Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A challenge for men!

“What is your plan? Exactly!”

“What is your plan?” she asks. “It will work out somehow” he says. And the internal unrest in the relationship grows until lava like either flows out in the most unexpected places or erupts explosively in the most inconvenient time.

The unconscious natures of women and men play their vital roles for the survival of relationships, family, and community. Men by nature are more aggressive, impatient, short-sighted, given to winning, reproducing, overcoming, and hungry. Women think longer term, appreciate knowing the ‘plan’, seek to know ‘cause and effect’ as a source of empowerment that comes from being prepared. However these differences often weaken and lead to an unfulfilled relationship.

Men will come on like ‘gang busters’ with their ideas, thoughts and wants. The powerful woman has a plan, and most of these ideas don’t fit in. Her response isn’t, “Wonderful Plan, I’ll just forget mine”, but rather caution and discomfort. The accumulation of these emotional responses compound emotional disconnection and erode intimacy and passion.

Be your Best, “Slow Down”!

Lyrics from “Slow Hand” by the Pointer Sister gives a great “point” for understanding a powerful tool for communicating with your partner.

”I want a man with a slow hand
I want a lover with an easy touch
I want somebody who will spend some time
Not come and go in a heated rush
I want somebody who will understand
When it comes to love, I want a slow hand”

A quality and fulfilling relationship happens over a period of time. The time factor is one of the greatest challenges for people in our culture, especially men. There is a great deal of pressure from the economy to be as productive in as short a time as possible. This “hurry up” model doesn’t apply to love relationships.

Sequential Steps

Developing intimacy and closeness with your partner has to occur in sequential steps or stages. The initial step it requires is an honest acknowledgment of your partner. It is human nature to assume acknowledgment from our life mate. However this assumption begins to gnaw at the trust connection. Here are three fundamental and sequential step to creating a passionate and intimate connection with your partner:

  1. Acknowledgment of our partner’s presence, desires and wants are as essential five years into the relationship as was the original courtship and bonding.
  2. Acknowledgment initially is a visual awareness, but eye contact is equally critical. Often partners rarely hold and maintain eye contact with each other after their courtship. Sharing eye contact for an extended period allows connection in each others emotional center.
  3. This type of connection significantly increases the effectiveness of the third kind of connection that occurs, communication!

When a man is connected with his partner at this level, his words enter the emotional power center and connect with the plans of a strong woman.


  1. I don't think it's always men who are the ones who are impatient, short-sighted, and overcoming. As a wife I have had that role while my husband was the one who took foreeeever to make a plan and be slow to take action - so slow that opportunities sometimes passed us by. Often, that plan was all in his head and I was left to guess what that plan was....pretty frustrating. You are right, though, that adequate and timely communication can overcome lots of differences. Being left in the dark, having a wait-and-see feeling, and operating on a "need to know" basis are big roadblocks to communication and, consequently, peace and closeness in the relationship. Anon.

  2. That is a common conversation in my life. I agree it causes unrest because I truly believe it will work out somehow. It's how I've lived most of my life. The thing that gets me in trouble is that while I believe it will work out, I have no idea of knowing how until it happens, and my wife wants thing "fixed" immediately, or at least develop a plan for making it so.

    The other side of the story is that sometimes I know what it will take to "fix" the problem, but I do not have the resources available to make it happen, therefore compounding the problem. Many times it comes down to a decision. I can play it safe and not have what I need or take a gamble that may or may not work out. I'd rather gamble a little problem to avoid it building to a big problem, but I no longer take risks, or likewise gain the rewards, because it's not the smart choice. "What happens if it doesn't work?" I say we try again until it does instead of waiting and doing nothing until a small problem has reproduced a series of others.

    I can look back at my life and see a mountain of opportunities I passed up because it wasn't a sure thing. Most of which would have resulted in substantial gain. And so goes my life.


Reader Comments

"...My spouse and I have been married for 32 years and I've experienced our relationship from giggly in bed, to passionate in bed, to mad in bed to "sleeping" in bed...As we grow older the intimacy definition changes for me. Intimacy also for me is just sitting quietly, or driving for miles quietly or walking just hearing our footsteps crunch the leaves, holding hands. My usual struggle in intimacy is in my head - I have to intentionally stop my daily to do list, my past and future stuff and live in the present moment..." Pam

it's ... smaller things to celebrate that create the real passion

“We have found that passion ebbs and flows but we set a goal for our relationship a number of years ago that is working for us. At least every six months we do something that will create a lifetime memory. For us, we love to travel, so it's been pretty easy to find something big to do that will create that lifetime memory, but sometimes it's the finding of smaller things to celebrate that create the real passion.” Steve Rae

What'll arouse passion more than the feeling of being forgiven?

“The "typical beliefs that people have when the “fire” seems to have gone out of a relationship" I believe are a) that you feel your partner should have changed or should not have changed and b) that you feel you should change or that you should not have changed.

Acceptance of yourself and your partner leads to forgiveness. What'll arouse passion more than the feeling of being forgiven?” Brian Massey

A word from Russ Hardesty

The realm of relationship is mysterious; filled with magic, surprise, excitement, passion, intimacy, loss, disappointment and creativity. I am fortunate to have a life partner who is at once a mirror, teacher, lover, nurturer, student and companion. In this place of mystery, I continue to grow into a mature, loving and free man. I welcome feedback, suggestions, and comments – which is a gift to me! Thanks for joining the expedition! Russ