THE quest to find love just got a whole lot easier.
THE quest to find love just got a whole lot easier. Agency

Dating: Over-rated or not?

WHAT is it about the sight of two toothbrushes that can make a grown woman cry?

How many spares can you throw away before your heart just says "enough"?

The silence!

The knowledge that only one remains and you no longer have to think, "wait, which colour was mine?"

In a figurative sense, the other coloured toothbrush is no longer there to say good morning, to join you on an outing, to laugh and play with.

Goodness, I sound like an old woman who should invest in cats (as my friends have suggested).
Shame I don't like pets!

Good thing I do like dating, though.

I will not give up on the notion of finding my love or, if you will allow me to continue with the metaphor, the other toothbrush that will stay by my side in the holder.

But how do I meet someone to date and gain the strength and confidence to pick myself up and start all over again after another short-term relationship that wasn't quite right?

THE OPTIONS:

A bar? No, I'd rather not at my ripe old age of 32; we all know where that will go.

Online dating? Yes, that's possible, and I can narrow down the field but are the profiles truly honest and do we have a connection in person?

Through friends? That would be a wonderful option if most of my friends weren't in the category of already married or beautiful, intelligent and also single.

Join a club? Yes, but which one and will any single folk around my age also be there?

Speed dating? Winner: my best option at the moment to regain my confidence and be guaranteed at least eight to 10 dates with the opposite sex in my age bracket.

The thought of speed dating can be overwhelming for some, but if you have never tried it, I say 2013 is the year for you.

Speed dating works on an equal number of males to females in each age category.

The age categories are: 20s, 30s, 40s, (and when numbers allow, over 50s).

You spend eight minutes with each person in your age group and if you decide you would like to spend more time with one or more of your dates, you circle them and the hosts do the rest of the matchmaking for you.

Speed Dating with Style began in 2008 with the aim of meeting new people, expanding social circles and perhaps even finding "the one".

Over the years, these aims have been met as Renata Schindler, co-founder of the event, explains.

"I know of five marriages, 14 de-facto relationships and 41 relationships (82 people) so far as a result of this event," she said.

"Also, it is not uncommon that new friendship groups are formed or relationships occur through friends of friends who met at speed dating."

SO, YOUR TOP FIVE TIPS FOR SPEED DATING

  •  It is an eight-minute conversation, not an interview for marriage. Start it as friends - a "friend you haven't met yet". Do not tell your life history.

Talk about you and make sure you also listen to your date.

  •  Don't take yourself too seriously. Be positive, confident and upbeat, and the mood will be contagious.
  •  Beware of body language. Communication is 60 per cent non-verbal and only 40 per cent verbal, so watch what your body is saying.

Researchers say you can heighten your powers of attraction by about 70 per cent if you can improve your body talk.

  •  Wondering who to circle after the dates? If you notice that eight minutes went too quickly and you still have questions to ask your date, then circle them.

Even if you don't end up galloping off into the sunset, at least you'll enjoy their company.

  •  Relax and enjoy the dates and use the conversation starters provided if you are finding it difficult to strike up a conversation.

The next Speed Dating with Style event will be held on Feb 16, so ask yourself, will you find your valentine this year?

I for one will be Speed Dating with Style, looking for the person to accessorise my bathroom with his toothbrush.

Surely, one day soon, I will find that special someone who will replace his toothbrush only when it is scruffy and worn.

The replacement toothbrush will still be his and will simply signify the start of a new day and the journey with me and our life together.



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