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Dear Dating Coach,

I will be going to a Pesach Program with my family this year. One of the reasons we are going is because they have very reputable shadchanim working there. My family is hoping that this will facilitate a connection. I appreciate the expense and care that this takes and want to do my part as well. Any tips?


Program Pending


Dear Pending,

Kayaking is hard. I thought there was nothing to it. Hop in and let the current take you. I pictured a sunset cruise on a serene lake, surrounded by smiling dolphins. (What? Dolphins might swim in lakes. And smile. I am not a marine biologist!) Wrong, wrong, wrong. There are oars in kayaking and they matter. Apparently, refusing to use them is frowned upon (and also leads you absolutely nowhere. I know. Total pro tip right there.)

Thank you for reaching out! Kudos to you for appreciating the effort your family is willing to expend to help you work toward your future. Your willingness to learn and grow is already an asset in the shidduch process. There are, however, some ideas that might help you during this time.


Think PPP

Presentable: Be sure to take the time to pack a wardrobe that enhances both your inner and outer beauty. It is easy to scoff at clothes as superficial and not important, but your overall presentation matters; not only to highlight traditional appeal but also your grace and elegance. Instead, give thought to how you present, so you can showcase the gift that you are.

Personable: Friendliness goes a long way to forging new connections. You are not a mannequin. You are a woman with personality, interests and ideas. Use your time at the program to meet new people with a smile. Let your warmth lead the way because everyone there is a possible conduit to finding your zivug. Be genuine and kind and people will remember your warmth. This is not easy for everyone. Still, it is important to not let shyness or insecurity preclude us from sharing and connecting.

Participation: Programs offer all sorts of events and entertainment. This is not your time to catch up on sleep or sit in your hotel room. Participate in the programming offered and you will not only meet other guests but also have the opportunity to share your personality. Attend the various programs and the other guests will take note of the vibrant person that you are.

These tips of course can be applied wherever you may find yourself this Pesach with a chance to present well, meet new people, and participate in activities available to you. So, remember, PPP, and you will bolster the effort offered by your family as you row toward your future.


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Henni Halberstam is a Dating and Marriage Coach whose expert advice will help you navigate dating and relationships in order to ensure a successful marriage. You can contact her at to schedule a phone session.