“It was not love at first sight…”

People have often asked me, "When a first date does not progress beyond a second date, what is the main reason?"

The answer given by singles is often the same.

"No chemistry."

When people talk about chemistry, they are hoping to feel the sparks, the 'electricity' or the flutter in the heart. But honestly, if you asked me, that's usually 'lust at first sight' and not 'love at first sight'. :P

Love needs not always be 'at first sight'. Let me share with you a Lunch Actually success story that I have just heard today. *super happy*

They are both from the financial industry. He is about 10 years older. When they first met at the first date arranged by us, she was actually not bowled over by him. In fact, she said, "Could you find me someone taller the next time?" and "I don't think I am comfortable dating someone who's not within my age group…" and "He talks a lot about work!"

What did touch her is his personality – his consideration and his kindness. Even though he was late for the first date, he apologized and bought her dinner (we do arrange dinner dates when requested by our clients :) ). And subsequently when he knew that a relative of hers was undergoing an operation, he checked on her right after the operation to see if everything went OK. 

And now… a year later, after getting to know each other better, they have found the perfect match in each other. And they are tying the knot!!!

Love at first sight can be an extremely romantic notion. But if she has decided not to go on a second date, and subsequently a third and fourth date, because she did not feel the sparks at first… she would have missed out on the chance on finding her soul mate.

Hence, to all singles out there is… when you are contemplating a second date and you feel that there's no chemistry…

Give him/her a chance. Give yourself a chance. Give love a chance.

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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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行行出状元

Just joined a Chinese Toastmasters Club! This is the first time I am using Chinese to write a speech. The members have been very encouraging! That evening, I won the Best Speaker Ribbon. 🙂 Sharing my maiden Chinese speech with you… 🙂

刚刚加入华语讲演会!

这是我第一次用华语写稿. 会员们也给我很大的支持和肯定.

当晚, 我得到最佳备稿作业奖. 🙂

和你们分享我的作业…

初试啼声: 行行出状元

大家好!

我们玩一个游戏好吗? 你们猜一猜我的职业! 让我给你们三个不同的选择吧! 一, 律士. 二, 银行家. 三, 红娘.  猜我是律士的请举手, 猜我是银行家的请举手, 猜我是红娘的请举手… 谢谢大家的参与!

其实无论你猜一,二或三, 你的答案都是正确的!

虽然我没有律士执照, 我是法律系出身的. 我的第一份工作是在花旗银行当管理培训生. 在2004年, 我就开始从事摩登红娘的职业了.

如果你问我, 我小时后的梦想是什么… 我可以很肯定的告诉你… 一定不是当红娘!

那我是怎么加入这份行业呢?

在银行工作的时候, 周围的同事都是单身一族… 我总是想不通. 这是怎么一回事? 他们都才貌双绝.  察言观色之后, 原来他们是因为一天到晚都是日无暇晷. 所以没有时间认识新朋友或扩展自己的生活圈子.

刚好,我就在这个时候认识午餐约会的概念.这个概念在英国和美国都已经相当流行了. 但是,当时的新加玻,甚至亚洲也没有类似活动. 我对这门生意特别感兴趣因为我觉得当摩登红娘除了赚钱还可以帮助别人, 真是一举多得, 何乐而不为?

辞职前, 当然先要和家人商量一下. 我想我的妈妈肯定以为女儿疯了! 虽然她没说出口, 但从她的表情, 她真的给她这女儿气坏了! 爸爸妈妈辛辛苦苦让我到外国留学. 还考上硕士学位, 我现在竟然要当媒人!  他们问我, “女儿呀女儿! 难道你没听过…不做中、不做保、不做媒人,三代好吗?” 他们也劝我不要辞职. 先做兼职. 那至少生意做不成, 饭碗还可以给留着.

我不是不要听从他们的忠告.只不过, 我的个人作风是… 一不做,二不休. 经过一般讨论之后, 爸妈也只能无奈地给我他们的祝福.

转眼间,我当红娘的生涯也有六年了. 在这六年内, 冠仁和我真是酸甜苦辣都尝遍了.我的爸妈也被我们的良工苦心被感动了. 现在他们已经成为我们的大力支持者.

话说回来,当红娘真的不容易! 我的栋梁当然是我这一位英俊潇洒风度偏偏与我心心相印的丈夫. 而我们两个可爱的孩子门是我们精神上的支柱.

