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On Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness

How to End a Relationship the Right Way

Robert Manni - Friday, April 18, 2014


Getting dumped can suck, but most guys are used to it.

We’ve either been or known the guy that’s been blindsided and dumped by his lady. It’s not fun, but guys usually dust themselves off and dive back into the dating pool even if the pain still festers inside. I would be easy to take out our frustrations on the next woman we date. But what does that accomplish? Instead I suggest walking a few steps in a woman’s shoes and consider how she feels after a guy she really digs throws her to the wayside. To make a better world someone needs to take the high road. Here are my five Guy’s Guy tips for manning up for a break up.

1. Be mindful before making your move.

I’m referring to how to bring closure to a relationship. I’m referring to cutting the cord with a woman you’ve dated for at least a couple of months. She’s offered her body in intimate ways and you know damn well she’s interested in being more than friends with benefits. So if you’re just not feeling it, let her down gently and move on. That means no more booty calls. Let her find someone who wants to be with her for more than one more night of rumpling the sheets.

2. Break up in person in a suitable location.

That means no disappearing or dumping her by text or phone call. Pick a public location, preferably outdoors with lots of people in motion. I suggest avoiding sitting face-to-face in a crowded restaurant unless you want to risk seeing what her radicchio salad with balsamic vinaigrette dressing looks like on your shirt. Pick someplace like Central Park where you can sit side-by-side watching good-looking people run, walk, and bike past you. This will remind her that the world keeps turning and is filled with potential new partners. 

3. Be direct without placing blame.

Okay, she’s a great girl and you enjoy hanging out with her. But, you’ve given the relationship a chance and now you’re just not feeling it. That’s okay, bro. Over time you’ll become more adept at qualifying your partners early on so you don’t waste each other’s time or needlessly hurt their feelings. Every situation is different, so I can’t suggest the words for you. Once you’ve decided that things aren’t working take a deep breath and tell her how you feel without blaming her or getting into the weeds with details, even if she farts in bed. The bottom line is that you don’t see the potential for a long-term relationship. So it’s not about you or her. It’s about ‘us’ and ‘us’ means two people. 

4. Be kind.

No woman likes being rejected, especially after she’s shared her body and bared her soul with a guy. Once a woman opens up her emotional windows, she’s understandably vulnerable. So be mindful and choose words that avoid hurting her any more than she feels you already have, even if in the long run you’re doing her a favor. And when it’s over, that’s it. Again, no slinking back for a little something something every time your inner horn doggie wants a treat. Let her go, amigo.

No matter how bad you may feel if her tears start to flow, ultimately no woman wants to be with a guy who isn’t totally into her. And trust me, if she is as cool as you think she was for dating you, after you leave she’ll move on faster than you’d expect. And ultimately, that’s a good thing for both of you.

When it's time to call it quits, will you show some class when delivering the news?

 

This week’s Guys Guy of the Week is Jimmy Kimmel for remaining friends and still doing some comedy bits with ex-girlfriend Sarah Silverman.

Guy's Guy's Dating Basics - Part 1

Robert Manni - Friday, March 21, 2014


The more things change the more they stay the same.

Every day, month and year guys make the same basic errors in their efforts to woo a woman. With the advent of more and more technology, sometimes guys don’t even have to speak with a woman before “hanging out” with her in the hopes of getting some you know what. It’s a sad state of affairs that I felt compelled to tackle this post, but a Guy’s Guy does what’s necessary in the service of his fellow men and women. Because in a Guy’s Guy world, men and women win when they can both be at their best. So listen up fellas, and ladies, let me know how you feel about these five basic rules for men who are dating.

Respect.

You treat your best buds right. You split the last beer in the six- pack. You spring for the pizza delivered to your crib during the game.  But when it comes to women, you send them photos of your junk when you need a booty call. Not good. A rule of thumb is to treat the woman you are with, whether she is your girlfriend or someone you just met, with the same courtesy, generosity and respect that you do to your very best male friend.  She is a person, and an equal, who in most ways is just like you. And in most cases she’ll start off on her best foot by putting your needs before hers. Now of course not every woman fits this bill, but the women you want to be with do.

