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15 Differences Between the Boy you Date and the Man you Marry

15 Differences Between the Boy you Date and the Man you Marry

When you’re dating a guy, it’s easy to think he’s perfect. You’re in a love haze, so be careful because there are definite differences between the boy you date and the man you marry. It’s true that people can change, so don’t ditch a guy just because he seems like a slacker at first. It’s okay to give him a chance to prove himself. However, if you don’t eventually see some of these characteristics, don’t be afraid to dump him and move on to someone new. If you’re young and having fun at this point in your life, it’s okay to date around and have flings, but before long you’re going to want to settle down, so make sure you do it with a quality man, not an immature boy.

  1. The boy you date asks you to “hang out,” which involves less commitment than a date. He wants to have fun with no strings attached.
    The man you marry asks you out on dates and is clear about his intentions with you. He wants to be with you and wants you to know where you’re headed.
  2. The boy you date talks with you about people you know from your past, or pokes fun at that guy at the bar, or only shares funny stories because he can’t connect on a deeper level.
    The man you marry can hold a conversation with you about books, movies, music, and other common interests. This makes for a more substantial relationship in the long run.
  3. The boy you date will say he never wants to get married or have kids, and nothing will change his mind. Don’t try–this is a red flag that he’s not Mr. Right!
    The man you marry might change his mind about wanting to marry and have kids after he’s met you.
  4. The boy you date hears your attitude, takes it personally, and starts firing it right back at you until it spirals into a major fight.
    The man you marry can handle your attitude and talk you down from a ledge. This is especially important when you have major life crises or a bad day at work.
  5. The boy you date calls you mean and immature names to make himself feel like a winner.
    The man you marry fights fairly. He doesn’t call you names or use physical force, no matter how angry he gets.
  6. The boy you date cares too much about looks, and will tease you for looking sloppy until you fix yourself back up to his standards.
    The man you marry understands that everyone has good and bad days as far as looks go, and won’t hurt your feelings or love you less if your weight fluctuates or you have a bad hair day or forget to shave for awhile.
  7. The boy you date will say “I’m sorry” because he just wants you to cheer up or stop nagging him. He says “I love you” because he doesn’t want to lose you, even though he doesn’t really feel the meaning of the words.
    The man you marry will say “I’m sorry” because he honestly is, and he never meant to hurt you with his words or actions. He says “I love you” because he truly means it, and wants you to feel that love every minute of your life.
  8. The boy you date will expect to have things done for him because that’s what his mom did, and that’s what other girls have done for him, and he doesn’t have to take care of himself.
    The man you marry will know how to take care of himself: how to cook, clean, do laundry, pay bills, and more–because he’s already a man. It’s important for people to have this figured out before they’re ready to marry, which is a great way to tell what type your guy is.
  9. The boy you date doesn’t want to meet your friends because he just wants to be alone with you all of the time.
    The man you marry wants to hear stories about your friends until he can meet them and get to know them himself.
  10. The boy you date well, you’re too embarrassed to take him to meet your parents, not that he’d ever bring it up himself.
    The man you marry wants to meet your parents, and impresses them when he does.
  11. The boy you date is always the one you fantasize about marrying, because he’s cute and all you do is have fun together (until the first big blow-up…).
    The man you marry is never a sure thing. You hem and haw over if he’s right, if you should settle down with him, if your relationship can make it long term.
  12. The boy you date doesn’t listen to you or fully engage in conversations. He nods while you talk, then changes the subject or just tells you what you want to hear.
    The man you marry cares about what you have to say. He wants to know your thoughts and opinions on anything from major issues to tiny moments from your day.
  13. The boy you date runs at the first sign of trouble because it’s too much drama for him, and he doesn’t want anything tying him down.
    The man you marry sticks with you through tough times because he’s committed to you and the relationship, and wants to see it through to the end.
  14. The boy you date doesn’t reach for the check, and huffs if you ask him to split the bill with you.
    The man you marry pays when he takes you out, even after you grab the check and insist five times that it’s your turn to pay.
  15. The boy you date never gives you security. You don’t know how he feels or what he’s up to when he’s not with you, and your friends might even have money riding on how long you’ll last.
    The man you marry will make you feel secure. You’ll always know he loves you, you’ll be able to trust him, and you’ll know that you two can make it through anything.

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Last Updated on January 15, 2019

What Are Interpersonal Skills? Master Them for Better Relationships

What Are Interpersonal Skills? Master Them for Better Relationships

When I wrote my book Extraordinary PR, Ordinary Budget: A Strategy Guide, I was surprised at the various layers of review and editing necessary to get the book to publication. Before I ever submitted the manuscript, I enlisted a former colleague to read and copy edit my work. Then, I submitted my work to an editor at the publisher’s house, and once she approved it, she sent it to her colleagues and then her company’s editorial board.

Upon editorial board approval of my book, my editor sent my work to reviewers in my field, then a developmental editor, then a designer and layout team and, finally, another copy editor. There were a host of personalities with whom I needed to interact along the way.

It turns out that getting a publishing contract was just the beginning – a lot happens between developing a concept, writing the book, finding an agent and publisher, and getting the book on bookshelves or on Audible or Kindle. Through every milestone of the publishing process, my ability to interact with others was crucial. This underscored for me that no matter what or how much a person accomplishes, you never do it alone – everyone needs assistance from others.

While I conceived of the book and wrote the manuscript, there is no way my book could have hit booksellers’ shelves without the dozens of people who were involved in the publishing process. Further, interpersonal skills can propel or stonewall success.

