This dating startup founder + new mama is breaking the ‘rules’ and rocking it

“Taking risks can be really intimidating, especially for young women, but I wish I had done it sooner.”

This dating startup founder + new mama is breaking the ‘rules’ and rocking it
Talia Goldstein and her oldest (Max) via Facebook

Motherly @ Work features the stories and insights of modern women growing their careers—and their families.

Dating is hard. Like, really hard. Sometimes it seems like you have to suffer your way through a million frogs to find your prince.

Online dating has been around for a while now, and though it provides the means to meet, and date, those who are “compatible” with you, it’s still a slog. Often it takes hundreds of dates to find someone that you really click with. And that can take months, or even years.

What happens when you want to turn dating norms on their head? What if you don’t want to suffer through the awkward beer burpers and too-long huggers?

Enter Three Day Rule, a mix of traditional and algorithm-based matchmaking that believes antiquated notions like the “three day rule” shouldn’t apply today. What does apply today? For the site’s users: A digital matchmaker to help make a human connection behind the online profile.

In 2013, the woman behind the new app, Talia Goldstein, looked around her and realized that she was surrounded by smart, successful, attractive friends who were stumped at how to find love. Even in the world of online dating. Even though they were all “great catches.”

Hearing her tell it, you can almost hear the “ding” of the lightbulb moment. These people needed help. Partnership, love, and the end of pointless blind dates was a dream that shouldn’t be a fantasy. And she would be the one to make it their reality.

Mom to two beautiful children, Max (3) and Eloise (9 months), Talia juggles work and family in the same way she started her company : with ingenuity and grace.

Seen on CNN, Fast Company, Fortune, Good Morning America, Refinery 29, LA Times and the Washington Post (among other), Three Day Rule is taking the dating world by storm, and helping people find love. Now, with 400% revenue growth in 2015, Three Day Rule is launching in its eighth city with the praises of hundreds of successful matches to back them up.

Disrupting an established industry isn’t easy. How did Talia do it?

So, dating sites and matchmakers have been around for a long time. What makes Three Day Rule different?

Talia Goldstein: We’re a unique hybrid of in-person matchmaking, which has been around forever, and a modern, tech-enabled company, so we use a blend of both intuition and data to help our clients find their perfect match. We also work with clients who are actually ready for a real, lasting relationship, so the mindset is quite different from many of the dating sites and apps out there.

We work with men and women who are smart, successful professionals, who simply do not have time to spend on those sites. We provide a concierge service and help people “outsource” their love lives – we spend hours and hours finding their match, so they don’t have to. Additionally, our matchmakers are all incredible people, who have had successful careers and left them to follow their passion for helping people find love. We do this because we genuinely and authentically love to match singles, and we’re really good at it too.

In such an established industry, how did you know that something needed to change?

Talia Goldstein: A few years ago, I started hosting singles events for fun. My first event had about 20 people and within months, the parties grew to 600 people. At one event at The London Hotel in West Hollywood, I looked around and noticed that all of the guests were successful & attractive but, for some reason, were having trouble finding love. It occurred to me that something was missing in the market so I quit my job in television and launched a matchmaking company.

What made you think that you were the one to do it?

Talia Goldstein: I had built a reputation at work for being the office matchmaker. I was setting my co-workers up left and right. My department was in on the secret, and then other departments started appearing at my cubicle for dating advice and to be set-up. After successfully matching a number of couples, I realized that I had a special talent for matchmaking.

Is stepping outside the box scary?

Talia Goldstein: Yes it is. However, I think the reason that I felt comfortable stepping outside the box was because I had a strong support system. I knew that if I failed, I would still be loved.

That sounds simple, but I think that played a big role in my decision to take the leap of faith, quit my job, and start my own business. Nobody judged me or wanted me to fail. Everyone around me rooted for me, would show up at events, and be there for me through thick and thin. Knowing that you can never really fail because you have people who support you is really liberating as a business owner. And best of all, these people are also the ones who continue to motivate me to succeed.

Where did you find your confidence to start your own business, and live life as an entrepreneur?

Talia Goldstein: Growing up, I was never the best at anything. I always had to work harder than others to achieve what I wanted—to make the varsity tennis team, to be student body president, or to learn a language. And because of that, I learned how to hustle in order to see success.

There are a lot of entrepreneurs who have things come easily to them—whether it’s resources or capital or innate skills, but I’m not one of those people. Because I knew that hard work does pay off, I was confident that I could get from point A to B by hustling, and that it would translate into success. That knowledge, combined with the support from my friends and family, gave me the confidence to start my own business.

What has been the response to this new way of finding a partner?

