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8 Qualities Every Independent Woman Should Look For In A Boyfriend

8 Qualities Every Independent Woman Should Look For In A Boyfriend

You prize your independence. You are the one who can handle your job challenges, problems with coworkers and family issues without running for help. When it comes to your boyfriend, you have some specific things in mind which will fit in with your lifestyle. Here is a list of things you are looking for. These are not set in stone, just a set of guidelines. If your boyfriend fails to meet one or two of these criteria, don’t kick him out. After all, one of your great qualities as an independent woman is your talent for flexibility, compromise and problem solving! You might have to do some work or if you think it is not worth it, you might move on.

1. He gives you your personal space

You love having a little time, space, and some oxygen for yourself. He knows that and loves his private space too. There are no problems if you are away for a weekend or out with the girls. He does not cling and he does not pester you with texts and phone calls while you are enjoying yourself. It is, of course reciprocal because you do not believe in 24/7 surveillance either. But you love those funny messages at unexpected times.

2. He’s there when you need him

You know the type of guy who wants to become your second dad and is overprotective. No thanks! You have learned from early on to be self-sufficient, capable and strong. You want him there though when you need support, encouragement, and advice and he always is.

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You know that there is a certain ambiguity in your independence. You always want to show your strength and capabilities but at the same time you feel the need to be cared for emotionally and socially. You can list countless examples when he has taken care of you in moments of doubt, sadness, and even exhaustion.

3. He knows the ups and downs of living together

Are you going to lose some of your independence if you start living together? He probably has been through that himself. Maybe it was a small apartment and the pressure of being together for much of the time ruined the last relationship. He is prepared to examine with you all the pros and cons. He is aware, like you are, of the risks. Most research now indicates that cohabiting or marriage is not the problem. It is the age of the partners and their maturity which really makes the difference. You both know the dangers of mindlessly drifting into cohabitation.

4. He does not feel threatened

You know that some men actually feel a little intimidated or even threatened by an independent woman. They may even feel less masculine when confronted with the woman’s autonomy. But, you know that your boyfriend does not expect you be more clingy and less independent once you become a couple. Your relationship is not about giving up what you have fought for and there is no question of being conquered.

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5. He knows your real agenda

Fortunately, your boyfriend is far more enlightened than those guys who think that a woman’s main ambition is to get a partner and settle down! You both have great ideas on how you will work together as equal partners in finding happiness together. Your boyfriend knows that romance is just the icing on the cake. Baking and eating the cake requires commitment and hard work.

6. He knows that no partner needs to dominate

We all know the stories about who is “wearing the pants” in certain households. Fortunately, couples have evolved and there is no need for domination or even power struggles or when making decisions. You both believe in a partnership so there is no need for one of you to hold all the cards.

He respects you and your decisions and you feel safe in his presence. This is a biggie as 95% of domestic violence victims all over the world are women. There are no signs of emotional or physical abuse and that is why you feel totally secure.

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7. He understands your goals and ambitions

Problems can arise when your boyfriend may not be ambitious at all at work and does not have any great goals, apart from surviving till Friday! You don’t relate to being not motivated at all and working in a dead-end job. This is where the motivation gap may cause problems because your long hours and getting up early may not suit your boyfriend at all and may lead him to loneliness, frustration and insecurity.

This problem is solved when you both have goals and ambitions and they are not necessarily tied to the world of work. Your boyfriend may be highly motivated in sports or working out and is also driven by ambition. You both understand your goals because you have discussed them a lot.

8. He knows how to communicate

Guess what the number one problem is in most relationships? It is not sex or money but lack of communication. Most couples cannot deal with arguments which tend to start and never finish. You know the ones where you or he threatens to leave or take some other drastic action.

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Your boyfriend is an effective communicator because he never brings up old issues or introduces third parties (“Your Mom agrees with me”). He also concentrates on the present issue and avoids exaggerating by refusing to use the words “you always” and “you never”. He knows that these tend to fudge the real issues as you yourself understand only too well. You both know that arguments resolve differences and are not to be used again and again!

Have you been able to tick off all the above points? How did your boyfriend do and did you pass the test yourself?

Featured photo credit: Couple in love/ Pedro Ribeiro Simoes via flickr.com

More by this author

Robert Locke

Author of Ziger the Tiger Stories, a health enthusiast specializing in relationships, life improvement and mental health.

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Last Updated on February 11, 2021

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

Easily Misunderstood by Others? 6 Barriers You Should Overcome to Make Communication Less Frustrating

How often have you said something simple, only to have the person who you said this to misunderstand it or twist the meaning completely around? Nodding your head in affirmative? Then this means that you are being unclear in your communication.

