Which is Better for Your Love Life: Being Cautious or Optimistic?

Which is Better for Your Love Life: Being Cautious or Optimistic?Scarlett and Aaron were going to have an amazing life together.

She knew it in her bones. She’d never had a relationship this good. And she knew—even if Aaron didn’t—that he’d never had it this good, either.

The problem was that he was pretending.

Pretending he wasn’t head-over-heels in love with her—even though she could see it in his eyes.

Pretending he could live his life without her.

Pretending he didn’t know what tomorrow was going to bring.

They spent all their free time together. They texted each other all day long. Their couple photos were all over social media. So why couldn’t he admit what was already obvious to the world?

When Scarlett talked to her girlfriends, they told her to be wary. Don’t jump to conclusions, they said. You’re just setting yourself up for a fall.

But it wasn’t in Scarlett’s nature to think she was going to fail. She wouldn’t have given so much of herself to this guy if she didn’t believe it was going to last forever!

What would you do, if you were Scarlett?

Would you rein in that enthusiasm and be more realistic about your relationship?

Or would you ignore the naysayers and enjoy the ride?

It’s not something I’ve ever found statistics for, but I’d say half of the women I know are incurable optimists in love. The rest remain cautious—even when things are going well.

Which category do you fall into?

For some people, the category they fit into is a product of their age. It’s easier to be optimistic when you’re young and full of ideas about how relationships should be.

For others, optimism isn’t an option. They’ve been burned too badly before. So they never give themselves over to the beauty of love even when it’s real.

That’s why I recommend the middle ground whenever this question comes up.

A way to stay positive about your relationship while keeping your feet grounded firmly in reality.

It’s important to be optimistic about your relationship. What we get out of relationships is what we put into them. If you’re half-hearted or ambivalent about being with him, he’ll pick up on that and hold back a part of himself.

That doesn’t mean you should wear blinders. Even if you’re convinced you’re going to live happily ever after with this man, you don’t know what the future holds. It may not work out.

So I recommend a specific strategy. It’s what I recommend to my clients and something readers of His Secret Obsession will already know.

Channel your hopes and dreams into a relationship vision.

How can you use this relationship as a tool to enhance each other’s lives?

Let me show you.

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3 Strategies to Tame a Guy Who ALWAYS Has to Win

3 Strategies to Tame a Guy Who ALWAYS Has to Win“He has to win at everything!”

Damona was exasperated.

“We can’t even go for a game of mini golf without his ‘gotta-win’ hat going on. It’s not even fun anymore. We go for a hike, he’s gotta pass everyone else on the trail. I keep telling him it’s not a race to the finish line. Stop and smell the roses, you know?”

I knew. “Have you tried talking to him about it?”

“Every time.” She rolled her eyes. “He claims he gets it, and tries to explain the idea better than I did. Then he’s back to his old ways.”

This is what I knew about Damona’s partner. He worked in finance. He’d been a star athlete in college. Status mattered to him. He worked hard so he could play hard.

Status mattered to Damona, too. She liked being with a man who was successful and treated her like a queen.

But that very thing she fell for in him—his ambition and drive—was making their relationship intolerable.

He never relaxed, she said. He turned everything into a competition. How many minutes would it take him to vacuum the house? Could he do the dishes faster than she could load them in the dishwasher?

She wouldn’t have minded so much—after all, it was great he shouldered his share of the chores—except that he rubbed her nose in it every time he “beat” her.

He won; she lost. He was the man. She did it like a girl.

It made Damona’s blood boil. “I tell him, ‘We’re not in kindergarten! Grow up already!’”

If you’ve ever dated a competitive guy, you know how hard it can be.

Why does he DO that?

Why does he turn everything into a competition? Why does he brag about winning?

How can you get him to see that “winning” in love looks a lot different from winning on the sports field?

After all, YOU know that it’s better to be happy than to be right. It’s better to lose an argument than lose your partner’s respect.

Unfortunately, those concepts don’t always fly in the boardroom.

A man who doesn’t prioritize winning can find himself falling behind his more competitive colleagues.

Competitiveness is important to men. It defines their relationships from a very young age. Any time a group of boys gets together, their playfulness quickly turns competitive.

Trying to beat each other serves a purpose. It establishes their place in the pecking order. The boys who end up on top become “alphas.” The boys who lose are relegated to “beta” status.

