How To Do Everything And Be Happy

Official website and blog

Leave a comment

10 Top #Dating #Tips

stop kissing frogs
Dating – not necessarily easy, but pretty straight forward, right? You probably think you know what these ten tips are going to be already! Well you might just be surprised; there’s more to successful dating than hairspray and perfume.

  1. Figure out what you want: Most people have a long list of things they DON’T want in a partner – you significantly increase your odds of finding someone by doing the exact opposite; decide what qualities you’d like.
  2. Re-evaluate your image: If you’ve had the same hair-do, same clothes, same anything, for a while – it’s probably time for a makeover.
  3. Go online: 50% of all modern relationships start on the internet. Get yourself on social media, start being social, and find a good dating website – you’ll more than double your chances of meeting someone than staying in the real-world.
  4. Say cheese! When it comes to profile photos you’re scientifically proven to be more attractive if you’re looking into the camera & smiling. Men should do the opposite.
  5. Action photo! Science says a photo of you doing something (playing an instrument, riding a horse) is better even than the smiley photo. Although photos of you drinking are an exception to this rule.
  6. Beware the pleasant message exchange: Endlessly pinging flirty messages back & forth with someone you’ve yet to meet is a bad idea no matter how much fun you’re having. If you’ve found someone nice online, you must arrange to meet as soon as possible.
  7. Don’t do first dates: First dates are scary & horrible. Skip ‘em. Meet for coffee first, and only for 15 minutes.
  8. To meet the one, you must first meet the many: You’ve heard it said that every journey starts with a single step, finding romance generally takes more than one date. Many more.
  9. Dating can be fun – if you’re not enjoying it, you’re not doing it right.
  10. Sex on the first date? Not if you ever want to see them again.

You can find the science behind these tips – and many more besides – in HOW TO START DATING AND STOP WAITING. Available in paperback, ebook & audio download.


Leave a comment

3 Reasons Why You Too Can Find #Love, #Lust or #Romance in #2015


stop waiting for your prince

It’s a funny thing about running Happiness Workshops, I’ve started to notice that the same ‘wishes’ – and therefore the same ‘goals’ – come up time and time again.

THE, number one goal – the one that perhaps half the attendees in any given workshop will share – is to lose weight. But in second place, the other goal that a sizeable chunk of my readers and clients want to nail, is the relationship goal – by which I mean find one.

However, unlike losing weight, most people I’ve met seem unwilling or unable to do anything about the state of their love life, or lack of. True, they might spend a good deal of time wishing that some handsome prince or princess will knock on their door. They might, in a flurry of madness, sign up to one of the larger dating websites and spend an evening with a bottle of chardonnay, sat in front of the computer, scanning pictures of other singletons wondering whether this could be the one. They might even throw caution to the wind and go on a date, only to return home several hours later humiliated and heartbroken and vowing never to do that ever again. But that’s as far as they’ll get. And they’ll stay single. Maybe, forever.

Now if any of that rings true I want you to imagine me sitting here, with my arms crossed, shaking my head slightly in dismay. Because it doesn’t have to be that way!

If you started 2015 hoping or promising yourself that it was going to be a good deal less solitary than last year, then let me be the first person to grab you by the shoulders and tell you it can. And here are three reasons why:

Reason number 1 – You’re not the only one reading this blog post!

If almost half the people in any given workshop are looking for romance, it stands to reason that there are, contrary to how it must seem, an awful lot of people out there looking for love! I use the word ‘looking’ in the loosest sense of course, because the truth is that’s the one thing they’re not doing. Not really. They’re waiting. Just like you. But that’s ok, because whilst they’re doing bugger all about their single status you don’t have to. All you have to do is find them, and fortunately for you, I know how you can do just that.

Reason number 2 – Dating can be fun!

Here’s an idea that I’d like you to wrap your head around; dating can  be enjoyable. And if you’re one of the many, many people who’ve found the reverse to be true then I’d like to wager that you’re doing it all wrong.

