​I Don't Need a Dating Coach, Do I?

I was speaking to someone the other day about what I did and received a gasp "Dating Caching? I didn't even know that existed!" "Well there's a whole dating industry out there, look up ODA (Online Dating Association) or DIPN.UK (Dating Industry Professionals Network)" I replied. He nearly fell off his chair. Yes, it may seem alien that anyone would seek a dating coach, but when I explained who needs us and how we help people, he let out a sigh of relief "Well maybe you can help me."

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Dating can seem so confusing, messy and daunting that it makes you want to lie down in foetal position and suck your thumb. Endless online dating sites, hook-up apps, speed dating events, meet-up and interest groups just for singles, not to mention a new breed of predator-type daters whose only mission is to manipulate you. Today things can look so daunting that people will opt to stay in poor miserable relationships than face "THAT". You might be one of them. Even though you know what you want, you might feel like it's 'mission impossible'.

That's because today, singletons not only have to take into account what baggage others come with, what potential partners goals and dreams are, (if they are realistic and whether they want what their potential partner wants); singleton have their own baggage to contend with. They also need to consider whether they truly know what they want and whether they can meet someone who wants that too. Exhausted yet? Our society is increasingly moving away from traditional ways of dating and our identities have become more fluid (is anything private anymore?). Everything seems to be up for negotiation and renegotiation, and even then it doesn't seem quite right. It disrupts any sense of status quo and calls everything that's meant to be stable (jobs, relationships, nationalities) into question. What to do?

Dating coaching takes your hand and helps you navigate the ever evolving dating world and teaches you that it actually can be fun. Yes, in fact dating is meant to be fun. Yes really. If it's not, then you are doing something wrong. You might be misunderstanding signals, getting yourself hurt all the time, experience angst of meeting new people and so on. Dating coaching take all that away. It builds your confidence and gives you reliance. More importantly dating coaches dispel myths that keep you in 'fear-mode', collapse your bittersweet past, teach you skills and arm you with knowledge that make you more resilient to rejection. They keep things real for you and help you find your blind spots. And more importantly what we do works.

Madeleine Mason Roantree

Dating Psychologist, The Vida Consultancy Ltd

Dating and relationship expert, with an MSc and BSc in psychology, pending counselling psychology doctorate, Cert. in Applied Positive Psychology, plus cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), person-centred and psychodynamic training. Madeleine offers personal coaching and counselling sessions as well as seminars and workshops. Having experience in marriage, divorce, dating and relationships, Madeleine is passionate about helping people to understand their own needs and getting successful results in their personal relationships. She was shortlisted for Dating Expert of the Year 2014 and 2015 at the UK Dating Awards, plus nominated best dating expert in the world at the 2016 iDate awards. She has worked with various publications such as TimeOut, Daily Telegraph, The Independent and continues to blog at LifeLabs. In 2016 she founded the UK Dating Fair, an annual event for singles to get dating advice and meet the best dating experts in the UK, she is open to collaboration and idea exchanges within the helping profession.