Sherry Argov was spot on when she talked about the classic male fear of losing one’s freedom in her book “Why Men Love Bitches”. Specifically, she advises women to avoid needy behavior and give guys enough space to do their own thing.
This insightful bit of advice captures an important part of the male psyche – Sherry knows very well that the last thing men want is a girl who represents the end of their freedom.
But it begs the question: what’s the deal with this kind of fear anyway?
Why are so many guys freaked out by the idea of a relationship – or the written-in-blood vibe they get from it?
Does being with someone really mean signing away your soul to a lifetime of servitude? Is a relationship the equivalent of being “caged in” (as Sherry puts it), or only doing what your significant other wants to do?
Or is it just fear messing with our minds?
Thing is, a lot of men – including yourself – might have been burned by bad relationships in the past. You might have heard from your friends or experienced firsthand some form of bad behavior from women such as possessiveness or emotional abuse.
Hey, it happens to the best of us. But that shouldn’t discourage you to keep striving for the ideal woman, and the ideal relationship for that matter.
A healthy, balanced kind of setting is where two people are there by CHOICE, and not out of a need to be in relationship for the sake of it. Neither of you feel trapped in being together, and being a couple feels like the most natural thing in the world to do.
But the real obstacle to shedding this unnecessary fear and making an ideal relationship a reality is a LACK of proper habits.
You see, most guys might have what it takes to attract a woman, but sadly not many know how to keep the spark going after the initial rush of infatuation.
Truth is, a lot of couples get stuck after the “reality check” stage rolls in and come face-to-face with each other’s not-so-endearing qualities.
But don’t let that scare you off. ALL relationships go through this natural evolution, so let me give you a few vital pointers on how to keep a relationship intact in spite of the bumpy road.
#1: Give Yourselves a Chance To Miss Each Other
Like I mentioned earlier, all couples go through the heart-pounding thrill found in the initial stages of a relationship. The passion is high, you can’t keep your hands off of each other – that’s normal.
However, as the weeks and months go by, a sense of routine will slowly creep into your lives. Again, this is expected, but you need to give yourselves time to grow OUTSIDE of the relationship as well.
Generally speaking, women will naturally throw themselves into a relationship with PASSION, wanting to dedicate almost every waking minute to YOU.
This is the thing that freaks out some guys, but it’s really immature to be afraid of this female tendency.
Compared to us guys, women are hard-wired to be in better tune with their emotions than we are. It’s just nature at work.
This means she has an affinity towards building relationships and creating their idea of a perfect shared life. As a man, you have to embrace this fact.
But at the same time, you also need to safeguard yourselves against getting too consumed in being a couple. Otherwise, the relationship will take on a needy dynamic, which of course is something you don’t want to happen.
Thus, you’ll have to let her know that both of you need to maintain the individual passions you had BEFORE you became a couple. Neither of you can risk losing your identity in the relationship.
After all, your zest for pursuing your passions is what made you unique and attractive to your woman in the first place. Neither of you wants to end up wondering, “What happened to the fun person I met?”
So, make sure to give yourselves time to do your own thing and recharge your “batteries”. No matter how awesome a relationship may be, doing the same thing over and over will wear out even the most passionate of couples.
#2: Women Hate Slackers
You know how mothers always tell their kids to brush their teeth, clean their room and do their homework? Your girl doesn’t want to be like that in the relationship.
In order for her to feel comfortable and be at ease in the relationship, you need to put on your big boy pants and put in an equal share of responsibility.
She’ll eventually resent you if you let her do all the work. The key to avoiding this situation is by having your OWN life sorted out. Don’t make her clean up after you; she doesn’t need the stress.
Be the best version of yourself by excelling at your job, paying your bills and basically being a responsible adult and a productive member of society. Besides, even if you weren’t in a relationship you’d STILL have to take care of yourself, right?
Like some of my female friends say, they need men who can run ALONGSIDE them – not someone they have to carry.
But let issue you an additional challenge: aside from being a mature, self-sufficient guy, you also need to man up and make plans in the relationship as well.
As I just mentioned, women don’t want to do all the work. Make plans and follow through with them.
Take her somewhere nice and take care of logistics on your own.
No matter how fiercely independent a woman may be, she still needs to feel her guy’s masculine core. This is defined by your strength of direction and dependability. Provide this in the relationship, and you’ll make things a lot easier for the both of you!
#3: Embrace Conflict
Not to freak you out by the topic, but even married couples will have issues they’ll NEVER completely agree on. Dr. John Gottman, the author of “The Seven Principles of Making Marriage Work” has been studying couples for decades and his research shows that people will argue about certain issues throughout their lives.
Obviously you’re different from your girl. That’s why you need to view disagreements as a chance to know more about her rather than turning the discussion into a standoff.
When it comes to certain things, the only thing you can agree on is to disagree about it. You don’t have to win each and every time.
Sometimes, having different perspectives on a matter is neither right nor wrong – just different.
Instead of treating a clash of values or beliefs as a sickness in the relationship, you can make things more constructive by using these moments as LEARNING experiences. NOT seeing yourselves on the opposite ends of the spectrum is a big step towards a greater sense of “we-ness”.
With this approach, you’ll develop a mutual understanding, learn how to compromise and ultimately, learn to ACCEPT each other’s differences.
When you employ these three key habits in your relationship, the reservations you might have about being committed will go out the window.
Being in a fulfilling relationship makes you a better person overall, and the so-called pressure of “sticking it out” becomes non-existent. In the end, you’ll find that there’s really nothing to be afraid of.