Episode 282 | April 5, 2022

The Science of Love and Relationships with Dr. Wendy Walsh

A Personal Note From Orion

Love is one of the most important things in life. It greatly affects every aspect of our day-to-day lives. As America’s Relationship Expert, Dr. Wendy Walsh takes the latest science of love and turns it into news you can use to improve your intimate relationships. 

Dr. Wendy is a Doctor of Psychology, relationship coach, and attachment specialist. She helps men and women go from single life to committed, secure, healthy relationships. She is also the host of the Dr. Wendy Walsh Show on iHeart radio and the podcast, Mating Matters. She is the former co-host of the Dr. Phil spin-off, The Doctors, and the author of three books about relationships.

Tune in as Dr. Wendy teaches us how to take control of our love lives by learning about the science of love!



In this Episode

  • [00:52] – Orion introduces her next guest, Dr. Wendy Walsh, America’s Relationship Expert, who takes the latest science of love and turns it into news-you-can-use to improve intimate relationships. 
  • [02:58] – Dr. Wendy shares her reason for how love became the most important thing in her life and narrates on discovering her passion.
  • [06:38] – Orion wants to know other types of attachments other than security attachments.
  • [09:34] – Dr. Wendy says that not a lot has changed regarding finding mates and dating and gives examples of the female mating strategies.
  • [13:22] – Orion tells the experience of meeting her husband, and Dr. Wendy discusses the science of what happened to them.
  • [19:00] – Dr. Wendy opens up the whole game of board of love so that people can release the myths and anxieties about relationships that society has implanted.
  • [24:41] – Orion asks about Dr. Wendy’s perspective on attracting a person and the things women need to do to attract their mates.
  • [28:24] – Dr. Wendy talks about ways to detect a deceiver or a cheater and some tips for identifying red flags in a relationship.
  • [33:25] – Orion and Dr. Wendy discuss women reaching 40 or over 40 and looking for the love of their lives. 
  • [35:35] – Dr. Wendy and Orion talk about the importance of self-love and telling yourself a good lie.
  • [38:59] – Dr. Wendy emphasizes that a profile should not be regarded as a love letter or a giant brochure, and dating apps are for meeting and getting into the real world very quickly.
  • [47:06] – Orion asks Dr. Wendy for her three top tips for living a stellar life.
  • [49:17] – Check out Dr. Wendy Walsh’s website to know more about her. Also, join her special private community on Patreon.

Jump to Links and Resources

About Today’s Show

Hi, Dr. Wendy. Welcome to Stellar Life podcast. Thank you so much for being here. 

I’m happy to be here. 

Before we begin, can you start telling me some beautiful things about how one of the topics you never studied in school is love and it’s the most important thing for you in your life and this is why you discovered that passion of yours to help people?

It is connected to everything as far as our quality of life is concerned. Our choice of romantic partner is the single most important decision we will make in our lifespan. It affects how our mental health will be, how our physical health will be, our financial success. A bad choice can put a mother in poverty real quick. It impacts who we hang out with, where our social world is, where our work takes us. It literally impacts everything. 

Our choice of romantic partner is the single most important decision we will make in our lifespan.

The research shows we’re wired to bond. There are those who say I won’t need anybody and I will just be single and create all of that for myself, but we know that long-term bonded people do better on every scale. They even live longer, they accumulate more wealth. It’s so much more expensive to maintain two households versus one. We evolve to have it for a reason. 

How did you become so passionate about this topic?

I spent my 20s as a journalist and news anchor. I had pretty high mate status. I was physically attractive, so I dated a lot of men who couldn’t make commitments and couldn’t have healthy relationships. I wasted a lot of years, first of all, eating up my fertility window, wasting it on people who couldn’t give me the children I needed because we are wired to reproduce.

Secondly, I wasted too much time trying to analyze them instead of trying to figure out why I was making those choices. When I finally settled down, at the 11th hour of my fertility window, I got a non-smoking, non-drinking vegetarian and thought I would be just fine. Popped out two babies in my late 30s and early 40s and went into therapy with all the pregnancy hormones. Then I learned about early childhood trauma, early childhood roadmaps for love that we go and imprint on our adult romantic lives. 

That’s when I went back to graduate school and I got a Master’s and Ph.D. in Psychology. Originally, I went back to graduate school to make different choices for my daughters, to raise them so they can have healthy attachments. I was studying developmental psychology and early childhood development. I came across the key to life, which is John Bowlby’s Attachment Theory, and that is that we form a kind of model or idea for love in our heads often when we are preverbal. Then we go out into our adult romantic lives and find people who will make us feel the way that we believe love is.

All very well and good if you had a secure attachment with your parents, you didn’t have genes for anxiety. As a result, you’ll go and find people with secure attachment styles. All too often, childhood involved neglect, abuse, criticism, trauma, and then usually, that trauma came at the hands of somebody we loved, and now love is mixed with pain. Then we go out and find partners who will bring us that same pain because it’s familiar to us. We’re not comfortable with it, we want something different, but we can’t figure out why we’re always making these choices.