Call Her.

If you want to stand out from the crowd, pick up the phone and give her a call. It doesn’t matter if you’re set up a time to get together or confirming the location of your date. Notice, I said date, not hanging out. Women like hanging out, but they want to date a real man. So take a break from all the texting and call her. If your call goes to voicemail, leave a message. Don’t hang up assuming she’ll see your number and call back. And whatever it was that you wanted to talk about, make sure you tell her that you wanted to hear her voice. And if that’s not the case, why the hell are you seeing her anyway?

Be On Time.

See point one. Being on time is a sign of respect. Being late without a damn good excuse means that her time is not as valuable as yours. Women know this and do not like it when guys leave them sitting and waiting alone at a crowded bar or restaurant. If you make a habit of being late for your lady, other guys’ll hit her on, and eventually she’ll  consider the dudes who have their game on. That brings us to our next point.

Never Take A Woman For Granted.

So she really digs you and you’ve rumpled the sheets with her in every position imaginable. That does not mean she should be taken lightly or for granted. In fact, you should be treat her even better for all the things she’s done for you in and out of bed. This is an easy trap to fall into.  I’ve been there myself a few times before being dumped, and deservingly so.

Let Freedom Ring.

Being possessive or controlling is a sign of insecurity. Too many guys get their hackles up when another male takes a look at, or God forbid, says something to the women they’re with. Hey, I do not condone hitting on someone else’s date, but let’s keep things light and friendly. Not every guy is looking to jump your lady’s bones. And if you are that concerned about it, what do you do when she’s at work or out with her friends? My advice is to be confident and secure in that she chose you. Now it’s up to you to keep her interested and not screw things up.

The list of dating tips for guys goes on and on. Frankly, I’m just getting warmed up. If you take one thing away from this pointed rant it’s to treat others the way you want to be treated. And when it comes to a woman, treat her twice as well as you treat yourself. You’ll get lots of dates and the word will get around that you’re a guy who “gets it”.

Are you taking care of the basics when getting your dating game on?

5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Getting Back Into the Game

Robert Manni - Friday, February 21, 2014


The most important person to know in your life is yourself.

Yet so many people spend the majority of their time reacting to what’s going on around them. Before they know it, each new day has turned into a Xerox copy of the previous one. And there’s no other area than dating that demonstrates this repetitive, redundant behavior where we too often rush into a new situation without considering what we want and need to be happy. They say the heart wants what it wants, but we can be swayed by the conscious mind and exterior world into believing someone is right for us when they really aren’t.  Since we’ve just begun a new year, let’s address our dating goals like a good investigative reporter and ask a few basic questions before hopping back on the dating merry-go-round. And of course, we’ll approach it Guy’s Guy style so everyone can win.

Who?

There is no better place to begin than by asking who we are at this point in time. Many daters are not in touch with themselves and as a result they continually chasing after people they think will make them happy. If we take the time to slow down and explore our hearts we might find that we have been putting our emotional eggs into the wrong baskets. If you don’t know who you are and what makes you tick how can you really know someone else that you want to give your heart to? This is the critical step for finding the right partner. In advertising terms, it’s called knowing your brand.

What?

This is another critical question to ask before beginning another dating cycle. Many women have a list of criteria they expect in a man. Maybe it’s money, a certain occupation, a physical look, style or even a specific attitude. Nothing wrong with having parameters, but instead of simply asking ourselves what we want, let’s consider what we have to offer a potential partner. Men make this mistake all the time. I know a lot of guys who expect the women they date to have a stripper bodies and razor sharp minds. Unfortunately, a lot of these guys are just regular dudes who spend too much time on the couch watching the game with a Bud in their hand. If we ask ourselves what we have to offer, we’ll be more realistic about the type of person we can attract.

Where?

