The COST of Valentine’s Day

happy valentines dayThere was an article in the TIMES this month about how much couples spend on Valentine’s Day and it was a whooping $19 billion dollars!!!

“The National Retail Federation predicts that Americans will spend a total of $19 billion on Valentine’s giving this year. That averages out to $142 per person celebrating the holiday.”  Read more at

But that is for couples!  You are single so how much will you spend?  Nothing, you say?  You are not seeing anyone so why would you have to spend any money on February 14th?  I will tell you why.  I recommend that you attend an event for singles, which may have a small cost.

This year is the first that I have gotten so many emails about events for singles.  This is great.  On a day when a lot of singles feel depressed and frustrated about their love lives for not having anyone to share it with, THIS year singles are going to be out having fun, meeting potentials and cutting a rug.  (see below for a sample of events)


Here are a few of the events I’ve seen advertised:

Mix, Mingle & Match – Speed Dating in the Art District

The Art of Romance Committee

Saturday, February 14, 2015 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (EST)

Mount Rainier, MD


Valentine’s Day Virginia Winery Tour

Wine Pro Tours

Saturday, February 14, 2015 from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM (EST)

Arlington, VA


Valentine’s Day Poetry Slam

America’s Future Workforce

Friday, February 13, 2015 from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM (EST)

Washington, DC


Valentine’s Day Sweetheart Ball

Thrift Chapter #12

Saturday, February 14, 2015 at 8:00 PM – Sunday, February 15, 2015 at 12:00 AM (EST)

Upper Marlboro, MD


The Velvet Rope Affair – An Affair to Remember

The Art of Romance Committee

Saturday, February 14, 2015 at 9:00 PM – Sunday, February 15, 2015 at 12:00 AM (EST)

Mount Rainier, MD


And of course my own flirt instructors will be teaching singles how to mingle and flirt with the opposite sex at our COED FLIRT NIGHT for $20 in Chinatown on Friday, Feb. 13.  Join them by registering HERE!

Check out Eventbrite  and other event sites for events in your area and DO SOMETHING FUN this Valentine’s Day.  Spending $40 or $50 should be in your dating budget for this holiday.   The Day is about LOVE and celebrating the possibility of romance.  It is coming for you….so embrace it!


Still looking for The One? Contact me today!
Kiki Strickland
Matchmaker & Dating Coach
“Country’s Top Matchmaker!” – EBONY Magazine

Why you’re no good at dating

Lovers on a date

Some of you are TERRIBLE at dating.  And you want to know why?

You never do it!

When was the last time you went out on the date?  Think hard.  This is 2015. How long has it been?  And WHY aren’t you doing something about the fact that you haven’t been asked out in a year, two years, a decade?

Well, there is no time like the present to start getting back out there.   Date!  Go out with a man!

Feed your funnel.

Like in marketing for business, you need to make sure that you have a continuous stream of potentials  coming in.  Otherwise, WHO are you going to date?

Here is where you can find potentials:

  • Try online dating sites
  • Work with a matchmaker/dating coach
  • Go to events
  • Try speed dating
  • Stop by happy hours after work
  • Join organizations
  • Do stuff you like and stuff you don’t like!  Do it all…at least once.  Skiing, hiking, biking, spades tournaments, etc.
  • Meet men while out and about and don’t turn them down! (Someone I know met her husband at a gas station)
  • Accept a hookup from someone else (not a sexual one, just an introduction)
  • Use Facebook to reach out to your friend’s friends

And more!

The new year has kicked off and it is TIME for you to finally start working on your love life.

Join my Meeting Mr. Right group for the next 3-months if you need assistance and want to meet and bond with other women who are also working on improving their love lives and finding The One.  Find out more at  There is a LOT that you can do and you need to start doing it!

Happy Dating!

