Friday, June 09, 2006

What Women Say They Want from Men, Part 1

This is another multi-part series, the purpose of which is to help you understand some very critical issues in getting along with women instead of competing with them, and will include some revealing comments by some women about what they want from a man, as well as some examples of things that women think they want that they respond to quite negatively when they actually get them.

I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to this weekend. I don’t normally look forward to weekends because I try to live every day as if it were my last, so my weekdays are very full and rewarding, but the weather is supposed to be outstanding, and I have a stockpile of charcoal in my garage that is begging to be reduced and a beef rib roll crying out “cut me into steaks and sear me over hot coals!”

Obviously, this has triggered a testosterone rush of the first order, and I never fight the urge to be a manly man who does manly things. We’re pretty simple, right guys? It just really doesn’t take a whole lot to make us happy.

But what about our women?

That’s the kicker, isn’t it? They have all that networking going on all the time, all that drama, all those nasty little rituals to go through. And trying to get a straight answer out of one of them is like pulling dragon’s teeth, isn’t it?

Are you ready for some good news? Women really aren’t as complex as they appear, and they really aren’t difficult to understand at all, IF you learn a little about them and learn their language…

What’s that? Sounds like something a travel agent told you once? Maybe, but while women really aren’t from another planet, they have evolved to do some things differently than us. Some of these differences work to their advantage, some to their disadvantage, but the same thing can be said of us.

Most women don’t do well with spatial issues like reading maps or knowing how things will fit together, while most men are fairly adept at it. Most men are very bad at detecting and interpreting hints, while women could effectively converse all day long without ever directly addressing anything.

This can affect us in our relationships in one of two ways. We can identify and understand these differences, and use them to our mutual advantage, or we can fail to understand them, and get sucked into a competition over whose way is better and who is going to be in control of things.

Let’s take buying a car, for example. Most men know more about the mechanical workings of a car than most women, are more excited by and interested in automotive performance, cost and difficulty of upkeep, etc. Most women are naturally much more sensitive to non-verbal communication, hints, innuendo, etc., than most men could ever hope to be.

I’m not even going to go into all the ways in which buying a vehicle can cause a couple to start a series of bitter fights; we’ve all been through the friction of the male trying to take too much responsibility in the process, being too aggressive or controlling on the issues of selection of vehicle and dealer, etc. But think about the possibilities that a little understanding and cooperation could afford!

If a man understands more about the ownership issues of vehicles, what he knows can be invaluable to a woman who doesn’t necessarily care what brand the vehicle is as long as it has a certain look, or certain features that she needs or wants to enjoy. But, for that value to be realized, he must LISTEN to her to find out what is important. When she says, “I liked the pink car the best,” it’s highly unlikely that she is saying that the fact that the car was pink was a deciding factor. She’s waiting for him to ask what it was about the pink car that she liked so she can tell him about the comfortable seats, the accessibility of controls without taking her eyes off the road, or whatever it was that she won’t get into until he shows that he’s interested in hearing it by asking about it.

A woman’s natural sensitivity to unspoken communications can make her invaluable during the negotiations over the purchase. Men are much easier to lie to or lead on than women because we don’t notice the nuances that declare deceit that nearly every woman alive readily sees without even watching for them. But again, he must LISTEN to her when she spots something amiss during the sales presentation or the purchase negotiation in order for them to derive any benefit.

That’s just the beginning of the revelations you’re going to have over the next few days, so brace yourself.

To give you something to ponder, here’s what one of the test group said she wanted in a man:

“I want a man to listen to me and take me seriously when I’m trying to be serious, to laugh with me when I’m happy, and let me get problems sorted out and fixed without distracting me when I’m not happy.”

Sound familiar? As I said, women are NOT that hard to understand, and they’re really not that different from us in a lot of ways. They just DO things differently from us that makes them appear too complex to understand, when in fact, our problem is that we simply don’t know enough about them, their “culture” (what it’s like to live as a woman) and their language. We’re going to work together to fix that.

I’m no travel agent, but no woman who knows me will tell you they wish I knew more about women; a lot of them come to me to help them understand themself! They send me e-mail asking questions, they call me on the phone, and they even by my book, which is written for men, and the comments from those who have concur: it’s “spot on” accurate.

It should be. It’s the result of working closely with a large group of women to learn how to listen and speak “girly-ese,” to learn what it’s like to live and experience life as a woman, to learn what makes them do the things they do the way they do them, and to learn what they think turns them on and off and how that differs in some cases from what REALLY turns them on and off.

My job was to translate what I learned from them into “man-speak” and give it to you, straight and to the point, without cluttering it up with theory and opinions. I did that job well, according to those I’ve served, both as a counselor and in "How to Be Attractive to the Woman You Love" which you can get at if you’d like to join the scant ranks of rare men who really do know what women want and how to enjoy giving it to them.

We’ll take this up again tomorrow, with more from women about what women want. Don’t miss it!

In the meantime, live well, be well, and have a wonderful day!
David Cunningham

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