The key to a healthy relationship is understanding that you will never find happiness in a relationship. Click To Tweet

Right. What are the types of attachment? You say security attachment. What are the other types? 

The general public is starting to learn about categories of attachment. In fact, there’s quite a continuum that you can land on as far as how much fear you have around closeness, how much neediness and desire for closeness, how much you avoid emotional intimacy, how comfortable you are with emotional intimacy. 

We can loosely put people in categories like anxious. People who have an anxious attachment style are constantly vigilantly looking for signs of abandonment. They’re the ones that text too much. They’re the ones that are stalking online to see what their date is doing. They’re worried all the time that their partner will cheat or leave them and they desire closeness. 

Within this category, there’s also the anxious ambivalent person who desires closeness because if they meet somebody who gives them closeness, they’re the ‘come closer, go away person.’ Come close until this feels way too uncomfortable, too much intimacy, so I’ll cause some big drama and make you run away.

Then there are people who have an avoidant attachment style where if you put these people in MRI machines, you can actually see areas of the brain where they are working hard to suppress feelings. Somewhere in their infant life, they went, ‘can’t trust people,’ ‘can’t trust mom,’ ‘can’t depend on people.’ When intimacy comes close to them, they feel engulfed and smothered and so they suppress those feelings. Interestingly enough, it is often the person with the anxious attachment style who finds the person with the avoidant style. They often have very long but very unhappy relationships.

They feed each other’s insecurities. 

They feed each other’s insecurities. Then there are people with a secure attachment style who can give and receive love comfortably, who can talk about their feelings, who have enough self-esteem and a backbone to be able to say the words I’m sorry when they mess up. It’s not that they’re not human, they do mess up. In a moment of passion, when they’re angry, they might say the wrong things, but they know how to make repairs, and that’s a big difference.

No man has a right to any woman’s body. It’s about women making an intelligent choice.

Like Sylvester Stallone said in one of the movies, I think it was Rocky, where he said it doesn’t matter how many times you fall, I can’t really say it verbatim, but it’s about how you get up. The most important thing. 

The road to intimacy is paved with ruptures followed by repairs. During the repair process, you see the vulnerability of your partner, that you’re able to be humble and authentic as you say I’m sorry. People who say to me, my partner and I have never ever had a fight. We’re just so perfect for each other. I’m like no threat of intimacy there.

Right, it sounds very superficial. There’s no depth in there.

It’s avoidant. It’s emotionally avoidant. 

Yeah. You’ve been doing this for a while and reality has changed so much when it comes to finding your mate and dating. What do you see has changed in the last few years?

Not a lot has changed. There may be new pathways and they may be digital, but the human mating strategy has happened from the beginning of time. At my heart, I am an evolutionary psychologist and I will tell you that you are on this planet today and I am on this planet today because our great, great, great, great, great grandmothers knew female mating strategy very well.

There are several different female mating strategies.

There are a number of different female mating strategies. They seem to have taken on new jargon and new language, but it’s the same old game. For instance, step one of the female mating strategy is to slay the competition. If there’s a mate that a woman is interested in, they have to find a way to make him not be interested in their competition. There are two ways that women do it in modern times and they did it historically. They might have used different words. They either call their competition a ‘slut’ or a ‘gold digger,’ those are modern words.

The two fears that men have one is that they’ll be cuckolded. In other words, they will mate with a woman who will be sharing her eggs with the whole tribe and they’ll end up raising another man’s genes. This is a very real fear for men because men in history have fallen out of evolution’s chain because they hooked up with a woman who was hooking up with others and they ended up raising somebody else’s genes.

The other is that she will extract resources. Whether it’s the protein from a wooly mammoth or whether it’s money from a bank account or a diamond ring, it doesn’t matter. There are women out there who will extract resources without giving love or commitment. Those are men’s two fears. That’s why women in modern times don’t even know that they’re doing something that was primed in them from their anthropological past, but they are.

The other way they slay the competition as they try to prove that they’re more fertile and they’ll give the men better babies. Now I should be really clear here, even if you don’t want to have children with somebody intellectually, a lot of these behaviors are ancient and you act them out anyway. What do women do to showcase fertility? They showcased youth, beauty, and a narrow hip to waist ratio. If you just look at Instagram today, you see a bunch of girls that look like cartoons because they’re showcasing things that our caveman ancestors preferred in women.

Wow. What are other strategies not so cruel?

All genders practice some form of deception.

I want to tell you that the human mating strategy is filled with cruelty and deception because we’re all trying. Chris Rock will say, in the first six months, all a woman is doing is dating his representative. After six months, you get the real deal. Evolutionary psychologists like me will say that all genders practice deception at the beginning. It’s an Academy Award-winning performance as we try to entice the person to come closer, get entwined with us. All genders practice some form of deception. 