Talia Goldstein: The response has been overwhelmingly positive. Dating has changed so much over the last few years and in many ways has become harder and more confusing. Our clients are so grateful to have a matchmaker by their side. We help people navigate the treacherous dating world as matchmakers, but we are often also coaches, friends, and more to our clients.

Our matchmakers get to know our clients really well, so the clients know their matchmaker has their back. The matchmaker learns what their client is looking for in a match, and the matchmaker goes out and finds that for them. She goes to events, scours our database, and sets up many, many in-person coffee chats to get to know the potential matches before she sets up a client. It’s sort of like having a good friend go on all your first dates for you, and only sending you the best ones.

We save our clients time, energy, and a lot of the emotional exhaustion that goes into finding a match, and they always end up referring their friends to us, so we know they are loving what we do.

Have you had naysayers?

Talia Goldstein: There are people who believe in the traditional way of finding love—meeting at a party or through a close friend. However, the majority of singles these days are open to finding love through online dating or matchmaking. In fact, 1 in 3 marriages in the past five years now come from dating sites and services!

Some people also initially say they wouldn’t pay for matchmaking, but when they find out how incredible our matchmakers are, how wonderful the matches can be, and how simple we make the entire process, they are swayed, and ultimately many of these people end up becoming clients.

Why do you think innovation and ingenuity are important in business?

Talia Goldstein: Matchmaking is an ancient profession and it comes from an innate human need, which means that it’s ripe for innovation.

Technology is important because it helps us streamline something that has historically taken years and years, and it helps us be better at what we do every single day. In the dating industry, you have to keep innovating, because people continue to want to find love, and the competition can be fierce, but at the end of the day, innovation is about keeping things simple—how can we help people find real love in a crazy world—and solving that puzzle is one of the most rewarding challenges in the world.

How does being a mother affect the way you run your business?

Talia Goldstein: Being a mother is a daily inspiration. My children inspire me to succeed because I want to set an example for them. They also give me perspective. Start-up life is a roller coaster ride and on the not-so-great days, my children help lift up my spirits. Having children also gives you a more forward-thinking perspective so that you think about the future a lot more. I find myself asking these types of questions: How can I create a world that I would want my children to live in? How can I leave the world a better place than how I found it?

Is there any one piece of advice you’d give to aspiring lady bosses?

Talia Goldstein: Don’t be afraid to jump off the cliff. Taking risks can be really intimidating, especially for young women, but I wish I had done it sooner. Quitting my traditional job seemed scary at the time, but it really wasn’t. Often we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to take a traditional career path, but if it’s not right, follow your passion. Ultimately, doing what your heart tells you can seem quite risky, but it pays off ten-fold.

What does the word “motherly” mean to you?

Talia Goldstein: Nurturing, gentle, kind and loving. Making someone feel loved no matter what.

To take control of your own love life (or that of a friend!), visit Three Day Rule and connect with one of their matchmakers.

Haley Campbell is the founder of Beluga Baby and creator of the ultimate bamboo baby carrier. She is a regular contributor to Motherly and is an avid advocate for entrepreneurs, and for the new generation of mothers making the world their own.

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After 4 kids, this is still the best baby gear item I’ve ever purchased

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work.

I have four kids 8 and under, so you might expect that my house is teeming with baby gear and kid toys.

But it turns out that for me, the more kids I have, the more I simplify our stuff. At this point, I'm down to the absolute essentials, the gear that I can't live without and the toys my kids actually play with. And so when a mama-to-be asks me what things are worth registering for, there are only a few must-haves on my list.

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer seat is on the top of my list—totally worth it and an absolute must-have for any new mama.

In fact, since I first splurged on my first BABYBJÖRN bouncer eight years ago (it definitely felt like a splurge at the time, but the five star reviews were really compelling), the bouncer seat has become the most-used product in our house for baby's first year.

We've actually invested in a second one so that we didn't have to keep moving ours from the bedroom to the living room when we change locations.

BABYBJÖRN bouncer bliss

baby bjorn bouncer

The utility of the seat might seem counterintuitive—it has no mechanical parts, so your baby is instead gently bounced by her own movements. In a world where many baby products are touted for their ability to mechanically rock baby to sleep, I get that many moms might not find the "no-motion" bouncer that compelling. But it turns out that the seat is quite reactive to baby's little kicks, and it has helped my kids to learn how to self-soothe.


Lightweight + compact:

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer is super lightweight, and it also folds flat in a second. Because of those features, we've frequently stored it under the couch, in a suitcase or in the back of the car. It folds completely flat, which I love.