Still looking for The One? Contact me today!
Kiki Strickland
Matchmaker & Dating Coach
“Country’s Top Matchmaker!” – EBONY Magazine

New Year’s Eve Flirting Tips

Group of friends celebrating new year   Original Filename: 84372820.jpgA client of mine went to a wedding recently in the Virgin Islands.  Turns out the couple had met at a New Year’s Eve party!  Yes, people will meet tonight all over the WORLD at galas, casino nights, parties and church services.  It can happen for you, if you are prepared and ready!!!

Here are some tips for you:

1 – Pick the right party.  Know what type of men you want to meet and go where they are going to go.  Be careful, though, about other people’s perceptions of parties.  Someone who didn’t meet anyone at last year’s party may complain about it being lame or full of old dudes but that may be because they focused on only the negatives.  Another person at the same party may have met guys their age and had a wonderful time.

That brings me to my next point:

2 – Put out positive energy no matter WHERE you go!  Even if it is true that the clientele where you end up is older that you are interested in, look for the younger people.  Don’t give up and sulk in a seat somewhere.  Younger men usually arrive closer to midnight, so dance the night away happily and be found enjoying yourself when they arrive, not looking bored or sulking in a corner.  Be friendly with all the men, even the older ones!  Keep smiling.

3 – Preparation – how you look and feel is going to play a huge part in the night.  When you get glamourous and love your dress, you walk taller, smile brighter and the endorphins are pumping.  You want to dance and have a great time.  If you are self-conscious about your dress or look or don’t feel you look your best, your whole night will be different.

4 – Talk to him!  There will be lots of men hanging around, dancing or eating.  Here are some conversation starters you can use if you are not great with flirting naturally (come to one of my Flirt Nights to get in the practice that you need!):

“How was your 2014?”

“What was the most exciting thing that happened to you this year?”

“What did you do last New Year’s Eve?”

“What are you plans for 2015?”

“What is the one thing that you have to do this year?”

It’s New Year’s Eve.  It is quite easy to talk about how the year was and all the things you want to do in the future.  No need for the regular boring small talk.  Keep the conversation centered around this special time.

5 – Ask Him to Dance – it is perfectly OK to pick out a guy who is alone or standing with a group of guys and single him out.  “Hey, want to dance?”  Don’t be afraid of rejection.  If he says no, on to the next one!  Maybe he can’t dance or maybe he has a girlfriend.  Nothing lost, but you were bold and took the initiative!  And if he says yes, great!  Just dance and let him do the talking.  You don’t need to do anything else but dance.  If he is interested, he will do the rest.

Wherever you are going tonight to celebrate, have FUN!  Dance with five guys, even if you have to ask them.  Talk to at least one guy in depth about his year and future plans for the New Year.

Decide for yourself that this coming year will be different for your love life and set out to make it happen!

Join us for a Flirt Night in 2015 to become a pro at flirting and meeting new men!  Click HERE for more info.

Happy Dating!

Still looking for The One? Contact me today!
Kiki Strickland
Matchmaker & Dating Coach
“Country’s Top Matchmaker!” – EBONY Magazine

One Lie Men Tell Women

“I’m not looking for a relationship right now.”

It is a LIE, ladies.

A prospective client told me just yesterday that a man she had been seeing for several months, who said in the beginning that he wanted a relationship, a committed relationship, ended up telling her that he did not want anything serious right now.

It took me back to 2006 when I started my matchmaking agency.

A gentleman came to me, told me how he was getting older (36), owned his own business, was set in his career and was now looking to settle down.  He paid me a hefty sum to find his Ms. Right.

Here is what happened with the first woman I set him up with.

She called me the day after their meeting upset because he told her he was not looking for a committed relationship.

Back then (in 2006) I was a little baffled.  Why would he come to me, pay me and then tell a match the opposite of what he told me?

I set him up with another match.  Again, she came back saying he was just looking for friendship.

But here is what happened, ladies.

The third woman I set him up with was The One.

He called me the same night of their date, excited, and said, “You hit the NAIL on the head this time.  She is perfect!”

They became exclusive after four dates and in six months they were looking at rings.