On the lightest level, for women, it might be a push-up bra. Believe me, your breasts are not that perky ladies. For men, it’s taking a picture of them in front of a very expensive exotic sports car that they happen to see somewhere and posting that on their Tinder profile as if that’s their car. These are strategies that everybody uses to make themselves look better.

This is so interesting because I believe that game of deception and I can see that there is so much deception on both sides. When my husband and I met, we met at Date with Destiny from Tony Robbins and it was after six days of real soul searching, really taking down the layers, and pulling off the masks. 

When we met, there were absolutely no masks, what you see is what you get. It was very rare. We met in this state and we said I love you to each other within 24 hours. He proposed to me nine days later on a hot air balloon in Vegas and I said no. It was a very, very daunting descent into Vegas. 

Nine months later, he proposed to me again and I said yes. I got lucky because I met him when we were both really vibrating on a high level, very, very clean. We did our intentions, we did our visions, pored to our partner what we wanted, we went inside, we cleaned some old trauma, and then we met at the perfect time.

You and I are on this planet today because our great, great, great, great, great grandmothers knew female mating strategy very well. Click To Tweet

Let me give you some science on what happened to you. First of all, you met when you were both in your state of readiness and I often advise women to stop trying to find the one or the perfect guy, but just find a guy that is in his state of readiness. Secondly, you build emotional intimacy first and this is super important. 

A lot of people want to see if their social worlds are right, they want to see if the physical chemistry is right, and then they worry about building emotional intimacy later. I will tell you, it’s much easier to create a passionate sexual relationship with somebody you have emotional intimacy with than it is to create an intimate relationship with somebody you have hot sex with. You guys were both at your state of readiness, you are both in a vulnerable, open, authentic place so you were able to fast forward on the intimacy growth.

Right. For me, he was not my type whatsoever. Bad boys that hurt me were my go-to. He’s a little bit of a nerd and is different. He’s more intellectual than the bad boys that I used to date. Prior to that event, we could go on a coffee date and we can talk to each other, but I would lose interest really quickly, probably he will too.

I think something happened there where, like you said, the state of readiness, we were open. I also had a whole process there where I had a breakdown, breakthrough, and I prayed to God and I said, “God, I’m trying to do this for a long time. It doesn’t work and please take it. Please send it because I’ve been trying, I’ve been doing it, what I’m doing doesn’t work so I need you to help me.”

Tell Yourself a Better Lie by Marisa Peer

I was very emotional, I was crying, I was releasing, I was very cathartic, and then I was open. I wasn’t trying so hard. I feel so many women and men are trying so hard, they’re pushing so hard. Instead of taking that energy out, just turn it in and turn it inward to connect to your higher self and higher power, and from that point of attraction, you can attract the right person.

I speak a different language than you, but I can understand your processes. I think that if you reduce the anxiety around it, then you become more attractive to others because people can sniff out needy anxiety. Now, becoming too cool as a cucumber is not also not good because then they can’t feel that they can’t connect with you. It’s about finding that middle ground.

What are some of your tips for attracting, retaining, and releasing when needed for your perfect match? 

First, I want to open up the whole game board of love so that people can release from them these myths and anxieties about relationships that society has implanted in them. First of all, there’s no such thing as the one. There’s no such thing as the soulmate. There are many soulmates and many ones that could be appropriate.

Relationships are far more about skill than luck. It’s not like you get to stumble on this person and go, oh, it’s so easy because they’re perfect. If you don’t have the relationship skills and you don’t learn the relationship skills, even if you met the person that looks good on paper, you’ll not be able to have a healthy relationship.

This other idea about if you meet this one and it’s so perfect, you’re going to be together until you are both dead or at least one of you dies. This idea is insane. When the wedding vow till death do us part was invented, death was pretty imminent. People got married in the year 1900 and profess till death do we part. The average length of that marriage was 12 years. You got married in 1990 and also professed until death do us part, the average length of that marriage was 12 years.

Generally, in our anthropological past, we stayed together long enough to get vulnerable children up and out of the nest. Puberty was much younger then. You didn’t need to know as many things to survive and make a living. Learn how to make a fire, learn how to fight off a bear, learn which berries aren’t poisonous. Pretty much had that figured out by the age of 12 or 13 and you were ready to reproduce. You also had a whole tribe of helpers, aunties, cousins, parents, grandparents around you so nobody was raising babies alone, just a couple in a house somewhere. 

The road to intimacy is paved with ruptures followed by repairs. Click To Tweet

The average length of our marriages is very similar to what was needed in our anthropological past. What’s happened though is that our life expectancies have continued to get longer and longer and longer. In the year 1900, the average life expectancy was the age of 38. Now, that doesn’t mean that people were old, decrepit, and had canes at the age of 38. They didn’t age faster, but the average life expectancy meant that people were dying from all kinds of diseases. 