I recently read a book by a prominent dating coach to help women find and meet men. I was amazed that this had become such an issue. There are guys everywhere and a simple smile will usually get their attention.  The bottom line is to fish where the fish are. If you want to meet men, you may have to hit some bars, ball games, ski slopes and gyms. You can also meet lots of cool dudes in wine tasting or cooking classes, tech stores, libraries, the museum, the laundry mat, book stores, running clubs, and on and on. Guys are omnipresent and usually approachable. Meeting them is more a function of your attitude.

When?

Nowadays we’re all so busy with our career nowadays that we say we don’t have time to invest in dating. Okay, but just like anything else in life, you get out what you put into it. So if you are seeking a partner, you’re going to have to meet new people and that takes time.

Why?

Hey, Guy’s Guy, between all the circumspection, knowing my brand and fishing where the fish are, this dating business really does takes up a lot of time. Why am I doing all of this? A-ha. That’s the magic question. Go ahead and ask yourself.  And then ask yourself who, what, where and when before jumping back into the dating pool. Hopefully you’ll be more prepared to meet a partner that’s right for you.

Are you asking yourself the right questions when it comes to dating?

5 Ways Women Sabotage Themselves With Men

Robert Manni - Friday, February 07, 2014


You’ve got to be in it to win it.

This old saying refers to dating, too. I hear from so many women who complain that they're having such a hard time meeting the right guy. With everyone working at a frantic pace just to maintain the status quo, it’s no wonder that we have little patience left when it comes to dating. We want what we want now, right ladies? Well, your Guy’s Guy is here to bring you both the bad and the good news about meeting men. Hopefully it will get you what you want, when it you want it. Here are five ways women can sabotage themselves when connecting with guys.

Always Plugged In.

I can’t tell you how many times I decided not to introduce myself to a woman because she was wearing her ear buds or playing Candy Crush on the subway. I love my music, too, but living in New York City provides me with more than enough stimulation that I don't feel a need to stay plugged in 24/7. Countless guys have told me that this is the number one deterrent to politely approaching a woman. I can’t say how much is too much, but while you were listening to Rihanna sing about “talking that talk” the cute guy sitting across from you on the E train probably decided to “walk that walk” at the 5th Avenue station instead of introducing himself. Just sayin’. 

Not Fishing Where the Fish Are.

Where can I meet a nice guy? I’ve been asked that a lot. Look around—there are guys everywhere and they're usually open to chatting up a cute woman like you.  To be more specific, you can find guys in bars, gyms, and ball games. But if these places are not your cup of tea, check out wine-tasting classes, golf course, tech stores, museums, the park, the beach, or even the laundry mat. And that’s for starters.

Traveling In Packs.

Women's rise in professional power was long overdue. That being said, it can be daunting for a guy to approach a group of women sitting at a table at a club or a bar. It’s a pressure-packed situation that most men will shy away from. You can say it’s lame, but them’s the facts. Guys like to separate a woman from the group and that’s no easy task when all of her friends are looking him over and mentally judging his every word and move. Try going out with one girlfriend and sitting at the bar instead of a table.  You’ll meet plenty of guys that way. It’s up to you how to manage their advances and all the free drinks.

Sticking Too Closely Your List.

The longer you’re single, the longer the list grows. And before you know it, you’re plucking random gray hairs and sitting on the couch on Saturday night stroking your cat, Fluffy. Not a good look. Alright, I’m being dramatic; but trust me—time files and if you keep adding to your dating criteria, you’ll shrink the pool of available dudes. If your list is longer than five, it’s too long. Another thing to consider is that sometimes traveling off the grid reaps mega rewards. Think about it.

Tossing Him Back Too Soon.

I know there’s always more fish in that online dating ocean and it’s so easy to just delete him for something as minor as walking with you on the wrong side of the sidewalk. Take it from your Guy’s Guy—men screw up, but we are resilient and we aim to please. If you give a guy a second chance over a minor indiscretion (and I don’t mean cheating), you might find out something about what he’s got inside.

