Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.
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- Are You Showing Him the REAL You?
- Marriage is as Marriage does…
- Does He Know the Color of Your Eyes?
- Are you Over-looking Heroes in Your midst?
- Step 4: Offer Him Your Appreciation and Reveal the Hero!
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December 30, 2009
Like many women I know, I was drawn to see the movie “It’s Complicated” with Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin. I was mesmerized by Meryl Streep, who at sixty years old still looks so amazing and displays the kind of confidence that had me watch from the audience, thinking to myself how awesome sixty will be and had me actually looking forward to it.
By now, we’ve all seen the preview showing the shock and horror on Meryl Streep’s face when her character, Jane wakes up in bed with her ex-husband, Jake, played by Alec Baldwin. They divorced many years earlier, and now they suddenly found themselves in each other’s arms again. I completely understood Jane’s shock, as Jake was now married to the very-hot thirty-something who he cheated on Jane with. We can all probably relate to her confusion, feelings of wrongness, and just plain craziness that after cheating on Jane, he would suddenly want to be with her fifteen years later? Sounds pretty complicated, right?
Well, I’m happy to report that through all the hilarious moments of pure shenanigans a`la Three’s A Company, I learned a very good lesson about love and I now think that perhaps it doesn’t have to be as complicated as we think. While we might think as we’ve been told–that men only need sex and food–this movie sheds some light on something even simpler that I think we all want and have in common. I wonder if we all basically want to be “gotten” by someone– to have our soul be seen and loved as is. I know it sounds corny, but how many of us melt when our man remembers that special place we like to be kissed or they see when we are about to get frustrated and they just know the special way to calm us down? Even if it’s your best girl-friend who knows the right thing to say to cheer you up– These are all the ways that we can feel seen and truly known by the ones we love. I believe it comes from a sincere adoration and appreciation for each other as people.
At a Thanksgiving dinner party I attended, we all talked about the things we were thankful for, and one of the guests said that he was so thankful for having “a wife who gets him.” I smiled, thinking that only the two of them could really know what that means. Their adoration for each other was apparent by how much they seemed to truly enjoy each other. This reminds me of the movie, and I wonder if Jake and Jane’s friendship and adoration was possibly re-kindled when they enjoyed genuine laughter and fun together– beyond the matters of work and the kids that might have distracted them in their marriage before. Could it be that they saw each other as beautiful on the inside and they suddenly found each other so attractive again. Is it possible that in spite of Jake having a stereo-type-super-hot wife, he simply wanted to be seen, heard, and really be understood and appreciated—rather than just be a sperm donor to his ovulating wife?
When we feel seen by another human being, in my experience it feels like that person is seeing our beauty inside and out, quirks, details—and all! This movie reminds me to remember all the special things I love about my man, all the little things that have me really “like” him and adore him as a person. Now I get why, when we are having fun and laughing together, those are often the sexiest moments ever! What can be simpler than that?
When is the last time you had real fun with your man? Perhaps as this New Year is dawning, you’ll remember some of the fun, silly times you have shared together, whether it be enjoying a concert with your favorite artist, or swinging on the swings at your local playground. Whether your dating or in a relationship, make this year one of fun, laughter, and seeing each other’s true beauty! Who knows, you might find yourselves having more fun between the sheets too! Enjoy!
December 23, 2009
This week I was thinking of the expression, “It’s better to be give, than to receive.” I grew up hearing it a lot from adults, and I remember how much fun I’ve had giving through out my life. I am especially reminded of the special high that comes from giving during this time of the year, when we are all in the giving spirit.
I pondered for a moment, wondering why it feels so good to give. I smiled and thought of all the yummy giving moments I’ve had over the years—from the back-rubs I gave my grandfather when I was five—to the times I dyed my Mom’s hair for her. I suddenly came to the realization that it wouldn’t have been as much fun to give, if those I gave to weren’t great receivers. To this day, when someone thanks me for the gift I gave them, my help with the dishes, taking the groceries out of the car, or even making an extra grilled cheese sandwich, I feel so appreciated, and I know that my gift has been received. Even better, is the fact that they let me give to them.
