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The Dating Coaches’ Cheat Sheet

with Hindy Herman and Hanna Kahana 

I’m Hindy Herman. I’m a mother of seven. After watching my children struggle through the shidduch system, I realized I needed to learn the proper tools to help others. I became a certified life coach, teaching skills in mindset shifts, building and enhancing relationships, and communicating effectively. I work most often with singles who are navigating the shidduch system. Each person I work with is different, but I have found in my work that these core pointers for effective dating are universal. 

  1. Get to know yourself before you even start. Recognize your abilities, your character, your values, and your weaknesses and flaws. Understanding yourself will help you identify the values and character traits that are most important in a future spouse.


  1. Be clear and specific about what you are looking for. The less specific and the more vague your words are, the more difficult it will be to see the qualities you are really looking for in the person you are dating.


  1. Let the person you are dating get to know the best of the real you. Put all your effort into sharing the best of you, with your dress, speech, and actions, but stay true to who you really are. Let them get to know all about you slowly. Sharing everything about you at once can overwhelm them and give them a false impression of your true self.


  1. Show up on a date the way you want others to see you. If you are feeling insecure and fearful, it will come through at some point on the date. And if you are feeling calm, secure and confident, that will come through as well.


  1. Be present, focused on the person you are out with now. Comparing, judging, or analyzing them will prevent you from enjoying yourself at the present moment with the person you are with right now.


  1. Never decide to end it or to get engaged when you feel anxious or unsure. A waste of time is ending something when you are missing information and don’t have clarity. It’s never a waste to go out again to gain knowledge and understanding.


I’m Hanna Kahana. I am a certified life coach who specializes in dating and the first year of marriage. My goal is to help daters gain clarity as they navigate through the wilderness of dating. I’m not here to tell you what to do – I’m here to help you figure out what you want to do. 

  1. Hishtadlus comes in all shapes and sizes. It can be exhausting to constantly feel that you need to do more to get married. Come up with ways to do your part that do not make you feel like you want to quit. Figure out what hishtadlus means to you and stick to it. No one would ever confuse a baby kitten with a lion. Don’t mistake someone else’s required efforts with yours.


  1. Rejection is not easy, but it’s all about perspective. When someone says no to you, what that means is that everything that encompasses them doesn’t match with everything that encompasses you. It’s not about being good enough. It’s about not being good for each other.


  1. Don’t look for a spouse to make you happy. Look for one that can enhance your happiness. You need to start a relationship with existing knowledge of how to make yourself feel good. When you rely on others to provide your sense of self-worth, you are constantly looking for your next fix. When it comes from within, it’s real and lasting.


  1. There are many shades of red flags. Aside from the ones that are generally accepted as red flags, you need to decide what you consider to be a red flag. What may be a red flag for your friend may be something that you love in a partner. Never compare. Look inwards to figure out how to color your flags.


  1.  Don’t be afraid to sit with your own feelings. The best way to gain clarity when you’re unsure how to proceed is to put a title to your feelings. “Why do I keep hesitating to go out again?” “Why am I blocking myself from opening up?” We constantly look at others to dictate how we should feel. However, we never think of having that discussion with ourselves!


  1. Don’t focus on things you can’t control. Channel your efforts towards the things you can improve. Aside from doing your hishtadlus, the actual number of dates or suggestions you get is not something you can dictate. If you’re giving it all you got, and you still get a “no”, that’s beyond your control. Allowing yourself to let go and allow G-d into the areas you can’t change will allow for the best change of all. It will allow for real happiness in your life.
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