He WAS looking for a relationship.  When he met the other ladies, he MEANT he didn’t want a relationship with THEM.

It is a hard pill to swallow.  For whatever reason, a guy tells YOU that he is just casually dating, then you find out he is getting married to someone else.

It is simply because you were not the one for him.

Sometimes it happens later, after you get to know him better.

You’ve been dating him for a few months.  Everything seems to be going well.  Then his story changes.  While he said he wanted exclusivity and marriage on your first date (in general, of course – not with you) he is now backtracking and saying he isn’t ready for something serious.  Or he needs time to work something out.  Or he is suddenly too busy.  Or he just disappears.

But believe me, he IS looking for a relationship.  He has just decided that you are not it.  It may have taken him a few months to figure it out, but he has now decided YOU…ARE…NOT…IT.

Why doesn’t he just come out and say you are not the One?

No one wants to intentionally hurt another person’s feelings.  You know that.  You’ve been there.  You went out with a guy then didn’t return the guy’s calls.  Or you feigned sickness.  Or you said you would be out of town for a while.  Or that you just wanted to be friends.  You didn’t really care about being his friend.  You just didn’t know how to tell him you were taking him off the date list.

Men don’t know how to tell you that you are not the One.  And really you don’t want them to.

What if he was honest and said, “I thought you were cool a month ago, but now you are getting on my nerves.”?


“I found you attractive when we met, but I just don’t care for your personality.”?

We feel somewhat better when he says it is really him not us, even though we are still hurt and confused.

So don’t bother asking if it was something you did.  It probably WAS something you did or said but he would never admit it.  Be honest – you didn’t tell that last guy that because he didn’t pick up the check, it turned you off.  You just didn’t return his calls.

Always be aware that at any time either of you can decide it is just not working for you and pull out.  But don’t expect the TRUTH about why.

Men will lie.

But so do we.


Still looking for The One? Contact me today!
Kiki Strickland
Matchmaker & Dating Coach
“Country’s Top Matchmaker!” – EBONY Magazine

Here is my latest Blogtalk show – Want to STEP UP YOUR DATING GAME?  LISTEN HERE!

Tango with Men!


I was already set to write on this topic (thanks to Tiffany who hipped me to Tango) when last night’s episode of NCIS New Orleans featured a man who was Catfished! It was a confirmation I needed to write on this topic again.

To avoid being Catfished or unwittingly duped into thinking you like someone online without knowing them really, make sure you start to SKYPE or Tango with him/her fairly early. These two apps are FREE to download so there is no excuse not to use them.

Both SKYPE and Tango, which is a phone app that allows you to video chat on either your android phone or computer, will give you the opportunity to see the face of your new potential as you speak/chat/talk.  You do not need an iphone, like you do for Facetime.  If you use your computer to Tango, the screen you see the person on is still the size of a phone screen.

As I have said in the past, it is NEVER a good idea to spend a lot of time chatting or emailing for months and months without getting in front of the person.  It is usually a waste of time!  I recommend my clients meet online matches AS SOON AS POSSIBLE once the emails start flowing.  Why not?  As I have experienced, you can think you are really into the person (falling in love even) and be sorely disappointed once you meet in person and have NO attraction to him/her.

Take advantage of these FREE apps to ensure that the person looks like their photos.

Some people do not know that these are free and are not that tech savvy, so you may have to convince them it is beneficial.  But please be wary of person that is not willing to meet you in person nor willing to download SKYPE or Tango to chat where you can see them.  That can be a red flag and I’d move on.

For more online tips, check out my show “Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland” here.


Holiday Survival Guide Part 2 & 3

Hi Singles!  I have THREE (3) podcasts for you for FREE – their links are in this blog!

Did you catch part 2 of my Holiday Survival Guide for Singles on “Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland?”  Listen here. (1)

This one was for singles who are not seeing someone.  November and December are the most popular months for engagements.  It is also the time that people get the most depressed.  I’ve heard of women buying themselves a fake engagement ring just to keep their families from hounding them AGAIN about why they aren’t married.  I’ve heard of women making up international boyfriends, military boyfriends –“we met online and he’s in Iraq fighting for our country,” etc.  Or some singles stay in a bad relationship or continue to date someone they don’t really like JUST so they won’t be alone for the holidays.