In fact, about 50% of humans did not make it to their fifth birthday. If you walk through any old ancient graveyard, you can see. Thanks to vaccinations, the number one reason why our life span is so much longer is because of vaccinations against all these early diseases.

Vaccinations extended our lives, but when they extended our lives, did they extend our relationships? What is most normal for human beings now is to be a serial monogamist and even the most monogamous of human beings—I should pause to say that we do have the widest range of sexual behavior of any primate species and also the widest range of paternal investment in their offspring by men.

At one end of the scale, you’re going to have a guy whose only investment in his offspring is a teaspoon of sperm. At the other end of the scale, you’re going to have a guy who’s a babywearing carpool driving, softball throwing, doting dad, and we have everything in between. That’s why the choice of mate is so important for women.

We also have the widest range of sexual behavior, but we do have a lot of monogamy. About 50% or more of humans are completely monogamous. Even those people might experience two or three long stints of monogamy in their life with some mate selection in between. We call that dating. I think people need to understand that game board. They need to understand what they’re dealing with.

The number one lie men tell women to obtain sex is the words “I love you.”

Then there are modern forces like we’ve entered the Information Age where women can more equally extract resources from the environment. We don’t need to form a team, go out with spears, and kill a wooly mammoth. We can sit at the keyboard just like the guys can and make money. As a result, we’re starting to see an oversupply of successful women because more women are getting college-educated than men and moving into the workforce. We actually have more women in the American workforce than men right now. 

Patriarchy is working hard to keep capital out of the hands of women and a lot of power out of the hands of women, but some are getting through. As a result, these women are carrying old-fashioned notions of patriarchy and Cinderella stories in their heads. They’re all hoping to find the one alpha male who’s actually going to be commitment-oriented. What are they doing? They’re eating up their fertility window. One in five women doesn’t get the opportunity to reproduce and become mothers.

Of course, there’s a whole industry targeting them to take their after-tax dollars to do things like freeze eggs, et cetera. That’s why these choices are so important and why people need to understand the mating marketplace. They need to understand what is normal. They need to get crazy myths out of their head about the one, the soulmate, religious doctrine, and instead just be authentic to who they are. Their sexual orientation and everything.

I still love the word ‘soulmate’ and I still wholeheartedly believe in that. I do agree with you. 

Do you believe there’s only one? If your husband died tomorrow, do you think you would never find another soulmate?

I don’t believe there’s only one. I think we have a lot of soulmates, but I think we can attract the right one. From your perspective on attracting the person and more in the physical realm, what are some things that women need to do in order to attract their mate?

These choices are so important and why people need to understand the mating marketplace.

It depends on what kind of mate they’re looking for. The first thing they need to do is decide at what stage of their life they are and whether they’re looking for a long-term relationship or a short-term relationship, and whether they want to reproduce. If they’re looking for a short-term relationship and they’re not looking to reproduce anytime soon, knock yourself out ladies. Look hot, hook up, have same-sex relationships, whatever you want, enjoy your bodies. The pleasure of your body is wonderful and we use sex for far more than reproduction. We use it for dopamine, oxytocin, stress reduction, and all kinds of things. 

It’s mostly good for you

Yeah, mostly good for you. Although I will say, sex is a much higher risk hobby for women than it is for men. Because of women’s unique biology, women are much more likely to contract an STI. Women are much more likely to fall in love with a loser because their bodies emit so much oxytocin, which is the female bonding hormone. They’re also more likely to contract an 18-year case of parenthood. We try to take precautions by using protection, but it’s still a higher risk for women. 

If a woman is looking for a long-term relationship, the most important thing she needs to understand about the mating game is you can’t use the same strategies that you use if you’re looking for a short-term relationship. If you’re looking for a short-term relationship, the main emphasis is on the physical. If you’re dressing hyper provocatively, whether it’s in your dating profile or when you’re showing up on dates, you’re sending a message that you’re here for a good time. 

There is pressure. Women feel a lot of pressure to compete, but actually, men have been wired—you could blame patriarchy for the sexual double standard, the one that gives men points for sexual experience and gives women demerit points for the same sexual experience. But men have been wired inside to be cautious about committing to a woman who appears sexually easy because all he’s thinking in his head is, she must do this with all the boys. Therefore, there’s a chance I could be cuckolded.

They may not literally be thinking that, but their evolved sexual psychology is thinking that. Slowing the pace of the sexual relationship is the number one way in order to get a long-term commitment. I want to be clear about this, I am not talking about any kind of purity construct. Ladies, you’re equally pure if you hook up on the first day as if you wait three months. I’m also not talking about withholding sex from men to manipulate them.

Slowing things down helps build emotional intimacy.

Just using the term withholding means that they have a right to your body. Actually, no man has a right to any woman’s body. It’s about women making an intelligent choice, taking the time she needs to expose a deceiver, taking the time she needs to see if he’s really in there for a short-term or a long-term relationship, taking the time she needs to see if he will sacrifice for her as he might have to sacrifice in a long-term relationship. That is why slowing things down helps build emotional intimacy, which research shows is the biggest glue in relationships.

