As part of this special series for Men’s Health Week, enjoy the insight of James Wilson, Dating with Dignity’s Man Expert and Associate Coach, as he shares is insight into how “one-upping” your man could cause him to run for the hills.
How to avoid the #1 Secret Relationship Demon: Competing With Your Man
(And we’re not necessarily talking only about chess, physical endurance, or holding your liquor, ladies.)
If we could offer one little piece of advice when it comes to competing with men, it would be this: STOP! It’s hurting you; it’s hurting them; it’s hurting all of us.
But the problem for most women is this: you’ve been conditioned to compete with men throughout your childhood, high school, college, and now in the corporate world.
In fact, in some organizations it’s a necessity. We know that if you stopped being competitive at work, you may not even be able to survive, let alone get a promotion and be seen a key asset. So while you must remain competitive at work, it’s critical that as soon as you’re not at work, you must know how to shift completely out of competition mode.
There are many aspects to leadership at home, and I’m in no way implying that the sole leader in a relationship is the man. I believe in fluid roles in relationships.
What we do know is this:
Many years ago I was in a relationship with a woman who would talk me down to our friends. You know how that looks and feels. She would make those little sarcastic comments that would generate a snicker or an understanding shake of the head from the crowd. Her attempt to win their sympathy and understanding was made completly at my expense.
As a result, I found myself in competition with her over the love and understanding of our friends. I wanted them to take my side. This competitive “dance” was so destructive to our relationship.
Instead of competing with your man, how can you create a dance in which you build each other up, not tear each other down? If you get the sense that a man who’s dating you feels more secure when your confidence is
down, run. If you feel more comfortable believing you can control a man, or even if you just feel more powerful than a man you’re dating, stop. Let go.
The corporate arena can be like a boxing ring sometimes, and we respect that. However, you don’t want your love life to be a boxing match. Take off the boxing gloves and attract a man into your life who’s strong. Then make it your mission in the relationship to make him even stronger.
The stronger he is, the more he’ll provide and protect. He is your rock. If you tear him down, you’ll drown. Build him up so high with words of appreciation and respect that no storm can touch your land.
James Earl Wilson, CPC, is an internationally renowned, award-winning performer and relationship coach. James functions as Male Expert Coach for Dating With Dignity, where he consults successful women and men on their path to find the love they desire and deserve. E-mail James here with questions and comments!