Why do women (and often men) seem to get so little of what they want from their love relationships, especially as time wages on?
We've heard it all before, Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus. It's no "News flash!" that men and women require different needs, wants and desires in order to be happy and feel content in a relationship.
But why does it seem so damn difficult to speak the 'others'' language? Why do we tend to withhold, put up walls, hang on to resentment, even punish each other?
Let's face it, we think about our own desires first most of the time, especially when it comes to what we feel we are NOT getting in a relationship. In fact, we can be downright obsessive when it comes to our lover's perceived neglect.
The bummer is, if we want more from our partner/spouse, we need to give him more of what he wants. Even if you don't feel like it or you've felt neglected for a while now, change must begin somewhere, so why not with you?
Giving up self-focus and instead, learn to be of service to your lover. BUT, you must also and simultaneously honor yourself at all times. This habit will require discipline and ongoing practice.
And don't mistake service for servitude. I'm not talking slave labor here or some twisted Stepford wife dynamic! But acts of service can reap sustainable happiness, adoration, devotion and passion!
For various reasons, over time women begin to lose themselves in relationships and thus lose sight of the key ingredients to a fabulous relationship. We allow our mystery, independence, and individuality to be traded for things like control, complacency, stress, nagging, or being overly concerned about what "he" is doing or not doing. All of which ultimately makes him want to pull away and leaves you feeling miserable, alone and neglected!
Let me make this very simple ladies; if you want more time, care and attention from your partner, there are 5 specific actions you can take.
1) Give Him Space.
Most men need and want space. Space can consist of emotional, physical, or both elements. When given space, he will come to you with more love and attention than you'll know what to do with.
The problem is that most women get into habits of hovering, nagging, peppering with questions, smothering and even withholding sex and intimacy. Tactics such as these can come from a caring place, or a space of over-trying, controlling and neediness. None of which are attractive qualities, to either of you.
Whatever the source, these qualities are sure to push even the best man to become distant or even full emotional shut down. Men enjoy and want to share intimacy and vulnerability with you, BUT not by force. It will come as a result of you leaning back, while quietly and energetically inviting him in.
Try this. For the next 2 -4 weeks, each time your partner returns home for the evening or wakes on the weekends, instead of immediately beginning to ask questions (or before you start any conversation) give him a warm kiss and then tend to yourself for a bit. Read. Take a bath. Go for a walk. Or tend to your chores as usual.
Whatever you choose to do, breathe..., be in your own calm energy, honor your own wishes and desires, and let him come to you if or when he is ready. If things have been strained in your relationship for any length of time, it may take several days or weeks for him to soften. This new action will build needed emotional safety, especially if there has been a history of anger, resentment or conflict.
This can be a fantastic experiment, practice leaning back physically and emotionally, and let your spouse / partner come to you while you calmly, coolly and confidently attend to your own needs!
2) Help Him Feel Desired.
Just as we want to feel adored and cherished, men want to feel desirable and capable. What have you done or said lately to help your man to feel wanted and like the total "kick ass" man of your dreams?
Bottom line: Men want to feel like men. If you treat him like a loser, he's going to act like one! If you treat him like he is lazy, he will behave that way. Our expectations and behavior have great influence. Are you utilizing your influence wisely? This is your chance to use your Jedi mind tricks, so be smart about it!
And don't even give yourself a moment to think, "Well, what the hell has he done for me lately?, why would I want to go the extra mile?"
The answer might just be little to nothing. And you may not FEEL like going the extra mile, I get that. But this is about you, your choices and your ability as a strong, feminine woman to be a powerful change agent in your relationship and your whole life.
Try this out: Look for 20 opportunities EVERY day over the next 2 weeks to boost your sweetie up a few notches and see what happens.
Do this as a loving gift and with NO expectation for reciprocation. Tell him you appreciate him (his hard work, eyes, ass, intelligence). Initiate sex out of the blue. Surprise him with his favorite meal or restaurant.
Whatever you choose to do, do these things without expectation of reciprocity and watch what unfolds. nAgain, this may take some time, so be patient!
3) Be A Lil' Old Fashioned!
Ok, so while I am all for "fem rights", I also see the merit in being feminine! I'm not saying you need to be barefoot, pregnant and naked as you scrub the floor on your hands and knees (unless that's your thing!), but I do suggest that you think about how a lil' old fashioned femininity can soften your relationship.
Bringing balance to the feminine and masculine energies in your home is critical for each of you to be happy.
I see too many women today expressing too much masculinity. Women often do everything for couples; from planning dates, to bringing home the bacon, to managing finances and the house, to directing weekend activities...
