Smart People Dating with Dr. Matt Zakreski and Dr. Julia Hodgson

“If you lead with the things that matter most to you, you’re giving yourself a much better chance of success.” 

— Dr. Matt Zakreski


Are you wondering how smart people navigate dating? Dating someone may require you to take authentic leaps to bring out your vulnerable side and create intimacy with the other person. In this week’s episode, we are joined by Dr. Matt Zakreski and Dr. Julia Hodgson.


Part One of ‘Smart People Dating with Dr. Matt Zakreski and Dr. Julia Hodgson’


Ultimately, we’re looking for people who are on a similar wavelength to us, have similar interests and values. Commonality creates intimacy, which sustains a relationship because you can be intimate with friends and co-workers. You will find that wherever you go, the people you get along with, cognitively have similar brains to yours. So, those are the people you usually create intimate relationships with.


“All relationships give us that opportunity to expand, grow, and become more authentic from the inside out.” – Dianne A. Allen 


They help you acknowledge and accept every bit of who you are. It’s about being unapologetic for being smart and being your authentic self without being a threat to the person you’re dating. It’s essential to stay in alignment with your values, what’s important to you, and be willing to communicate those. Nobody thinks the same way that you do. That’s where the beauty of diversity steps in.


Part Two of ‘Smart People Dating with Dr. Matt Zakreski and Dr. Julia Hodgson’


People have different reasons for dating someone. Depending on where you are at life right now, you may be seeking things other than intellectual stimulation, which is fine because it’s a journey.


“The person we’re dating is someone who should challenge us and make us better.” – Dr. Julia Hodgson


Take a moment to reflect on why you’re dating someone and who’s the kind of person you want to date. The person you’re dating should be someone who sees the good things in you and helps you elevate them. 


The more serious you get about it, the more you realize that dating isn’t just about sex or meeting the parents. It’s about being together and engaging in activities where both of you are operating on the same depth of intensity.


About Dr. Matt Zakreski and Dr. Julia Hodgson


Matthew Zakreski, PsyD is a high energy, creative clinical psychologist who utilizes an eclectic approach to meet the specific needs of his neurodiverse clients.  He specializes in working with children and adolescents, as well as their families, in providing therapy and conducting psychological evaluations.  He is proud to serve as a consultant to schools, a professor at the university level, and a researcher and author on his specialty, Giftedness.  


Dr. Zakreski is a member of Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG), the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC), and the New Jersey Association for Gifted Children (NJAGC).  He is also a member of the Pennsylvania Association for Gifted Education (PAGE) Board of Directors.  He has given professional talks, trainings, and keynote addresses at these organizations and others.  Dr. Zakreski is the co-founder and lead clinician at The Neurodiversity Collective, where he provides therapy, coaching, training, and psychological assessment.


Matthew J. Zakreski, PsyD

Adjunct Professor

Licensed Clinical Psychologist 

Pennsylvania Association for Gifted Education (PAGE) Board Member


Julia Hodgson, PsyD, MEd is a psychologist, writer, and lifelong learner and educator. She serves as the Director of Addiction Psychology at AIDS Care Group and is co-founder of The Neurodiversity Collective with her partner, Dr. Matt Zakreski. 


Dr. Hodgson has a Doctorate of Clinical Psychology and a Masters of Education in Human Sexuality, both of which she uses to serve her passion for working with marginalized and misunderstood communities. She has specialized in working with people who are pregnant and parenting, additionally acting as an advocate for normalizing discussions about taboo topics and providing support for caregivers. 


Julia Hodgson, PsyD. MEd (she/her)

Clinical Psychologist & Sexuality Educator

(908) 432-4826

@DrJuliaParents (Facebook Instagram Twitter)


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