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18 Reasons Why Simple Boyfriends Are The Best

18 Reasons Why Simple Boyfriends Are The Best

I am always amused when I see a “relationship status” on Facebook that says, “It’s complicated.” What exactly does that mean? He cheated and I may not take him back? We broke up but maybe we’ll get back together? He’s married but maybe he’ll get a divorce? With all of the complications in life, why would any female choose a complicated relationship?

I’ve had many, and they were not enjoyable. What I came to learn is that the long-lasting relationship involves a very “simple” boyfriend – one who takes all of the drama and uncertainty out of that aspect of my life. So, here’s to the simple boyfriend and 18 things that he brings to a relationship!

1. He is honest

When you have fixed your grandma’s famous pork chops for a special dinner, he tells you that pork is his least favorite meat. He’ll then give you a big hug and say that he will eat them anyway, because he loves you.

2. He is trustworthy

When he says he can’t meet you because he has to work late, he calls later from work, just to say “hi.” A knock on your door at 10:00 pm – there he stands with flowers and a bottle of wine to share.

3. He is even-tempered

While you are freaking out over a situation at work or some personal family crisis, he holds you tightly, soothes you with a great shoulder rub, and tells you that everything will be okay. If plans for a weekend getaway go awry because you have a paper or a work project due, he will bring over your favorite take-out and offer to help.

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4. He is not possessive

When you haven’t seen your girl friends for a while, he encourages you to take that trip with them and offers to “dog-sit” while you are gone. You then come home to an immaculately clean apartment with a “Welcome Back” gift on your kitchen table.

5. He is flexible

You have to cancel a date to a concert because of a nasty cold. He goes to the concert venue, sells the tickets, and arrives at the door with your favorite take-out and a movie.

6. He is unselfish

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    He thinks of you at least as much as he thinks of himself. If you don’t want to see a particular movie, that’s fine with him – he will let you pick an alternative. If you’re too tired to get all primped up to go to that party, he’ll stay home with you and watch TV instead.

    7. He is not jealous

    One of your best male friends from high school is in town, and you want to meet him for dinner. The simple boyfriend gives you a big hug and tells you to have a good time.  Simple boyfriends are self-confident enough to understand that everyone has friends of both sexes without any romantic or “flirty” motives.

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    8. He likes himself

    This is so important. When a boyfriend is “comfortable in his own skin,” he does not have to pretend to have or to be something else. He doesn’t have to be a “player” or try to impress you or anyone else. It’s so refreshing! When the two of you are out with your work friends, he readily admits that he knows very little about the work you all do. Later, he tells you how much he respects what you and your fellow workers do, even though he may never fully understand the challenges and the responsibilities.

    9. He won’t ask you to change

    Not your hair, not your make-up, not your dress, not your habits, not your laugh, nor your weight and not your beliefs and principles. He will never worry if you ate some extra cookies and that you love going to the gym mainly because your personal trainer is super hot (see point 7). He understands that everyone has their own quirks, style, and values, and he accepts them with love.

    My current boyfriend never asks me to buy new clothing that is more in keeping with his “crowd” (despite the fact that I am a modest, plain dresser), nor does he request that I “tone down” my heated discussions with his friends and family members. Instead, he celebrates my individuality by telling me often that he loves who I am, just as I am. I once had a boyfriend who was on the school board of a district in which I was a teacher. When we decided to go on strike, and I was painting signs in my garage, he arrived for dinner and helped me finish up the painting! No, he didn’t support the strike, but he supported my right to disagree!

     10. He is not concerned with “appearances”

    When you choose a particularly “outspoken” mode of dress, and you are on your way to a party of his friends, he will honor your individuality, stay by your side and proudly introduce you to other guests. When you have not had time to “do” your hair, and choose a pony tail instead, he will tell you that he loves your hair like that!

    11. He accepts your friends and family

    No one has a perfect set of friends or family members. I have had a friend for over 10 years, whom I love dearly, but she has some very annoying personality aspects. For one thing, she talks incessantly and hops from one topic to the next, barely taking a breath. But she is my friend and has always “been there” for me. A few boyfriends I have had refused to be around her and wanted me to severely curtail my times with her. My current boyfriend may joke about her privately, but he is kind, gracious and “puts up” with her whenever we are all together (with a smile, I might add).

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    12. He has your back

    Simple boyfriends will not deliberately put you in uncomfortable situations or will extricate you if they have. And if your plane has been delayed two hours, he will not tell you to take cab because your arrival is just too late. He will be there with a silly “welcome home” sign. And he will not allow friends or family members to be rude or discourteous to you. In short, he is loyal.

    13. He doesn’t like drama

    Simple boyfriends do not create drama, nor do they participate in it. While drama may be exciting and stimulating to some, it is a sign of immaturity, and immature boyfriends do not make for lasting relationships. When your friends are in an uproar about a cheating husband or wife and an impending divorce, he will calmly listen to your “rants” and honor your feelings, but he will not take sides and insert himself into the drama. He is your “steady Eddie,” helping you to gain the perspective you need.

    14. He is patient

    If you are not ready for physical intimacy or for the two of you to move in together, he will not push you or try to “guilt” you into something with which you are not comfortable. Patience extends to smaller matters too, like not freaking out because you are going to be 30 minutes late. If you are late for a dinner date, he will welcome you with open arms, just glad that you could make it at all!

    15. He doesn’t play games

    The “bad boy” types tend to be game players. They may give you a “rush” at first, go AWOL for a time, come back into your life, etc. They are unreliable and will never participate in a solid relationship. The simple boyfriend is steady and thinks playing games is immature – and it is. If an old girlfriend needs his help to get out of an abusive relationship, he will explain the situation to you, describe what he will be doing to help, and will keep you “in the loop” the entire time. When he returns, he will shower you with love and appreciation for your understanding and willingness to support him.

    16. He likes simple activities as long as they are with you

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      The simple boyfriend will be happy to take walks with your dog, to have a lazy day of reading, to grocery shop with you, or to go to the laundromat. His happiness comes from being with you, and he states this regularly. He will offer to run errands for you or to help you clean your apartment, with a smile on his face and a lot of cuddling when the tasks are completed.

      17. He sees his girlfriend as his best friend too

      The simple boyfriend wants to be a friend just as much as he wants to be a lover. Beware of the boyfriend who does not honestly confide in you and ask you to confide in him. This is not a permanent partner. When your simple boyfriend, on the other hand, hears that you are having a difficult time with your ex-husband over child support or visitation, he will want to hear about it, to help you consider options, and to support the decision you ultimately make.

      18. He won’t degrade you

      The need to call you names and to criticize you is a form of emotional abuse and comes from two sources – low self-esteem and the need to exert power. Simple boyfriends lift you up! If you are having a bad hair day, or a sudden outbreak of acne, he will tell you how beautiful you are in his eyes. If you have inadvertently insulted one of his friends, he will re-confirm his love for you by intervening to repair any “damage.”

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      Elena Prokopets

      Elena is a passionate blogger who shares about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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      Last Updated on January 15, 2021

      7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

      7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

      The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

      Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

      Posture

      First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

      • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
      • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
      • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
      • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

      All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

      Facial Expressions

      Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

      • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
      • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
      • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

      If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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      1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

      A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

      The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

      This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

      2. Relax Your Face

      New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

      The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

      To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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      3. Improve Your Eye Contact

      Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

      The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

      To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

      3. Smile More

      There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

      Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

      4. Hand Gestures

      Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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      It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

      5. Enhance Your Handshake

      In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

      “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

      It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

      6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

      As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

      Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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      Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

      Final Takeaways

      Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

      If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

      More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

      Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

      Reference

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