... it's no wonder men today are retreating toward decision paralysis, shyness, fear and low confidence - us ladies are running their lives, and perhaps running them ragged!
There is only one masculine energy in any home and if you TAKE it, he will have no choice but to express himself as the feminine energy in the home (which WILL ultimately lead you or him to not want sex, closeness, connection or intimacy).
This is how energy balance works. YOU, as the true feminine must soften and melt into your gorgeous feminine energy, thus relinquishing the masculine hat (most of the time) before he can put it on!
This doesn't mean you cannot handle the finances, bring home the bacon or direct certain activities. It means do it in feminine ways, your innate ways.
You must also be willing to share and relinquish certain things and be okay that he doesn't do things 'your way', on your time, or at all in some instances. I hear you saying, "If I don't do ______, no one will." I hear this EVERY day from clients. I can't address this idea in full in this blog, but in short, please trust me when I say, that is not true!
If you've been wearing the 'I do everything hat' for a while, they why would he do anything, you do it all and he doesn't have to. Additionally, if you are too controlling about how and when things 'should' be done, he might just feel like there is no winning, so why should he try.
If the two of you have been out of balance for awhile and you've been playing the 'do everything role', it will take time for each of you to reset. Again, patience will be needed. You can also reach out to our team to get some specific coaching around this idea, it can be quite tricky.
Here are a few suggestions for stepping more fully into your femininity.
Stop doing tasks that are not crucial to your sanity.
Check your tone of voice as you interact with your lover. Is it demanding or inviting? Soft or critical? Loving or resentful?
Check in with your body language. Is it soft or aggressive? Loving or repelling? Inviting or rejecting?
Learn to let go... Breathe... and release...
Be more accepting of your partner.
Let go of any perfectionism that is getting in the way of being close and connected.
PS: The lack of balance between Masculine and Feminine energy is one of the most detrimental pieces to a relationship's ability to be sustainable, and has myriad ramifications and symptoms (lack of sex/attraction, intimacy, vulnerability, playfulness, etc). Please don't hesitate to reach out for help with this one.
4) Attend To Your Needs.
Ladies, you might not want to hear this one, but you must be willing to meet your own needs as best you can with love, care, maturity and confidence. No one is responsible for your happiness and well being except you!
Of course, as you and your lover grow together, build emotional safety and closeness, you will naturally meet each others' needs more frequently and easily. But it is not your partner's job and he is under no obligation to live to 'please' you!
As you learn to love yourself completely, accept yourself fully, and meet the majority of your own needs, you will not be looking to your spouse for "what he's not doing", and you will simultaneously let go of resentment, hurt and anger. On the opposite side of confident independence, behaving in needy ways serves as husband repellent! So be cautious and aware.
Note: Neediness usually illuminates personal insecurity and self-doubt, and can present itself as silent treatments, guilt trips, door slamming, pouting and so on. These are not very flattering or inviting behaviors. Take it from me, a former queen of guilt trips, pouting and other bad relationship habits, this stuff only creates more distance and dysfunction!
Be the strong, independent, carefree woman you are! Come on girl, get your swagger back!
5) Share Your Feelings, Not Your Drama.
I find it interesting how women are often accused of "always wanting to talk about their feelings". Yet, it's incredibly rare that women actually say how they feel. Rather, we are more practiced in telling dramtic stories that sometimes point to how we feel. It goes something like this, "Oh my gosh, I can't believe that you did ___. You make me feel so ____,I can't stand that."
Does some version of this sound familiar?
This type of sharing is actually complaining and blaming, and not at all about sharing feelings.
Sharing feelings is soft, feminine, and inviting and sounds more like this: "I feel sad." "I feel excited." " I feel lonely." "I feel happy."
See the distinction?! When you use feeling statements (instead of accusations, shame or guilt), your man will begin to probe further, and become interested. He cares very deeply about how you feel, but retreats quickly when put on the hot seat!
This shift in communication toward your partner is pinnacle in drawing him in and creating a safe, loving bond where he will WANT to do anything and everything for you. Most men want to share their deepest heart with you, and want to spend lots of time together, BUT they must feel emotionally safe, and YOU are the emotional leader in the family, so LEAD.
Getting what you want by giving him what he needs isn't that difficult, it just requires practicing a few new tools and tricks and being a bit patient! The above steps are good and healthy for you, even if you don't want anything more from your partner, or if you want to avoid getting into future sticky situations!
In love and liberation!
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Cheers to Liberate Living! Shawn