 

Are you taking steps not to sabotage yourself with guys?

How to Improve Your Chance for Romance

Robert Manni - Thursday, December 05, 2013


Once upon a time there was no Instagram, Tinder, Facebook, Match.com, Vine, and no sexting, texting, or even e-mail.

Can you imagine? If a young buck wanted to meet a nice lady, he’d take a deep breath, walk across the bar room, smile and say something clever like, “Hey, my name's Steve.”  If he was fortunate enough that she didn’t blow cigarette smoke his way, it was on him to keep the conversation going in the hopes of making a connection. This requires a real conversation, one that transcends discussing recent episodes of “The Walking Dead” or fantasy football.  Keep it real, amigo. Before we were drowning in technology, people were forced to connect face-to-face, person-to-person. It was a good way to foster social skills and the fine art of conversation. Instead of hiding behind cell phones and 140 characters on Twitter, dudes had to put themselves on the line in the hopes of as a way of making a woman feel special. With this in mind I humbly offer the Guys’ Guy’s four easy ways to polish your social skills and improve the chances for romance.

Put The Gadgets Away.

There's a million apps available to help guys out on the town connect with random women.  But texting a stranger from across the bar will not enhance your social élan. It’s much more effective to introduce yourself in person, like our friend Steve did all those years ago. Women prefer the direct approach. Just be a gentleman and don’t gawk at their boobs. When scoping out the female prospects, check the hair, the bag and the shoes. They’ll tell you a lot about a woman and how she sees herself. Once you decide whom you want to meet, think of an open-ended conversation starter that requires a real answer, not a yes or no. “Do you like pickle backs?” probably won’t get you far. Then, tuck that cell phone into your pocket, flash your best smile and make your approach.

Pay Attention.

This is the cardinal rule for connecting with women. That’s because women pay attention and have this amazing capacity to assimilate tons of detailed information about everything, including what you said two months ago about your ex. Men are not very good at this. But, guys who learn the value of active listening find themselves miles ahead of their beer swilling mates that half-listen to their female companions while they multitask by watching the game and checking for texts every two minutes. When talking with a lady, everything else takes a back seat. Period.

Get Real.

Unless you have major bank, can rhyme like Drake or look like Gosling, you are not a chick magnet. Life is not a Rick Ross video unless you are Rick Ross.  Take a deep breath, accept who you are at this moment, then smile inwardly and say, “Damn right!” It’s all good, young man. Not all women are built like fitness models and neither are you. Laugh with others, laugh at yourself and have fun meeting women. Maybe you hit it off conversationally with someone who may not be your cup of tea physically. Not a problem. You can be friends. She might make a terrific wingman, or you could be hers.  Better yet, she may have a slammin’ girlfriend that she’ll introduce you to if she hasn’t already set her sights on you. If that’s the case, be nice and be kind. Things usually work themselves out.

Follow Up.

If you master steps one through three and score her digits or more, make sure you stay the course and call her the next day. That means the next day, not next week. And it means a phone call, not a text, not a sext of your junk, or an Instagram, etc.  Let her know you had a great time with her and that you’d like to see her again. If she shares your interest, have a plan in mind. Trust me, she’ll be impressed that you’ve not only taken the time to call her, but you had the consideration to think ahead and make her life a tad easier. Woman may be more aggressive these days, but they appreciate a dude who can take the wheel and treat them special. And, women are special.

 

Are you polishing your socials skills and connecting with women?

How to Handle a Breakup

Robert Manni - Friday, October 25, 2013


Nothing lasts forever, especially when we’re dating.

At one point or another, everyone gets dumped. Sometimes it comes as a surprise. It can be emotional. It can feel like the end of the world, but it’s not. We survive, and in most cases, we look back a year later and consider how better off we are and why the heck we stuck in that other relationship for that long. So, it’s important that we handle the drama and the deluge when it happens. Here are my four tips for handling a break up, Guy’s Guy style. 

Don’t take it personally.

