Gong Xi Fa Cai!


Quick post. Just came back from a midnight show – Fearless, by Jet Li. Really enjoyed it.
 
Anyway, here’s to wishing my dearest readers Happy Lunar New Year!
 
May the Year of the Dog bring you love, health and happiness! 🙂
 
Gong Xi Fa Cai!
 

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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It’s all about perspectives, isn’t it?

You know something? I am beginning to appreciate you, my dearest readers a lot more! Not to say, I have not been appreciating you in the past, but you know what I mean. 🙂

I used to lament to Jamie, “I am getting a steady flow of regular readers, but… they are just so quiet, I am not sure if they are even there if not for the web stats tracker!”

But after visiting some other websites, websites of fairly well-known personalities locally or internationally, I realized that,

“Hey! My blog is not so bad after all!”  🙂

I do get occasional comments when things that I write are interesting enough! 🙂 Some blogs do not have a single comment. I mean, it’s all about perspective, isn’t it? If I am comparing my blog to Xiaxue a.k.a Wendy Cheng or Kenny Sia, well then, there’s really not much to compare, is it?

But if I compare my blog to maybe blogs of similar genre, or people who started their blog at around the same time I started mine, I uh hmm, I do have a number of regular readers, albeit a small, but growing crowd. Yes, I do believe in being optimistic. Hence the word crowd. 🙂

Perspectives, the same can be say about relationships.

In my line of work, there is a small percentage of people (if I really have to put down a figure, I would say less than 15%) whom I meet who are stuck in the way they see things, and they refuse to see it in any other way.

Lady X asked me, “Hey Violet, why are you introducing me to guys who are not ready for serious relationships?”

“What do you mean by that?”

“I thought the date with him went pretty well. But, towards the end of the conversation, he told me that he’s only looking to widen his social circles and not ready for any serious relationship. So my question is – why are you introducing me to such men?”

Guy Y said, “You know, the girls you have been introducing to me do not meet my requirements at all. You know what, if you cannot find me girls that are of the calibre that I am looking for, do not bother.”

In both situations, there are many ways to see it. Obviously, the most apparent of all reasons is that –

The matchmaker is unprofessional, the matchmaker over promises and under delivers and the matchmaker should be fired.

In the case of Lady X, could she have seen it as…

“If my date really likes me, wouldn’t he make an exception for me even if he is not looking to be in a serious relationship?”

or

“If my date is really not looking for a serious relationship, so why did he approach Violet in the first place?”

or

“Is my date really not interested in a serious relationship, or is he not interested in me?”

or

“What are the things I can do to change the mind of my date, since I really like him.”

As for Guy Y, could he have thought that…

“Why do the dates do not meet my expectations? Are my expectations too unrealistic, and should I readjust them?”

or

“Should I check with them why the people whom they introduce to me do not meet my expectations? I am sure there are some valid reasons.”

or

“Could it be that the ladies whom I am looking for are ladies who are not looking for my type of profile? And that’s the reason; I have not been matched with them? What can I do to meet their requirements?”

Still on the same topic of perspective, I could react to the above by thinking,

“These people are just unrealistic and unreasonable. They do not deserve my help.” I can then withdraw further and further into my shell, and at the end of the day decide to leave, as I can no longer take the abuse.

OR

I could take it as, “Why are these people reacting this way? What if they are really right? Could it be that I am in the wrong? If yes, how can I make things better? Could I retrain my consultants?”

OR

I could decide, “Well yes, seems like they are not behaving in a rational manner. What could be the cause of it? How can I help them solve the problem? What skills can I equip myself with to make me better at my profession? What skills can I equip them with to help them succeed in their dates and in their lives?”

At the end of the day, it’s all about perspectives, isn’t it?

What is your perspective?

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Must We Sleep?

 
Have not been updating as often as I would like to. Well, you have got Jamie to blame. :p As part of our plan to be healthier this year, we are now sleeping before 12am. In the past, we would not go to bed until it’s past 1am. I am seriously not used to the current sleeping habits, even though we have been doing it close to 2 weeks. Jamie’s pretty serious about it though! So, we have been keeping up with it. I keep waking up at odd hours. Think my body is still adjusting to the shock.
 
And now, it’s time to sleep again. I wish they could invent a pill that help me no longer need to sleep yet look as if I have had my 8 hours of beauty sleep. When will that day come?
 
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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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The Journey of Love

The beginning of the year.