Powerful. How do you detect a deceiver?

Time. Deceivers will show their true colors because they’ll give up, leave, and move on to an easier target.

How do you detect a cheater?

You mean somebody you’re already in a relationship with and they might be having an affair?


All genders have come up with great espionage to try to figure that out. They go online, they do their research, they make fake profiles, and try to entice him on Instagram. There are so many things that people do. I made a TikTok video recently that someone asked me to talk about is it okay to look in your partner’s phone? My attitude is absolutely okay to look in their phone if you want to break any trust you already don’t really have. The truth is, if you’re in a healthy, committed relationship, why’s the phone locked? What are they hiding?

Right. What are some red flags? Because I know that I’ve been into relationships, and I was all into the oxytocin, the good feel hormones, I was madly in love, and the red flags were just—

There, and you’re missing them.

There, and I couldn’t see them. Everybody around me could, but I couldn’t.

Self-confident people are attractive across the lifespan. Click To Tweet

And that’s why because you’re high in oxytocin, dopamine, norepinephrine, and everything else, so you couldn’t see at that point. Therefore, slowing things down helps prevent that cocktail of neurohormones from changing your vision. Red flags are different for each person. There are two kinds of things you’re looking for with red flags. You’re either looking for somebody who literally doesn’t have the emotional capacity to have a healthy relationship even though they may want to, or you’re looking for somebody that’s using long-term advertisement to get a short-term relationship.

The easiest way for a guy to obtain sex from a woman, the number one lie that men tell women in order to obtain sex is the words I love you. Slowing it down helps, and if they get angry, if they attack you, if they say you’re being frigid, or you’re manipulating me, then you know what you need to know about this person. At the end of the day, you’re looking for how much compassion they have.

When in the dating process, in the first few weeks and months, you tell them a tender story, bit by bit, you open up and peel up the layers. They respond by laughing about it, changing the subject, talking about themselves and something that happened to them, and not giving you the respect, compassion, and empathy that you deserve. That tells you, you don’t want to go down the road with this person and deal with all the bumps of a long-term relationship.

I feel like predators, cheaters, or people that are very manipulative, they find their victim when they’re very weak, when they are vulnerable, when they are longing for love so much that they’re willing to do anything, or when there, oh my God, I’m reaching my 40s and I really want love, so I’m going to be open to anything.

Or they have people who have an anxious attachment style who present that. But the truth is actually true narcissists actually target people who are pretty emotionally smart because the one thing narcissists do not have is emotional intelligence. What they want to do is suck it out of other people. What they do is when they target somebody who has high emotional intelligence, what’s the most important thing somebody has when they’re emotionally intelligent? Empathy.

The narcissist gets to play the victim, and then the person with a high emotional intelligence has trouble setting boundaries.

The narcissist gets to play victim and then the person with a high emotional intelligence has trouble setting boundaries because their mind says things like, oh, you know, but he had a bad childhood or, oh, it was so hard for him because of this, I should have more compassion for him, instead of going, no. Then before you know it, they’re lending them money, they’re exposing their eggs and bloodstream to them without a condom. They’re doing all kinds of highly risky things because the narcissist has made them either feel sorry for them or the narcissist will start finding the flaws and picking apart the self-esteem of the person with high emotional intelligence.

My goodness. Yeah, I’ve been in a relationship with one of those. It’s almost like you describe what happened. You described my previous relationship. I did StrengthsFinder and two of my five top strengths are empathy, so hello, plus I’m a coach, I’m a therapist. I feel people. It was exactly like that. I ignored all the red flags. He was totally putting me down. It took me three years to recover from that relationship.

Yeah, it does. It can be traumatic. These are called traumatic bonds.

Traumatic bonds, okay. I want to change the subject a little bit. For women who are reaching 40 or over 40 and they’re looking for the love of their lives but they feel desperate, do you have anything to tell them or to sew them with?

The key to a healthy relationship is understanding that you will never find happiness in a relationship. The work is an inside job. Happy people have happy relationships. Going to therapy, working on yourself, getting a large social support system, all that is very important to becoming a good mate. I think that that’s the most important thing people can do. It’s a lifelong journey to keep growing and internally becoming emotionally smarter.

Right. What if they’re at the end of their emotional strength? They feel like I can never, ever have love. I’m 40 and who will want me now that there are all those beautiful young women on Instagram? How do you handle that if somebody comes to you with that type of feeling?

That’s when I will remind them that life is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If that’s what you believe, that’s what it’ll be. It’s really important that we stay in our power and not let society put ageism on us, sexism on us, or lookism on us. That we look in the mirror and go, you know what, I’m pretty cool, I’ve accomplished a whole bunch of stuff. That’s the work I’m talking about, getting self-esteem. People who are self-confident are attractive across the lifespan. It’s the most attractive thing, liking yourself.