This is the biggest challenge. When we get dumped, we automatically think there's something wrong with us. We feel inadequate and insecure. How could he or she not love me anymore? Of course it would be helpful to know if some part of our behavior had become a deal breaker, but that might not be the case. He or she might just not be feelin’ it anymore. Maybe they connected with someone else (it happens), or they evolved in a way that the two of you remaining together just didn’t fit in with their plans. Hey, none of those options strokes our ego, but it’s not a condemnation of us. It is about them and sometimes facing the facts softens the blow. After all, who wants to be in a relationship with someone who doesn't want to be with us?

Be careful how you rebound.

Naturally, if our ex hooks up with someone new, we might want to show them a thing or two by showing a new partner a thing or two or three in the sack. Take that, MF! That might be a fun way of expunging the past, but it can make us feel worse. Maybe not, but that kind of sex is usually purely physical while the hurt is emotional. Take steps to get your head on straight and address your emotions prior to hooking up.

Don’t take it out on your next partner.

Whether you decide to date up a storm or just hook up for awhile (again, I recommend dealing with the emotional baggage first), make sure that you don't take your breakup frustrations out on someone new. Regardless of the situation, they need to be treated with the same respect that you seek. Let’s not turn things into a subconscious, vicious circle of “he or she hurt me, so I’ll hurt you”. That reckless behavior of defeats the purpose of starting fresh and it actually ends up hurting us because we are not acting out of love.

Stay positive and treat yourself.

Love hurts, and when we face up to the fact that our partner may no longer feel the same way about us, it can be devastating. Take heed, friends. You are not alone. We’ve all been dumped and after licking our emotional wounds, we deserve a treat. Take a vacation, join a club, take a fitness class or just do something that your ex wasn’t into that you missed out on because he or she wouldn't participate. Who knows? You might meet someone new in that kick boxing class. I met a lot of really cool women when I went online for datessome became lovers, some became friends, and some I never saw again. In any case, I met new people with new ideas from all over the country and the world, and it really is a big world out there. And you're an important part of it because, after all, there is no one quite like you. But, that’s for your new partner to find out. Good luck and stay positive! 

How do you cope with a breakup?

The Guys' Guy's Guide to Things That Are Better Now

Robert Manni - Thursday, October 10, 2013


There are so many things wrong today—government shut downs, GMO’s, NSA snooping and Miley’s coated tongue.

It’s too easy to add to the list and bemoan our plight. Instead, let’s go back thirty years to 1983 and compare notes. That was the year Michael Jackson dominated the charts, the Swatch was launched, McNuggets came out and Lotus 1-2-3 was our preferred software.  Here is my Guy’s Guy Guide to Things That Are Better Now. One caveat—technology is more advanced than in 1983, so we’ll put the tech-related items into context. Enjoy!

10. Central Park – From its lush greenery to the calming energy that permeates the sprawling fifty-block area to the expanded running paths and new playgrounds, Central Park keeps getting better. Central Park was, for the most part, a scrubby dump in the seventies and eighties that you could not venture into after dark. With the commitment from the city and the hard work of the Central Park Conservatory, it has been transformed again into the wonderful oasis as it was imagined.

9. Beer – No longer are we limited to old standbys like Bud and Miller. The beer industry has exploded with creativity, craft brews and innumerable fine selections available in bars, taverns and delis. You can even brew your own beer. This is very good news for beer lovers whose idea of excitement in the past was waiting for that shipment of Coors in a refrigerated container to show up on the East Coast.

8. Cooking – I thought about calling this, “Food”, but with the advent of GMO’s and factory farming, food has not gotten better. That said, the world of gastronomy has expanded and in many cities you can sample any kind of cuisine at any hour of the day. The “foodie” movement has given us an education on preparation and matching flavors. If you want more proof, check the frozen food aisle of your local supermarket. The section that once offered a merger selection of TV diners and frozen pizza has now become a smorgasbord of global offerings.

