing many of us to reexamine the parts of our lives that, before, we took blissfully for granted.

Though we can’t quite say it has all been doom and gloom. In the face of adversity, singles have somehow managed to find a silver lining in the coronavirus-shaped cloud.

Whether to distract themselves from the nonstop negativity on the news, or just to fill their time after a pandemic-induced lay-off, 68 percent of Millennials took up new hobbies during these dark days.

Turns out, Savannah was not the only single to shake up their thinking this past year. When it came to putting things in their proper place, 72 percent of singles said they’re finally prioritizing the right things in life, like mental and physical health.

Put simply, singles made the most of 2021. Coming out of the pandemic as better versions of themselves, it’s safe to say this dose of singles are more eligible than ever.

Virtual Meets Reality

Nearly no aspect of life was immune to the consequences of the virus--love and relationships being no exception.

Thanks to social distancing, many singles found themselves stuck at home instead of out on the roam. Either impossible or too risky to meet their crushes in person, the cultural consensus of ‘dating’ begged to be redefined.

Like a knight in shining (disinfected) armor, a new influx of video chat technology ushered its way into lives to successfully save our dates.

Thus, the video date quickly cemented itself as a common courtship courtesy for a quarter of singles during the pandemic, with half of younger singles insisting to meet virtually before in person.

So, anyone can go on a Facetime date, but what about experiencing real love?

Turns out, you don’t have to be in the same space as someone to feel a spark in the air, with 78 percent of singles having felt romantic chemistry during a video date.

Still not convinced? According to nearly half of Gen Z and Millennials, you can fall in love over a video date. Long-distance daters, rejoice!

So, if you're single and suffering from pandemic-induced Zoom fatigue (yes, it’s a thing), a romantic video date with your special someone might be just the thing you need.

Maturity Matters, Looks Don’t

Needless to say, amongst local restrictions, life-threatening illness, and worldwide uncertainty, looks tended to take a back seat during the pandemic. With the most exciting adventure in town being a run to the supermarket, most people stayed home, alone, and in pajamas.

After endless lockdowns and social distancing at home, dressing up felt more like more of a chore than taking out the Tuesday trash. Aesthetically, comfort took control in our choice of clothing, with loungewear, athleta-leisure, and sneakers seeing a huge spike in sales. And, with masks covering half of our faces, makeup trends were quick to ditch the contour sticks and focused, instead, on a more natural, simple look.

Thanks to the habits we picked up during the pandemic, the trend towards inner beauty was well on it’s way. However, it wasn’t until some of our most cherished celebrity crushes began to publicly question the necessity of personal hygiene, that the hotness hierarchy finally fell to its knobby knees.

With that, it became official: looks are out, maturity is in.

“Following any traumatic event,” Match reports, “we often look for partners who are stabilizing, regardless of whether or not they have a six pack. This psychological effect leads us to surround ourselves with people and social contexts that feel genuinely safe.”

Emotional security suddenly became the new sexy.

Before the pandemic, if you would have asked your single friends how they ranked physical attractiveness in a list of desired qualities in a mate, almost everyone would put 'hotness' at the very top. This year, however, only 78 percent considered it an important quality at all.

While physical attractiveness might temporarily catch the eye, qualities like being open-minded, accepting, and a good communicator are what makes a partner truly show-stopping.

Covid Killed the Hookup

With all this emphasis on emotional security, is there any room left for keeping things casual? According to singles, not much.

Today, only 11 percent of single people are interested in casual dating.

“We’re not saying one-night-stands are gone for good,” says the Match report, “but they’re definitely on the decline.”

Were social distancing restrictions to blame? Maybe. But, catching the COVID-19 cooties didn’t sound very appealing, either.

When it came to taking seriously their role in stopping the spread of the virus, Millennials and Gen Z understood the assignment.

Both generations are known for their passion for improving society; so, it makes sense that amongst a global pandemic, the young, wild, and free were more careful with their mingling.

Interestingly, 75 percent of singles, both young and old, are vaccinated. Considering the wider social opportunities and lesser risk of infection, in the times of corona, getting the pinch could mean a greater shot at love.

For all it’s chaos and instability, the pandemic also provided singles with an opportunity to slow down, work on themselves, and reflect about what they really want out of their lives.

Not interested in risking their health for something not serious, pretty quickly, the flirty flings just stopped cutting it.


What does the future hold for modern singles? According to Match, marriage!

Now, more than ever, singles want meaningful, steadfast and committed relationships.

In the world’s current state of instability, nothing’s more appealing to singles than having a solid sense of security at home. Committing to a reliable, trustworthy, and long-lasting partner is just the sort of stability singles, like Savannah, are searching for right now.

