Katherine is a writer, dating and relationships coach, midlife mentor and motivational speaker. Her book, How to Fall in Love - A 10-Step Journey to the Heart, has helped single women and men all over the world understand their blocks to relationships, change their patterns and date with courage, clarity and confidence. Through 1:1 coaching, online courses, workshops and retreats, Katherine supports people to create healthy relationships with themselves and with others and to create lives they truly love. She also writes for the national media on topics including love and dating, wellbeing and personal development. You can find out more about Katherine's work at www.katherinebaldwin.com and you can read her blog at www.fromfortywithlove.com.
The Christmas message is one of hope but if we’ve been single for a long time or dating without success for a while, Christmas can also be a tricky time. With so much focus on family, the festive season can stir up mixed emotions for those of us whose prayers have yet to be answered or whose dreams have not yet come true.
‘Are you afraid to fall in love?’ may sound like an odd question to ask on a Christian Connection blog. You’re on a dating website. You’re clearly looking for a partner. So you’re ready to fall in love, right? If only it were that simple.
If I hadn’t managed to open my rather closed heart and mind, I wouldn’t be getting married in June. When I first began to date my fiancé, I found all manner of things about him to judge and criticise. I’d done the same with boyfriends in the past. If I’d have continued like that, I’d still be alone.
Practice makes perfect, so the saying goes, and this maxim is just as true for dating as it is for other areas of life. You may be one of the lucky ones who falls in love with the first person they chat to online, but many of us need to go on a number of dates with different people so that we can become aware of what we truly want in a relationship and learn how to set and keep healthy boundaries.
In order to find love, we have to expose ourselves to potential hurt. We have to open our hearts and be vulnerable. The problem is it doesn’t always work out. We might decide the relationship isn’t right, or the person we’re falling for might want out, leaving us with a bruised or broken heart. How do we come back from this?
“I just knew she was the one for me.” “I knew the first time we met that we’d get married.” “It was love at first sight.” It must be wonderful to feel so certain about one of life’s biggest decisions. But what if you never feel sure? What if no potential partner feels entirely right?
Modern dating happens so fast. We rule people out online before we’ve even met them or we check to see if anyone new has liked our profile on the way home from a date. At this hectic pace, how do we decide whether to see someone again after a first encounter or move on to the next?