Dating, like a lot of things in life looks simple enough, but  there’s a right way of doing it, and about sixty zillion wrong ways. And whilst it would be nice if everyone was naturally good at dating, we’re not, just as not everyone is naturally good at dancing.

A good ‘date’ can be broken into seven distinct phases – each one can & should be exciting, and fun, and flirty, and lots of other adjectives that broadly speaking mean romantic. Want to know what they are?

Reason number 3 – I can help!

Hey you! Stop waiting!I’ve been where you are! Several times! I never found my wife until I did something about it, and when I lost her I had to start all over again. I think I’ve probably made every dating mistake there is to make, but the upside of all that heartbreak is that you don’t have to be single for a moment longer. Let me tell you what I’ve learnt.

How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting is available right now in paperback, audio, and for your kindle or free kindle reading app.

In fact, from Friday 9th January 2014, until Thursday 15th, the kindle version is a mere 99p (or local equivalent). That’s pocket change. You’d spend more on a cup of coffee, to drink on your own.

Read the opening chapter here.

Read more: How about 5 Top Dating Tips or The Nine Golden Rules of Dating

Leave a comment

50 per cent of all romances start on the internet


Twenty years ago I worked in an office where people dictated letters and memos, and handed them to a secretary to type up. Our department was considered high tech; as well as a secretary, the five of us shared a PC. It wasn’t networked. The internet didn’t exist. I honestly have no idea how we got anything done.

Now the entire world is ‘online’. My ten-year-old niece and nephew send me poems they’ve written, pictures they’ve taken or songs they’ve created, electronically, from a variety of devices scattered around their house. They visit ‘virtual worlds’ where they create and take on the persona of ‘monsters’ and meet other children of the new millennium. And only occasionally does this hi-tech world fall short of their expectations. Like when my nephew recently expressed some frustration when he couldn’t connect to Nana’s WiFi.

“Nana doesn’t have WiFi,” said his dad.

“No WiFi!” replied my wide eyed nephew.

When it comes to finding love in the 21st Century, I’m a big believer in the Internet. In How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting I actually claim that 50% of all modern day romances probably started online. Now how on earth did I come up with that figure? Buckle up people. Prepare to be nerdified.

Let’s start by looking at Online Dating Websites, specifically how popular they are. Below is a list of the fifteen most popular websites, according to This information is ‘correct’ (or so say eBizMBA) as of October 2014. And in case their website ever disappears off the face the www you can download a PDF of the page I’m looking at here.

  1. match – 35,000,000 unique visitors per month (31.9% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  2. pof – 23,000,000 unique visitors per month (21.0% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  3. zoosk – 11,500,000 unique visitors per month (10.5% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  4. okc 10,150,000 unique visitors per month (9.2% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  5. eharmony – 7,100,000 unique visitors per month (6.5%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  6. badoo – 6,000,000 unique visitors per month (5.5%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  7. christianmingle – 5,500,000 unique visitors per month (5.0%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  8. ourtime – 3,500,000 unique visitors per month (3.2%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  9. datehookup – 3,000,000 unique visitors per month (2.7% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  10. blackpeoplemeet – 1,200,000 unique visitors per month (1.1%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  11. howaboutwe – 1,000,000 unique visitors per month (0.9%of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  12. seniorpeoplemeet – 900,000 unique visitors per month (0.8% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  13. speeddate – 850,000 unique visitors per month (0.8% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  14. chemistry – 550,000 unique visitors per month (0.5% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)
  15. jdate – 500,000 unique visitors per month (0.5% of visitors to the top fifteen sites)

Wowsers. That’s a lot of people.

eharmony claimPay close attention to number 5: eHarmony. As of today they claim they are responsible for almost 4% of all US marriages (This is based on a survey they commissioned in 2012).

