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I often get asked how I became a matchmaker. It wasn’t something that I ever aspired to be as a child. I didn’t even know you could become a professional matchmaker until a few years ago. I don’t have one of those stories of I always knew I wanted to fix people up and play cupid. I did always believe in true love and I often gave people too many chances in relationships. I was not born an expert on love and relationships. Actually I had quite the opposite. My parents divorced when I was 8 years old and I never really knew what true love was. I dreamed of it and held on to the hope that prince charming would sweep me off my feet and we would live happily ever after. However, after my relationships and my marriage didn’t last I knew there had to be more to love. So I went on a search to find the missing pieces in my life.

After my divorce, I went on a search to understand the dating world, relationships, and the true meaning of love. I studied different avenues of dating, studied intimate and interpersonal communication at my university and began to study others in the dating industry. I started my first company, The Dating Stylist, to help singles makeover their online profiles and create a positive self image about themselves. By the way this company was born from finding my ex-husband on a dating site while we were married! The guys on there were so creepy! I knew someone could help them create better profiles. I’m sure all the single ladies are shouting “Hell yeah they are creepy!” From there I was offered a job at an international matchmaking agency. With each matchmaking client I met I felt like the agency could do more to help the clients find love. The agency treated the clients as a factory line, setting them up on random dates without really learning who they were as a person. I couldn’t take the impersonal business practices any longer and branched off on my own. Matchmaking came naturally to me and I wanted to create a company that took love and people seriously. I wanted my clients to feel worthy of finding the best relationships. I wanted to increase the confidence of the breast cancer survivor who’s husband left her during the fight of her life or the single mom that didn’t feel pretty and worthy anymore. I wanted each client to feel beautiful and fabulous. So after intense studying and lots of late nights I launched my company, The Dating Boutique.

Matchmaking is a serious business. It’s not a factory line of sending singles on dates. I get to know who my clients are as people. I feel the heartache behind their stories and I see the hope in their eyes. It is my job to help steer them on the right path and help them find love again.

Through my journey of heartache and confusion, I learned what true love is. I’m not a matchmaker that had this perfect love life. I messed up in love multiple times but the difference is I didn’t give up. I learned from my mistakes. I knew true love was out there. So I studied it, I built it, I created it, I found true love. Sometimes we have to shred all the pain and hurt of the past to get to the depth of who we really are. It is a pain in the ass. It hurts like hell but it is worth it.

Now I want others to know you are not alone. I’ve been through the trenches of dating and marriage disasters but I came out stronger. I came out learning and practicing true authentic love. I don’t paint love as all rainbows and sunshine, it is damn hard sometimes. Is it worth it? Yes. Is it going to get better? Yes. Are you worthy of finding true authentic love? YES!

Here are a few steps on becoming your own matchmaker:

1. Be true to you. Do not try to become someone just because you think someone will like you more. You are beautifully uniquely you.

2. Let go of the past. One of the most important steps to finding love is moving forward. Don’t hold on to your ex. There is a reason the relationship ended. Why are you dwelling on a relationship that is over? Why stay with a person that didn’t choose you when there is someone out there that would do anything to be with you?

3. Forgive. Recognize your past hurts, feel all the hurt and pain and then let it go. We all have stories to tell of heartbreak, unfaithfulness, abuse, and the unthinkable. You are better than all the pain in your life. You were made with a purpose. Forgive those who hurt you and move ahead. Do not let them have one more piece of your precious energy. Use your energy on healing and creating healthy relationships.

4. Practice loving yourself. Surround yourself with things that make your soul smile. Look in the mirror and tell yourself how great you look. Speak and think positive life giving thoughts.

5. Finally, don’t give up hope. The perfect match is out there. Sometimes it takes time to find true love. All the scars from the dating battlefield will be worth it.

Get out there and create a life you love! Remember you are the author of your story.