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Trouble Committing in a Relationship / Commitment Issues


For many people dating and the start of a relationship is fun and unplanned. The excitement of hanging out with someone new and seeing what unfolds is most people’s approach, where couples just take it a day as it comes. However, as things progress and feelings develop this can change. Some may feel like they are ready to commit and take their relationship to the next level. Others may feel like things are moving too fast or doubts might start to set in. This is often called “getting cold feet”.


Someone who experiences cold feet may feel anxious, apprehensive, fearful, and reluctant to commit and can get cold feet at any stage of life and in any situations, for example, it can happen before a relationship, during a relationship and when there is a change in circumstances. When people think of cold feet, most people imagine someone about to propose, get engaged or get married.


Yet it can also be further down the line in a relationship too, like committing to have children, moving to another city or country, buying a property together or making retirement plans. I’m sure we can all think of a conversation we have had where we have expressed some doubts on a situation that may come and go, however, having doubts in a relationship where they are frequent can have much deeper repercussions.


While it is totally normal to question where you are in life and where you see yourself going in the future, it is important to remember that our decisions have the biggest impact on those that we love, and this is why I chose to share this topic today.


Being in a relationship with someone who has cold feet or has expressed there not sure about committing to the next level you would like in the relationship can be so difficult.  It can be so confusing and hurtful for some, they wondered whether it is best to end the relationship.


For those of you that may have watched Sex and The City back in the day may remember where Big gets cold feet and Carrie is left at the altar. There are many TV shows and movies that show how much pain a character goes through when their partner all of a sudden freaks out and ends things.    


This happens more than we think! Not so much always being left at the altar most of the people I have helped seem to question everything after being engaged or 1-6 months before a wedding or when one in the couple is putting on pressure for marriage, children or an overseas move. 


I will share with you the concerns and fears the men and women  I help get clarity share with me –


“I’m not sure if were compatible”

“what if I’ve overestimated my love for them?”

“I can’t love them as much as they love me.”

“I don’t look forward to the wedding and spending life together.”

“I’m worried I won’t be as happy with them as I initially thought.”

“I’m losing the excitement about seeing them.”

“I don’t miss them if I don’t talk to them in the day.”

“I’ve lost that sexual desire.”

“I no longer find them attractive.”

“I miss living my single life.”

“I thought this would get better over time.”

“It’s been going downhill for a few years.”

“I want to have sex with different people”

“I haven’t lived enough yet.”

“I think we want different thing”

“I’m not sure I am in love with them”

“I am not sure if I am here because it’s convenient / comfortable”

“I’m not sure if they are the person I want children with”

“Our lifestyle and retirement dreams are so opposite, it’s not going to work”

“Now the children are older, we have nothing between us.”



Naturally, if you are on the receiving end of the doubts and lack of commitment, it may make you question everything. Whether they love you or ever have. Or perhaps whether you’re being unreasonable for asking a certain level of commitment from them. It can leave you feeling unsafe and worried about the future. Unsure whether you can bare the hurt and living in the uncertainty may take a toll on your health.


When a partner won’t commit different reactions are common.  Some people consider ending things quickly because of the disappointment and pain. Others stay resilient decide to do whatever it takes to be with them and make it work and hope to change their mind. Some carry on as if they didn’t hear the words their partner said and live in denial, carrying on as normal.


There are many reasons commitment is hard for some people.


First being with one person for the rest of your life – can scare people. Especially if they have were used to constantly getting attention from the opposite sex and enjoyed doing what they want when they want. This includes being able to dress up for others, flirt and have fun with multiple people – all of which they can no longer do if they are in a committed relationship. Of course, they can dress up and flirt and have fun with their partner but many share with me that it is not the same after they have been together for some time.  


Then you have those that are serial cheaters – men and women who, despite loving their partner and knowing that this person is the best thing that has happened to them, they go and mess the relationship up by cheating. They struggle to say no to temptation and end up getting caught but continue to lie time and time again – making them question whether they are made for serious relationships or destined for the single life.


I’ve also had clients that lost themselves in the relationship right from the beginning they changed themselves to be like their partner, adopted their hobbies, friends, values. Then after a while and their partner is madly in love with them, they start to question everything. They are not sure if they want the same things because they were just following their partner and when it gets serious they wonder who am I and is this what I really want?


It’s so difficult for people to work out whether they are just scared of committing or there are fundamental flaws in their relationship. It’s so important to help a person gain clarity as they could make a huge mistake and hurt many people in the process.


