Dating failure is Beyonce’s fault!

Last week Michelle and I went on a ‘kinda blind date’ with each other. A friend in common said we must meet and she was… oh, oh, oh, so right! The instant match was more synchronised than the two back up dancers in Beyonce’s “All The Single Ladies” music video.

If you could picture us in black leotards, the almost three hr ‘dancing’ went like this: Michelle would share anecdotes on modern dating failure and I cheekily backed it up with BS.

Not the kind of BS you are thinking about, but Behavioural Science and the psychological component behind dating failure.

When everyday figures constantly tell us that ‘if you like it, then you should have put a ring on it’, unconsciously we absorb pre-conceived ideas of what IS the PERFECT relationship. But if we do not fit the image of a couple or we are not fast enough to tie the knot, we are doomed to fail. Now, we start blaming QueenBey for our dating failures!

The line ‘Cause you had your turn, but now you gon’ learn what it really feels like to miss me’ quietly normalises revenge and punishment as  a way to relate to  others. It tells us that relationships are a constant transactional dynamic of what you do to me and what I do to you. Constantly keeping score in an unhealthy tit for tat.  Now, listen to this :BS (Behavioural Science, remember?):  Psychology says that punishment is the worst technique to influence behaviour. It causes unbalanced emotional responses and does not actually offer any information about more appropriate or desired behaviors.

So people, really, stop punishing others ASAP!.

Hold your horses members of ‘The Beyhive’, I must re-vindicate QueenBey. With the line Don’t be mad once you see that he want it’ Beyoncé urges us all to tap into (bad pun) the 90’s Spice Girls wisdom of knowing ‘what I want, what I really, really want’. To create our very own choreography of what a couple is, and even better start learning the moves to dance our feet off to achieve it. Orchestrating this is hard yet achievable, trust me, I swear on my BS experience this tune will enable us to have much more satisfying relationships.

Now Michelle and I understand why we had to meet. Two single ladies that ‘put the hands up’ on the belief that reflecting on pop culture, society and most importantly working on ourselves can take dating ‘to destiny, to infinity and beyond… Oh, oh, oh!’

DrFabiolaBarbaPonce

 

By Dr. Faby Barba Ponce

PhD Organisation Psychology
Masters in Management and Social Development ( U de G, Mexico)
BA Psychology Honours (ITESO, Mexico)

Good vs Evil

Soooo if you’re anything like me you can’t help but getting sucked into ‘car crash’ TV, and the season finale of Ali Oetjen’s journey on The Bachelorette was no exception.

Now, Ali is no angel. She comes off the back of not one, but TWO similar reality TV shows. After supposedly sailing off into the sunset with hunky Grant all the way to America she comes skulking back to OZ with her tail between her legs amidst rumours of shagging his best friend.

Yet, you’ve gotta give a girl props for getting straight back out there. And this time she had a very specific set of criteria:

  1. You must be willing to move for me and live in Adelaide
  2. I want to be married yesterday
  3. I want to be barefoot and pregnant for the next five years (that *may* be a tad exaggerated..)

After fighting their way past 16 other hopefuls, we are down to two. There’s Todd, the guy who rocked up to first impressions dressed in a full suit of armour. Oh what a fairy tale ending for the producers that the pure-of-heart-knight-in-shining-armour Todd would be in the final two fighting for Ali’s heart. Then there is Taite. He’s handsome, he’s broody, he is labelled emotionally unavailable and not willing to commit. He is the Jafar to Ali’s Aladdin. Classic good vs evil.

But is it?

Todd is portrayed as the dreamboat catch. He is decreeing his love for Ali and telling her in the finale he will give her everything she wants. There will be no sacrifice too big. He will submit to ALL HER NEEDS. He rocks up to the finale with an engagement ring.

Taite, on the other hand, is totally up-front. Honestly telling Ali that he is not in love with her after 6 weeks of COMPETING for her affection and doesn’t think he can commit to marriage, babies and uprooting his life just yet. He wants to see how things go in the real world. What. A. Villain.

Ali chooses Taite. Social media has a field day.

BacheloretteTweet

The thing is, successful relationships aren’t about checklists.

It’s not about mapping out your life and finding ‘the one’ that perfectly fits the mold.

This is where society’s cues get it so very very wrong and men and women’s expectations of what a relationship looks like from both the outside and the inside get so very jaded. As women, we think we all want a Todd, but what we really need is to step out our comfort zone for the Taite’s of the world. As men, there is nothing wrong with putting yourself out there emotionally, but compromising too much and not staying true to yourself will just leave you as a nice guy finishing last.

Why not join our next dating adventure and do things a little differently. We have hooked up with the Curious Cartel crew (a match made in heaven…) to bring you The Lock In – immersive theatre with an 80s sci-fi throw back and Captain Morgan cocktails to boot.

You never know, your Taite could be waiting.

Under Pressure


If my dating life in my 20’s had a soundtrack it would have been “Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?” by Rod Stewart. Big, bold, and brassy with confidence oozing all over the place.

In my 30’s it would have updated to LMFAO’s “Sexy and I know it”. Smug, with a sly smirk.

And yet, as the years drift by and I launch into my 4th decade…the music has changed.

Nowadays it more likely to be Queen and David Bowie’s mournful “Under Pressure”.

With The Travelling Wilburys’ “Handle me with Care” playing quietly in the background.

Urgh.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m a confident lad. I back myself. Hell, I even like what I see in the mirror (except for the hairline – that’s a crime against humanity).

But…I’m feeling under pressure, you know?

