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Entrepreneur went on 138 dates to find ‘the one’: Treats online dating like a ‘start-up’ | #bumble | #tinder | #pof | #onlinedating | romancescams | #scams


A woman who went on 138 dates finally found ‘the one’ after engaging in an ambitious online dating experiment for an entire year.

Entrepreneur Rebekah Campbell was a 34-year-old single trailing around the online dating game when she decided one morning she’d had enough.

Speaking to Today Extra hosts Belinda Russell and David Campbell, Campbell told the tale of how it all began.

RELATED: What your single friends wish you knew about modern dating

Rebekah had been out of the dating game for 10 years, after tragically losing her first love in a car accident. (Rebekah Campbell)

“I woke up on the fold-out bed in the garage of some friends of my parents on Christmas morning, and I just thought ‘this is not how my life is supposed to go’,” she said.

“I said ‘I’m going to solve this problem’, and I set myself this mission of going on one date every week for a year, just to see what happened.”

Campbell had been out of the dating game for 10 years before she embarked on her task, having tragically lost her “first love” in a car accident.

RELATED: All The Single Ladies: ‘I’m newly single, how do I date?’

In the years following, she built herself an impressive career — first as a music manager for artists like Matt Corby and Evermore, and then as the mind behind tech companies Posse.com and coffee-ordering app Hey You.

Faced with the beast of modern dating, she decided she’d approach it much like she approached her own projects — with a clear goal.

“I’m not the most strategic or smartest business person but I’m quite good at sticking to a goal. I set myself this goal of going on one date every week for a year. I didn’t know how it was going to go, but I figured that would give me 52 shots,” she said.

As her experiment unfolded, Campbell started building a plan and a process.

“It was a process of kind of learning as I went… after every date, or every rejection, I would reflect on how I could improve my strategy,” she told Today Extra.

On just her second date, Campbell had a bit of a ‘flop’ meeting, and instantly set about brainstorming ways to avoid it happening again.

“The second date wasn’t a disaster but we weren’t a great match.

“I thought I could avoid that kind of situation by doing ‘screening’ phone calls.”

Refining her dating process, Campbell started a routine of messaging people early in the week before sitting down to a call to check if they had a connection.

“I would message people on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, then on Sunday afternoons, I would have phone calls. I’d set up three to five phone calls, and then on Thursdays and Fridays, I would do my dates,” she explained.

While her efforts did help the dates along, she said finding the perfect match wasn’t all strategies and weekly targets.

“It was a process of becoming the right person, as much as it was a process of finding the right person,” Campbell said.

“I was long in the process of second-guessing… ‘What do men want to hear?’, ‘Will they be intimidated by my career stories?’

RELATED: Sami Lukis: ‘Wondering where all the “good men” are? Take a closer look’

“I learnt you’ve got to show your strengths, and show your weaknesses and your vulnerabilites.”

The realisation ultimately led to Campbell finding her match with husband, Rod.

“I had no expectations going into that date. We just had a really open conversation, he was himself, I was myself,” she said.

The pair now have a family of their own, with Rebekah publishing her book 138 Dates which details her journey to find ‘the one’, and her tips for navigating the ups and downs of the modern dating world.

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