Men are some of the most simple beings to understand. They are so low-maintenance that their needs (as few as they may be) are often inadvertently neglected. When a man truly loves someone, he loves them fiercely and deeply. It isn’t often that a woman gets to be intimately familiar with the inner life of a man, but a relationship tends to make that happen. When a woman knows a man deeply, she has the beautiful ability to build him up into even more of a man.
First, to truly understand men and how to make them feel fulfilled in a loving relationship, it is helpful to realize that men don’t just want love—they want to be respected. Men live in a world of power struggles and authority—respect is everything. According to a man, if you aren’t respected, you certainly aren’t loved.
Men are doers. They derive their worth and value from accomplishing things. This stems from the fact that, at their core, men are conquerors, so they need to constantly have challenges to face, but they also need to feel like they are capable in order to overcome those challenges. That’s where you come in. As a valuable and present partner in the relationship, you have the power to unlock a man’s masculinity and enhance it. It is a big responsibility, but here are some tips to help.
Men don’t talk about their inner lives very often—both because they’ve been taught not to care about it, and because they often just don’t know what to think about it or even how to verbalize it. So, here is a list of the top things guys wish their partners knew and did for them in their relationship.
- Say, “I respect you because… (you are compassionate, you are logical, you are strong, etc.)”
- Tell him how capable he really is—men are only as capable as their partner believes they are. Say it with sincerity.
- Compliment him on a job well done (even if it is only mostly well done). We all need recognition sometimes.
- Give him some time to himself. We all need our alone time.
- Allow him to pursue you. This can be as simple as letting him text or call you first.
- Give him the time to figure out the solution for himself—don’t jump in and do it for him (this ruins #2).
- Show him some physical affection—men require a physical touch at times, even if it’s just playing with his hair.
- Allow him to be risky sometimes (yes, even to buy that motorcycle).
- Encourage him to have great adventures (even the risky ones. See #8).
- Choose to trust him (and tell him how much you do).
- Let him lead—all men are born leaders; some just haven’t been told that yet.
- Give him gifts, but make them practical!
- Give him grace—he isn’t perfect, and we are all sensitive to mistakes.
- Learn his weaknesses (this will help with #13).
- Don’t try to fix him—he isn’t broken. Any real change always has to come from within, and your job is to encourage him on his journey.
- Give him challenges, both big and small. Men want the chance to exercise their strength, especially for their partner (this will also help with #2, #6, and #10).
- Acknowledge that men and women are different, and that’s completely fine.
- Be his teammate. This is especially important for the married couples out there—remember that you are a team, you are partners.
- Support him—he chose you over his friends, now show him that you will get behind his decisions and that you’ve got his back.
- Give him a book that will motivate and inspire him. I suggest Wild At Heart by John Eldridge.