Lots of good things happening to people around me. Just on blogosphere itself, we have: My good friend Irene is engaged!!! Am so happy for her! My primary school friend Wai Sum got promoted! Congrats! And my dear cousin Andrea was featured on the newspaper! Triple wow! 🙂

On a personal level, I have just been offered to be a columnist for a magazine on a trial basis. 🙂 If things work out well, they might offer me something long-term. Am really excited about that. This is my first ‘coup’ so to say in this area, and it reaffirms that I am heading in the right direction. 

***

Things often work out in a very strange manner. Something good will happen when you least expect it.

For example, I never expected to meet Jamie. I was sick and tired of relationships, and I just wanted to enjoy my singlehood. I dreaded going to the Annual D&D, and it was actually Zarique who co-erced me to go under the pretext of building better bilateral ties. And I begrudgingly put on my turquoise short cheongsam, and some make-up and went. And it was there I met Jamie again. And the rest as they say… is history. 🙂

When friends ask me sometimes,

“How do I get hitched?”

“I have been searching high and low, but I still have not seemed to meet Mr. or Ms. Right.” I often give them various suggestions on where they can go or what they can do to increase their chances.

Now that I think about it, going to the right places, and doing the right thing is one thing.

But having the right mental attitude i.e. the right mindset is even more important.

I think… People are attracted to confident people. People in general do not like needy people. We like someone whom we can respect.People who know who they are. People who know where they are going.

In my line of profession, I have met so many singles who just rattle off a list of criteria that they are looking for in the future partner. I wonder, if they have taken time to sit back and think if it makes such a difference if the person is 2cm taller or shorter? Or if the person is more chatty or less? Or if the person is fairer or darker? Or if he/she is more attractive?

All these are the shell, the exterior. These are the qualities that the culture that we live in make us look for. We are constantly being bombarded by blown-up pictures of beautiful people. I was taking the MRT yesterday, and the OSIM u-zap campaign was in full blown. Fiona Xie’s beautiful figure was displayed for all to see.

It’s like.. we think if we do not have a partner who looks like that, or close to that, we are losing out. There’s so much pressure to conform. We want a trophy boyfriend / girlfriend / husband / wife.

However, if you ask me, what matters more is what’s inside, what’s really deep inside.

Do you share the same values? Are you going to grow together? Will this person help you be the best person you can be? Can you help the person live out his/her fullest potential? Can you imagine this person to be the father/mother of your kids?

I can still remember that heart-wrenching scene from Fantastic Four. When Ben turned into The Thing, and he went to look for his wife. His wife just could not accept that he has turned into such a monster. Perhaps she married him for his good looks, or she just cannot imagine waking up next to The Thing.

Whatever it is, the fact is… Ben is still Ben. Nothing has changed deep within him. It’s just his entire exterior has changed, he’s still the same person.

After being in the love industry for the past two years. I am beginning to understand it more.

So perhaps when I am asked the same question “How do I get hitched?” by my friends, I will say…

You are setting out on a journey, a wonderful journey… in search of this precious treasure.

First and foremost, do you think you have the pre-requisites to take this journey? Are you prepared to take this journey? Have you equipped yourself with the right skills and equipments? The road is going to bumpy sometimes, and you might meet some obstacles.

Secondly, do you have the map? Are you sure you have the right map? Just in case, the map you have is not the right one, do you have access to people along the way that will point you to the right direction?And finally, do you know how the precious treasure look like? When you get to your destination, there might be many different treasure masquerading to be the one you are searching for. Do you know of tools that can help you decipher whether it’s the real thing?

Your comments? Write me a love letter.

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Love…

A friend sent me this, and thought I will share it with you. 🙂

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Almost a Size 8

Have not been blogging for the past few days as we have just returned to Singapore. I am beginning to notice a trend. I blog a lot more when I am in KL. Am not sure why…
 
Talking about something REALLY personal today… looked into the mirror recently, and realized that I have put on quite a bit of weight. And I am suffering from another breakout.
 
I become moody and grouchy when I look into the mirror and see that my face is red and blotchy. I am just one of those people who is not blessed with good genes, unlike Jamie who eats thrice my portions, who washes his face with cleaning foam like once a month. Don’t we just hate people like that? :p I watch what I eat, I take pains to clean my face, but, the results are often disastrous.
 
It frustrates me frankly.
 
But then, I have decided to work on my strengths and let go of my weaknesses. It is depressing to fight a losing battle. I have come to accept the fact that I will not be the slimmest person ever. Or neither will I ever have porcelain skin.
 
