The Scoop: Confidence Therapist and Authentic Dating Specialist Kimmy Seltzer has seen more of her clients find serious relationships during the COVID-19 pandemic than ever before. She said the pandemic has helped people realize the importance of relationships, and many have renewed their focus on dating. In 2020, Kimmy shifted her in-person coaching to virtual sessions that teach clients how to present themselves effectively, flirt, and date online with confidence. She encourages singles to unlock their potential — even virtually — using her background as an image coach, dating coach, and matchmaker.
Love finds a way to bring people together, even during one of the most challenging times in modern history. While the COVID-19 pandemic has left people feeling more isolated and socially distant, they can still connect and build relationships online.
Kimmy Seltzer, a Confidence Therapist and Authentic Dating Specialist, told us the story of one woman who came to her looking for love before the pandemic hit.
“Initially, she wanted to empower herself and demand more from a partner,” Kimmy said.
Kimmy said she worked to improve the woman’s flirting ability, help her set boundaries, and emotionally connect with others. By the time the pandemic hit, Kimmy said her client was ready to find that special someone. She met a man online who she talked to on the phone and over video chat.
“They had their first date in a parking lot,” Kimmy said with a laugh.
Over the next few months, the woman developed a deeper connection to her partner, and, now, they’re engaged. The woman’s story isn’t just a glimmer of hope in a dark time. Instead, Kimmy said that many of her clients are finding relationships the same way.
“As people slow down their lives, they’re accelerating their relationships,” said Kimmy.
Kimmy said she also had to pivot her business to accommodate the surprises of 2020.
“My business has shifted away from in-person experiences where I take people shopping and do Wing Girl sessions. I decided to reconfigure and do things virtually,” she said.
She hosts virtual sessions to teach singles how to date online. During the sessions, Kimmy spends time focusing on the subliminal messages that daters send with their body language, clothes, and attitude. She often suggests image modifications to help them make better first impressions.
Though she has long worked with clients around the United States, her move to virtual coaching has helped her reach an even larger client base.
“I love coaching people who care too much about everybody else that they forget to care about themselves,” she said.
Kimmy’s dating philosophy includes three pillars that she finds most important for successful relationship-building: style intelligence, emotional intelligence, and social intelligence. She said those pillars build on one another, and daters won’t progress to another pillar until they master the first one.
The first pillar, style intelligence, is the picture daters present to the world. That includes their wardrobe, body language, and the first impression they make. Kimmy made it the first pillar because if someone doesn’t make a good first impression, it will be difficult for them to share their emotional and social intelligence.
“It’s all about working on people’s profiles and how they’re marketing themselves. Most dating coaches work from the inside out, but I work from the outside in,” Kimmy said.
Before the pandemic, Kimmy would go shopping with clients to find clothes that worked for their style. Now, she offers virtual makeovers using a program that allows clients to try items using augmented reality. If an item works, the client can order it directly through the program.
The second pillar is emotional intelligence, or how someone expresses themselves, shares their story, and demonstrates vulnerability. Kimmy often finds that singles struggle to communicate their emotional intelligence effectively on dating platforms.
“I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone into someone’s dating apps, and I can see why they’re not progressing to video dates. I get down and dirty about how they’re having conversations,” Kimmy said.
The social intelligence pillar is about how people flirt or catch someone’s attention. Kimmy hosts workshops to teach singles how to flirt, and they learn to use their social skills in romantic settings.
Wearing a mask is an essential part of stopping the spread of COVID-19. However, covering most of your face isn’t ideal for making social connections. Kimmy noted how many people have started avoiding eye contact when they see people they don’t know.
“You don’t have a mask on your eyes,” Kimmy said.
Though it may feel harmless to avoid eye contact with strangers, that avoidance can actually weaken social muscles. If people sidestep basic human interactions, it may be more difficult for them to flirt, make conversation, and share themselves with a potential romantic connection when the opportunity arises.
Kimmy has advice for keeping those social muscles active.
“As you’re going about your day, still smile through your mask. Others can tell when you’re smiling,” she said.
She also suggests dressing up so you can feel attractive while you’re going about your errands.
Kimmy advises her clients to set up video dates to practice their social skills and ensure that potential partners are ready to take the next step. On video dates, singles should focus on their body language and make eye contact with their computer camera when talking, not just look down at the person on the other end of the call.
“It’s important to keep those social muscles fit even if you’re stuck in your cocoon, not being social. It gets harder and harder to build that muscle as time goes on,” Kimmy said.
If clients aren’t sure how they are presenting themselves on virtual dates, Kimmy offers a Wingwoman service, where she connects one on one with the client and gives tips virtually.
Some singles may have thought that the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent quarantines meant shutting down their dating lives. Kimmy said that isn’t true; it’s still possible to build a relationship using virtual tools.
“I’m seeing people get into successful relationships now more than ever. People are slowing down and taking a look at themselves and what’s important,” she said.
According to Kimmy, before COVID-19, some singles enjoyed dating. They would go on many dates and meet people without building emotional connections. Now that dating has to be more selective, those singles have become more serious, and they may only meet up in person with someone they really like.
“It takes a lot for people to earn the right to see you these days. You have to say to yourself, ‘Hey, this person is worth actually meeting,’” Kimmy said. “I have a couple of clients who’ve just gotten engaged because they built strong emotional relationships they never had before.”
And Kimmy is available to help anyone ready to date online. Clients don’t need to be experts on online dating, and she works with people of all ages.
Clients can work with her one on one, join her Love Academy for group coaching, or listen to her podcast “The Charisma Quotient.” No matter how daters decide to connect with Kimmy, her philosophy will stay the same.
“I describe myself more as a strategist than a coach. Coaching can feel like analysis paralysis. I love creating dating plans for people using my three pillars, so they get what they want. They get results,” she said.
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Hayley is the Editor-in-Chief of DatingNews, and she handles editorial schedules, interviews, social media, and partnerships, among other things. She’s been in the dating industry for more than six years, and her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Bustle, Cosmo, the Huffington Post, AskMen, and Entrepreneur.