A Matchmaker Talks About Finding Love After the Pandemic
Hi and welcome to the BAS Weekend Wellness Column! My name is Erynne Elkins and I’m a Well-Being Advocate and Certified Breathwork Facilitator. Every Friday I’ll share a holistic wellness modality available here in the Bay Area. Cheers to good health!
The Geometry of Dating
“Life has changed. I call it the great re-awakening. You have this opportunity to connect with people, to expand your circles like you’ve never (done before),” proclaimed Shannon Lundgren of Shannon’s Circle. Pairing couples is natural for Shannon. “I came into this business (inspired by) a fellow college alumnus who had been matchmaking for 20+ years. (I thought), ‘Oh my gosh, this is so great,’ because this is something I do all the time more informally in my life. That this could actually be a career was kind of a novel idea. That was about eight years ago,” Shannon told me recently over Zoom.
When the student is ready, the teacher will appear. “Coming out of the pandemic, our social skills are like muscles. They need a workout. It’s time to start putting your best foot forward,” she added. An energizing invitation indeed! The idea of “getting back to normal” sounds awesome! The reality, however, is it may take a bit of getting used to.
“If we think about the pandemic, we went from whatever circles (we had) and then it was totally closed down. It was almost like anti-circle expansion because you couldn’t even see people. That definitely has had a lot of impact on mental health (and) physical health for many of us because we haven’t had those interactions with others. Some had gone through the pandemic alone and that’s been really isolating, not being able to hug or see family and friends. And others have been with family or a love partner and not other people. (So) how do we defy the gravity of shrinking circles and make conscious, intentional decisions to expand (them)?” Shannon offered.
Oh no. Does this mean back to the virtual drawing board, hoping to find “the one” via a computer screen? Please, not that again. “Don’t let the discomfort of a relationship that didn’t work (out) take you to the sidelines. You want to stay full(y) on the field, especially if you really want to be in a relationship. The process is intended to fail fast. 99% of the time the person you go out with is not going to be the one. That’s okay because you’re only looking for one. Relationships are meant to be stepping stones in our journey, rather than all or nothing. View it as this line that’s circling up to a better and better fit,” Shannon reassured.
Ahh. Nothing like math to help put things in perspective. Wonderful. But for the love of ice cream, what about people’s genuine desire to be in a relationship now that the vaccine has hopefully kicked Rona to the curb? “You build your own sundae in life. You make your own life full and happy and (a relationship) can be the sprinkles on top that makes it better. I think there’s a lot of pressure in relationships, a lot of blame, a lot of expectation, and then when it doesn’t work out, it’s like ‘Oh, well this person was going to be everything to me’. Instead, how can we think about relationships as ‘We try out (those) sprinkles, (those) sprinkles worked for a bit and now we’re evolving into something else.’ Relationships are an evolution in terms of us learning about ourselves,” Shannon shared.
Dig it. Self-reflection as it relates to being in a relationship is good for the soul. Now, what about Bay Area independents who aren’t actively looking and are totally okay with that. What about an intentional dating hiatus? “That’s okay too. It’s okay to be in a place where you’re just like, ‘Hey, I want to spend time with friends. I want to spend time with family. The irony is, when you’re happy and you’ve got the sundae without the sprinkles, that’s exactly when the sprinkles happen. When you don’t have expectations. That’s when you meet and have the most fun,” Shannon added as a reminder.
Back to the ice cream. Yes! Let’s also circle back to the dedicated romantics who are diligently looking for their person. “One of the things I always tell my date coaching clients to do is to recite to themselves, ‘I’m so excited to meet this wonderful person. I wonder where I’ll meet them?’ Then your mind knows you’re going to meet this person,” she quipped.
All are welcome to join Shannon’s Circle. If you want to be in the loop and become eligible for introductions to her clients (if there’s a fit), you can fill out this form. “I do focus on the San Francisco Bay Area. My best fit for clients are those that are intellectually curious singles who are looking for that one plus one equals 11 type of relationship. It’s the synergy of two people having more of an impact together than being by themselves,” Shannon explained. And just like that, one plus one equals two has been replaced. Who could ask for anything more?
For more information, visit Shannon’s website (below)
Shannon also offers a course (The Love MBA) to help women reboot their dating lives no matter where they are starting from. It’s a coaching program where Shannon works one on one with the client.