Communication

71. WHAT DO WOMEN WANT?

 ellie and carl

Don’t worry……..what men want will be the subject of my next entry.

I bet I know what you’re thinking; the men’s entry is going to be a LOT shorter than this one. We’ll see. In any event, what I’m going to share should be somewhat entertaining. I just turned fifty and there’s no doubt some of this knowledge would have been of use when I was much younger. I’m not trying to come off as some great guru that knows about the ultimate secrets keeping men and women from understanding each other better. Lord knows I need a lot more information before that tag could be used, but what I do know is for the most part fairly accurate and rather useful.

So, men, listen up. You think you know what a woman wants in a man; money, power, and looks, right? Wrong. Here’s where we stumble massively. We’re used to seeing “normal” looking guys with gorgeous ladies and think “What the heck? What is it that attracts these beauty queens to those whom we judge ordinary? Well, they know and practice those traits that are truly magnetic, either instinctively or consciously.  Look to all the male sex symbols of Hollywood, the stratospheric examples of today and those that live on through pop culture and legend. Look for the common behaviors and it becomes easy to see why they are the men who have never, and will never fade away. Here are the five biggest patterns.

OBSERVATION # 1.  What attracts a woman?

  1. There’s no cologne like confidence. This is the single most powerful source of attraction on the planet and I’m not just talking men and women, I mean men with everyone and women with everyone. Men, however screw it up the most and feel cockiness is a synonym for this elusive elixir. Far from it. Cockiness is the best repellent one can project. Here’s the difference in a nutshell. Confidence wants to prove itself through action, cockiness wants to convince others through dialogue. Women (and everyone else) are attracted to doers, not to those who brag.
  2. Nothing grabs attention like a powerful command of language. You think Sean Connery, Johnny Depp, Yul Brenner, Cary Grant, and George Clooney are at the top strictly because of their looks? Hardly. Yes, they’re handsome, but let’s face it, that’s what Hollywood is mostly full of anyway; beautiful people. What makes the standouts standout? Listen to them talk and you’ll hear a distinctive pattern of intelligence and ease. They do not stumble through vocal expression, they rejoice in it taking careful steps to speak with the proper speed, tonality, and emotion. Two of the best are Liam Neeson and Anthony Hopkins, perhaps not the most attractive of men, but ask any woman who has watched them and you might be surprised at what they think.
  3. Posture. I still see men my age walking like they are in middle school two years past puberty. Slouching, mouth hanging open, dragging their feet, and spitting every 18.4 feet. Yuck. Yup, these guys are not the stuff of female fantasy. Have some self-worth to how you move and people will project an image of someone who believes in himself. Walk with purpose but not with arrogance. Think “James Bond” and you’ll have it made.
  4. Kindness/Selflessness. This does not portray weakness and anyone who would argue otherwise is probably quite lonely and unhappy. Putting others first is truly rare and therefore extremely noticeable when it takes place. Those who work toward the interests of everyone else eventually command the most respect and admiration. This cannot be faked and those that try come across as shallow and dishonest. How can a woman not be attracted to a man who has her best interests at heart?
  5. Hygiene. It’s been said one cannot judge a book by its cover; I disagree with this. How we treat ourselves sends a powerful message to those we come in contact with; and cleanliness is the best first message we can offer to those we wish to attract. Whether you like it or not it’s difficult to sell to self-respect and reliability when it’s wrapped in neglect. Nothing fancy needed here.  Clean fingernails, combed hair, brushed teeth, fresh clothing, etc. Keep in mind that hygiene extends to our environment as well. Being clean and somewhat organized can be quite seductive.

So, nothing above has to do with looks, money, or power. Looks, money, and power only become desirable when they are preceded by the proper attitudes and habits. They are the enhancements of structure; and those structures built with the greatest of care automatically attract quality upgrades.

OBSERVATION #2. The power of surprise.

For the men that don’t get this one, here is where the seed of anything romantic lies. All women love surprises, but not all surprises are appropriate. No unannounced parties where she hasn’t gotten ready to look her best are allowed. Driving to the jewelry store to pick up something already purchased when she thinks you are going to lunch is allowed. Surprises must be kind, soft, helpful, and loving in nature. Packages in the mail with her name on them, cleaning the house when she is away, a handwritten letter, flowers delivered to her work; these are the gestures that prove to the one you love that she is on your mind.  Even when she might suspect the event, she still wants the surprise, and here’s why. When she says “You don’t need to get anything for my birthday” she is placing more value on your ability to understand and anticipate what she desires over her urge to simply request it. Here’s the kicker. When a man says “I don’t want to do anything for my birthday” the woman interprets is as “Ah! I must surprise him!” This is why we seem to have so many truly unwanted events, actions, and gifts. Don’t feel bad guys, they come from the heart.