People who find themselves in this position benefit massively from my 3-day individual breakthrough program, because we are able to work together to sort through the fears, doubts and negative thoughts.

We often under estimate the power of our thoughts in creating problems that aren’t really there. If a person keeps telling themselves that they are not compatible with their partner or worry that because they fantasy about other people they will not be able to get married and aren’t marriage material, the confusion often gets worse. An impartial relationship assessment is often needed which I do inside the breakthrough process, after examining the root of the issue.


There is a difference between commitment problems and cold feet. Cold feet usually indicates having some doubts that can be alleviated with some reassurance or clear thinking and many believe this is natural when any relationship is about to go to a deeper stage. In contrast commitment issues go a little deeper. It’s something often within the person that needs to be addressed. Mainly strong fears. Many times I see people wanting to commit but struggling too and end up self-sabotaging in their relationships.


Imran completed a 3-day breakthrough program with me because he didn’t want to lose his girlfriend but was not ready to marry her. He felt he wasn’t ready to move in together and give up his freedom of doing what he wanted.  He enjoyed seeing her on the weekends and working long hours and then going out with his colleagues during the week. As we explored his reasons for not being able to commit, it was clear he was affected by his parents loveless marriage. His parents tolerated each other, but there was no romance, age 6 he remembered them living in separate bedrooms and sitting in chairs at opposite sides of the room. His parents stayed together but were very unhappy and bitter towards one another, this impacted his views on marriage. As soon as things got serious with someone he would leave to avoid falling into the “trap of marriage” as he put it.


Thomas I helped was addicted to the adrenaline of a new relationship. He loved the thrill and excitement of getting to know someone and the chase element kept him on his toes, however, once he got comfortable with someone, or they showed a lot of interest in him he was ready to move on. At first he believed these women were just not right for him. But later admitted that he got bored too easily and didn’t see himself ever settling. When we looked at why he was thinking so much negative things about the women he had been with and felt insecure with some that they would get bored with him. So he was mirroring his own fears.


Thomas had previously been married for 12 years – 8 of which were happy years, however the last 4 years were full of heartbreak as his wife cheated on him and he hadn’t yet got over the jealous, insecure and inferior feelings he felt.


To avoid getting hurt again, he only did short term dating. Having his sexual needs met, without having to commit to them. I supported Thomas in releasing his past and building his confidence that he could love again and be happy in a long-term relationship. He’d promised himself never again would he fall in love, yet deep down that is what he truly wanted a romantic loving , passionate, relationship. After the sessions, he didn’t have to end his relationship, instead together they redefined it to meet both of their expectations. We also created a plan for boredom to never enter their individual lives or relationship.


If you can identify with some of the fears described and believe you may have commitment issues, please do not feel like you will never be able to commit to someone. There are actions you can take that will help you overcome the fear of commitment and help you to build a healthy relationship outlook with your special person if you want to or understand better what you need in a relationship to make committing easier –


  • Take small steps – Instead of throwing yourself into the deep end with relationships, take it slow. If the goal is for you to move in with your partner, start off with spending three nights in a row with them each week, then as you get comfortable you can increase that. Or if the plan is to have a baby, spend some time with friends and their children, take your nieces or nephews out for a day, have some fun getting used to being around kids so that you are familiarizing yourself with the concept of having a baby without scaring yourself.
  • Find a partner that eases your fears – For someone who has fears of commitment, you must be clear on the types of partners who would be good for you. A person who requires a lot of time and attention or doesn’t like to be alone, might be too much for you. You will want a partner who understands your need for space otherwise you may feel pressure and want to leave. Pick a person who understands your fears and will take the time to evolve with you.
  • Explore what has led you to feel this way and explain this to your partner – If you look back on your relationship experiences, do you notice patterns? Have you had positive or negative examples of healthy or unhealthy relationships in your childhood? Share this with your partner – you can explain “I have never had positive examples of healthy long-term relationships or marriages in my life” Or “I have experienced how divorce feels from a child’s perspective so I am worried about having children” Or “I want children but I’m not financially ready as I’d hate for them to go without…” and then add but I am willing to work through my fears and then see if I can adjust my thinking. I’m willing to commit to talking to someone I trust to hopefully figure these things our.



On the other hand, people who experience cold feet before committing, can be genuinely happy – they just experience relationship doubts or worries that need to be addressed to reassure them that they are doing the right thing. I speak to many people that get cold feet before a wedding for example. Normally they need only 1 to 2 sessions.