Over the past two years, all singles report 20 percent higher interest in marriage, with men more interested in marriage now more than ever.

So, if you’re single with marriage on your mind, now is the time to get yourself out there.

Not sure where to start? If you’d like to meet like-minded, quality, commitment-minded singles, sign up today and we’ll set you up!

A happy couple

Third Time’s a Charm: How the 3 Date Rule Makes Dating a Breeze

Here at The Setup, we’re dedicated to giving you the tools of empowerment you need for the sometimes scary journey that is dating. Dating should be something easy and fun. However, self-sabotage and bad advice are two common hurdles that get in the way of building successful relationships. 

Let’s break down some dating strategies and figure out how to start a fun and fruitful dating journey. 

What's the first thing anyone can do when beginning this journey?

Speak to professionals. Where do you normally go for dating advice? Most often, people seek dating tips from their friends, family members, or even co-workers. Though they mean well, they usually end up giving bad advice.

For example, if you're speaking to grandparents about dating, there is the possibility that they’ve not dated within this century. Dating dynamics have changed drastically in the last 10 years. Now, throughout quarantine and the global pandemic, we've seen even more drastic changes within the dating industry.

Evidence show that nowadays, people are more anxious, lonely, and stressed than ever. Both quarantine and remote work are two recent factors that have caused otherwise content singles to consider coupling up quickly. Many people currently feel immense pressure to find love and companionship and therefore try to take a fast track into relationships. 

If you’d like to avoid any more unnecessary confusion, worry and stress throughout your dating process, our best advice is to speak to the right people from the get-go. Seek advice from professionals who have the credentials to back up what they're saying.

The Magic Number 3

We’re all aware of the many dating strategies that have floated in and out of popularity. Which ones actually work?

3 Day Rule

The “3 Day Rule” goes like this: after you finish a date with someone you must wait three days until you call them back. By waiting this amount of time, you supposedly appear less desperate and more attractive to the other person.

This strategy essentially tunes into the idea of playing “hard to get.” However, in modern dating this strategy is no longer relevant nor effective. If anything, it is more harmful to your dating journey.

Quite counterproductively, this strategy paints you as uncertain, hesitant, or uninterested. No longer do we live in a time where romance goes slow. Allow yourself the indulgence of dating and communicate with your potential partner freely. Don’t bind yourself within this outdated rule. 

The modern dating world does not fare well with the “3 Day Rule.” This unhealthy method of beginning a relationship often ignites thoughts of insecurity and doubt in your date. 

So, do yourself a favor and leave this “strategy” in the past.

Wait Until Date 3 To Get Physical

The idea behind this strategy is that after date three it is acceptable to become intimate with the person you are dating. It insinuates the idea that you are finally good enough to not be abandoned or thought of as “loose” because you waited three dates.

Countless amounts of research and years of expertise proves that this idea can be emotionally dangerous. By placing too much pressure on the relationship too soon, many partners find themselves feeling unnecessarily anxious and begin to overthink almost immediately in the relationship.

By the third date you are more than likely just beginning to truly understand the person your date, still figuring out if the feelings you have with them can spur into something deep and meaningful. Don’t get lost in the whirlwind of premature physicality—keep it cool and take things slow.

If you find yourself considering a third-date hooking up, take a moment to consider your long-term goals while dating. What do you really want? A fun night of lost inhibitions and pleasure? Or to genuinely get to know your date, understand their deepest desires, and maybe, if all goes well, build a future with them? 

Getting physical early on might be fun, but it can also cloud your judgement as the relationship continues. For example, getting caught up in lust for the person could cause you to ignore major red flags or obvious differences in you and your date’s core values. While lust is an important aspect in dating it is impossible to build a lasting foundation from lust alone. 

Our advice is to bury this strategy, and never look at it again. By taking out the pressure of intimacy, you allow your feelings to grow naturally for the other person. This will make your relationship stronger, your feelings deeper, and leave you with peace of mind.

3 Date Rule

The idea behind this strategy is to go on a minimum of three dates with your current match or possible partner before making the decision to continue/stop dating them.

The 3 Date Rule is a method to break unhealthy pressure and anxiety-based patterns that we have placed on ourselves in modern dating.

This strategy gives you a clear action plan to follow that takes off the pressure of early dating and give you steps to follow throughout your dating journey. It aims to help you understand the other person and yourself and see if there is a possibility of going steady.

There is no doubt in our mind that the 3 Date Rule benefits those who utilize it. 

So, what is the 3-date rule, exactly?

Date 1: Keep it light

The first date should be light-hearted, focusing on simply getting to know each other. This means the date should not be more than 2 hours, and it should be in a less formal place such as a coffeehouse or brunch. 