OBSERVATION #3. The number one thing women want us to give them.

Ah, the age old question, what do women want from men? (This is different from the first observation; what do women want in a man, what do women want from a man?) It is jewelry, security, or sex? Perhaps it’s the ability to open jars, fix the car, or reach something on the top shelf? How superficial can you get? They want the same thing we want from someone we are going to spend the majority of our time with.  Number one, at the top of the list in bold easy to read letters – they want us to be their best friend. And they should be. Anything less is undesirable for both sides. Think about this for a minute. Our best friends we grew up with (I’m most likely talking other guys here) we are probably still friends with, right? Yet did we not have disagreements and sometimes even knockdown drag-out fights with these same people? Of course, but in the end we remained friends. It’s a powerful force, one difficult to break or walk away from. Friendship, real friendship, is the purest form of love because in the end it’s unconditional. Bumps in the road do not keep us from moving forward. Casual acquaintances move on after a time, and that’s fine, but best friends see beyond hardship and disagreements. When we see elderly couples walking in the park, holding hands and smiling, isn’t there a sense that there’s something more than love between them? To me they almost seem like  the same person. This is what women want.

There it is, I wish I knew more but for the moment it will do. Don’t worry, the men’s section is next. It promises to be a lot funnier and I’m sure it will surprise a lot of you.

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With Love and Compassion, Daniel Andrew Lockwood

22. PLEASE FORGIVE ME…..

My apologies for not posting in a few weeks. I had pneumonia  all of September and now a root canal today (after a week of tooth pain) so the bumpy road will smooth out soon and I’ll feel up to sharing again. Don’t give up on me, I never will on you….

7. WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF LANGUAGE?

mcdonalds

An obvious answer to the title question may come to mind. Language exists so we can communicate vocally in ways that don’t require grunting, snarling, snorting, and screaming. There’s no doubt these expressions still prevail–especially among men–but there’s a much more profound need to speak. We crave deeper connections to others, not just through our senses, but mentally.

At one time, my speech was quite stoic. It had neither passion nor imagination.  When I attempted to illustrate myself with the limited feelings I had connection to, the descriptions came out clichéd and boring. For years, I uttered the same words in the same tone of voice to the same uninterested people. I never stopped to think about what came out of my mouth. My responses were never astute, and the results were often insulting and insensitive. I’ve tasted my foot more often than I’d like, and my attempts at taking back what’s  just been said  always had a tone of insincerity  when filtered through my toes. Once it was uttered, the original thought prevailed. Whatever came after did little to dispel the impact of  my initial misfortune. Over the years, I’ve consciously developed a slower response time. This, and a better vocabulary, has significantly improved my moments of awkwardness.

My mentor, Joe, sat me down years ago and posed the initial question. It changed my life.

“So, do you know what the purpose of language is?”

“Sure.” I said confidently. “We need to communicate so we can interact with each other.” Joe looked blankly at me, totally unimpressed with my answer.

He kept staring. “What happens when I say something to you and include a word you don’t quite understand?”

“I guess I’d probably ask you what you meant.”

“I doubt it.” He smirked a little and continued. “Let’s try an example and we’ll see what happens. How would you interpret Honor thy Mother and Father?”

I cleared my throat. “Well, according to the ten commandments I suppose we are obligated to love our parents.”

Joe smiled. “Look up the word honor.”

There was always a huge dictionary on the table when we talked. I thought it was there for decoration. I picked it up, flipped to the word, and read the entire definition. No where was mentioned the word “love.”  Joe could see I was speechless, so he continued.

“Here lies our problem. The purpose of language is an attempt of the speaker to take the images, ideas, feelings, and definitions of what they are thinking and  place them into the mind of the listener with as little discrepancy as possible. If each person has a different understanding of the same word, communication will not take place as intended. In cases where we are attempting to learn from those who are offering us information, it’s vital that we bridge the gap.”

I now carry a dictionary with me everywhere. I find myself looking up words with great frequency. More often than not, I still need assistance interpreting my own thoughts, especially when I’m writing. The accessibility of reference material has become quite easy these days with technology where it is. Any excuse I harbored for the unavailability of either a better word or its definition, has vanished. I’m no master of the English language, but I do consider myself at least a student. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I don’t still grunt, snarl, snort, and scream from time to time.

With Love and Compassion, Daniel Andrew Lockwood