It’s a lifelong journey to keep growing and internally becoming emotionally smarter.

Yeah, and I feel like loving yourself, it never ends. You have to do the work your whole life.

We have good days and bad days. There are some days we are vulnerable.

Right, and I love talking about self-love. It’s so, so important. When we blame everybody else for our situation, we’re victims, then we give away our power. But when we look inside and we decide that the common denominator in our dating story and in our relationships is us, then the only thing that we can work on is ourselves.

We need to go back to the old trauma. We need to heal. We need to do whatever is helping us move forward and gain confidence. I love affirmations. I love Louise Hay. I used to have pages and pages of affirmations, especially at that point in my life where I was so, so broken.

My mentor, Marisa Peer, she’s one of the greatest hypnotherapists in the world. Now she’s coming up with a new book, it’s called Tell Yourself a Better Lie. When you’re so broken, you’re telling yourself so many bad lies about yourself. It’s either lies that somebody who was a predator told you and you took it on, but sometimes we abuse ourselves so much more than others can abuse us.

Yeah, and we also give people permission to treat us a certain way. The second we put up with the tiniest little bad behavior, this little red flag that we choose to ignore, we’re giving them permission to grow bigger, bolder, and more painful.

Yeah. Coming back to the affirmation thing, telling yourself the good lie. I am beautiful, I am strong, I am capable, good things are coming my way. I’m getting better and better each day because your subconscious mind is listening to everything you tell it. I don’t know if it’s a joke.

Even if you say jokingly, oh, I’m so stupid, your subconscious mind takes it as a reality. You want to tell yourself, maybe it’s a good lie, maybe it sounds like a lie now, but you’re going to grow into that new identity, and gain your strength and confidence. From that point, you will be more attractive.

Relationships are far more about skill than luck. Click To Tweet

I heard someone recently use this metaphor that I thought was so lovely about positive self-talk. The metaphor was, you could be having a phone conversation with somebody unrelated and make a sentence that says, yeah, I mean, that’s why they went on with that walk and that’s why we should probably go on a walk. As soon as you say the word walk, your dog jumps up and down. Your dog doesn’t know that you’re not talking to him. The dog doesn’t know that you’re not saying, we are going outside for a walk now.

He’s triggered by that word. He has an explosion in his brain of neurohormones that are activating his brain at that time with the sound of that word. When you are talking and thinking all day long, your brain is listening just like your dog does. So what are you feeding it?

Yeah, I know. I love the comparison of, your mind is like a dog because it will do what you tell it to do. If you tell it I’m stupid, okay, all right. The next time you’re going to start speaking and wanting to say something smart, it will hold you back and say, uh-uh, you told me that we’re stupid, so we’re going to say something stupid right now.

Yeah, we have to fulfill that.

Yeah, we have to fulfill that. When we are going on this new dating journey in this new era, and I know that a lot of the way we date is similar to previous times in history, but now we have profiles, what should go on somebody’s profile, and what should never be on someone’s profile?

I think that everybody’s an individual, but a profile should not be regarded as a love letter or a giant brochure. I also don’t think dating apps should be used to date. They should be used to meet and get in the real world very quickly. If you’re texting somebody on an app and it’s going on for hours, days, or weeks, you’ve missed the boat. You want to get on the phone with them and get to the next level very quickly.

Life is a self-fulfilling prophecy. If that’s what you believe, that’s what it’ll be. It’s important that we stay in our power and not let society put ageism, sexism, or lookism on us.

You want to put as little as possible and a few pictures. Again, think about these pictures ladies. It’s going to be all sexy, he’s going to go oh, she’s here for the sex. If it’s highly retouched, beauty filters, or all that makeup, guys don’t like that. You need to have something really natural and you need to have a full-body shot wearing clothes doing something, walking down the street, action.

They just want to see your full body. Now if you’re going to put bathing suit shots up, that says what you’re out there for. Think about what you’re advertising. Think about this with your profile. Your boss could be going through and seeing your profile.

Nice, yeah.

Do you want your profile pictures walked around the office in his mind? They’re literally a brochure for the entire world. You want to be a little bit protective, but you also want to be a little enticing with just a few sentences. Then very quickly, within a few texts, hand them your phone number, get on the phone, and then assess. If you don’t like what you hear, then you’re done. But these people who fall in love with hope, who get into these texting relationships, they go on forever.

I also suggest that the first date should never be a date. It shouldn’t be this high-powered pressure who’s going to pay, do we get dressed up, let’s make it romantic. It should be a drive-by coffee date of not more than 20 minutes. After that decide if you want to go on a romantic date. What you might find after one phone call and one coffee date is, this person could be a good customer for you, this person could be a good colleague, this person you will refer to somebody else. You’re accessing them as a human.