Sure the pressure from the date is one thing – dressing up, stepping up, putting yourself on the line.

But I find the real pressure is actually ‘around’ the date.

Family members at Christmas lunch gingerly asking “So, are you seeing anyone at the moment?”. Being unofficially known as “the unmarried one”. Realising that not only are you the only cousin without kids, but your dating life is now a fascinating live soap opera and the topic of numerous lively conversations. Doesn’t help when you overhear Aunt Martha blurting out “Why doesn’t he just pick one?”.

Settle down Martha…remember, we get to choose which retirement home we’ll stick you in!

I totally get how people can avoid dating all together. Just tap out of the game and replace it with long work hours, friends, computer games or alcohol.

But what if the solution isn’t to avoid the pressure but to embrace it?

Instead of running away from the intensity…lean into it?

LeanAnnie_BDCBlog

It’s probably crazy but maybe what you need when you’re under pressure is…more pressure! As the philosopher once said “No pressure, No diamonds”.

So…in that spirit, our next dating adventure is going to put you under some real pressure. We’re heading into The Rocks and doing an Escape room! Yep, that craze from Europe has headed to Australia and we’re diving headlong into it.

No safe dating for us. We’re going to mix dating, alcohol, and a bit of claustrophobia and see what happens.

I mean, it worked for Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock in “Speed”.

Reality Check


Learning about love from Reality TV is like learning about cooking from Silence of the Lambs.

But Channel 7 plans to change all that with their new dating show.

Their secret weapon? Dating guru Matthew Hussey. But more on him later.

First…the usual.

In a wonderful bit of casting, the always bubbly host Fifi Box will take the role of the always bubbly host. She’ll be guiding a bevy of unlucky-in-love beauties in their quest for true love…and hopefully a part-time modelling contract. It’ll all happen at an exotic locale like the Gold Coast or the Sunshine Coast or a large McMansion in Terry Hills. They’ll overuse words like “romance”, “soulmate”, and at least one girl will say “I didn’t come here to make friends”.

So how will this dating show compete with its competition?

“Farmer wants a wife” has a monopoly on doe-eyed city-slickers looking for a “real” Aussie man. A bloke who wears an Akubra un-ironically, swats away flies with one hand while he cradles a XXXX in the other, and thinks a good date is to take a young lass sheep-dipping wearing his best flannie.

“Love Island” has a monopoly on sub-100 IQs, fake tans, and more tribal tattoos than a Nickleback concert. When the last winner’s surname was literally “Crapp”, you have to wonder.

“The Bachelor” has a monopoly on…well…awesomeness. It had a monopoly on awesome. Unless you were playing the Bachelor drinking game where you had to scull a shot of tequila every time a girl said “like”. Then it was very not awesome. It was positively deadly.

And of course who could forget “Dating Naked” which had a monopoly on awkwardness, and very clever editing.

Well, like I said – Channel Seven’s “The Single Wives” has a secret weapon.

The world’s number one dating coach: Matthew Hussey (who we absolutely admire btw).

RealityCheck_SingleWives.jpg

With over 183 million views on his Youtube channel he’s famous for demystifying the challenges and confusion of modern dating. He offers general advice like – look to meet someone on the street and in cafes not in bars. But his main audience is women who he encourages to be confident, set their standards high, and look first to generate a fulfilled life before venturing out into the dating world.

So, if you want to add a little bit of education into your weekly dating show guilty pleasure then “The Single Wives” might be just the ticket. And then…you can come and practice your new found skills at Bondi Dating Club. Our next adventure is on a catamaran sailing for 4 hours. No biggie.

Because Reality TV is good, but it ain’t nothing compared to Reality.

Your Guardian Angel/a


He was charming.

On the app.

But now in real life? No so much.

In fact, he’s less than charming…he’s making you feel deeply uncomfortable.

At first it was just a vibe. Something wasn’t quite right, but you couldn’t put your finger on it. But as the date drags on, red flags start popping up everywhere.

His laddish jokes start becoming more brash and sexist, the witty innuendo is now just vulgar and dirty, and you’re feeling weirded out by his constant habit of “accidentally” brushing your thigh.

You’re three drinks in and feeling light-headed so you head to the bathroom to get away from him and to collect your thoughts.

“Am just being silly or is this guy actually really dodgy?” you think as panic catches in your throat.

Then you see it. A poster.

After a quick read, a wave of relief washes over you as you realise you’ve found your “out”.


The poster encourages women in bars and pubs around the CBD to locate bar staff and “ask for Angela” if they feel unsafe or threatened on a date. The code word alerts trained staff to discreetly escort the person to safety. It’s a new initiative by the NSW government to combat violence and sexual assault.

Anti-social behaviour is not a new thing but dating apps seem to be exacerbating the problem;

“Given the increasing popularity of online dating apps, many people are meeting for dates at bars, clubs and pubs having never met beyond the screens of their phone or computer”

– Troy Grant (British Minister for Police)

It’s a great initiative and we here at Bondi Dating Club hope it goes a long way in cleaning up some of the darker elements of online dating.

In fact, it is one of the reasons we founded Bondi Dating Club. We wanted to create a fun and exciting, yet safe, environment in which to date and meet people. Being a curated event means people are vetted and the co-hosts are on hand to keep the vibe friendly and respectful.

GuardianAngela_SpeedDate

So whether we’re star-gazing at Sydney Observatory, wine-tasting at Bondi’s Neighbourhood bar, or watching whales breach, lunge and tail slap whilst wandering down the Coogee Coastal Walk – you’ll be able to really relax and let your guard down because…we’ll be your dating guardian angels.