For those having commitment issues deeper support is often needed. As commitment fears can be deep rooted and I recommend a full relationship belief and history review. If there are patterns it is important to release the past, learn from it and get clear on the relationship you want. What is it that you want, emotionally, practically and sexually? Then when you are clear on that get the right support to learn how to communicate that to a pertner in the best way possible.


I will share more about cold feet in the next episode as it is slightly different, so I will add some more tips in that audio for couples.


If anything I have covered today rings a bell with you, you will benefit from a breakthrough session, where we can explore the root causes of your relationship fears and identify the best actions you can take to move forward in a healthy way that leaves you feeling happy and deeply connected to yourself so that no matter what the outcome you feel good. As life is great when we live a life being true and loving to ourselves.


Please also remember – love may not look equal in a relationship. One person may show love easier than another or love can be shown in different ways so it’s important to figure out what your partner’s way of showing love is and seeing how well this aligns with your wants and needs, changing it if it doesn’t.



Mila TutorMila Tutor
07:10 25 Mar 23
I have worked with Nicola for some time now and have found her to be compassionate, kind, and extremely helpful. She has helped me a lot.
Riti SajitRiti Sajit
06:58 25 Mar 23
Nicola is a wonderful human 🤍 Thank you for helping me through my difficult time.Still living by your words and advice. I would definitely recommend anyone needing relationship counseling to try Nicola :)
Mihaela BotnariMihaela Botnari
12:54 17 Mar 23
Thank you for destroying my relationship. My partner reached out for support and you advised him that there is nothing for him to heal and that he should send his girlfriend for therapy, like this is your place to tell him. I’ve been through therapy myself and I know how to make the difference between a good therapist and someone who just wants to get more money, and the second seems to definitely be your purpose!
Helen HHelen H
19:13 10 Nov 22
Nicola’s support and advice proved invaluable when my marriage was struggling. Over a series of meetings (online and fact to face, to suit our needs), Nicola helped steer us through a very difficult time. She was always calm, neutral and never made us feel like we had failed or had ‘messed up’. Nicola has a wealth of experience and keeps up with current research, but has a very unique approach to getting you back on track. With regular support materials and just being there, she helped us realise that our relationship could go on; by making us look at ourselves and helping us consider the tools we needed to move forwards. I can honestly say that I don’t think our marriage would have survived such a difficult time without Nicola’s expertise. I often listen to Nicola’s podcasts on Spotify when I’m needing a bit of extra support. Thank you, Nicola
Justin LossJustin Loss
13:23 30 Jun 22
Nicola has been a massive help. I had tried traditional counseling and it had seemed to be moving me further away from what I wanted. After listening to several of Nicola's podcasts I decided to reach out to her. The discovery call was enlightening and she described a process that was more focused on creating a better future vs reliving the pass. From there I went through her Breakthrough Program...All I can say is Wow! Her program and guidance has quickly changed my mindset which has in turn improved all my relationships and overall stress level. I highly recommend working with Nicola and can't thank her enough for her help and care.
Ciaran CarlisleCiaran Carlisle
22:16 23 Jan 22
My partner and I spent a number of sessions with Nicola discussing our relationship difficulties, both together and one on one sessions. She has been so good to talk to - incredibly helpful and understanding with our problems.My partner and I have come out of this with a better understanding and move love for each other. Nicola has taught us many techniques to use in situations were we feel at odds which has been fantastic. We would recommend Nicola 100% for relationship advice.Thank you so much again.
Loida Delgado-PerezLoida Delgado-Perez
03:09 22 Jan 22
Nicola's marriage counselling have been life changing for both my partner and I. The learnings have been exponential and have transform us individually and as a couple. We reached out to Nicola at the lowest point of our relationship and about to break apart. Her compassionate and smart yet practical advice and exercises transform us in such a way that we are now at the best we've ever been personally and as a couple.As a result we've decided to get married and book Nicola every year for a couple's check in! I couldn't recommend her sessions more to anyone feeling stuck and wanting to be in a better place. Best investment of time, money and effort EVER. Thank you Nicola, you are an inspiration to me and many others :)
Christianne KaddoumChristianne Kaddoum
17:19 20 Oct 21
The hours I’ve spent working with Nicola have been the most valuable of my life.I now feel equipped to do things differently. It’s been the most liberating and empowering experience and I’ve learnt things that will stay with me forever.Through the excellent help from Nicola, it is now possible for me to have a different and healthier approach to various situations.She has professionally helped me to consider my perspectives in a way I hadn’t before.I can finally begin to reframe my life experience and see them in a whole new light.Thanks Nicola!