You can send them a little text that says, ‘hey, I don’t think romance is in the cards for us, but I might want to put you up with a friend sometime,’ or,’ hey, there’s this thing going on in my company. You should apply for that, that’d be good for you.’ You don’t know what you’re going to use this person for. They didn’t fly in from Mars. They’re living in your city, and you’re going to run into them at some point. So treat them as respectful human beings while you’re assessing what it is. 

If you don’t like what you hear, then you’re done.

But if you project all this romantic energy, then very quickly when you realize you’re disappointed, you don’t know what to do with them. That’s why people ghost each other because they just feel so embarrassed and so awkward about it.

My advice is to get into the real world. Pretty quickly, if they’re not for you, tell them in a polite way and they might be a good one. One year, when I was on the dating apps, I was a single mom for 15 years so I didn’t really have relationships. Every once in a while, I dip in. I met a lot of really great men that were not for me. They were lovely men, but there was no real connection.

I held a New Year’s Eve party one year and I invited about 20 guys from the apps. I invited all my girlfriends and they were all vetted by me because I’d had phone calls or a coffee with them. I knew that they were okay, but just not for me. They were so happy to come. So keep the contacts, they’re good people.

That is so powerful and it’s such a beautiful view. Sometimes women come and it’s like a job interview. I’m going to be the judge and jury and I’m going to give you a very sharp verdict. They don’t even look at the other person as a human, but like, are you going to be my husband, are we going to have four kids, are we going to live in a little house with a fence?

How about, who are you? Do you live in my neighborhood? Cool. Do we know people in common? Oh, that’s cool. Just be a friend.

Right, take it lighter. The point is just to take the pressure off. Like you said, make it a 20-minute coffee date and just see. If it’s a decent person, like you said, just keep in touch because why not? It might not be for you, but it can be a really good match for your girlfriend, your company, or whatever.

The final bit of advice that I have, which I think is really important, is don’t sit there being in love with hope. If the guy is not showing you a lot of passion, contact, and activation, don’t sit there rereading his texts from five days ago going, I wonder if he’s going to text me back? He’s not, he’s gone. And even if he does, do you want to be with somebody who took five days to get back to you? No, you need to ghost him at that point and just keep on moving.

You want to choose the guy who’s impassioned by you.

You want to choose the guy who’s impassioned by you. I’m going to close with a little story about how I met my boyfriend on an app. Bumble has a thing and many women use this as a mating strategy where once you match, the woman needs to speak first. If 24 hours go by and the woman has not reached out to the guy, the match expires.

First of all, this goes against all evolution. Sperm chases egg, not the reverse. Okay, people? Anyway, what happens to those guys is they go into this gray box. If they choose to rematch with you, to really say, no, I’m really into you, I really want this, they can keep trying that. I’m not clear whether they pay a fee for that or whatever.

I didn’t use the apps very often. I never had notifications, so I wasn’t seeing a lot of messages, which accidentally gave me the reputation of being hard to get because I wasn’t responsive, but mainly because I was just too busy and I wasn’t getting notifications. Whenever I had time, I’d pour myself a glass of wine and get on the apps.

One night, I opened up that app. I was about to do the swiping again and then I said, you know, who are these little grayed-out faces up there? If I liked him once, maybe I like him again. I clicked on his face and I only wrote the word hi. That’s the only pickup line a woman ever needs. She’s bringing her eggs, okay. Say hi, that’s it.

He wrote back within seconds because he had notifications on. “Wendy!!!! Where have you been? I rematched with you four times. Oh my God, you’re here. I thought you disappeared from the app? How are you able to email me? This is amazing.” I’m seeing this energy and I’m like, what is this?

When we finally did get together, he said, “I don’t use the apps the way you’re supposed to. The guys tell you you’re supposed to match with 100% of the women and then see who’s interested in you. That’s how guys use the apps. They use them differently.”

Don’t get excited, ladies, when you get on the apps and you find that every single guy you click on is a match. It’s because they click on 100% of the women. He said, “I didn’t use the app that way. I just found you and I just kept rematching with you.” At the end of the day, I chose somebody who was activated, impassioned, and excited by me. We have the best relationship.

He’s still excited by me and that I love. Instead of all those avoidant playboys, oh, I’ll get back to you later, babe, I’m busy. No, no. I got a Julio who’s like, “Wendy, what do you want to do?” “I’m here, I’ll pick you up,” “I’ll be there.” It’s the best.

That’s such a great point. It’s such a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing that. Before we say goodbye, for now, I would like to ask you two questions. One is, what are your three top tips to living a stellar life? The second one is, where can people find you?

Just get out there and do your thing. Who cares what anybody thinks of you?

Okay, three top tips for living a stellar life. Grow your financial intelligence, learn about investing, learn about how to get capital. If you’re a young person, start investing very early and be more risky because you have the gift of time. It’s never too late. I am 59 years old. I own an apartment building and a farm, and I’ve only been learning this in the last few years. I’m looking for a third property right now.

Are you kidding me? That’s amazing.