Communication should be simple, right? It’s all about two people or more talking and explaining something to the other. The problem lies in the talking itself, somehow we end up being unclear, and our words, attitude or even the way of talking becomes a barrier in communication, most of the times unknowingly. We give you six common barriers to communication, and how to get past them; for you to actually say what you mean, and or the other person to understand it as well…

The 6 Walls You Need to Break Down to Make Communication Effective

Think about it this way, a simple phrase like “what do you mean” can be said in many different ways and each different way would end up “communicating” something else entirely. Scream it at the other person, and the perception would be anger. Whisper this is someone’s ear and others may take it as if you were plotting something. Say it in another language, and no one gets what you mean at all, if they don’t speak it… This is what we mean when we say that talking or saying something that’s clear in your head, many not mean that you have successfully communicated it across to your intended audience – thus what you say and how, where and why you said it – at times become barriers to communication.[1]

Perceptual Barrier

The moment you say something in a confrontational, sarcastic, angry or emotional tone, you have set up perceptual barriers to communication. The other person or people to whom you are trying to communicate your point get the message that you are disinterested in what you are saying and sort of turn a deaf ear. In effect, you are yelling your point across to person who might as well be deaf![2]

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The problem: When you have a tone that’s not particularly positive, a body language that denotes your own disinterest in the situation and let your own stereotypes and misgivings enter the conversation via the way you talk and gesture, the other person perceives what you saying an entirely different manner than say if you said the same while smiling and catching their gaze.

The solution: Start the conversation on a positive note, and don’t let what you think color your tone, gestures of body language. Maintain eye contact with your audience, and smile openly and wholeheartedly…

Attitudinal Barrier

Some people, if you would excuse the language, are simply badass and in general are unable to form relationships or even a common point of communication with others, due to their habit of thinking to highly or too lowly of them. They basically have an attitude problem – since they hold themselves in high esteem, they are unable to form genuine lines of communication with anyone. The same is true if they think too little of themselves as well.[3]

The problem: If anyone at work, or even in your family, tends to roam around with a superior air – anything they say is likely to be taken by you and the others with a pinch, or even a bag of salt. Simply because whenever they talk, the first thing to come out of it is their condescending attitude. And in case there’s someone with an inferiority complex, their incessant self-pity forms barriers to communication.

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The solution: Use simple words and an encouraging smile to communicate effectively – and stick to constructive criticism, and not criticism because you are a perfectionist. If you see someone doing a good job, let them know, and disregard the thought that you could have done it better. It’s their job so measure them by industry standards and not your own.

Language Barrier

This is perhaps the commonest and the most inadvertent of barriers to communication. Using big words, too much of technical jargon or even using just the wrong language at the incorrect or inopportune time can lead to a loss or misinterpretation of communication. It may have sounded right in your head and to your ears as well, but if sounded gobbledygook to the others, the purpose is lost.

The problem: Say you are trying to explain a process to the newbies and end up using every technical word and industry jargon that you knew – your communication has failed if the newbie understood zilch. You have to, without sounding patronizing, explain things to someone in the simplest language they understand instead of the most complex that you do.

The solution: Simplify things for the other person to understand you, and understand it well. Think about it this way: if you are trying to explain something scientific to a child, you tone it down to their thinking capacity, without “dumbing” anything down in the process.[4]

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Emotional Barrier

Sometimes, we hesitate in opening our mouths, for fear of putting our foot in it! Other times, our emotional state is so fragile that we keep it and our lips zipped tightly together lest we explode. This is the time that our emotions become barriers to communication.[5]

The problem: Say you had a fight at home and are on a slow boil, muttering, in your head, about the injustice of it all. At this time, you have to give someone a dressing down over their work performance. You are likely to transfer at least part of your angst to the conversation then, and talk about unfairness in general, leaving the other person stymied about what you actually meant!

The solution: Remove your emotions and feelings to a personal space, and talk to the other person as you normally would. Treat any phobias or fears that you have and nip them in the bud so that they don’t become a problem. And remember, no one is perfect.

Cultural Barrier

Sometimes, being in an ever-shrinking world means that inadvertently, rules can make cultures clash and cultural clashes can turn into barriers to communication. The idea is to make your point across without hurting anyone’s cultural or religious sentiments.

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The problem: There are so many ways culture clashes can happen during communication and with cultural clashes; it’s not always about ethnicity. A non-smoker may have problems with smokers taking breaks; an older boss may have issues with younger staff using the Internet too much.

The solution: Communicate only what is necessary to get the point across – and eave your personal sentiments or feelings out of it. Try to be accommodative of the other’s viewpoint, and in case you still need to work it out, do it one to one, to avoid making a spectacle of the other person’s beliefs.[6]

Gender Barrier

Finally, it’s about Men from Mars and Women from Venus. Sometimes, men don’t understand women and women don’t get men – and this gender gap throws barriers in communication. Women tend to take conflict to their graves, literally, while men can move on instantly. Women rely on intuition, men on logic – so inherently, gender becomes a big block in successful communication.[7]

The problem: A male boss may inadvertently rub his female subordinates the wrong way with anti-feminism innuendoes, or even have problems with women taking too many family leaves. Similarly, women sometimes let their emotions get the better of them, something a male audience can’t relate to.

The solution: Talk to people like people – don’t think or classify them into genders and then talk accordingly. Don’t make comments or innuendos that are gender biased – you don’t have to come across as an MCP or as a bra-burning feminist either. Keep gender out of it.

And remember, the key to successful communication is simply being open, making eye contact and smiling intermittently. The battle is usually half won when you say what you mean in simple, straightforward words and keep your emotions out of it.

Reference

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