Even as someone who has written hundreds of essays, press releases, pitch notes and other correspondence, writing itself is not a solitary endeavor. Sure, I may write in solitude, but the moment I am finished writing, there are always clients, colleagues, partners, peers and others who review my content.

What is more, even as a published author and contributor for this platform, I try to never submit final copy (content) that has not been copy edited. I send everything to my copy editor, whom I pay out of my own pocket, for her review, edits and approval. Once she has reviewed my work, caught unbeknownst-to-me errors, I am much more confident putting my work out in the world.

How Interpersonal Skills Affect Relationships

It is clearer to me now more than ever before that interpersonal skills are needed in every profession and every trade.

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People don’t elect leaders because the leaders are smart. Individuals are motivated to vote when they have a hero and when they feel they have something to lose. If they seriously dislike the other candidate, they are much more likely vote according to a 2000 Ohio State University study:

“A disliked candidate is seen as a threat, and that will be motivation to go to the polls. But a threat alone isn’t enough – people need to have a hero to vote for, too, in order to inspire them to turn out on Election Day.”

In a work setting, interpersonal skills impact every facet of your development and success. Trainers must collaborate with a design team or the company hiring them to facilitate the training. During the training itself, the facilitators must connect with the audience and establish a rapport that supports vulnerability and openness. If the trainers interact poorly with the trainees, they are unlikely to be invited back. If they are invited back, they may be unlikely to inspire cooperation or growth in their trainees.

Solopreneurs interactions with clients and subcontractors, and those interactions will, in part, support or adversely impact their business. If you enjoy a career as an acclaimed surgeon or respected lawyer, your interactions with patients, clients, health insurance agencies and a team of other practitioners – many of whom are shielded from public view – will improve or decimate your practice.

As a hiring manager, one of the things I consider when interviewing candidates is their interpersonal skills. I assess the interpersonal skills they display in their content and face-to-face presentation. I ask probing questions to learn how they interact with others, manage conflict and contribute to a team atmosphere.

When candidates say things like, “I prefer to work alone” or “I can hit the ground running without assistance,” I bristle. When candidates appear to know everything and everyone, I wonder if they will be receptive to learning or open to feedback. Could these statements be indications that these individuals lack interpersonal skills?

It stands to reason, then, that interpersonal skills are among the most valuable and the bedrock of all talents and skills.

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What are Interpersonal Skills?

Interpersonal skills range from emotional intelligence, empathy, oral and written communication to leadership to collaboration and teamwork.

In sum, interpersonal skills are skills that enable you to interact well with others. They include teachability and receptiveness to feedback, active or mindful listening, self-confidence and conflict resolution.

From a communications standpoint, interpersonal skills are about understanding how colleagues prefer to communicate and then using the appropriate mediums to meet respective needs. It is about understanding how to communicate in a way to get the most out of different people.

For instance, in my career as a public relations practitioner, part of what I am constantly evaluating is which colleagues, clients and members of the media prefer email, text or phone calls. I am assessing how much frill to use with each person depending on what has worked in the past and depending on what I know about the person with whom I am interacting.

Making these decisions and being disciplined enough to follow each person’s known preferences helps me better connect with the various individuals in my orbit. Is this tiring at times? Yes. Is it necessary? Absolutely.

How to Improve Interpersonal Skills

There are tons of resources to teach interpersonal skills. I love books such as Leadership Presence by Belle Linda Halpern and Kathy Lubar, and The 5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman.

There are also a host of books and articles on emotional intelligence, which is the ability to manage one’s emotions and perceive and adapt to others’ emotions. Emotional intelligence is likewise a critical component of positive interpersonal relations. You can learn more about it in this article: What Is Emotional Intelligence and Why It Is Important

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Active and mindful listening also support improved interpersonal skills. I recommend you take a look at this piece: Active Listening – A Skill That Everyone Should Master

I have further found that humility helps a ton with interpersonal skills. It takes humility to admit you have more to learn and that you can learn from the people around you. In fact, everyone with whom you interact has a lesson to teach you. And employers are increasingly looking for team members who are lifelong learners, meaning they believe there is always room for growth and professional and personal development.

Forbes contributor Kevin H. Johnson noted in a July 2018 article,

“That’s why, when anyone asks what the next ‘hot’ skill will be, I say it’s the same skill that will serve people today, tomorrow, and far into the future—the ability to learn.”

Don’t overlook introspection.

While interpersonal skills may seem simple enough, introspection is critical to learning where and in what ways you need to grow.

Through introspection and observation, I have learned that my interpersonal skills suffer when I am sleep deprived, because then I am short-tempered and irritable. I’ve observed this connection over a significant period in my life. Unsurprisingly, it is also true of others. Fellow LifeHack contributor, health coach and personal trainer Jamie Logie noted:

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When you are chronically sleep deprived, it really does a number on you. A lack of sleep can keep your body in a constant state of stress and over time this can get pretty ugly. Elevated stress hormones can be involved in creating a bunch of pretty nasty conditions including anxiety, headaches and dizziness, weight gain, depression, stroke, hypertension, digestive disorders, immune system dysfunction, irritability.

Additionally, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development reported,

“Sleep deprivation can noticeably affect people’s performance, including their ability to think clearly, react quickly, and form memories. Sleep deprivation also affects mood, leading to irritability; problems with relationships, especially for children and teenagers; and depression. Sleep deprivation can also increase anxiety.”

The point is, even as you are identifying ways to improve interpersonal skills, think about what is getting in the way. While sleep deprivation is a trigger for me, your stumbling block may be different.

The Bottom Line

You cannot fix what you do not know is broken. Even as you work to understand and apply interpersonal skills, spend some time in mindful meditation to get clear on what is holding you back from developing solid relationships.

Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

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