No, no, no!

Instead of wallowing in the holiday blues, use this time to do something for yourself!

  • Set goals for next year and start implementing the steps. 
  • Be Santa for your family/friends – come up with some great or much-needed gifts for others.  Do it anonymously and watch them light up when they tell you about their Secret Santa.
  • Mingle with other singles (more on that in part 3)
  • Enjoy family and friends.  Choose to spend time with people who are fun, outgoing and love life!
  • Have your OWN holiday party! – invite all the other single people you know that will be around and make it a FUN time.
  • Give back – do a community service project, feed the homeless, volunteer at a shelter or nursing home, organize a clothing/food drive – get out of yourself and GIVE!

If you have more serious issues during the holidays, check out my interview with Avalaura Gaither Beharry from Avalaura’s Healing Center to hear Avalaura’s tips on dealing with depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) here. (2)

Seasonal Affective Disorder is a type of depression that occurs at a certain time of the year, usually in the winter.

I continued on with Holiday Survival for Singles last Saturday, only this time it was for singles who want to USE the holidays to meet someone.  Whether you are traveling home or staying in town, click this link (3) to hear tips on how to make the holidays a time to meet more potentials, have fun and reconnect with former friends.

“Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland” airs on at 9AM on Saturday mornings.  Subscribe at this link.

I hope these podcasts are helpful in creating wonderful and fun holidays for you as you search for your Mr. Right.

Stay tuned for more topics on dating and relationships from the Matchmaker & Dating Coach in December!

Happy Dating!


Still looking for The One? Contact me today!

 Kiki Strickland, Matchmaker & Dating Coach




Holiday Survival Guide Part 1

Woman Pulling Ribbon on Christmas Gift

Last Saturday I began my Holiday Survival Guide for singles on “Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland.”  Listen here.

That one was for singles who are seeing someone or in a new relationship (I also added a few tips also for those dating a while).  I covered questions like should you get him a gift or invite him to your family’s Thanksgiving dinner if you have only been seeing each other a few months?

One thing I forgot to say is that if you have been dating a while, like a year or so, do not let other people’s comments about engagement get to you.   For instance, well-meaning coworkers or friends may say things like, “I wonder what YOU are getting for Christmas?  Possibly a RING???”

Or worse, they may grab your hand when you come back from Thanksgiving, checking to see if he put a ring on it.

People do not realize that that type of comment or question can be embarrassing for you.  Don’t let it bother you or cause you to wonder/hope/dream that it will happen.  If you two have not talked about engagement or moving forward, do not let the fantasies take over in your mind just because someone outside of your relationship suggested it may happen.  They are not a part of your relationship.  They may be stirring up a false hope.   I have seen it cause resentment in women when their guy does not propose, or even arguments or her pulling away.  The guy is usually clueless as to why.  He does not know that other females (males do not usually make these kinds of comments) have put thoughts of a ring into her head.

Brush off those comments of others and enjoy the holidays with your guy.

Of course, if it HAS been a couple of years of dating and you ARE wondering if you two will move forward, you may want to purchase a podcast I did on “Getting to Engagement” so that you can be sure it is coming.  You do not want several years to go by with the two of you still just dating.

I’m continuing on with Holiday survival for singles this Saturday only this time it will be for singles who are NOT seeing anyone right now.  I will talk about how to handle family questions about your love life (or lack thereof) and avoiding the holiday blues.

“Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland” airs on at 9AM on Saturday mornings.  Subscribe at this link.

Happy Dating!

Still looking for The One? Contact me today!
Kiki Strickland, Matchmaker & Dating Coach
Helping you find the LOVE you’ve always dreamed of.
BlogTalk Radio: ” Dating Talk with Kiki Strickland”