Now, if we assume that eHarmony’s stats were correct in 2012, and are still correct today, and that all dating websites are equally effective (!!!), then mathematically the top fifteen websites are responsible for a whopping 61.8% of all US marriages!!

That seems… unlikely. Fortunately I can list the reasons why:

  1. eHarmony’s survey was possibly a little optimistic back in 2012 (given that they commissioned it)
  2. And it’s almost certainly out of date today (given that there are many new players in the online dating website community)
  3. Some dating websites are definitely better than others, whilst others are worse.

But if we adjust our numbers assuming that eharmony’s newley wed statistic is actually only a quarter as impressive, ie. that they’re only responsible for 1% of US marriages – and that whilst some websites are less effective than eharmony, some are also better – this still means the top fifteen websites could be responsible for, approximately, 15.5% of all US marriages.

So what if we take marriage out of the equation? Here’s an interesting statistic taken from the 2002 paper snappily entitled Cohabitation, Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage in the United States published by the CDC: The percentage of US women, in co-habiting relationships, that turn to marriage within 5 years are 75% for white women, 61% for hispanic women, and 48% for black women.

Let’s pretend all American women are black for a moment, and that cohabiting couples that don’t tie the knot in five years go their separate ways, This means you can assume there’s one unmarried couple cohabiting for every two married couples, and that the top fifteen dating sites are therefore responsible for 23.1% of US people cohabiting and/or married. But this figure rises when you remember that there are white and hispanic women, and that some couples co-habit for longer than five years.

Add to that number those people who aren’t shacked up together, who are *just* dating (whatever that might mean), and that number might easily double again: 46.1%

And what about all the dating websites that didn’t make the top fifteen? Actually, forget dating sites, what about the likes of twitter, facebook and all the other social media sites that actually do a far better job of introducing people than the sites that are supposed to be about introducing people!? Suddenly that initial guesstimate that the internet is responsible for 50% of all relationships seems somewhat low!

Online Dating can seem daunting – but it needn’t be a nightmare. Get How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting today, follow the Action Points and you too can find someone special.

Leave a comment

Opening Chapter: How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting

This month saw the launch of my new book How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting. It’s available now in paperback, as an ebook, and (once I’ve finished recording it), as an audio download from audible. Pop along to amazon and select the format of your choice. In the meantime, here’s an excerpt from the opening chapter…

To Begin With

On my thirty-second birthday, as I sat at my mother’s dining room table in front of a large cake, thirty two candles threatening to ignite my beard should I lean too far forward, I realised that the only ambition I had left in life – the only dream I hadn’t given up on – was to be married.

Or at least in some sort of steady, loving relationship.

A long term partnership with someone whose ying was a close match to my less than melodic yang.

But even this, this last naive expectation of life, was looking increasingly unlikely. Every candle on that cake was some sort of burning epitaph to just how utterly rubbish I was when it came to affairs of the heart.

There had been relationships in the past – of course there had – but I’d kind of ‘fallen into them’, by accident. And after the ladies in question had tried, and failed, to mould me into the kind of man they actually wanted, those relationships had withered and died. There hadn’t been an ‘accidental relationship’ for a while. Colleagues no longer described me as an eligible bachelor. Some had started to question my sexuality.

So as my family launched into a rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ I decided there and then that the prospect of being single for the rest of my days was unacceptable.

Something had to be done.

Around that time there was a BBC TV show called ‘Would Like to Meet’ where a team of experts (a flirt coach, an actor, and an image consultant) would take some hapless individual and turn them into a heartthrob or a man-magnet. It very quickly became my favourite TV show. I’d watch it avidly from one week to the next hoping to pick up some tips. And the conclusion I came to was that I too could do with a similar makeover – albeit without the entire viewing nation of the United Kingdom looking on.

