Are You 'Ready for Love'? Matchmaking Guides Show the Way
In "Ready for Love", a new dating reality show hosted by Bill and Giuliana Rancic that premieres Tuesday on NBC, 36 women vie for the attention of three highly eligible bachelors—Ernesto, an architect; Ben, a banker; and Tim, a member of the band Plain White T's. With movie-star good looks, staggering net worths and enough charm to make your mother blush, these men are about as relatable and commonplace as the dream-suitors you read about in romance novels, but their struggle to find love is universal. Leading the men on the path to love are three matchmakers—one of whom, Matthew Hussey, has distilled his dating wisdom in a new book, "Get the Guy: Learn the Secrets of the Male Mind to Find the Man You Want and the Love You Deserve." We look at this and other matchmaking guides that help readers get ready for every kind of romance, from casual dating to diving in to commitment.
Ready for real-time wooing?
"Not Your Mother's Rules" takes the message of the 1995 dating classic "The Rules"—maintain your mystery—and updates it for a world in which social media and rapid-fire communication are the norm. The first step in determining what you want in a partner and what kind of relationship you're looking for is getting in the game, and this guide to 21st-century flirting—complete with a text-back time chart and a rundown of Facebook dating etiquette—will help you do just that.
Ready to commit yourself to romance?
Singletons looking for love often get discouraged by the basic challenges of the dating world. In her tough-wisdom take on romance, Susan Page reminds readers that it's not supposed to be easy to find a mate, that rejection is the norm and that love rarely shows up on one's doorstep. In Page's view, another way of asking yourself if you're ready for love is asking yourself if you're ready to log the hours it takes to meet people, put in the effort to get to know someone and make the compromises that commitment requires.
Ready to level with your partner?
At the same time, a relationship founded on obsequiousness and excess sacrifice is bound to run into trouble. In her saucily-titled guide, dating expert Sherry Argov argues that love and romance should always spring from self-respect and personal integrity. Men tend to run from a woman who overcompensates, she writes, "because the woman's behavior doesn't suggest that she places a high value on herself."
Ready to live a passionate life?
Matthew Hussey has coached hundreds of guys in relationships, and in "Get the Guy," he distills core insights that let women in on the secrets of how men's minds work. Furthermore, he argues that romance and dating shouldn't be primarily about "getting a guy" (he confesses early on that the book's title is something of a joke), but about enhancing the joy and excitement of one's life. Finding a mate, he says, "is about living a life that engages you at every level and by extension creates opportunities for you to connect with other people." The side benefit? "Women who live passionate lives are inherently sexy and attractive."
Ready to tie the knot?
Many matchmaking guides speak to single people looking to partner up, but even within relationships there are levels of love and commitment that you have to be sure you're ready for. Gary Chapman's book, "Things I Wish I'd Known Before We Got Married" is aimed at couples preparing to tie the knot, but his wisdom on the challenges of commitment—that love is not always enough or that, after a while, romance takes work—apply to any pair considering taking their relationship to the next level.