The only way for me to keep a size 8 figure (we are not really that ambitious here, I am happy with a size 8, not even aiming for a size 6) and to have clear skin is to eat ‘clean’ food i.e. healthy, non-fried, non-oily food which rule out most of my favourite dishes. It’s a trade-off really.
 
Slim figure + Clear skin vs. Good food + Favourite dishes
 
As you can see, favourite dishes have clearly won to date.
 
One of my 2006 resolutions is to lead a healthy lifestyle. To achieve my desired weight by the end of this year. Ironically, that’s also supposed to be my desired weight for last year.
 
The truth is, I believe I can achieve my objective if I prioritize it enough, and I want it enough. Do I want it enough? Or can I live for another year leading an unhealthy lifestyle, and living with some excess fats around my waist and hip, and a red and blotchy face?
 
Sighs. Life is full of difficult decisions sometimes.
 
To choose between a salad and a Char Koay Teow…
 
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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Are you happy?

R and his partner are going through a quarter-life crisis, a newly-coined term. Both are high-earners and high-flyers. They are not sure what drives them, or what motivates them. They are uncertain about their mid-term future. Sounds to me like it is a case of what is now popularly termed as “Quarter Life Crisis”.

I recall my personal quarter life crisis.

I have just graduated not so long ago. Had a comfortable and stable job in a MNC (Multi-National Company). I thought that this was what I have always wanted. This is exactly what I have aimed for since I was a little girl. Good company, good job, great starting pay. But, why do I somehow feel a bit… empty?

I started to dread going into work. Going into work was a torture. I remembered hating Sunday nights. I will start pulling a long face by about 5pm on Sundays as I knew that my weekend was coming to an end. I was not sure what I wanted. I hated what I did. I looked at what my boss was doing, and I did not aspire to take over her position in the next 5-10 years. I was very worried then… that I would have to spend the rest of my life feeling the way I felt.

The reality is, being able to truly live is a privilege that we started to have in the last 100 years because in the past, most people were too concentrated on survival to think of anything else. Today, we have our basic needs met at an early stage. We do not need to do something which we do not enjoy. Hence, we know of many friends who quit their jobs to pursue their dreams. In the past, we would be termed as crazy or irresponsible. But today, our families are not waiting for us to bring home the bacon. As a result, we are looking to meet our higher needs.

We want to find meaning in our lives, in our existence.

 I asked R,

“Are you happy?”

He seemed surprised by the question.

I guess we are so entrenched in our day-to-day lives, that we do not stop to ponder upon our own happiness. Our lives are like clockwork sometimes. On weekdays, we work, then go home. On weekends, we run errands, catch up with friends, rest. And then the cycle continues.

It’s the same with relationships sometimes.We know that perhaps he/she is not the one. We plan to give up on the relationship. But somehow, we just hang on. Perhaps it’s for convenience, or perhaps part of us still love him/her, and we just hold on to the tiny hope that perhaps in another week or so, things might change for the better.

And before we know it, another month has gone by, another year has passed.

Are we truly happy? Or are we just going through the motions?

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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The Most Difficult Words To Say

The Most Difficult Words To Say: “‘When you go back to Perth, do you think we should just… ?’ She’s gone.”

Such a simple post, but yet, with such simplicity, his readers hearts really go out to him.
.
.
.
.
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I met up with an old friend C the other day. He is going to get married. Well, technically… yes. He has not proposed yet. But he will be proposing in the next 2 months. He plans to hold the wedding next year.

Asked him about his girlfriend, and found out that she’s actually not local. They have been in a long distance relationship for the last 4 years. And he sees her on average once a year.

I thought Jamie and I were mad. We were together for 1.5 months, before going on a 2.5 years long distance relationship.

But C apparently is even ‘crazier’. But though the whole arrangement sounded crazy, C is so committed to his relationship.

Which made me ponder over the question last weekend…

What makes a relationship work?

Is it the constant communication? Or is it the more compatible you are, the higher the chances. Jamie and I had a conversation on this.

And we decided that what makes a relationship work is…

sharing the common value. 

And the common value to share is… as Morrie said in “Tuesdays with Morrie” – ‘keeping your relationship/marriage together’ being the most important value. And sometimes it might involve sacrifice from one party or even both parties.

And the common value to share is… as Morrie said in “Tuesdays with Morrie” – ‘keeping your relationship/marriage together’ being the most important value. And sometimes it might involve sacrifice from one party or even both parties.When your relationship is more important than anything else your career, your sense of adventure, earning money; when you place your relationship as top priority, the chances of the relationship working out are much higher.

