Valentine's Day: Advice on Gifts and Date Planning

454931603Whether you’re single or in a relationship, you probably downplay Valentine’s Day when asked how you feel about the holiday – at least publicly. No one wants to be that person who embraces a holiday created by the greeting card and candy companies.

As it turns out, Valentine’s Day brings out the hypocrite in us all. In a survey by It’s Just Lunch, the premiere dating service for busy professionals, nearly one-third of both men and women surveyed said they feel “indifferent” about Valentine’s Day, with another 13 percent saying it makes them “miserable” or “dreadful.” Yet, over 70 percent of those same men and women expect to spend Valentine’s Day with someone if they’ve been on four or more dates.

So, let’s face it – you’re probably going to need to acknowledge Valentine’s Day if you’ve been on more than a few dates with someone. Are you feeling that misery and dread now as you worry about making plans and buying a gift? Don’t worry. It’s Just Lunch has you covered with the results of the rest of their survey:

The date

Men and women both overwhelming agreed on their top date choices: dinner at a restaurant with some significance in your relationship or a weekend getaway.

Haven’t been together long enough for those options? The men leaned toward wanting to go to a fancy dinner while the women were more likely to want to have something cooked for them at home.

It’s Just Lunch spokesperson Irene LaCota says split the difference, “Go out for a fancy dinner and then come home to make dessert together where you can kick off your shoes, relax and enjoy each other’s company.”

The gift

People may be indifferent, but they still want a gift. Only 17 percent of men and 6 percent of women said they wanted nothing for Valentine’s Day. Of course, the gift should be commensurate with your relationship length. If you’ve been dating less than a month, 59 percent of men and 49 percent of women say they don’t expect a gift. However, if you’ve been dating one to three months, those percentages dropped by approximately half.

“Play it safe if it’s your first Valentine’s Day together,” advised LaCota. “If you’ve been on at least a few dates together, make plans together sometime over Valentine’s weekend and invest in at least a card and a small gift.”

For the ladies, flowers are always a popular choice. The folks at It’s Just Lunch wondered, however, if the iconic red roses were seen as generic and devoid of thought and attention. As it turns out, the ladies love them! Fifty-seven percent of women said they love red roses, with only 16 percent thinking they were generic.

And where should you send these flowers? You might think she wants the attention and jealous glares of the other ladies in the office when her bouquet arrives, but 57 percent of women want their flowers delivered in person by you. Only 20 percent want their flowers delivered to the office.

Jewelry and plans for a future activity you can do together followed on the women’s wish list.

For the men, a card and a weekend getaway topped their gift wish list . . . right behind one other thing that might not surprise you: sex. Fifty percent of the men chose sex as one of the top three things they were hoping for this Valentine’s Day, while just 22 percent of the women said the same.

If your relationship isn’t at the weekend getaway or romping between the sheets stage, buy him a bottle of something you’ve seen him order, like a bottle of red wine or a small bottle of whiskey. Don’t know him well enough yet to pick out something personal? Consider a virtual gift, such as an iTunes gift card. A third of men said they’d be happy to receive a virtual gift because it would be something they could actually use.

Source:   It’s Just Lunch 2015 survey of approximately 1,000 singles


Do Sports and Dating Mix?

186918094No doubt, men and women across the country will sit down next weekend to watch the Super Bowl together. For many, it might be the only time of year they enjoy a sporting event together. For others, however, sports are an important part of their life, and they want a partner who can enjoy sporting events with them.

It’s Just Lunch, a matchmaking service for busy professionals, conducted a survey of over 1,400 people to determine the role sports plays in relationships. The results of the survey suggest that the younger you are, the more important it is that you have sports in common. Here are some of the most interesting results from the survey:

Nearly one in every five people in the survey said sports have negatively impacted a relationship in the past. That number rose to one in every three people when looking at the 18-24 age group and dropped down to one in ten with those aged 55-64. Women were more likely to say the issue was the amount of time and money spent on sports, while men were more likely to admit that a bad mood after a “crappy game” caused the fight.

Good news for sports teams: 45 percent of both men and women say they’d like to go to a sporting event for their first date. Somewhat surprisingly, women were more enthusiastic about it than men. Only 23 percent of women said they’d rather not go to a sporting event on a first date, compared to over 30 percent of men.

The younger someone is, the more likely they found it important their partner be interested in sports. Twenty-five percent of 25- to 34-year olds indicated their partner must like sports and be willing to go to and watch games, whereas only 10 percent of 55- to 64-year olds felt the same way. Overall, 59 percent of men and 43 percent of women wanted a partner who would watch a game or go to a game every once in awhile.

Younger people are also more likely to spend an entire Saturday or Sunday in front of the television watching college or NFL football five months out of the year. Forty-one percent of 25- to 34-year olds said they’d rejoice if they learned their partner spent their weekends this way, because that’s how they like to spend their weekends. That number plummeted to 16 percent in the 45-54 age group.

More good news for sports teams: 84 percent of people said they’d be willing to use vacation time to travel to a sporting event with their significant other. Fifty-three percent of both men and women said they’d be ok if it was just once for a big event, and 31 percent responded with the more enthusiastic: “When do we leave? I’ll pack my bags!”

Super Bowl parties could be a good place to meet a date. Forty-five percent of both men and women said a Super Bowl party would be a good place to meet a date. Only 21 percent of men and 14 percent of women responded that Super Bowl parties were a bad place to meet a date, the rest said it depended on who was throwing the party.

Have sports ever been an issue in your relationship? Check out our tips for making it through football season together, which can easily be applied to any sport!