7. Clothing – Let’s face it, people can showcase their personal style a heck of a lot better now than in 1983. Men’s suits are more flattering, mixing and matching of patterns has become an art form and women have an endless selection of shoes, bags and hairstyles to embrace and call their own. Of course there's a down side: we’ve seen the casual movement turn air travel into a parade of tracksuits and ladies, those yoga pants are a bit too ubiquitous now. That said, it’s hard to argue with being comfortable.

6. Publishing – Instead of following the music industry's demise until it embraced digital offerings and sent more bands out on tour, the publishing industry was taken by surprise when self and hybrid and independent offerings created stars. Before they knew it, sales of eBooks were in line with physical book sales. This is great news for both readers and writers. Meanwhile, the publishing industry is busy peddling celebrity books because they don’t require “breaking” a new name or building a brand. Snooki had brand awareness before her novels launched.

5. Social Media – Okay; we didn’t have social media in 1983, and you may not care for those pithy, inspirational sayings from your Facebook friends, being on the receiving end of a poke, reading political rants or seeing photos of someone’s sushi lunch, but keeping in touch with long lost acquaintances can be fun. And if you’re not interested, you can turn it off at any time. Period.

4. Weed – We’re moving from draconian Rockefeller laws to medicinal use, and that’s only the beginning. Pot is going to become legal at some point during the next decade. Why? Follow the money. Marijuana is the next cash crop and it’s ripe for reaping tax revenues.

3. Gay Rights – Who would have conceived of legislation legalizing gay and lesbian marriage back in 1983? We’ve come a long way in accepting and protecting the rights of everyone regardless of their sexual preference. There isn't enough love in the world so let’s hope this will soon become a non-issue.

2. Coffee and Tea - Similar to beer, we’ve moved from a handful of mass brands to a plethora of exotic, great-tasting blends from around the world that are featured in small independent stores on every corner of the city. The same goes for tea. Once there were two big, boring brands on the shelves. Now we have dozens and even yerba mate comes in an array of flavors. That’s a good thing.

1. Broadcast Media – Cable grew from a handful of new channels to the thousands of selections we have today in a short period of time. We can watch whatever we want, whenever we want, wherever we want, with or without commercials on a multitude of devices. That's cool. Okay, I don’t like those housewives shows either, but you know what I mean.

This is just a first pass. There’s also been advances in traditional medicine, an increased awareness of holistic healing and yoga, cell phones with cameras that capture so much more good and bad behavior, and of course Duck Dynasty.

Now that doesn’t necessarily make this a better world than thirty years ago, but it’s too easy to fall into a malaise and cry about once what was. Hey people: things change and they will keep changing faster than they did over the past thirty years. Guy’s Guys look on the bright side. How about you?

Do you appreciate the many changes in our culture since 1983?

 

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is Frederick Law Olmsted who won the Central Park design competition in 1857. Nice work, amigo.

Five Tips to Keep Her Happy

Robert Manni - Thursday, October 03, 2013


Women are easy to please.

Really?  Yes—trust me. I’ve learned the hard way, and I continue to learn every day. Like most men, I used to view women as beautiful, exotic, unpredictable creatures; nearly impossible to figure out. I wasn’t doing the math. When guys don’t address the basics, women get complicated quickly. Like they said in Shrek, it’s all about the layers. Here are a few tips for guys that might help them keep their partners happy and their relationships on course, Guy’s Guy style.  Share them, ladies, and you might see a change for the better.

Clean Up Your Act.

Regardless of how tidy a woman may or may not be, she’s delighted when a man keeps his crib, car, clothes and body squeaky clean and smelling good. Special attention is required for the refrigerator, sink, and especially the bathroom. She’ll notice. Keeping clean is a positive way to live and it'll help guys score a check-plus on the first date and beyond. It may also up his chances at her wanting to see if his sheets and tighty whities are clean, as well. Once into a relationship, guys need to set the bar high. That means cleaning up around the house, taking out the garbage and vacuuming etc. It’s got to be done anyway, and she’ll notice.

