Lessons on Being a Man from Jesus

In one of my previous posts I made the comment that  Christian women don’t just want Prince Charming, they want Jesus.   I believe this to be true, but I also think that the church, in general, has an interesting concept of who Jesus was.   I think many people in the church see Jesus as a weak beta nice guy, but he definitely wasn’t.  The Jesus presented in the Gospel was an alpha – really The Alpha.

The concept of “game” or just modern PUA techniques really boil down to a few key concepts.  Mostly the idea of knowing who you are and what you want.  I want to take a few of these key concepts and relate them to Jesus.

Confidence

Most people would agree that one of the most attractive things to women is confidence.  They want a bold confident man.

Jesus was possibly the most confident man that ever lived. If you read the Gospels, I can’t think of any instance where he wasn’t supremely confident.  He didn’t ask for things, he demanded, told, instructed, ordered.   He knew who he was and where he was going.  Knew what the Father set before him.  The only time that we see any weakness was in the Garden of Gethsemane where he anguished over what was to come.   Even this wasn’t necessarily a lack of confidence, just a desire to not have to do a hard thing.

Compliance

One of the “tricks” the seduction community often talks about is getting compliance, getting investment.   Moving a woman around, asking her to do things, getting her to buy into your frame – your way of thinking.    I suspect, and I may research into this more, that compliance is a tool that causes men and women to buy more into you and what you are doing.

Jesus always seemed to be telling random people to do things.   One great example is the Samaritan woman in John 4:7

Then a woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink”

He starts this interaction out with a command to give him a drink.   He does it all the time:

As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen.  “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.”  At once they left their nets and followed him.

Mystery

Another thing I talked about recently is the Christian dating advice that you shouldn’t play games.  You should just come out and say ‘I like you and want to explore the idea of marriage’.   Jesus was rarely plain.  Almost everything he said was a parable, or contradictory or just plain difficult to understand.   He is one of the most enigmatic people in history.   Countless people over two millennia have worked to understand his teachings.  In fact, the apostles spent the rest of the New Testament trying to clarify the Gospels.

Why did he do this?  At least partly because it’s interesting.   Humans naturally are drawn to a mystery and want to figure it out.  The same reason you should be mysterious.  One thing to note though, the Bible is plain about it’s overall purpose, just the details are mysterious.  It’s OK, good even, to show a woman that you are interested, but it’s also OK to push and pull, not answer every question, listen more than you talk, play the game a little.  Life is fun, and it’s good to do things that keep people engaged.

Handling Rejection and Betrayal

One thing that modern men, it seems that especially men in the church, don’t handle well is rejection.   Guys can get angry and spiteful when they are rejected.   This is something the Christ didn’t do.   He never forced himself on anyone, and when he was rejected or even betrayed, he didn’t get angry or vengeful.   A great example is the story of the Prodigal Son.   Not directly about Christ, but one of his teachings about a son that rejects his father, goes off to live life his own way, but when he does return his father embraces him warmly, doesn’t chastise him at all.

We should be like that.   If we are rejected, let that person go, but treat them with love if they return.

A key thing in that story is there was not an expectation of the son’s future behavior.   The father welcomed him back but didn’t scold him or assign him a place to work.  He was welcomed unequivocally without expectation.

Another example is the rich young ruler.  Jesus told him the requirements to be saved but didn’t become angry when the man rejected him.

Don’t Chase

Another thing Jesus didn’t do was chase after anyone.   He never did anything to try to supplicate or coerce anyone.  He was his own man and if someone didn’t follow him he just let them go their own way.

Be Fun

This one is a bit interpretive, but people liked to be around Jesus.   I mean really, how many of you have a 12 man posse that quit their job to follow you around???   He would go out to speak and crowds would follow him.   Women would break perfume at his feet.  He was accused of hanging out with sinners.   He turned water into wine.   Now I don’t want to insinuate that He did anything bad, or that you have a right to party and be crazy because Jesus did it, but he wasn’t a stick in the mud either.  He wasn’t boring.  People were drawn to him, and not because he was putting them to sleep with his lame stories.

