I must admit that since I’ve decided to “own it” and commit to being a Love Coach full time, I’ve met some very interesting people and heard some fascinating stories which bring new light to why so many women are single.
Just the other day, I was at a theatre event, with my boyfriend, that was preceded by some mingling time for guests. As I teach my clients the importance of chatting to people and mingling at social events (including skills for “working a room”), I decided to put those techniques to use in this real-life situation. So, after turning to a couple beside us and ensuring that my boyfriend was happily in conversation, I walked off and eyed the room for interesting people to speak to. Immediately, I caught sight of a woman who I thought was cute, but, from her energy and look, I figured was definitely single. She was standing beside another woman looking rather uncomfortable, her mobile clutched in her hands nervously as if she’d turn to it the minute that her friend found someone else to converse with. This happened pretty quickly as the friend was greeted by someone she knew with whom she began an enthusiastic conversation. As I expected, rather than looking for someone else to speak with, this woman began instead to scroll nervously through her phone.
I decided to rescue her. Walking in her direction, I met eyes with and smiled at a man I’d never met who was clearly eager to chat with someone. I introduced myself to the woman on the phone with an admiring line about her handbag. She seemed extremely relieved to have someone actually approach her and we immediately began to converse. She seemed very sweet and I liked her energy. Upon discovering what I do, she launched into a hurricane of just how difficult it was to meet men in London and how “she’d tried everything”. I listened attentively but didn’t offer any advice, as I would have normally a year ago.
My very supportive boyfriend encouraged me to follow my dream of helping to empower women to find love, and paid for me to be coached by a well-known “Supercoach”, named Judymay, who coaches other coaches on how to get themselves out there and succeed as coaches. Judymay explained to me the importance of “not giving free advice” to people I meet. Clients value much more what they pay for and will actually put that into action. It was true. My parents, who are therapists, had always told me that “if someone wants professional advice, they will pay for it. If they won’t pay for it, they don’t really want it or aren’t ready to hear it”.
Thanks to Judymay’s advice, I was able to avoid telling this woman that she would easily meet someone if she would just mingle rather than looking at her phone. At that moment, the man I’d exchanged a glance with came over and began speaking with me. The woman by my side was just about to shrink away and scroll through her phone again when I introduced her to this man who seemed very keen to chat. I noticed my boyfriend looking at me a bit warily, so I came over to him, gave him a reassuring pat and introduced him to another group standing beside us that I’d never even met before. He easily began to converse with the man in the group, so I moved on.
This time I spotted a woman sitting on one of the chairs to the side of the room reading a book. Yes, that’s right: she was actually sitting and reading a book during a mingling event. I decided to give her the benefit of the doubt and consider that maybe she was married and didn’t want to meet anyone (though I think we should all be meeting new people all the time regardless of our couple situation). I sat down beside her and asked a question about the book, remarking that I’d heard the author’s name (I hadn’t) and wondering what she thought of it. She seemed pleased to have someone who actually came over to speak with her and spoke animatedly about the various books the author had written and how much she enjoyed his writing style. When she discovered that I was a Love Coach, she right away said, “oh gosh, I could sure use one; I haven’t had a date in years”. “Yes,” I thought. “That might have something to do with the fact that you are sitting and reading a book rather than taking the opportunity to mingle while at an event loaded with available men”. I said nothing but instead began asking her more questions about her. In fact she was easily engaged, very well spoken, and had a fascinating life. I was captivated and saddened by the thought of this fascinating woman not being able to find a man.
Just then, a man with an cute white doggy sat down beside us and I immediately went to stroke him and commented on how adorable he was. From my many dog-owner friends, I even knew some of the key questions to ask to keep a dog conversation afloat. The woman beside me was just about to launch into her book again when, instead, I introduced her to the man with the dog (who I’d never met before). As it turned out, she too was a dog owner and the two easily chatted about the funny things their two dogs did (that wasn’t so hard). Considering my job there done, I noticed the woman with the mobile phone was once again back on her phone as the man I’d introduced her to had moved on.
I was about to return to rescue her again when a man with a lovely knitted scarf beside me caught my eye. I smiled and commented on his scarf. He told me that his daughter had knitted it and we began a lively conversation about how lovely it was that children were being taught how to knit in school (my daughter’s school had a knitting club and she was eagerly knitting a scarf for her little sister). At that point, I noticed my boyfriend looking like he needed rescuing, so I introduced the man with the scarf to the woman with the phone. By the time I walked over to give my boyfriend a warm squeeze, the man with the scarf had moved on and the woman was back on her phone. Luckily, the performance was just about to start so we were all called to sit down.
During the intermission, the woman with the phone approached me eagerly and asked me if I knew the two men that I had introduced her to. “No, I just met them,” I replied. She seemed shocked. “But how did you talk to them so easily?” she asked. “It was like you’d known them for ages!” “Actually, that’s one of the things that I teach my clients,” I replied, shamelessly giving myself a plug as Judymay had instructed. She quickly asked for my card. I apologised that my new logo wasn’t ready yet, so I didn’t have any cards, but promised I’d email her if she gave me her email address. The woman with the book approached me as well at the end of the play and thanked me for introducing her to the man with the dog. It turned out that she and the man were almost neighbours and the two had a dog-walking date planned for that coming weekend. She was nervous, she said though, as she hadn’t had a date in years. I said that I’d be happy to guide her as “that’s one of the things that I do with clients”, and she gave me her card.
My boyfriend meanwhile had made a good work connection. There was a queue for picking up the coats on the way out so I took the opportunity to chat with a couple that was waiting beside us. We found out that all four of us were going to be at the same art exhibit the following weekend so we exchanged numbers saying that maybe we could grab a coffee there.
At the end of that event, I walked out with two perspective clients and some possible new friends. My boyfriend had made a good business connection; and a date between two complete strangers was arranged. All of that was made possible by some simple mingling.
So why are so many women single when it’s just a matter of an easy conversation? I asked some of my shier single friends that question. “Maybe we just don’t feel confident enough to try,” one told me. Or maybe they just don’t know the techniques for mingling in a social situation.
Julia Keller is a Love Coach, speaker, writer, and Driven Woman member. She helps women on mingling and how to get the love life that you desire.