自己拥有一个幸福的家, 也希望可以帮助别人找到他们的幸福.这可是我这一位摩登红娘的愿望!

但愿我心想事成吧!

司仪.

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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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Episode 2 – Ask Violet – Is he interested in me?

Reader Fiona sent in a question – “Is he interested in me? Should I wait for John, or go out with Steven?”

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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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Lovely News… A Reminder of Why I Love What I Do :)

Had a call from a local magazine today. They are looking for ladies who have found love in their 30s. So, they wanted my help to check with our clients if they are willing to be interviewed.

It was a good opportunity for me to catch up with our married clients. Called up one of our lady clients who got married earlier this year… let’s call her M. It was really nice to touch base with her. So I told her about the story angle, and asked if she was willing to be interviewed and photographed for the magazine. She gamely agreed. I also told her that it is not necessary for her to tell the magazine how she and hubby met, as many of our clients would prefer not to let people know that they met through a dating agency.

Then M actually said, “I don’t mind!” Wow! Then she asked me if she can bring her own clothes. I told her I am not too sure, as sometimes the magazine might prepare clothes for the shoot, but I will check. And that was when she told me the extremely GOOD NEWS…

“Oh, it’s because I am pregnant!”

Wow! I was like so happy. Another Lunch Actually baby. 🙂

When people ask me, “Don’t you sometimes get tired of your profession? Why are you so passionate about what you do? Why this business of all business?”

This is the reason… I think there are not many jobs in the world where you can have a ‘direct’ hand in helping someone find happiness, and help bring a child to this world.

Can’t wait to see the photos of the baby! 🙂 Happy happy happy!

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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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Matchmaker, matchmaker, how do you match?

As a modern-day matchmaker, I spend a fair bit of my time making matches.

One of the questions that I get asked all the time is… “How do you match?”, “How do you know that it is a good match?”

Truth is, I can never be 100% sure that it will turn out to be a good match. There have been times that my team of dating consultants and I are so sure that it is a good match, and we even think that they will get married.

Then we will wait for the verdict.

The guy gave his feedback. “It was an absolutely fantastic date! She’s such a wonderful person. I would love to meet up with her again! Thank you so much!”

Wow…! In our heads, we were thinking, we will be getting a wedding invitation soon.

We called the lady, and she said… “He was ok. But not someone I would date. I don’t mind keeping in touch with him as a friend.”

There is no 100%. I always joke… If we could guarantee 100%, our membership fees and charges would be priced very differently. Apparently, the most expensive matchmaker (verified by the Guiness Book of Records) charges US$200,000. And yes, she guarantees marriage.

Ok, jokes aside… how do we match?

There are many aspects that we look at.

First and foremost, we need to learn more about the preferences of our client. What are his/her profile, physical and personality preferences? When we say profile, we mean age, education level, religion, ethnicity, smoking and drinking habits. Physical = height and built. And personality would include characteristics such as introverted vs. extroverted, spontaneous vs. organised etc.

Next, we will find out more about our client through our face-to-face consultation with him/her. Even though we gather profile information via a questionnaire which our client fills in, often, how we perceive ourselves, and how others perceive us are different. Thus, the matchmaker’s assessment is very important when it comes to matching.

We also take time to find out about our client’s past relationships, passions, his/her values, what is most important to him or her. E.g. for someone, religious faith is very important. Recently, I made a match between a lawyer and a teacher. Initially the teacher was slightly apprehensive about dating a lawyer. But both of them are staunch believers, and this common value binds them together, giving them a common ground. They are currently dating each other.

After each date, we will obtain feedback from our clients. The feedback is a two-pronged approach. Firstly, it allows our clients to give us feedback on what they like or dislike about the match. This would help us refine the matching criteria for their subsequent matches. Secondly, it gives us an insight on how our client is as a date. Obviously when we meet our client at our office, how he/she behaves would be distinctly different from how he/she would behave on a date. 🙂

And there you have it… by using the plethora of information we have, we handpick each and every match for our client. And of course, a dash of intuition comes in handy too.

For some clients, all it takes is one match. And they would have met their special someone. But for some clients, it might take more than 30 matches. Interestingly, one of our upcoming weddings in June… it was his 10++ date, and it was her first. 🙂

So, if you are single and dating… take each and every new date as an opportunity to meet a new friend. You’ll never know where each opportunity takes you! 🙂

Enjoy your weekend!

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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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