So over the next few weeks I tracked down Image Consultants, and contacted one. Back then, Image Consultants mainly worked for corporations, re-styling senior corporate executives who might otherwise look less than sharp in the boardroom, but I had surprisingly little problem persuading my consultant of choice to broaden the scope of her client base to include one sad and lonely thirty-something guy. She took one look at me, threw away every item of clothing I’d acquired in the previous decade, and in an afternoon gave me some much needed va-va-voom, in the wardrobe department.

And once I’d been completely re-styled, I looked around for a flirt coach.

These days, you can barely move for self-styled relationship experts and flirt coaches – heck, I’m just about to tell you why I’m one of them – but back in 2003 I could find just one. And she ran courses.

I took several hundred pounds from my savings, and booked myself on a ‘flirting weekend’. Nervously, I took my place in the front row, and when instructed I turned and introduced myself to the stunning blonde sitting next to me.

“I’m Peter,” I said.

“I’m Kate,” said the blonde.

Then she smiled.

And I was smitten.

The course wasn’t that much of a success, in that it didn’t teach me how to flirt. Not that it mattered. My strategy had worked, somewhat differently but infinitely better than I’d hoped. On the Monday evening Kate and I had our first date. By the Tuesday I’d officially found myself a girlfriend. A few months later I found myself on one knee. And a year to the day after we’d first met, I found myself married.

It didn’t last.

Two and a bit years later I lost Kate. To a brain haemorrhage. At Stanstead airport.

And when the dust settled – when I adjusted to a world without my wife – I was single again. The loneliness returned. And though I’ll never be able to replace my beautiful blonde, I needed to fill the space that she’d left.

Something had to be done

It’s my considered belief that ‘dating’ – whether that be online dating, speed-dating, “hey – what’s a nice girl like you doing in a place like this?” dating – is similar to job hunting; it’s just as brutal, many times more frustrating, and potentially far more heartbreaking.

And just like job hunting nobody wants to become ‘good’ at dating. To get good you have to do lots of it, and the very fact that you have to apply for a lot of jobs – or go on a lot of dates – raises more questions than it answers. It’s not really something you want to shout about. Never the less, I was determined. There was no way I wanted to return to the way things were, before Kate, life’s just too damn short. So date I did.

Many, many, many times.

And finally, after years and years of being completely useless at finding romance, I cracked it.

There’s love in my life again.

Just as there can be in yours.

Welcome to How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting.

If you’ve been sitting around, on your own, telling yourself you should really make an effort and ‘get out there’, this book might be for you.

If you’re already dating – or you’ve tried it – and you’ve encountered nothing but liars and Lotharios, started your own personal collection of dating disaster stories, all whilst beating off people you wouldn’t normally look twice at, this book is probably for you.

And if you’d rather fast forward through the dating stage as quickly as possible, and find someone you’d like to have a relationship with – whatever type of relationship that might be – this book is most definitely for you.

But before you get too excited, let’s establish some ground rules. Buckle up and prepare to learn the hardest lesson this book has to give.

‘How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting’ is available NOW in paperback, as an ebook, and shortly in audio from & .com
Visit amazon to purchase the book.

You don’t need a Kindle device to read a Kindle book. Download the FREE kindle app for your computer, smart phone or tablet from amazon ( | .com)

Leave a comment

Start Dating, Stop Waiting. 5 Dating Tips

heart-love-romanceBefore I started on my quest for happiness, I was using my problem solving skills to figure out what actually works when it comes to courting the opposite sex. From the pen-pal clubs of the early eighties, to the lonely heart newspaper ads of the nineties, from postal dating services to the more formal introduction agencies – there hasn’t been a dating service that I haven’t tried!

And after many, many years of seemingly making every dating mistake there is – scouring every scrap of scientific research I could get my hands on – I finally cracked it. There’s love in my life. And it wasn’t an accident.

If love, lust or romance feature in your goals for this year let me see if I can impart some of my dating prowess to you now. Here are my top five tips for dating success.

Dating Tip Number 1: What do you want?

