1. How did you meet him?

I met him on Single Muslims (*no affiliation with Single Muslima Solutions). We only exchanged a few emails before scheduling a call. I first met him very randomly. I was driving home from the north and the weather was really bad so I stopped at a service station not far from his city. He suggested he come to see me and meet. In wasn't ideal in my head as I was dressed in comfortable driving gear, minimal makeup plus it was Ramadan! However, another part of me had no expectations so I thought why the hell not? I told Soraya where I was and who I was meeting so I knew that someone knew my whereabouts in case he was a murderer or something lol and I kept in contact with her throughout the evening.  He turned up in baggy jeans and a hoody , unshaven and after a long day of fasting. We broke our fast with  bean burger from Burger King and literally chatted for 2 hours at a service station!

2. What made him different from the other guys you had met? 

What made him different was his normality. There was no show or even that flirty banter, it was just comfortable. He didn't make me nervous but rather at ease. His face was kind and almost familiar. He was polite and remembered details of things I had said which showed me he was attentive.  He didn't have a university degree and was shorter than the average I usually met and he was also more reserved. But he was open, honest and had an ethos that showed he was very hardworking.  He hadn't had many previous partners which isn't something I would have judged him for if he did  but it showed me he had a certain respect for women  and saw a relationship as something special. he smiled a lot and spoke kindly of his family and friends. He introduced me to his mum on our second meeting   and nothing was a secret.  His intention was marriage only and he proposed after 2 months and we got married 5 months after we met. 

3. Looking back what was different about your mindset that helped bring you to the right guy?

I was at a stage in my life where I was happy with myself . I was at my strongest and most independent.  It was also due to having a great friend in Soraya I took on your advice about unavailable guys  in recognising  if it's not going to lead to marriage.  I didn't care about my potential partner's job, height, wealth, ethnicity or whatever else some people may look for. I wanted honesty, loyalty and a caring companion . Basically I was looking for good character above everything else.

4.What did you learn in your coaching journey that would help ladies who currently feel stuck in their search and who are fed up of meeting the wrong guys?

Be assertive and have boundaries! I feel you pretty much know when you first meet whether there is true potential. And if you know it's wrong (in terms of his character and your compatibility) don't waste time on that person. Throw away that tick list of height, race, job, education, status, looks etc. and actually start by considering his character. No one stays young and hot forever, jobs changes, money comes and goes and no matter what colour we are we all have a soul that makes us unique. Don't ever become a man hater because you've met so many wrong guys.  Just as we feel we are different from other women they have met there are also many men who are different to the guys you have met. Recognise a man who is open, caring, who doesn't hide you and who only intention is openly marriage . This should be the intention from the first meeting. I never thought I'd meet my husband and I'm very very blessed and lucky . There's a lot in the saying "when you meet the right one you just know"

Soraya Soobhany-Chohan