Entertainment zone:

Is the toy bar worth it? The toy bar is totally worth it. Not only is the toy bar adorable, but it's one of the first toys that my babies actually play with once they discover the world beyond my boobs. The toys spin and are close to eye level so they have frequently kept my baby entertained while I cook or take a quick shower.

Great style:

This is not a small detail to me–the BABYBJÖRN bouncer is seriously stylish. I am done with baby gear and toys that make my house look like a theme park. The elegant European design honestly just looks good in my living room and I appreciate that parents can enjoy it as much as baby.

It's adjustable:

With three height settings that let you prop baby up to be entertained, or lay back to rest, we get years of use. And the bouncer can actually be adjusted for bigger kids and used from newborn to toddler age. It's that good.

It just works:

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work. But I have used the seat as a safe space to put baby while I've worked (I once rocked my baby in it with my foot while I reported on a breaking news story for the Washington Post), and as a cozy spot for my second child to lay while his big brother played nearby. It's held up for almost a decade with almost-constant use.

So for me, looking back on what I thought was a splurge eight years ago, was actually one of the best investments in baby gear I ever made.

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


Motherly editors’ 7 favorite hacks for organizing their diaper bags

Make frantically fishing around for a diaper a thing of the past!

As any parent knows, the term "diaper bag" only scratches the surface. In reality, this catchall holds so much more: a change of clothes, bottles, snacks, wipes and probably about a dozen more essential items.

Which makes finding the exact item you need, when you need it (read: A diaper when you're in public with a blowout on your hands) kind of tricky.

That's why organization is the name of the game when it comes to outings with your littles. We pooled the Motherly team of editors to learn some favorite hacks for organizing diaper bags. Here are our top tips.

1. Divide and conquer with small bags

Here's a tip we heard more than a few times: Use smaller storage bags to organize your stuff. Not only is this helpful for keeping related items together, but it can also help keep things from floating around in the expanse of the larger diaper bag. These bags don't have to be anything particularly fancy: an unused toiletry bag, pencil case or even plastic baggies will work.

2. Have an emergency changing kit

When you're dealing with a diaper blowout situation, it's not the time to go searching for a pack of wipes. Instead, assemble an emergency changing kit ahead of time by bundling a change of baby clothes, a fresh diaper, plenty of wipes and hand sanitizer in a bag you can quickly grab. We're partial to pop-top wipes that don't dry out or get dirty inside the diaper bag.

3. Simplify bottle prep

Organization isn't just being able to find what you need, but also having what you need. For formula-feeding on the go, keep an extra bottle with the formula you need measured out along with water to mix it up. You never know when your outing will take longer than expected—especially with a baby in the mix!

4. Get resealable snacks

When getting out with toddlers and older kids, snacks are the key to success. Still, it isn't fun to constantly dig crumbs out of the bottom of your diaper bag. Our editors love pouches with resealable caps and snacks that come in their own sealable containers. Travel-sized snacks like freeze-dried fruit crisps or meal-ready pouches can get an unfair reputation for being more expensive, but that isn't the case with the budget-friendly Comforts line.

5. Keep a carabiner on your keychain

You'll think a lot about what your child needs for an outing, but you can't forget this must-have: your keys. Add a carabiner to your keychain so you can hook them onto a loop inside your diaper bag. Trust us when we say it's a much better option than dumping out the bag's contents on your front step to find your house key!

6. Bundle your essentials

If your diaper bag doubles as your purse (and we bet it does) you're going to want easy access to your essentials, too. Dedicate a smaller storage bag of your diaper bag to items like your phone, wallet and lip balm. Then, when you're ready to transfer your items to a real purse, you don't have to look for them individually.

7. Keep wipes in an outer compartment

Baby wipes aren't just for diaper changes: They're also great for cleaning up messy faces, wiping off smudges, touching up your makeup and more. Since you'll be reaching for them time and time again, keep a container of sensitive baby wipes in an easily accessible outer compartment of your bag.

Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that supporting Motherly and mamas.

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It's science: Why your baby stops crying when you stand up

A fascinating study explains why.

When your baby is crying, it feels nearly instinctual to stand up to rock, sway and soothe them. That's because standing up to calm babies is instinctual—driven by centuries of positive feedback from calmed babies, researchers have found.

"Infants under 6 months of age carried by a walking mother immediately stopped voluntary movement and crying and exhibited a rapid heart rate decrease, compared with holding by a sitting mother," say authors of a 2013 study published in Current Biology.

Even more striking: This coordinated set of actions—the mother standing and the baby calming—is observed in other mammal species, too. Using pharmacologic and genetic interventions with mice, the authors say, "We identified strikingly similar responses in mouse pups as defined by immobility and diminished ultrasonic vocalizations and heart rate."

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