Attainability

The idea of attainability is one of the biggest problems I think Christian guys have who want to date.

Single men in the church usually fall into one of two categories.  Either they are just creepy and scare the girls away, or they are aloof and won’t engage.   This leads so many Christian women to ask the question “Why won’t he ask me out?”.

How many of you guys have had this happen?  A woman is flirty and friendly and fun, but you just aren’t sure.  Aren’t sure that she’s “the one”, and there’s all this pressure to “date intentionally”.  Or maybe you are just scared, unsure.  Either way, you try to make her invest more.  You act aloof and uninterested.  You play games.  Then one day, all of a sudden, she goes cold.  She wants nothing more to do with you.   That is an attainability problem.  She decides you are unattainable and she’s wasting time, so she just ghosts you.

Attainability is the probably the most beautiful message of the Gospel.   It’s something addressed in the most popular verse in the Bible – John 3:16

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

God made himself attainable to us by sending Jesus.  We also see this in Jesus’ life.  He ate with sinners and tax collectors, in fact, went to Zaccheus house for dinner.  He even encouraged the children to come see him in Matthew 19:14

 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Even the Caannanite woman got access to him in Matthew 15:25

 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.

He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”

“Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”

 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.

Be a Man Like Jesus

Preachers will often bring things like this up when it comes to advancing the Kingdom.  Encourage us to be bold and share our faith.   But these are concepts we can use in every aspect of our daily life.  Our work, our relationships, our dating and ultimately our marriages and families.   If we, as men, would be a little more like Jesus, I believe we would have more success in lives.

It’s interesting that the Internet dating community has picked up on these concepts that are so well illustrated in the Bible.  In some cases, they have turned them for questionable or even evil purposes, but that doesn’t mean that the foundation they are built on is invalid.

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Christian Men Get No Mercy

There’s a lot of onus on the men in the Christian community to be mature, responsible, not play games.

This video from Mark Ballenger that discusses Christian Players is a PERFECT illustration.

 

“A mature Christian isn’t going to play games.  If they really like you they are just going to say ‘hey you know I like you, I’d like to go on a date with you, I’d like to see where this goes because I’m looking to get into a Godly marriage someday and I just want to see where it goes with you”

Wholly crap?   Can any of you men imagine walking up to a woman you have a crush on and saying that?  That would require balls of steel.   You would have to be SUPREMELY confident to do that.    Most guys, in the Church or not, have trouble just asking a woman for her phone number, let alone confessing that they really like you and see you as a marriage prospect.

And ladies, if some guy did that to you what would your response be?   Sure, it sounds supremely romantic, but what if you aren’t attracted to the guy, or aren’t sure you would marry him?   Then, all of a sudden it gets super creepy.

Games exist because they create attraction.  They are a method to build some tension, make things interesting and fun and lead to more.   Earlier in this video, Mark warns against guys that want to date a woman too early, when all they know about this person is the superficial.  But then he turns around with this statement about not playing games.

So, as a guy, I’m supposed to

  • Meet a woman, presumably that I find physically attractive
  • Get to know her – but without any flirting or game playing that’s pretty natural when it comes to romantic relationships
  • Ask her out by telling her I like her and that I’m looking to get married and want to see where it goes with her.

Huh

On the flip side,  this is the way that the rest of the world works

  • Meet a woman, presumably that I find physically attractive
  • Flirt with her, if we have chemistry get her number
  • Ask her to coffee, or maybe dinner and see where it goes from there

Seems like there’s a bit of a disconnect.

Couple all this with the pressure formed from the date intentionally mentality that really limits the dating experience truly devout guys get, and you end up a bunch of people that can just never connect.