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Source:   It’s Just Lunch 2015 survey of 1400+ singles

Is it important to you that your potential partner like sports or be open to learning more? Let the matchmakers at It's Just Lunch help you find your match! Get started today by calling us at 1-800-489-7897 or click here to tell us a little about yourself.


New Year's Resolutions for Dating: Diet and Fitness

Eat better. Lose weight. Find love. These are all common resolutions at the start of any new year. We polled over 5,000 singles to find out just how important diet and fitness are in their dating search, and what we learned is that most people simply want someone whose lifestyle matches their own. 186470165

Diet

A new year, a new you. Maybe you're cutting out sugar or meat from your diet, or maybe you're concentrating on portion control. You probably have many reasons for wanting to adjust your diet, but for many of us it's about weight loss and looking and feeling more attractive.

Our survey revealed that many of you, whether you recognize it or not, factor diet and eating habits into the dating process. Maybe it's just your nerves, but 41 percent of women and 37 percent of men admitted to eating less than they normally would on a first date. 

What was really interesting was how men and women reacted differently to a date who didn't eat much. Thirty-two percent of the men said they think a woman is trying to impress him when she picks at her meal on a date. Nineteen percent said they were glad she is watching her waistline.

Meanwhile, women found men who didn't eat on dates to be a turnoff - 24 percent of them thought the man was just trying to save money by eating less and nearly 30 percent thought it revealed he didn't like eating out. 

Scared to order the ribeye because she just revealed she's a vegetarian and ordered a salad? Only 20 percent of our respondents said it was important to them that their partner share their same eating habits, so go ahead and order something you'll enjoy. 

Fitness

The other piece of looking and feeling attractive, of course, is related to your level of physical fitness. Confidence is attractive, and for many of us our confidence is tied to what we see in the mirror. That's probably why so many - 73 percent of the women in our survey and 66 percent of the men - said they get themselves in shape before they start dating. 

Physical fitness also happens to be something many of us find important when looking for a potential partner. Forty-eight percent of men and forty percent of women surveyed said it is "extremely important" to them that the person they're dating be in good shape, and just four percent of both men and women said it wasn't important at all. 

So how in shape do you need to be? The survey revealed that most people simply want someone whose physical fitness matches their own. 

We all know physical attraction is important, but beyond that most of us want to be with someone who can join us in our favorite activities. When physical fitness levels differ drastically, the odds that you can enjoy the same activities together - whether that's running or rock climbing or skiing - are greatly reduced. 

And it turns out that being in a relationship with someone might actually improve your fitness level. A third of both men and women in the survey said working out becomes more of a priority once they're in a romantic relationship, and nearly fifty percent said they are "extremely likely" to encourage their partner to be more active. 

As you think about your diet and exercise resolutions for the new year, remember to make your goals about you. It's feeling great about yourself that will attract the type of person you want to be dating.

Is your New Year's resolution meeting someone new? Let the matchmakers at It's Just Lunch help you find your match! Get started today by calling us at 1-800-489-7897 or click here to tell us a little about yourself.


Shape Up Your Love Life in 2015: The Top 3 New Year's Resolutions for Daters

 

Party hat on and glass of bubbly in hand, you watched the ball drop and rang in the New Year.  But without that special someone to smooch at midnight, something remains amiss as you greet 2015.  Hoping for a different scenario next year?  Follow the "3 R's"—three dating resolutions that will shape up your love life in the New Year!

Bigstock-Midnight-Kiss-1068841Reflect:  As the calendar turns, pause and take the opportunity to reflect on your 2014 love life.  Too many daters move from relationship to relationship without being sufficiently introspective throughout the process.  Yes, reflection takes some time.  Yes, sometimes we unearth unfavorable aspects about ourselves.  But unless we identify maladaptive dating patterns, we're prone to repeating them.  Tangible Tip:  Select one facet of your love life that must change and stick with it.  Sarah reflected on 2014 and learned, "I realized I date men longer than I should—meaning, I go on five or six dates with a guy, recognize the connection isn't there, but I keep seeing him thinking maybe the sparks will develop.  But they never do.  I end up prolonging the inevitable break-up which makes it harder for both of us in the end."

Reconsider:  Some of us need to reconsider who we go out with in 2015.  We all have an image of our ideal partner but too many daters rule out anyone who doesn't fit their rigid criteria.  Take it from those who've been there, sometimes The One shows up in a slightly different package than we'd expected.  Tangible Tip:  Make a list of the qualities you want in your future spouse.  Dream big and have fun with it!  Highlight the "must have" characteristics—those traits on which you will not bend.  Consider any others to be negotiable.  As Janie explained, "I always said I wouldn't date a guy with kids because I watched my friends deal with too much drama with their boyfriends' children.  So when I found out Eddie had kids I figured our first date would be our last.  But he had every other quality I'd ever hoped for—he's trustworthy, loving, successful, and treats me like a princess—so I married him!  Ultimately, I realized which qualities were imperative and that having kids didn't need to be a deal-breaker.  As a bonus, I learned I like my role as a stepmother."

Reach Out:  If you want your love life to change in 2015, you have to make some changes.  Remember the definition of insanity?  It's doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.  For those in the dating scene, this means reaching out in a new direction.  Push yourself a bit—nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?  Tangible Tip:  Interview friends whose relationships you respect.  How did they meet The One?  Commit to stepping out of your comfort zone by trying one of the methods that worked for them.  Bob had never considered joining a dating service until he befriended Don and Kelsey.  "They have what I want.  I've never known a couple so perfect for each other and so in love.  I found out they met through It's Just Lunch.  So, I've decided to give it a go."

Ring in the New Year by resolving to follow the "3 R's"—reflect on your patterns, reconsider your criteria, and reach out in a different direction.  Shape up your dating style and see who comes your way in 2015!