Starting dating again does not have to be depressing if you approach it in the right way! Get some friends, or a date coach like Karen Perkins, to help you. Try and keep it fun and safe… dipping your toe in the water with a few internet dates, or events such as Hope Valley businesswoman Cathy Hinsley’s highly successful Single Social group is a great way to get back into meeting people. http://www.singlesocial.co.uk/ Think of it as ‘practice’ for when the right one comes along! A few trial dates will boost your confidence- let’s be honest, if you want to get better, you need to practice. Just go for a coffee to start with and think of finding the right person for you as like other types of shopping… if you want to buy some fab shoes, you always have to do some research into what’s available, what style suits you, and often change your mind on the way… so be realistic and be open to all the exiting options.
Make use of makeovers and personal shoppers to find an outfit that really shows you off at your best. Stylists like Sheffield’s Nicky Valantine can help you get the right look too- no need to spend a fortune. And remember- smile, even on the phone, the other person is just as nervous as you.
Here are some tips to stay safe and boost your confidence
1 Take control You may have to meet a lot of people to find that special someone you really like, so try and enjoy yourself. Meet lots of people and if it doesn’t work first time, dust yourself off and try again. Think of it like internet purchasing. Some dates you may keep as friends; they can give you feedback and moral support as they are dating online too.
2 Check your profile When you set up an internet profile on a dating or other site, do get friends to check it so you are not encouraging the wrong responses. Choose your words carefully, look at other profiles and see what appeals to you. You can always update it as you go along. ‘Adventurous’ may send out the wrong message to some…
3 Read the dating safety tips carefully Take things at your pace. Do not give out any personal info until you feel ready. Be careful what you share by webcam or photo, you never know who else is watching.
4 Photos get more responses If you don’t want to share because of your work or embarrassment, say you are happy to send a photo later otherwise people may overlook you.
5 Trust your intuition If someone sounds wrong, then trust your intuition and don’t go. A bit of Googling or Facebooking can reassure you about people you do not know well.
6 Think of a good dating venue in advance For example, chose somewhere safe, well known to you, but where you won’t find all your friends piling in to embarrass you. Suss out a likely table, loos etc which will help you feel more confident when you arrive. Meeting outside a coffee shop or pub and walking in as a couple can be less daunting. When you do go on a date, tell a friend and text them when you are safely home.
7 Never give out your address or home telephone until you choose!
8 Analyse the sites There are lots of dating sites and newspaper dating pages , so have a good look at them, their cost and if they attract your kind of date. Google for people’s comments on how good they are and ask your friends which ones they recommend. You can look using a free profile first. Wait for special offers once you have joined, which makes the monthly amount much cheaper. Take advantage of offers to check out a site. Some sites may share databases so spend wisely!
9 Have an Internet Shopping Date evening with your friends Get some nice internet profile photos done over a glass of wine and some feedback on your clothes choices, make up etc if you have not been on a date for years. Your friends will love helping you and have fun egging you on and finding out how it went…
10 Finally Take 5 years off your age and add 5 years to theirs!
Have Fun! Don’t give up; there is someone out there for you when you decide! If you need any help with your online profile, some confidence building and lots of tips about where to meet new people, like the Single Social events, contact Karen Perkins on 07971 881251 or follow her on Twitter at @fabcoach for lots of free dating tips. www.karenperkinslifecoach.co.uk
Dating, Life, Career and Social Media Coach
Karen Perkins is a life, career and social media coach. Karen moved to Sheffield to study a post grad in Housing and after meeting, marrying and divorcing her ex-husband, has brought up two children as a single mum who are now ‘fantastic teenagers’. Aside from her part-time job in social housing, Karen is currently moonlighting as exam coach, business mentor, taxi driver, butler and cashpoint. In 2002 Karen had a chest infection so bad, she thought she wouldn’t make it. Surviving an ambulance dash to hospital, she decided to put her childhood entrepreneurial ambitions into action and started her own business. Her initial business idea came from caring for her elderly mum. Karen helped her re-locate to Sheffield, and find and settle into a new flat, which inspired her Later Life coaching for older people, widows and those facing retirement.
Karen’s successful coaching business is tailored to the needs of the individual or business. She offers one-to-one coaching, focusing on the work – life balance and planning how to manage issues that arise in the future. The combination of her public and private sector experience with that of setting up a successful coaching business, helps her to understand her clients’ needs and priorities whether they are teenagers, careerists, older people or women starting dating again. Her date coaching service helps people who are trying to get their life back after divorce, or even avoid marrying the wrong person and the Empty Nesters Club she founded helps women coming to terms with a change in roles and relationships after their children move away from home.
Karen’s love of walking led her to found Sheffield Speed Date Walking, her love of social media led her to become Sheffield’s only Twitter Coach , plus all Social media and her love of cake led her to found Sheffield’s Clandestine Cake Club!
Karen is regularly in the media. She has been re-tweeted by the New York Times and MumsNet, is a regular careers specialist on BBC radio and has guested on Radio 5 Live.
Karen Perkins, Business and Life Coach
Skype id karenperkinslifecoach
Mobile 07971 881251
Twitter follow me @fabcoach and @laterlife