All women need to get financial literacy. It is the most important thing because it gives you more confidence when you’re choosing a mate because you don’t need them for the money. You can choose a best friend. That’s the first thing, everybody needs financial literacy.

Secondly, work hard in your life to reduce social evaluative threats. Meaning, listen to the voice inside yourself about what is right and wrong, what is good or bad. Don’t worry about what everybody else thinks because they don’t have your best interests at heart. You have your best interest at heart. So many people live worried about being shamed by the tribe, worrying about social evaluative threats. Just get out there and do your thing. Who cares what anybody thinks of you? 

Finally, learn emotional communication. Google it if you have to. You get 36 words in the English language that we use to express feelings and start sentences with the words I feel and say those words. Because the more comfortable you get with using emotional language, the more comfortable other people will reciprocate with you.

I feel like I really enjoyed our interaction today. Thank you so much.

You’re welcome. You can find me anywhere online. The handle is @drwendywalsh. My very special community is on Patreon, patreon.com/drwendywalsh, where we meet for private Zoom rooms. In fact, it’s tonight, Tuesday night. I also have loved science education classes there. My podcast is there, my books are there. It’s really my special private exclusive community and it’s super affordable. It’s $8 a month. I want to keep it low so that everybody can come on board. I just enjoy meeting people one-on-one in Zoom rooms.

Yeah, it’s beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing that. Thank you so much for being here and sharing all this beautiful information with us.

Thank you for the good work you do.

Thank you and thank you, listeners. Remember to grow your financial investment because it’s never too late, listen to your intuition, and don’t worry about what others think because you are the only one who has your best interest in heart. Learn emotional communication and have a stellar life. This is Orion, until next time.

Your Checklist of Actions to Take

{✓}Don’t be afraid of the ups and downs of your relationship. The road to intimacy is paved with ruptures followed by repairs. During the repair process, you will see your partner’s vulnerability; this will allow you to be humble and authentic as you say, “I’m sorry.”
{✓}Find a partner who is in a state of readiness. Stop trying to find the perfect partner. Understand that the ideal relationship is not perfect.
{✓}Build emotional intimacy first with your partner. It’s much easier to create a passionate sexual relationship with somebody you have emotional intimacy with than to create an intimate relationship with somebody you have hot sex with. 
{✓}When looking for a partner, decide what stage in your life you are in right now. Are you looking for a long-term relationship or just a short-term relationship? 
{✓}Don’t ignore the red flags in a relationship. The moment you ignore the tiniest bad behaviors of your partner, you are giving them permission for these behaviors to grow bigger, bolder, and more painful.
{✓}Don’t use dating apps to date. Use them to meet and get into the real world very quickly. The first date should never be a date. It should be a drive-by coffee meeting of not more than 20 minutes. After that, decide if you want to go on a romantic date. If they’re not for you, politely tell them.
{✓}Choose the guy who’s impassioned by you. If the guy is not showing you a lot of passion, contact, and activation, don’t sit there rereading his texts from five days ago going, “I wonder if he’s going to text me back?” He’s not; he’s gone. Just move on.
{✓}Grow your financial intelligence. All women need to get financial literacy. It is the most important thing because it gives you more confidence when choosing a mate. After all, you don’t need them for their money. 
{✓}Listen to the voice inside yourself about what is right or wrong and what is good or bad. Don’t worry about what everybody else thinks because they don’t have your best interests at heart.
{✓}Learn emotional communication. The more comfortable you get with using emotional language, the more comfortable other people will be reciprocating it with you.
{✓}Visit Dr. Wendy Walsh’s website to get to know her more. Also, check out her special private community on Patreon.

Links and Resources

About Dr. Wendy Walsh

As America’s Relationship Expert, Dr. Wendy takes the latest science of love and turns it into news-you-can-use to improve your intimate relationships. Whether the topic is finding love by navigating dating apps, keeping love by introducing novelty and better communication skills (Ask her how to make a communication sandwich!) or coping after a divorce or loss, Dr. Wendy has the data and practical advice on how to do it the healthy way.
Host of the Dr. Wendy Walsh Show on iHeart radio for the last six years, she is also a former co-host of the Dr. Phil spin off, THE DOCTORS, the author of three books on relationships and host of the Podcast Mating Matters. During the pandemic, when people suffered the most isolation, she blew up on TikTok and other social medias and has nearly 2 million followers online.
Disclaimer: The medical, fitness, psychological, mindset, lifestyle, and nutritional information provided on this website and through any materials, downloads, videos, webinars, podcasts, or emails are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical/fitness/nutritional advice, diagnoses, or treatment. Always seek the help of your physician, psychologist, psychiatrist, therapist, certified trainer, or dietitian with any questions regarding starting any new programs or treatments or stopping any current programs or treatments. This website is for information purposes only, and the creators and editors, including Orion Talmay, accept no liability for any injury or illness arising out of the use of the material contained herein, and make no warranty, express or implied, with respect to the contents of this website and affiliated materials.

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