Have you been hurt by your significant other because of something they said (or didn’t say)? Have you been angry because they didn’t do what you expected them to do? Are you frustrated with them because they didn’t buy you the gift you were hoping for (and hinted at) over the holidays? Now let me ask you – did you tell them directly what you expected and what you wanted? If not, then don’t be surprised when this happens, because men cannot read your mind!

Men and women are wired differently – our brains behave differently and emotion drives us in different ways. It is sometimes hard to comprehend this, but if you accept it, it will make your relationship a lot stronger! Hints and mental expectations don’t work – men communicate directly. They say what they mean, usually in a concise way. Because they operate this way, they interpret things more literally and don’t read into words like we do. They think in a very linear way, whereas women think in a more ‘mixed up’ way.

Using an analogy, women’s brains are like a big plate of spaghetti – we are all over the place with thoughts and emotions. We can have multiple things on our minds all at once. Men don’t operate this way – their brains are like a closet of boxes. They only have one box open at a time and can only give their full attention to the box that is open. They have to close that and open a different one to switch gears. So if they seem annoyed or don’t want to listen when you want to talk to them about something or they get frustrated if you suddenly change the subject, it is because they have a different box open. If you drop a hint and they are focused on something else, the hint is lost on them. They need a little time to put away the box they are currently working on and to get out a new one. This is exactly why he doesn’t hear you when watching tv, reading or working on a project. It’s also why he forgets things he was told. A great approach to get his full attention is to let him know you want to tell him something and/or switch topics so he knows what he has to do to listen to you. And by the way, men have a “nothing” box. If you ask them what they are thinking and they say nothing, they mean they really are thinking about nothing!

Men and women communicate differently too. When a man says he’s fine, he really is. However, this is hard to understand for us because when we say we are fine, we are most definitely not fine. When a man says he will do something, he will, although he may do it on his own time if there was not time agreed upon in the request. He does not need to be asked “are you sure”? This will annoy him because if he said he would do it, he will. Again this is counter to us, because we feel asking “are you sure” is a polite way to make sure, since we often say yes when we really don’t want to do something. If you want your man to do something for you, ask for it directly using “would you” (this is more direct than using “could”) and if it is important to do right away, say so.

This only scratches the surface of the many differences between the two genders. It may seem silly to you, but the book Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus does a really good job explaining a lot of the differences between men and women (it really does often seem like we are from different planets). And we are offering programs for women (Unleashing Your Feminine Power) and men (The Warrior Man Project) that will dive into some of this as well. So if you want to learn more about this to improve your own relationship, contact us now!

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