3 Rules You Need to Know about Men

How To Understand MenI can’t get away with saying that men aren’t complicated.

Women don’t believe me. They’ve been on the receiving end of too many mystifying texts or communication blackouts. If men were simple, wouldn’t they say what they mean and cut the games?

But if I said, “We guys are not complicated,” to a roomful of guys, every single one would nod. Men don’t see themselves as complicated. We like to think we’re pretty straight-forward.

So who’s right? Are men simple or mysterious?

I’ve come to realize that male behavior is mystifying to women—but not to other men.  It all makes sense once you learn the male code.

A friend of mine, who also writes about relationships, spends a lot of time reading books written by men for men about what it means to be a man. She says it’s been a huge eye-opener for her. She had no idea men worried so much.

She now understands that men don’t really inhabit the same world she does. What he sees and what she sees can differ a lot. She can’t figure out his behavior by putting herself in his shoes, because his shoes don’t fit.

It works both ways. Sometimes I recommend that men read a romance novel, to give them insight into female fantasies. They resist it every step of the way. They’re sure they’ll hate it.

But it gives them a lot to think about. They may have never thought about why romance and passion matter. They start to see it’s less about how they perform and more about how she feels.

The male code has gotten a lot of attention in recent decades. Authors like Sam Keen and Robert Bly raised awareness of the harmful and heroic sides of manhood. Most men are now aware that becoming a man has as much to do with culture as biology.

But what are the unwritten rules of manhood? And how do they affect you?

Here’s a quick introduction.

Male Rule #1:
Think logically.

True or false?

Men are rational; women are emotional.

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Why You Should Play the Long Game

How To Find a Long Term RelationshipWhy You Should Play the Long Game

Jennifer was sick and tired of being overlooked by men … and she wasn’t shy about letting me know it.

“I could follow all the dating advice out there to the letter,” she complained, “and it wouldn’t do me as much good as liposuction. All I need to do is look hot. Then everything will fall into place.”

Was Jennifer right?

At a cursory glance, what she says has merit. Focus on your looks, and male attention flows. Each admiring glance feels like money in the bank.

But I like to think of the long game. And I was hoping to convince Jennifer of that, too.

There are two ways to play the dating game:

You can play the short game, or you can play the long game.

The short game is all about instant gratification. It’s about getting more male attention, the phone number requests, the hits on your online dating profile. You know you’re winning because you’re flooded with so much attention.

But the short game is hard to win. There’s a lot of competition. There are women with glossier hair, who take better selfies, or are more shameless about self-promoting.

I see so many women disheartened because they’re losing the short game. They’re not walking into venues and seeing heads swivel. They’re not getting five date requests a week.

But there’s a better game in town.

A game with higher odds of winning.

The long game is all about a lifetime of love. It’s not concerned about what happens today. It’s concerned about progress: that slow, gradual movement towards a dream. It aims for strong marriages and lifetime commitment.

What you look like isn’t so important in the long game. In fact, so-called “beautiful people” are at a disadvantage.  A 2017 Harvard study found that attractive couples are more likely to divorce, and their relationships don’t last as long.[1]

What keeps marriages together is this: Continue reading

How to Spot Your Future Husband Faster

How to Spot Your Future Husband FasterWhat are the chances your future husband is trying to meet you online?

One study suggests that it could be as high as 33%.[1]

(Other estimates are more conservative at 5% to 25%, so keep your eyes open in the real world, too. If he’s not online, he’s likely to be working at the same place you work or hanging out with mutual friends.)

But, if your future husband is online, how in the world are you going to find him? Have you seen all the potential matches out there? There are too many to sort through.

Dating sites can’t do the work for you. They can suggest matches but can’t predict chemistry. There are too many variables to consider.

Is your ideal partner near your age, or is he just outside of your ideal age range? Does he live within 30 miles of you, or does he live across the country? Does the camera love him, or will you pass over him because his profile pic is unflattering? Will you message him back, or will you ignore him because he can’t spell?

The human mind isn’t built to cope with questions like that.

Worse yet, if you consistently pick the wrong guys, you’ll waste your time on endless messaging and fruitless dates. You’ll become discouraged, frustrated, and sick of trying. Maybe the day you let your online dating membership expire is the day he tries to get in contact with you.

Luckily, your brain has a friend that knows exactly what to do.

Ever know something “in your gut”?

That’s not just a figure of speech.

You have two systems for making decisions. They’re called, quite cleverly, System 1 and System 2. (Seriously.)

System 1 is your gut or intuition. It’s what helps you make quick decisions, like whether to go for the chicken salad or double cheeseburger. You don’t have to think. You just feel the right answer.

Unfortunately, the “right” answer may actually be wrong, and that’s where System 2 comes in.

System 2 is your rational brain. The educational system taught you that System 2 is the only correct way to make a decision. Without reason, logic, and facts, you’re just guessing.

System 2 oversees our gut decisions. Perhaps your gut is urging you to move in with your boyfriend, but you write down a list of pros and cons to determine whether it’s really a good idea or not.

As great as it sounds, System 2 is remarkably bad at picking romantic partners for us.

You meet someone who is perfect on paper in every way. He’s exactly the sort of man you always said you wanted. But you’re not interested in the slightest. Your head tells you to go out with him, but your gut says, “I’ve got better plans. Pajamas. Netflix. Ice cream.”

Your gut is louder than your brain. Once it decides, its decision sticks.

So what does all that mean for online dating? And how does it help you find the perfect guy faster?

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How Personal Branding Can Help You Find Your Match

How To Find Your MatchYou’re at a party. Your host introduces you to someone you haven’t met before. He’s tall and good-looking, and his entire attention is focused on you.

He grins and says, “So, tell me about yourself.”

You stare at him like a deer caught in the headlights. He wants me to tell him about MYSELF? What do I say?

He’s still waiting. You’ve got a split second to come up with something.

What should you say?

  1. Ask, “Well, what do you want to know about me?”
  2. Tell him what you do for a living?
  3. Tell him what you do for fun?
  4. Just make sure you slip in the fact that you’re single?

We know first impressions matter. We know that it takes mere seconds for someone to decide if this is a relationship worth pursuing. Any veteran of speed dating can attest to the fact that it’s hard to rock those first few minutes.

Most advice on first impressions focuses on non-verbal body language.

  • Stand up straight
  • Make eye contact
  • Relax and smile

But what about the talking part? If you fumble while thinking of something to say, will he look past that?

Maybe. But why take the chance when you can ensure this never happens to you?

Here’s my simple solution. Have a one or two-sentence personal brand statement prepared in your mind. It sums up who you are and why he might like to get to know you better.

Your personal brand is what makes you unique. In business, it helps distinguish you from your competitors and lets clients and potential employers know why you’re the best fit.

Personal brands are important, too. Especially when you’re dating.

An online dating profile crafted with your personal brand in mind stands out. It catches the right attention from the right people. It even suggests potential conversational topics.

A good personal brand should evoke surprise and delight. There’s something about you he wasn’t expecting. He’s intrigued—in a good way—and he wants to know more.

For many of us, it’s not easy to showcase who we are. We’d rather speak plainly about who we are and try to be as humble as possible. Treating ourselves as a “brand” feels inauthentic—and more than a little vain.

But do you really want a man to see you as ordinary and nothing special?

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