Bottom line here is many Christian men are inexperienced and just as nervous as Christian women.   It’s just not fair or realistic to paint all guys that play games and are nervous as “players” and warn women from dating them.  Too often we play games because we are nervous.    We don’t want to be rejected, so we dance around and try to figure out if the woman is interested or not.  Yes, it’s not ideal, yes it’s better when men are confident and bold, but when there is little chance to build that confidence it’s a major expectation.

The reality is there are fewer single guys in the church than single women.  The reality is that there are women with a strong desire to be married that can’t find good guys.  The reality is that what we are doing ISN’T WORKING.

So ladies cut the guys some slack.  Give them some mercy.  Just because they aren’t confident and bold doesn’t mean they wouldn’t make good husbands.   In fact, the guys that are confident and bold could also be players.

Nervousness, playing games, being indecisive isn’t an indicator of a player, it’s an indicator of somebody that really likes you and probably hasn’t dated a lot of women – which is what you are really looking for.

Date Unintentionally

One of the biggest pieces of nonsense advice that’s put out by Christian gurus for dating is to “date intentionally”.

The idea makes sense in theory.   Don’t date someone that you know you aren’t going to marry.  Don’t date for fun or personal gratification.  Date with intention.

Sounds nice, doesn’t it?

This is really bad, and fundamentally the root of many dating problems in the church for three major reasons.

  1. How do you know who you would marry without dating them?
    Sure, we all should have standards about who we are dating.  If the person has obvious red flags right from the start, this makes sense.  But this is typically taken to the extreme,  gives in to this Disney Prince Charming idea of dating.  That a woman (or man) can’t go out on a date with a person unless they are the perfect God Ordained prince or princess.   I can’t go out with that guy because he’s not tall enough, or combs his hair funny, or wears glasses, or doesn’t make enough money, or doesn’t read his Bible enough or whatever.  We use this concept of discrimination to reinforce our inherent selection process (which – let’s be real – we are all going to have) and justify our fear and apprehension at opening up to another person.   Personally, I have 3 criteria I look for in another person before I would date them.  They have to love Jesus, be reasonably attractive (I try really hard to be liberal with this one) and we have to have chemistry.  That’s IT.  Now, of course, I have a long list of other criteria of things I find attractive, but I would go out with any woman that meets these first 3.    In fact, with the Jesus and the chemistry thing, I would go on at least one date just to explore these two areas if I didn’t know them well.

    As Christians I believe we should look for things that aren’t apparent, aren’t just flashy on the surface (nice car, pretty face, etc…)  How are we going to evaluate the character and inner quality of a person if we won’t even give them a chance based on a snap judgment.

  2. It puts too much pressure on the date
    I’m not sure I even want to go out with a woman that “KNOWS” she would marry me before we go out.  It puts SOOOO much pressure on.   I want to go out with a woman I like so we can see how we are together – one on one.   When you are in this knowing place, you put WAY too much expectation on the date.    Go out a few times, see how it goes, constantly evaluate, be smart.
  3. It keeps you from having experience dating
    The more people you meet, the more people you date, the better you are going to know what you want.   I’ve known plenty of women that seemed really great initially, then we spent some time together and it was CLEARLY not a good fit.   That enables me to further refine my process, figure out who I am looking for, who might be a good person to invest in and just get better at dating.  Until you get comfortable with the dating process it’s going to be a real mess and you will likely fall for the first person that comes along and pays attention to you.

This focus on only intentional dating keeps Christians immature and inexperienced at dealing with the opposite sex.  Then, when someone comes along that you THINK you would marry, you get involved, let the feelings overtake you, miss all the red flags and end up in a bad relationship.

What’s interesting is this seems to hold true for divorced people in their 30s and 40s as much as it does for teenagers.   After making an initial bad choice you either make another bad choice by rushing into something like you did the first time, or go blindly into a second marriage because the only person you date is the one that sparked an infatuation which you interpreted as God telling you they were the perfect one.

So go out, date unintentionally.  Know your boundaries and don’t go further than you want to.  Be willing to stop dating someone that isn’t a good fit, but get some experience.  Mature as a person.  Be a good date and good partner.  You never know, that person that you didn’t initially think you would ever marry might be the love of your life.

