An introduction to PassionSmiths


At eHarmony we love meeting people as passionate about dating and relationships as us, so we caught up with Madeleine Mason of Passionsmiths to talk all things love.


How did PassionSmiths come about?

I actually met my business partner Daniel Williams through eHarmony. Even though we didn’t end up dating, we had a lot in common and we both worked with people in a one-to-one capacity. Daniel is an integrative psychotherapist and I am a psychologist, with training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. We frequented the same coffee shop, which quickly became our local for catch-ups during which is where the idea for PassionSmiths came about.

At the time we found that many dating services were catering for either women only or men only, but we think that there are only subtle differences between genders and it doesn’t make sense to split the genders up. Rejection, for example, hurts regardless of whether you are a man or a woman. Struggling to find someone does is not a gender specific problem.


Who is PassionSmiths for and what services do you offer?

While one-on-one dating coaching and bespoke relationship counselling is our main offering, we found that some people benefited from seminars and workshops. My training and experience within occupational psychology allowed me to create and offer these, which we typically run at University College London (UCL). We also found that some of our clients would ask ‘where do you go to meet people’ and so we added events to our offerings. With Power Dating being our most recent event ‘invention’.


What drew you to working in dating and relationships?

We were aggrieved by the apparent increase in people feeling unhappy, stuck or lost in the world of love, the way relationships have been commoditized and how a gradual shift in people’s expectations that romantic love alone is enough to build a relationship. We see people making unreasonable demands on each other and damaging potential relationships, simply based on misconceptions about the nature of dating and relationships.. Through PassionSmiths, we wanted not to help people ‘meet someone’ but to equip them with greater self awareness, uncover unhelpful patterns, restore their faith in their abilities to relate to others and create better functioning so that they could judge for themselves what sensible expectations of someone else were, be in a better position to meet the right someone and have a decent shot at making fulfilling relationships .


How has online dating changed the way we start relationships for the better?

Online dating has provided a whole new way in which to meet people that you normally wouldn’t meet. It allows us to contact people we normally wouldn’t do in ‘real life’ settings, creating opportunities for love. It has normalised personals, which I think is great. We can be more open about looking for love.


What do you think the most important thing you need to have for a long lasting relationship?

It is impossible to pinpoint one thing. A good strong relationship is made based on common ground (ie. a motivation to be in the relationship even if it gets a bit rocky), reasonable expectations of each other (and maybe even an explicit agreement on what you can / can’t expect of each other), mutual acceptance / respect, trust, flexibility, willingness to negotiate on contentious issues between you and acceptance that there will be conflict (anger, upset, sadness) between you and that doesn’t mean you don’t love / care about each other any more.

But if I were to pick one thing, it would be the ability to be kind towards one another. Research shows that for every negative interaction, you need at least five positive ones to counteract it. Every relationship will have it’s ups and downs, but as long as positive interactions far outweigh the negative ones, you will be fine. The same goes for arguments. It’s ok to have arguments and be angry at each other, as long as they end well and on a positive note.


You can find out more about how PassionSmiths could help you have a better love life on their website.

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