Figuring out who it is you’re looking for is probably the most effective thing you can do to kick start your love life. You might think (as I used to) that you can’t afford to be picky, that finding someone who doesn’t repel you too much and is content to remain in your company might be the best you can hope for. I’m here to tell you that the reverse is true.

After months, possibly even years, of less-than-satisfactory relationships with long periods of nothing in-between, I sat down and wrote out what I actually wanted. A list of qualities that I hoped for in my ideal person. And about six weeks later I met my wife, Kate.

Now – that’s not the whole story, obviously. There were a few stages between writing my ‘perfect woman shopping list’ and choosing to sit next to this beautiful blonde I spied from across the room, but a few months into our relationship I looked back at that list and I was amazed at just how many of the criteria Kate met. Coincidence? Perhaps. But for the time it would take you to create your own list isn’t it worth the effort?

Dating Tip Number 2: Go online!

By my calculations online dating websites are responsible for one in five marriages. Include relationships that haven’t got as far as the altar, throw in the likes of facebook and other social media websites, and I estimate 50 percent of all romances probably start on the internet. Which means that simply using your computer to meet people could double your chances of dating success.

Dating Tip Number 3: Pick a good dating website

There are a LOT of dating websites out there – finding a good one can be a challenge. My current feelings are the free-ones can be just as good, sometimes better, than the paid-ones. For extra oomph pick a site that does some form of compatibility matching!

Dating Tip Number 4: To meet ‘the one’, you must first meet ‘the many’

Very, very few people go on one date and hit the jackpot first time. In fact, in the years I’ve been chatting to people about this stuff I’ve never met anyone who has. Dating is a numbers game. If you find someone you like online send them a message. If they respond toss a couple more messages back and forth. If you still like them arrange to meet. Meanwhile; continue to browse the dating sites, continue to send messages, continue arranging dates. Exclusivity should be reserved for that special someone you’ve dated more than once, in real life, and even then only if you want to.

As well as a numbers game, dating is a skill. The more dates you go on the better you’ll get.

SDSW drop shadow colour smallDating Tip Number 5: Have fun!

Dating is tough. It has to be said. Some days it can feel like a slog. But if it always feels like a slog, if it’s tough without being the slightest bit pleasurable, well, then you’re doing something wrong!

Try changing your mindset. Dating can be a fun. An adventure. Exciting. It’s a little like a lottery; Sometimes it’s just OK. Sometimes it’s better than OK. Occasionally it’s a total disaster, but every now and then it’s magical. And those moments make up for everything.

Secondly, make sure you’re doing things you actually enjoy. For me, a good first date takes place in a coffee shop, if it’s going really well I might suggest wandering across to the pub over the road. Dinners and first dates don’t mix well. But that’s just me. Maybe you’re into bungy jumping, or white water rafting or long walks in the countryside. Picking an activity you enjoy will significantly increase the chances of your first date going well.

Want More Tips?

If you want to delve into the detail behind the five tips above, pick my brain for more nuggets of dating gems, or need a little more hand holding, then I have some very good news. How To Start Dating And Stop Waiting, my third self-help book, is available today in paperback and as an ebook. An audio version – which includes the companion guide From Invisible To Irresistibleis also available at audible ( and com)

You don’t need a Kindle device to read a Kindle book. Download the FREE kindle app for your computer, smart phone or tablet from amazon ( | .com)

Leave a comment

Common internet / online #dating abbreviations, shorthand & TLAs (how many do you know?)