Do Women Want You

There is this overriding feeling in our society that it’s impossible to get a girlfriend, hard to date, girls aren’t interested, etc… and it’s dead wrong.

Most women over 30 in the church are under TREMENDOUS pressure to get married.  They want a man in their life desperately.   Their biological clock is running out, the other women in the church are judging them, society is judging them, it’s palpable.   If you aren’t a creeper, they probably WANT you.

The tricky thing in the church is it’s a big social circle and no woman wants to be made a fool of.  This is why so few women will outright show that they are interested in you.

It’s a completely different environment than a club or bar, where everyone is there just to hook up, meet people, whatever.  Girls in that environment will be much more open and honest about their interest.

Church girls will usually only show blatant interest if they either have very low social standing or if you are such high value they think it’s worth sacrificing their dignity.

So, if you are in a church group, and you want to date one of the high-quality girls you have to be careful.  If you give her too much attention in public you will scare her off.   If you flirt too much with all the girls, she will think she’s just another conquest, so you have to be somewhere in the middle.   Get her alone, or in a small environment where she’s comfortable.  Show her she’s special, treat her a little different than the other girls.  Be very clear about your intentions, but be discrete.   This is really hard, especially when they are aloof and weird, but one thing I have learned is that if a girl turns you down she won’t typically broadcast it to everyone in the group.  She has more interest in her social standing than you do, so she won’t tell anyone but her closest friends – unless you are a creep, then she’ll make a big deal out of it and shame you.

So pay attention, if she clearly doesn’t like you, don’t chase her.   If she clearly does, don’t flaunt that in front of everyone.   Be consistent, discrete and show her she’s the only one.

It’s best to assume that, unless you are flat out creepy or if she’s giving you hardcore signals you are just friends, she’s probably interested.

How to Know If She’s Interested

One of the biggest things I think most guys struggle with is evaluating a woman’s level of interest in you.   The last thing most of us want to do is make a woman uncomfortable and try to make some kind of move on her that’s unwanted.

But… there’s a problem with this.  It’s pretty much impossible to know.   Women aren’t consistent with their Indicators of Interest, so it’s tough to evaluate – and there is good reason for this, but there are a few things you can observe to help keep yourself out of trouble.

There are three types of women out there that you will encounter.

How to Know  She Isn’t Interested

I find that this is the easiest thing to evaluate – the women that are completely uninterested in you.    Here are a few things to look for:

  • Referring to you as a friend
    If she gives you a tight hug and says “It was nice to see you friend”, you are out.  She is NOT interested.
  • She sets boundaries
    I’ve seen this a few times.  A woman that doesn’t like you will only take things so far.  She might flirt a little, or be really friendly, but there comes a point where she stops responding and it’s a cold stop.   She gets aloof and cold.  Pay attention to this, and don’t confuse it with mixed signals – they aren’t the same thing.  Usually, they will still be friendly, but just distance themselves.
  • She touches you a lot
    This can also be confusing.  Touching is a very flirty thing, but if she’s always hugging you, touching you, whatever, she probably just sees you as a friend and is comfortable with you.  Notice if she does this with everyone if that’s the case she’s just a touchy person.   Don’t regard it as an indicator of interest.
  • She texts you a lot
    Again, there are exceptions, and some very forward girls will text you, but if she’s just talking your ear off all day, she probably is just a friend, and maybe a gossip.
  • She runs away
    If she actively leaves the area you are consistently, you probably creep her out.  Don’t follow her around and be weird.
  • She’s more interested in her phone than she is you
    If she would rather be playing with her phone than talking to you, she’s not that into you.

How to Know She’s Interested

The second type you will run into is the girl that is PLAINLY interested.   Here are some signs that she’s really, clearly into you.