Be Proactive.

If a woman has to keep drilling a guy about doing every little thing that’s expected, he’ll stay in the doghouse. It’s critical for men to take care of things on their own without having to be asked a million times. No one wants to be a nag, but she’ll seem like one if he doesn’t think ahead. Want to avoid “the talk”?  Anticipate a woman’s needs and address them. Surprise her with flowers, reservations at a restaurant she’s mentioned, cook her a tasty meal, order tickets for that play she wanted to see, etc. It all comes down to…

Paying Attention.

I know you've heard this one before. Even I still mess up at times. Guys have to stop thinking about themselves 24/7 and show more consideration for the one who keeps them happy. When they don’t, things get tricky and guys hear about it at the most inopportune times. I got an earful the other night right after settling in for the second half of the Cowboys-Giants game. She made a lot of great points, but maybe she should have been paying attention also—after all, she knows I’m a big Cowboys fan. Regardless, her points were on target, so I maintained eye contact throughout the “discussion”, actively listened and took her suggestions to heart.

Tell Her How You Feel.

When something’s wrong with a relationship guys often choose one of two courses of action. They do something about it or they leave. I’m not suggesting men are well adjusted in this area, but it’s usually how we roll. We’re not very good with addressing relationship issues. We try to fix things instead of discussing what’s wrong, the way women do. Men can work wonders if they listen with an open mind and express how they feel at the appropriate time. That’s not too much to ask.

Sex?

I won't go into the details, but women reward men who are creative, attentive, romantic and aim to please their partner. It’s that simple.

There are many more ways for men to keep their relationships on course, but ultimately it comes down to mutual love and respect. Men and women want the same things; they just have different ways of expressing themselves. But, that’s a good thing, isn’t it? It would be a drag if everyone were the same.

Does your guy do what it takes to keep you happy?

Get Your Relationship off to a Good Start

Robert Manni - Thursday, August 22, 2013

Most of us have little patience. We want everything right now, especially when it comes to new love.

We spend hours thinking everything through and planning how it could play out, sometimes to the point where we’ve mentally visualized the entire relationship and the breakup before the first date even happens. It’s crazy, but I can understand it. We’re all crazy busy conducting our day-to-day lives and it’s a challenge to pause, exhale and allow a new relationship to grow organically. Regardless of your sex here are a few tips, Guy’s Guy style, for making the best of a new romantic connection.

Be a Buddhist.

Wait—what? One of the tenets for successfully practicing Buddhism is a lack of desire. Of course you're attracted to the person you’re out with, but during those first few dates, try focusing on the journey and not the outcome. You might find that the simple act of sharing the company of someone new and your initial experiences are rewarding without the weight of expectations. Just have a good time and get to know your partner.  That’s it, but it’s not as easy as it sounds unless you commit to it beforehand. Leave your baggage and expectations behind and just…be.

Don’t judge.

We do a lot of judging. Whether it’s for our jobs or from watching all the talent-based reality shows, we live in a society that thrives on turning our thumbs up or down. Unfortunately, too often we carry this mindset into our relationships. In a way it’s understandable. No one wants to waste his or her time dating someone who does not measure up to what we’re seeking in a relationship. But let’s exhale every so often and give the other person the benefit of the doubt for minor infractionslike a guy walking on the inside while you’re traipsing down a crowded street in MePa. News flash. No one’s perfect, not even you, and if we remind ourselves of this every so often, it could allow new love to grow.

Be considerate.

This door swings both ways. If you’re a guy, plan the first date. Listen to what your partner’s interests are and offer up an experience that delights her. Whether it’s an outdoor Shakespeare performance, an ethnic restaurant or a bike ride along the Hudson River Park, plan a date that let’s her know that you’re paying attention and want to please her. Believe me, this goes a long way to getting things off to a great start. If you’re a woman, give the guy a break and return his call or text or whatever in a timely fashion and show up at a reasonable time.  Understand that he’s probably as nervous as you are on that first date. And, if you two click, you might find that the first time isn’t necessary the best time or a reliable indicator of how compatible you’ll be when it comes to intimacy. Just sayin’.