These are some of the more common TLAs (three letter acronyms) and abbreviations you’re likely to come across in dating profiles, messages or ‘chat’ sessions. There are others, and new ones are being invented all the time – if you think I’ve missed one add a comment at the bottom or drop me a message.


refers to the use of cannabis

any day now

as far as I know

away from keyboard

also known as

all my love

as soon as possible


awaiting your reply


bye for now

back at keyboard

be back later

big black cock

big beautiful woman

be seeing you

bondage & discipline/domination & submission/sadism & masochism

big evil grin


best friends forever

best friends for life

bye for now

be right back
(as in, “I’ve got to answer the door” etc)

big smile/bullshit
(that could make for an interesting misunderstanding!)

be that as it may

back to you

by the way

big wet kiss

come back later

check it out

see you

catch you later

chat with you later

drug and disease free

do I know you?

does it look like I give a sh*t?


don’t leave now

don’t lie to me

down to earth

evil grin


frequently asked questions

falling off the chair laughing

face to face

friends with ‘benefits’
(‘benefits’ being sex)

for what it’s worth

for your information

got to go

get a life!


go fly a kite

get it over

good luck

give me a break!

good sense of humour

glad to see you

hugs and kisses

have a good night

hugs and kisses

hurry back

how’s it going?

I could be wrong

I don’t care

I don’t know

I didn’t say that!

I gotta pee

in my humble opinion

in my opinion
(no humility)

in real life
(e.g. “let’s meet IRL”)

in search of

just kidding

just a minute

just a second

keep in touch

know what I mean?


long distance relationship

let’s just be friends

laughing my arse off

laugh out loud
(or, very occasionally, ‘lots of love’,
but that’s actually a mistake made by newbies)

laughing out loud again

long term relationship


man for man

man for couple (man & woman)

man for woman


mother I’d like to f***
(or more generally; an attractive woman in her 30s / 40s)

member of the opposite sex

member of the same sex

meet real soon

couple (man & woman) for man

couple (man & woman) for woman

more will be revealed later

mind your own business

nice one!

needless to say

non- drinker

none of your business

no problem

no response necessary


no strings attached (sex)

not that there’s anything wrong with that

no way!

oh, by the way

oh I see

oh my God!

off topic

public display of affection


point of view

peeing myself laughing

part time boyfriend

part time girlfriend


read(ing) between the lines

rolling on the floor laughing

rolling on the floor laughing my arse off

rolling on the floor laughing

are you OK?

social drinker

sense of humour

sooner or later

sick of me yet?

social smoker

sexually transmitted disease

sealed with a kiss

sealed with a loving kiss

see you soon

that’s all for now

take a hike!

to be discussed later

tall, dark & handsome



think I am in love

tender loving care

too much information

too numerous to count


“ta ta for now”

talk to you later

talk to you soon



thank you very much

very good looking


well endowed

woman for man

woman for couple (man & woman)

woman for woman


what’s in it for me?

well, got to go

would like to meet

who are you?

what the f***!?

want to go private?
(as in; online private ‘chat’ mode)

where are you from?

what would Jesus do?

what would Peter do?
(not always the same as Jesus)

who was that masked man?

whatever you say

what you see is what you get

hugs and kisses

you never know

you’re welcome

Leave a comment

Golden Rules of Dating

Protect yourself from future heartache and heartbreak. These are the Nine Golden Rules of Dating:

Dating Golden Rule #1:
Never reveal information (to websites)
that could assist scammers, spammers, or fraudsters
(unless doing so would prevent the website
from working properly).

Dating Golden Rule #2:
Ignore profiles without photos.
That way lies madness.

Dating Golden Rule #3:
Nobody gets your (primary) email address,
Facebook details, phone number, surname,
or anything else
until you’ve met them in real life.

Dating Golden Rule #4:
When using a compatibility dating site
skip anyone who hasn’t answered enough questions

Dating Golden Rule #5:
Never, ever, ever
send a wink, wave, kiss
or any other virtual gesture

Dating Golden Rule #6:
By message number 3 or 4
you should be
arranging to meet.

Dating Golden Rule #7:
‘Dating Exclusivity’ is only for
people you’ve dated at least once,
in real life
(and even then, only if you feel the need)

Dating Golden Rule #8:
Never ever sleep with someone
on the first date
(even if you’ve reframed it as the second date)

Dating Golden Rule #9:
If you meet someone so stupid
that they can’t see how lovely you are
they’re not worth your attention.
Move on.