  • She touches you
    This is the girl that doesn’t touch people, but will brush your arm, touch your shoulder when you laugh, punch you in the arm, etc…   Look for differences in the way she treats others and those subtle touches.
  • She gets nervous around you
    Again, distinguish this from creepy behavior.  If she will talk to you and then just runs away.   If she seems like she likes you but won’t make eye contact.  She’s TOTALLY into you.
  • She texts you
    In my experience, this type of girl will text you and ask all about you.  Conversation might be awkward, stilted, short.  Until you are actually dating she probably won’t harass you nonstop, but she might send you a quick text saying how good it was to see you, or whatever.
  • She asks you to do stuff
    She will invite you to do things, or give you some opportunity to jump in on something she’s doing.  “I’m going to X tomorrow, you should come” Often this will be by text too, so if she texts you and then mentions something, she’s probably into you.
  • She’s really interested in your life
    Your job, your family, whatever random thing you are doing interests her.   If you are a sports fan, she will pretend to be too, just to hang out with you.

These girls are typically obvious, and will usually go anywhere, do anything you suggest.

They are also typically less interesting than this last type.  This behavior can just reek of desperation and guys like desperation less than girls do, so often we just keep these girls around to stroke our egos – but be careful.  If you flirt too much with a girl that’s really into you it will be bad.

She MIGHT be Interested in You

This last category is the really hard one, and probably where the majority of women you meet will fall into.  Where it’s really hard to know if she’s interested or not.

  • She won’t text you, but will respond (or sometimes not respond)
    High-quality women, or nervous women, in my experience, will never initiate texts and won’t just chat with you over text for long periods.   Sometimes they won’t respond for hours, days, or not at all.   This is a really weird thing because it feels like it’s disinterest, but it isn’t always.   It’s hard to figure out.
  • She stares at you
    Nervousness is often and Indicator of Interest (IOI), but the girl that flat out stares you down can be hard to understand.   It’s a strong signal of attraction, but sometimes those girls won’t respond.
  • She’s hot and cold
    Sometimes she will seem very friendly and interested, the next time she will ignore you.   This can be tricky, maybe she’s just insecure and likes the attention, maybe it’s a different group of people around the next time, maybe she’s playing hard to get, it’s impossible to know.
  • She talks to you
    As a general rule, if a girl will talk to you in person, she probably doesn’t dislike you.   Again, this doesn’t always go both ways.  Look to see if this behavior is different from others if she talks more when you are alone together and watch for topics of conversation.  If she gets nervous as the conversation gets deeper that probably means she is wanting to open up but not sure if she can trust you.

These are really the girls you want to invest in and pursue.  They are usually high quality and are going to be more selective because of their standards.

Afraid of One on One

This is something that has puzzled me for some time.   I have a lot of female friends.  Some of them I can hang out with one on one and everything is fine.  Others, politely decline when I suggest it and finally there are a few that get really weird if you suggest it.  I’ve never understood this.  I’m a good guy.  Never assaulted anyone in my life, never abused a woman, even the most awkward of dates I have walked away as polite as possible.    So why are some girls so hesitant to be alone with me???  It’s a mystery, but I may have figured it out.

There is so much talk out there about “the friendzone” and women just friending you and not wanting to move forward, that I think it has confused some things.  There is something powerful about one on one time with a person of the opposite sex.

Think about it.  Would you spend time one on one with a married woman?  Have you ever?   I have and there are two or three married women that I would be alone with, but typically I’d have to have a very specific purpose and timeframe.   Even then, it kinda feels weird.

I remember one woman, back in college. I had a HUGE crush on her from the day we met.  We had great chemistry and she is still one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever met.   Unfortunately, she was dating a guy when we met, then they broke up and she met another guy and was in a long distance relationship.   But, one time, we were both going to college in the same town and I suggested we meet for breakfast one day before class.  Wasn’t trying to make a date out of it, just wanted to hang out with her.  She agreed, and we had a great visit, each paid for our own meals, gave her a hug and we went to class.

