Life Check Yourself Episode 379 The Signs Men Look for to Decide if You Are the One with Bryan Reeves
Marni welcomes world renowned author and life relationship coach, Bryan Reeves, in the Life Check Yourself studio, to discuss the dynamics in a relationship. The author of the recently released book, Choose Her Every Day (or Leave Her), Bryan delves into the semantics of how men perceive things versus how women perceive them. In this episode, the pair talk about what connection actually means, and how it is defined in relation to a person’s experiences throughout life. Men and women aren’t wired the same, but that doesn’t mean that men don’t desire intimacy just as much as women do, they just go about it differently. Marni and Bryan look into the misconceptions and stereotypes that have given men a bad rep; and how women have interacted with these preconceived notions ingrained in us by society.
Takeaways from this episode:
- Is he an F-boy or actually profoundly sensitive?
- Men perceive connection differently than women
- How to communicate your needs
- A relationship of invitation vs a relationship of obligation
- How to meet in the middle
- He wants intimacy too
Women Are From Venus, Men Are From… [01:37]
There’s a far-reaching misconception, when it comes to dating, that men don’t want intimacy. Society has continually fed into that narrative that men don’t care about forming a connection with their partner, and that intimacy isn’t their thing. But is that actually the case?
Men and women are wired differently. But at the end of the day, we’re all human beings, and we all crave the same basic things. We just perceive it in different forms. Bryan explains that contrary to popular belief, men are actually profoundly sensitive. But due to years of programming instilling in them the notion that insecurities or feelings are a weakness, it’s become a habit they’ve taken into adulthood.
We do come at things very differently. Men [do] want connection, too. That’s a fact.
That’s not to say that some men aren’t F-boys. But every human being has insecurities; has a need to belong; and a need to be understood. Men are not exempt from wanting connection. They just have a different picture of what that looks like.
If the house isn’t on fire, you’re doing something right [05:17]
Bryan elaborates that a majority of men view connection in a larger spectrum. If everything is running smoothly, the bills are paid, and the house isn’t on fire, then all’s good, and you’re good. Whereas for a majority of women, connection means something entirely different.
Quoting Terry Real, the successful podcast host breaks it down in laymen terms. He explains that for some, mainly men, connection is experienced shoulder to shoulder, which means that it’s you and your partner experiencing the world together side by side. Rather than, nose to nose, which is more internal. Whereas one gender views connection as doing activities together and facing the external together; the other views it as experiencing each other and connecting on a face to face, or soul to soul level. The latter being more intimate. But the way we translate intimacy is intertwined to how we’ve experienced it growing up, within our own lives.
A lot of us grew up in homes where intimacy wasn’t practiced in that way. For a lot of people, that was even unsafe to be nose to nose, or face to face, because that meant I could get crushed.
For many men, as long as everything is functional, then everything is good regardless of what’s actually going on in the relationship.
However we practice intimacy, balance is a key component. While it is pivotal for a relationship to include both types of connection, space and knowing when to give it and when to receive it is important. That’s where balance comes into play.
We get into relationships with the fantasy that ‘I’m going to get my needs met, and my desires met just as I want them to be.’ And even then, when we do get them met, there’s a part of us that has a visceral repulsion because actually that’s not balanced. It’s just me getting a fantasy of something that’s unsustainable.
How to Make Him Understand You [ 09:52]
There’s a distinction that Bryan makes which is invitation versus obligation. If you’re coming from a relationship as invitation, then that might fare better for you.
We’re adults, it’s human nature to want autonomy over our wants and our desires. No one wants to feel obligated. So, coming to your partner from a space that makes him feel obligated isn’t always the right way to take up your complaints. Whereas when it’s framed as an invitation, it’s indirectly telling your partner that this is where you’d like for them to meet you, and it’s up to them to choose. It restores their sense of freedom.
I think a relationship done well is an endless invitation; it’s an endless series of invitation.
To get to that balance and that level within a relationship takes years, and doesn’t happen overnight. But understanding the foundation of what connection means to each person is indispensable.
A Relationship done well is a paradox. It is an obligation that I am freely choosing to step into.