The modern “conveyor belt” type of dating—the quick interview-like conversation of back-and-forth questions—gives you no room to discover your match. Try to know a bit more than just a bullet point list of basic facts. 

Keep the conversation light and keep an open mind!

Date 2: Have fun!

Find out if you can have fun together. Date two is about laughing. Focus more on values and hobbies. 

The activity-based part of the second date will allow you to get to know this person while you're in a more comfortable and laid-back mood while your focus is on something else. Go bowling, hiking, mini golfing. Museums and sporting events are also great ideas.

Date 3: Wine and Dine

Get dressed up and go on a date dinner and a show. Allow this date to be where the romance steps in and takes the wheel. Lust can happen on date one, but date three is where you understand if that visual element can evolve into love. 

Do you want to go steady?

After the third date sit down with yourself, process your feelings, and ask yourself: “Is this someone I can go exclusive with?” 

Deciding to move forward with your date is the first step to building a strong, long-lasting foundation of forever. On the other hand, if you feel this person isn’t quite right for you, cut things off then and there. You can leave with confidence knowing that you tried your best, while refusing to waste time with an incompatible partner. Now, understanding your feelings and wants with more clarity, you can take what you’ve learned as you move into the next journey with your newest match.

Where did the 3-date rule come from?

There are only 12 Master Certified Matchmakers in the World—and Genevieve Gresset is one of the best. She has spent over 25 years coaching, mentoring, and matching single professionals all around the world.

Genevieve created the 3 Date rule when she noticed that her clients didn’t last more than 10 minutes into their first date. How? Having paired them based off their similar interests, relationship goals, and life values, Genevieve knew they should have matched better. She found, however, that many of her clients enter their dates with both anxiety and judgment, inhibiting them from investing in the opportunity before them. 

When she began instituting the 3 Date Rule for her clients she found an immediate increase in long-lasting relationships and healthier connections between people leading to the majority of the first ground of clients getting married.

The Best Dating Strategy

Applying the 3 Date Rule by Genevieve has helped thousands of clients go out on more dates and find lasting relationship success.

Throw away those other tips that forces you to move slowly into a relationship— Genevieve suggests three dates within two weeks. 

The method works by eliminating insecurity—the annoying, yet universal feeling that makes modern dating is so difficult. The 3 Date Rule keeps dates moving quickly, focusing on foundation-building and relationship investment while prioritizing maintaining a clear mind and feelings.

Here at The Setup, we do dating differently. We combine years of experience, face-to-face matchmaking, with coaching and a member portal full of exclusive content. We are here to ensure you have a fun, happy, and successful dating journey. Start at The Setup today!

Father Daughter Bedtime Story - Men Have a Biological Clock

Men Have a Biological Clock Too

Most people have heard the expression geriatric pregnancy. It’s the heinous medical terminology pregnant women over the age of 35 get. I’m only 30 and I’m already offended. But what you probably didn’t know is that men have a biological clock too. 

"Eventually I believe we will have the research to show that when it comes to fathering a child, time isn't always on a man's side."

-Jeremy Silverman, PhD

35 is the Magic Number

It’s a long-held belief that men can father children well into middle-age and beyond, while women hit their peak fertility age in their 20s. But recent research shows that sperm count and mobility drastically decrease with age. In fact, studies show the male reproductive system begins breaking down around the age of 35 as well. 

According to Rutgers University a study—which reviewed 40 years of research on the effect parental age has on fertility, pregnancy and the health of children—revealed some surprising findings.

Not only can poor sperm quality affect the fetus and ultimately the child, but it also puts the mother at greater risk of developing complications during her pregnancy and delivery. The study found that men 45 and older can experience decreased fertility and put the mother at risk for increased pregnancy complications such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia and preterm labor.

Infants born to older dads were found to be at higher risk of premature birth, stillbirth, and low birth-weight. There is also an increased chance of newborn seizures and birth defects such as congenital heart disease and cleft palate. As they aged, these children had an increased likelihood of cancer, psychiatric impairments, cognitive disorders, and autism.

Columbia University studied nearly 100K births and concluded: the older a man is when he conceives a child, the more likely his partner is to experience a miscarriage, even if she is young, healthy, and has no other risk factors.

Men Have a Biological Clock & It's Ticking

The study also found that older men struggled with fertility issues even if their partner was under 25. The problem is, nobody is talking about it, so most people don’t even know that men have a biological clock, much less that it’s ticking away under our noses. 

According to Gloria Bachmann, Director of the Women’s Health Institute at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School—women tend to be more aware and educated than men about their reproductive health. As she says, “Most men do not consult with physicians unless they have a medical or fertility issue.” 