Be honest.

Love can be a game, but you also want to be truthful with yourself. If you’re not feeling it, there’s no need to get into details, but don’t leave your partner dangling. If they did their best, but the chemistry’s not there, let him or her know that you had a nice time and leave it at that. I’m not suggesting downloading the bad news at the end of the first date, but when they follow up for round two, take the call and let them know that you’re passing. Concurrently, if you had a great time and want to see him or her again, there is nothing wrong with letting your new partner know that you had a blast. You never know, they might not be reading the signals clearly and you don’t want to risk that they never call again because they did not think you enjoyed their company. I’m not suggesting that you have to gush, but there are lots of ways to let your partner know that you’re interested in seeing them again.

Life moves quickly and when we fail to keep a handle on it, it can move so fast that we miss out by not taking the time to appreciate the beauty of possibility. Until next time…

Are you doing what it takes to get your new relationship off to a great start? 

Red Flags - 4 Sign's He's Not the One Part 2

Robert Manni - Friday, August 16, 2013
Every storm begins with a few drops of rain. When I finished my last post on red flags when it comes to dating, I realized that I had just scratched the surface. Not to say that it's all doom and gloom when it comes to finding "Mr. Right," but here are a few more signs to avoid.
He Has A Double Standard About Sex.
Sex is territorial for men, and it’s also where many guys maintain a double standard.  Guys go to strip clubs, get lap dances, and who knows—maybe even a happy ending. He might rationalize that hopping into the sack with another woman is not a big deal because “he’s just getting off”. And he’s probably telling the truth. To most guys, sex is a physical act. That said, he’s not going to reciprocate and view your having sex with another man through the same lens. Bottom line, it’s unfair. So if he’s sleeping with other women and he takes offense when you play it the same way, you’re not on the same page. You need to have “the talk” about this. If there is no agreed to line of delineation, you may want to rethink the relationship because it’s going to happen again.

He’s Abusive. 
There is physical and emotional violence and both are unacceptable in a relationship. It’s a very complicated area and I’m just your Guy’s Guy, but once a man gets away with abuse, the situation can quickly become a runaway train. I recommend that you strongly consider ending a relationship the moment any guy raises a hand or verbally berates you. Putting up with the abuse, rationalizing it or considering what you did to make him behave this way is a recipe for disaster. We are all responsible for our own actions. Love yourself and don’t take any crap.

He’s REALLY Into Porn.
We know guys are visual, and trust me, nothing makes a dude happier than seeing his woman dolled up in lingerie and heels. And with the barrage of sexual imagery the media spits out like a Gatling gun, any man can celebrate the female body in all its glory whenever he wants. Amen and hallelujah. That said, if you guy spends night after night drooling at porn sites on his oversized computer screen, it could take a toll on your relationship. Guys can view zillions of photos of women acting out any fantasy they have. This can set the expectation bar quite high so unless you are ready to perform, and I mean really perform, you may want to clock the time he spends online just a little bit so it doesn't get out of hand.

He Disrespects Your Family.
Everyone’s family is dysfunctional in some way. Families are living, breathing organisms. Some are more fun, more interesting or more loving than others, but when it comes to your partner’s family, it’s best to either join the party or keep a quiet distance as much as possible. If he disrespects your family, it’s a bad sign. If you feel his family has disrespected you, it’s also unacceptable. In most relationships, you’ll eventually have to deal with your partner’s family. If this becomes a point of contention and discomfort, ask yourself what can be done to remedy what could become an unmovable object and irresistible force confronting your relationship.

We each get one trip around the track, so be aware of the warning signs that signal the potential for getting into a relationship that is not built on a foundation of love and respect.
Our Guy's Guy of the Week is Roger Fox, the roguish womanizer from my novel The Guys' Guy's Guide to Love.
Are You Mindful of the Signs that He’s Not The One?


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