Funny thing is, she was nervous.  Not overly so, but just seemed a little apprehensive.   At the time, I just figured she thought I was going to make a move or do something weird.   Now, I wonder.   I wonder if there was mutual attraction.

Intimacy is Huge for Women

I’ve written about this before, but in general, women crave intimacy more than they crave sex.   For men it’s the opposite.   This is a challenge because it’s where the whole friendzone thing comes in.   It’s perfectly acceptable for a Christian Woman to have long talks and spend lots of time with a guy as a “friend”, but not acceptable if a guy wants to by physically intimate with her.   She gets what she needs, and is generally fulfilled in the relationship, and the guy isn’t.

But, there is a flip side to that coin.   Intimacy can, all too often, bring romance.   Women inherently know this.    In spite of all their nonsense about how guys can just be friends and guys shouldn’t assume I’m interested just because we hang out all the time, women flat out know that like and turn to romance in a heartbeat.

I think we, for the purpose of this article, we can put women into 3 general categories, although it’s easy enough to move from one to the other.

Category 1:  She’s not into you

There are women that are simply not attracted to you.   Never will be, you aren’t their type for whatever reason.   This can be anyone from your Mom, your married friend, or just the platonic friend you have.  Typically there’s just not any chemistry there.  The banter goes flat, it’s just not exciting and you can feel it.   These women love to hang out with you – this is where the whole friend zone thing comes in.   If you are attracted to her and she’s not to you, she will just want to be platonic.  You can come lift heavy things, give her advice, blah, blah, blah.  She doesn’t care.

Category 2: She likes you – a lot

This is the girl who will approach you.  She’s got nothing to lose, she’s into you.   You will go hang out and she will stare dreamily into your eyes, play with her hair, stalk you on Facebook, etc… This girl can be super weird, she might hit you up to hang out and then bail at the last minute.  She might invite you to stuff and then ignore you when you get there.   It can be really bizarre – or it can be just flat out annoying.

Category 3: She knows she’ll fall for you if you hang out

This is the most interesting category.  When you hear stories about guys who had to be persistent to get a date.  Who hung on forever until she gave in.  This is where that girl was at.   She likes you, maybe likes you too much but for whatever reason, she doesn’t want to be with you.  Maybe you aren’t her type, or maybe she just thinks you aren’t that into her.   She knows that if she spends time with you, she will start falling for you and that opens her up to getting hurt.

So, this may be a reason why that girl you like keeps giving you the cold shoulder in spite of the amazing chemistry you have.  She wants to know that you are serious, you are in, you really like her.  She knows if you hang you she’s going to fall for you and that’s scary, so she plays hard to get to make sure it’s real.

Of course, there’s also the Category 4 where you are a creeper and you should leave her alone, but that goes without saying.

Boys and Girls Can’t Be Friends

It’s really tough to have a platonic relationship between the sexes.  Heck, it can be really hard to have platonic relationships with the same sex (not that they usually go romantic for heterosexual people).   The sex thing is just too big of a deal to ignore.

Women know this, even if they won’t admit it.  This is why they get crazy jealous of other women.    Guys should know this, but sometimes they don’t.   Jealousy, drama, hurt, pain are all real things.  Don’t discount them in your dating life.  If you really like someone, show them they are important to you.   It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be dramatic, but simply show her how important she is to you.

Stop Making It Difficult

Something occurred to me today.    Many of us single people make love way too difficult.  There is so much fear and hurt and apprehension and anxiety surrounding dating that we just make it way too hard.  We second-guess ourselves, we think too much and we are too afraid of making a mistake.  I know I do, and I’m sure many others do too.  Most of us are single simply because we are afraid.

For the Ladies – Open Up

There’s a horrible story from Twitter trending right now about a woman who was walking her dog and a creepy guy tried to follow her home.   These things happen.   They are legit.   I recognize that women have to do a lot to keep themselves safe.  Men are bigger, stronger and it’s a definite act of trust to allow a man into your life.  Even saying Hi can be dangerous.  I get that.