Bachmann recommends physicians counsel older men as they do older women on increased risks and ways to mitigate them.

If you want to delay fatherhood, consider preserving a specimen to decrease the probability of complications later. It’s a much simpler, and less invasive process than it is for a woman to freeze her eggs, so look into it. If you know you want kids someday, consider it a solid investment in your future and your childrens’ futures.

Next thing you know, you’ll be saving for college. 

It Might Not be All About Age

“There is definitely evidence of weaknesses in the DNA of sperm as a man ages. And this could be the result of a weakness anywhere in the sperm-making system, from the copying mechanisms necessary to turn out new sperm every day, to the natural ability of the body to correct mistakes in that copying process, or really, any step along the way; any or all could become defective as a man ages.”

-Karine Kleinhaus, MD, PhD & Researcher at Columbia University

Dave McCulloh, PhD, Embryologist & Director of Laboratory Services suggests that a decline in the health of the male reproductive system has less to do with aging and more to do with environmental exposures to things like radiation, carcinogens, alcohol abuse, smoking, drug use, etc. 

Regardless of the cause, more and more research backs up the argument that men have a biological clock too. So if you’ve been putting off fatherhood, now is the time to take control of your future before you run out of options.

Of course, another option is to let us set you up with the love of your life and start making babies the old fashioned way. We can introduce you to the mother of your children

Couple on Date at Coffee Shop Experience Love at First Sight

Myth or Magic: Love at First Sight

According to a 2017 poll, 72% of men and 61% of women believe in love at first sight. But 41% of men and 29% of women claim to have actually experienced it.

Not to be confused with the reality show, Married at First Sight (MAFS), where one of our Master Certified Matchmakers, Genevieve, served as an expert. 

In an interview with BBC, Prince Harry said he knew Meghan Markle was the one for him the very first time they met. Like Harry, many people report experiencing love at first sight, but as you may have suspected, it’s not technically love.

Love, Lust, or Something Else?

It’s a typical Saturday night out with your girlfriends, when suddenly you lock eyes from across the room with the hottest guy in the bar. You hold one another’s gaze for just a beat too long as a slow, confident smile makes its way across his lips. Your pulse intensifies and your hands feel clammy as you realize he’s making his way over to you.

Suddenly it’s last call and you realize you’ve been talking for hours while your friends gawked knowingly. When he kisses you goodnight he asks to take you to brunch tomorrow. Your friends are dying for details in the Uber, but you can’t quite put into words what just happened. It’s not just that he’s insanely good-looking. It’s as if the two of you were drawn together by some unseen force. You just met, but it feels like you already know him and you’re already in your feelings. 

But if it’s not exactly true love...what the heck is it?

As far as 21st century scientists can tell: it's a strong pull to another person that makes you particularly open to the possibilities of a relationship with them. Maybe it’s chemistry or pheromones or destiny or magic—some things aren’t meant to be understood. But does it really matter?

Studies have proven this immediate connection and romantic drive toward another human is a legit phenomenon. Love at first sight is real.

“It's a basic drive, like thirst and hunger. Food and water keep you alive today; romantic love leads to bonding, mating and sending your DNA into tomorrow. In fact, poetry around the world talks about love at first sight. Even other creatures experience instant attraction to one another. But cultural factors always play a role as well.” 

-Dr. Helen Fisher, Biological Anthropologist

What Do We Know About Love at First Sight?

According to Dr. Fisher, romantic love runs along certain electrical and chemical pathways through the brain which can be triggered instantly.

It’s rare for both parties to experience love at first sight. It is usually only one party who feels the strong magnetic attraction instantaneously. The other takes a bit of time to warm up. 

People are more likely to fall instantly in love with objectively good-looking people. Men experience love at first sight, far more often than women do. Which suggests as we’ve often heard—generally speaking, men tend to be more visual beings.

“When you feel like you're falling in love, a chemical reaction is actually happening in your brain, releasing all those warm, fuzzy feelings. Your brain is creating dopamine and serotonin, and it looks like the brain of someone high on heroin. When you look into another person's eyes, your adaptive oscillator lock between you and your partner and form a loop. The greater the feeling here, the stronger the feeling of love. From there, these adaptive oscillators just pull you together and guide the two mouths together and you kiss. So there are chemicals in everything.”

-Dr. Trisha Stratford, MAFS Expert

One thing the experts agree on? You cannot rely on love at first sight to carry your relationship. You still have to put in effort and love your partner they way they want to be loved. It may jump start your relationship and put you on the fast track to commitment, but it doesn’t mean things will always be easy or come as naturally as it did when you first met. 

Are you ready to go on your last first date and possibly fall madly in love at first sight?