And the common value to share is… as Morrie said in “Tuesdays with Morrie” – ‘keeping your relationship/marriage together’ being the most important value. And sometimes it might involve sacrifice from one party or even both parties.When your relationship is more important than anything else your career, your sense of adventure, earning money; when you place your relationship as top priority, the chances of the relationship working out are much higher.

And the common value to share is… as Morrie said in “Tuesdays with Morrie” – ‘keeping your relationship/marriage together’ being the most important value. And sometimes it might involve sacrifice from one party or even both parties.When your relationship is more important than anything else your career, your sense of adventure, earning money; when you place your relationship as top priority, the chances of the relationship working out are much higher.

Scenario:
Peter and Jane are married. Both are high-flyers. Jane is a director in a MNC whilst Peter is a leading scientist in his field. Peter has been offered a research position in X country where he would be part of the team to find the cure for AIDS. Jane has just gotten a promotion and a salary increase. If she moves to X country, she would have great difficulty finding a job, not to mention a job at her level.

Should she stay on in her home country and conduct a long distance relationship, or should she join Peter in X country?

If Peter and Jane’s priority is their relationship, then Jane would probably leave her job and be with Peter as she perceives Peter’s job as more important, as his research would help save the world. Hence, in this case, Jane is making the sacrifice.

But I guess the problem is… what if the case is not so clear-cut? What if Peter was not a scientist but was a partner in a legal firm?

So then, why should Jane make the sacrifice when she herself has a great career? Maybe Peter should just NOT take up the offer and be contented with what he has at the moment?

I guess the difference is – when both parties place their relationship as top priority, then, the party who had to make the sacrifice would not have done it begrudgingly as he/she is doing it to make sure the relationship works out.

Like in the case of my friend C, his girlfriend will be moving to Malaysia from Australia… a lifestyle that might be completely alien to her. Or in the case of my friend groovygerm, his Princess left Japan to be with him in Kuantan. Talk about contrast!

But, the problem is… life is not so simple sometimes. Too many factors come into play. Sigh!

***How do you make your relationship work? Write me a love letter! 🙂

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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About Miss Match

Since I have just moved to a new domain, as well as revamped the blog, I thought I would just do a short profile, instead of the putting up the usual Blogger profile. Was raking my brains on what to write, and I have decided to write it ‘journalistic’ style – meaning I will be the interviewer, as well as the interviewee. 🙂

What is your name?

Violet. Also known as Seow Yan or Yan to my friends. Some people refer to me as Miss Lim, but please don’t call me that. Make me sound so old! And yes, effective Oct 2005, you can also call me Mrs. Lee. 😉

How old are you then?

I am an 80’s baby. And I shall leave it at that.

What do you do?

I run a lunch dating service. I set people up for lunch dates.

So you set people up for dates. How did that come about?

My childhood dream was to be a matchmaker.

Ok, I lied. I have always aspired to be a doctor, a lawyer or a banker. How I ended up as a modern-day matchmaker… well, I have always wanted a career where I will always be working with people, helping them solve their problems, lending them a listening ear.

I read law at University of Manchester, but after completing my internships, I decided that law was not my calling. I did a Masters in HR at LSE, but the job turned out to be too administrative.

Hence, I pounced on the chance of being able to start something which combines my passion with business… hence setting people up for dates seem like the perfect profession for me! 🙂

So you are married huh… did you meet your husband through a lunch dating service?

Nope, we met at university. But our first date was over lunch! 🙂

Okay, sweet… so why keep a blog?

I kept a blog for a couple of years at university. But I stopped when I started working in 2002. I have always wanted to start writing again but somehow did not find the time to.

Being in the love industry for the last 2 years, I thought it would be interesting to document my thoughts and musings as a modern-day matchmaker. And at the same time share some interesting insights on dating and relationships with those who are keen to find out more.

What do you do when you are not setting people up on dates?

Spending time with my hubby! 🙂 Also an be found at Toastmasters or Rotary Club meetings. Or when in my more pensive mood, I will be sitting in front of my sturdy computer… doing what I am doing now… blogging.

Ok, last question. What’s your all-time favourite romance movie and why?

Forrest Gump. Forrest’s love for Jenny is simply amazing. To love even when you get nothing in return. Loving to Forrest is not merely an emotion, but it’s a decision. He decided long ago that he loves her, and it has never wavered no matter what happened.

Some might think he’s stupid, but I think that’s true love.

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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