So the very thing Damona loved about her guy—his high status—was a direct result of his competitiveness.

Is it possible to break past this kind of barrier in a relationship?

I believe it is, and I’d like to share 3 strategies to help with that today. These strategies can help you survive life with an overly competitive man.

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Free Your Man from Anti-Commitment Peer Pressure

Free Your Man from Anti-Commitment Peer PressureLewis Howes had it all.

A seven-figure business.

A bestselling book for which he was about to go on tour.

An athletic career that had catapulted him all the way to the pros.

So, the first thing he did?

Break up with his long-term girlfriend.

Why tie himself down? A man like him didn’t have to settle. He had options.

Why work on a relationship that was messy and difficult and not always that rewarding…

When he could cut loose and enjoy the lifestyle he deserved as an attractive, globe-trotting bachelor?

It didn’t take long before he regretted his decision.

On tour, staying in one nondescript hotel room after another, he realized he was alone.

“I was asking myself about the point of it all,” he writes. “I had no one to share it with. I had no intimacy or deep connection with anyone else.”[1]

You’ve probably heard versions of this story before.

A normal guy, with a wonderful woman who loves him, achieves amazing career success … then announces his divorce.

Why do men throw away the best thing that ever happened to them?

What do they think they’re hoping to gain by choosing casual flings over a committed relationship?

Some say it’s just the way men are. They’ve evolved to spread their genes.

But the truth is that most men want to get married and have children someday. The wedding industry is alive and well, driven by vast numbers of men getting down on one knee. These men chose love—and they couldn’t be happier.

Others say that it’s the woman’s fault. She’s not doing or saying the “right things” to make him commit.

Howes wants us to consider a different perspective.

He thinks that what keeps men from committing is peer pressure.

Not just any peer pressure, either.

But the worst kind of all…

The pressure from society, culture, friends and family to “be a man.”

In his incredibly personal book, The Mask of Masculinity, Howes unravels what he learned about being a man—and suggests ways you can help the man in your life experience a break through.

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3 Criteria to Spot an Emotionally Healthy Man

3 Criteria to Spot an Emotionally Healthy Man“I want to find me a mature man. A guy who’s responsible, who treats me right, who doesn’t come with a whole lotta baggage I’m supposed to fix for him. Where is he, James? Can you find me this man?”

Taraji was on fire. She leaned forward to emphasize her words. There was nothing I wanted more than to tell her, “Yes! I know exactly where he is, and I’ll introduce you tomorrow.”

But I couldn’t.

I’m not a matchmaker. I don’t break confidentiality to match my clients with each other.

Nevertheless, I could empathize with Taraji completely. So many of the women who come through my office struggle with a dating scene that seems to reward immaturity. Tinder can be pretty shallow. There are a lot of big egos out there.

I knew Taraji was in a pretty good place to meet someone on her level. She was in her 30s, with a stable sense of who she was as a person. She wasn’t just socializing online; she was open to meeting men at work, at the gym, and through friends.

But Taraji, like many women I know, didn’t always vet her potential boyfriends for maturity.

She liked men with a cocky, confident attitude. She appreciated an expert flirt.

If he was suave, good-looking, and keen on her, she gave him a shot.

And that was fine, as long as that’s what she wanted.

But now she was telling me it wasn’t enough. She wanted an emotionally healthy man. Someone who’d sorted out his stuff. Someone who was done with dating and ready for a relationship.

That’s a whole different ballgame.

Most women already know there are a few important things you need to check out on that first date. Do you have enough in common? Are your long-term goals compatible? Do you get each other’s sense of humor? Do you have chemistry?

Those are all important. But there’s another factor that often gets forgotten:

Is he emotionally healthy?

You’ll run into a lot of guys who aren’t as mature as you are. They’ve got issues they haven’t addressed. They don’t know how to relate to a woman in a way that strengthens their relationship.

These men may be fun to date. But you may be in a stage of your life where fun isn’t as appealing as it used to be. Maybe you’re looking for something else, like Taraji was.

When your relationship goals shift, the way you select men has to shift, too.

You can’t just pick the same men you’ve always dated. You have to look for different criteria.

I recommend adding these 3 criteria to your list of what you’re looking for in Mr. Right. They’ll help you weed out the immature men and spot a mature man a lot faster.

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