But, don’t let that fear dominate you.  Don’t let it run your life.   There are good guys out there.  Respectful guys who truly want the same things you do.

Also be aware that even the best, most respectful guy is still highly motivated by sex.   In the right conditions, it’s incredibly hard for a man to not get aggressive with a woman.  Be aware of this.   Even if you trust him, be very clear about your intentions from the start.  Don’t go home with him, get naked with him if you don’t want things to happen.  Don’t give mixed signals and then complain when he wanted more than you want to give.  Be smart, but be open.  Communicate and take a chance.

Guys – They Want You to Move Forward

In this culture where the anti-man sentiment is so prevalent, it can be tough to see why a woman would even want you to approach her or talk to her.   Also, many of us feel inadequate, unsuccessful, fat, bald, old, ugly, poor, whatever.   Being men, we don’t really understand why women are attracted to men. (Conversely, this can be the same for women.   When a woman is insecure about her body – and pretty much every woman is, she doesn’t understand why a man could be so attracted to her.)

Bottom line is that single women, especially single women in their late 20s – early 40s WANT to be married.  They want it badly.  They want to find a reasonably good man.   In fact if you are a solid, safe guy with a job, car, house, etc… they are probably going to be head over heels over you.

Stop being afraid, nervous, second guessing.  Show some interest, move things forward.  Be confident, and not just bravado, but because you are a good person and there is a good woman out there that deserves you.

Join the Team

Love is an interesting thing.

In our culture, we are fixed on making connections – choosing mates, based on romantic love.  How does this person make us feel?

But what is romantic love.  For guys, it’s largely based on appearance.   I’ve rarely seen a man “in love” with a woman that they don’t find physically attractive.

Conversely, for women it’s largely about safety and money.  Women like big strong men that can provide for them and their children.  Most other factors are derivative of this.

(For more about this listen to this great interview with Duana Welch)

For some of us, things go beyond this.  Issues like faith, intelligence, humor, become very important.

What attitude should we have?

I remember many years ago asking a friend who had been married a year or two what he thought was the most important characteristic to look for in a mate.   He said “unselfishness”.   I would love to ask him that question now and see what he said after 20 years with his wife, but I think he was on to something.  That particular couple really demonstrated what I think is core to a good marriage – being on the same team.

Find a great teammate!

This concept brings to mind professional sports.   Professional athletes in the powerhouse sports (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL) are often motivated by money.  Many times you will see great players make choices based purely on big salaries.   These players are usually young and looking for the first big payday – and they will make questionable choices.   In the NFL particularly you will see this after a Super Bowl win.  Young players on a Super Bowl team will instantly get poached by other teams for massive amounts of money.

Sometimes we will see older, more established players make different choices.   They will make a change based on a chance to win a championship.   Guys like Reggie White who left the Philadelphia Eagles in 1993 to join the Green Bay Packers and was instrumental in a Super Bowl victory four years later in 1997.   Another great example is LeBron James who left his beloved Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010 to join the Miami Heat.   This was clearly an attempt to win a championship, which the Heat did in 2012 and 2013.

With age and wisdom, some players realize that they are part of the game for more than just a paycheck, they are in it to win.   They want to achieve the very pinnacle of their profession.  So what do they do?  They look for a great team.  They find great teammates.

Not only that, but they are great team players.  These guys WANT to make their team better, support those around them.  They understand that their unique talent isn’t enough to propel them to the top,   they need to make those around them better.  They need to play there best, give their best and lead their team.

Life is not an individual sport.   We need people around us.  And the number one person we need on our team is our spouse.

Men, as you search for a mate, look beyond the hair and makeup and clothes and gym body.   Look for the woman that you want on your team.  Have a vision and find someone to help you fulfill that dream.   And when you find her, help her.  Make her better.

Don’t see women as antagonists, see them as partners.  Build them up, encourage them, help them, invest in them, challenge them, give to them.  Both now and after you get married.  They will respond and do the same for you.

 

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