Have you ever offered help or tried to give to someone, only to have them say, “No thanks!” Did you feel a little disappointed? I know I have. The other day, I was talking to a Man who mentioned “how confused he was with women these days.” He said that often he’ll try to open a door for a woman, or offer help in some way, but so often she’ll stop him, and say, “No, thanks—I got it!” Could it be that we as women have become such great givers, that sometimes, we forget to receive?
This same Man seemed disheartened when he explained how much he really liked helping, and wished his wife would ask him to hang stuff on the walls more often, rather than do it herself before he got home from work. He explained how cool it was when she used to ask him to lift heavy boxes, or do things that required a man’s strength. The best part, he said was afterwards, “when she expressed her appreciation with a huge smile beaming from ear to ear.”
As I listened to him reminisce about giving, I thought to myself, “Ah, yes—that’s the same kind of appreciation I feel from those I give to. No wonder he feels deprived of giving.” After our conversation, I couldn’t help but think of receiving in a whole new light. Perhaps the real trick to being a great giver, is to be an even better receiver! As a bonus to being a great receiver, I remembered that “receptivity” is one of the four most attractive qualities of women.
When we allow men to give to us, and help us—we get to practice the gift of receiving. Sure, you can hang those pictures on your own, but why not let your man have an opportunity to express his way of giving and taking care of you? If you are like me, I know there is a strong possibility that you have a certain way you like things done (How many of you re-clean the kitchen after he does the dishes? ). The next time your man offers to give to you in some way, perhaps you’ll forget about the right way (your way) just this once, and practice receiving his gifts instead. Trust me– it will be worth it, when you find that he offers to give to you– more and more, and more… Enjoy!!
Please send me your best stories of your man giving to you this season. How well did you receive??
December 16, 2009
Have you ever dated a guy, and decided to call it quits because there just wasn’t enough “chemistry?” If so, you are not alone. It seems our culture has put a huge value on chemistry between men and women. If we don’t have chemistry, we don’t seem to have that “spark” that has us be attracted to them. When I learned what chemistry really is, I found myself realizing why all the guys I liked in high school made my palms sweat when they walked by me, and why I could barely speak in their presence.
When we feel chemistry with someone, what we may be feeling is a chemical reaction. More specifically, it’s the reaction of dopamine-the feel good chemical & testosterone-the hunter hormone our body has when we have an intense physical attraction. The rush of this attraction might be so intense, that it has us be in survival mode as “we must have his sperm to promote the survival of our species.” It may sound crazy, but it can truly feel like a life and death situation if we don’t get that guy, when we are under the influence of this drug I will now affectionately call chemistry. ( Perhaps that’s why I remember so many of my girlfriends in high school say, “I’ll just die if he doesn’t ask me to prom!”)
In my twenties, I remember dating several guys that seemed to trigger this chemical reaction in me. They were so good-looking, seemed so strong and manly, and possessed my vision of the Ken Doll, that I just had to have them. I knew I had it bad, when I couldn’t sleep, work, or do anything else without wondering what my dream guy was doing, when I’d see him, how come he hadn’t called me in three hours, or if he would notice when I wore his favorite color. I also seemed to get my feelings hurt a lot when I was with them.
I can see now that my physical chemical reaction to them had me contort myself into who I thought I needed to be to win them. I was in hunt mode, and I completely lost myself. I lost my likes and dislikes, my preferences, and I lost all the things that were important to me. Eventually, things didn’t work out, because I grew exhausted being this other person, and I wasn’t really giving them a chance to show me who they really were either. How many of you can relate to Katherine Heigl’s character in the move: “The Ugly Truth?” I laughed so hard, because I could see myself in her. Remember how much she changed who she was just to win the guy of her dreams? In the end, the guy she fell in love with was the guy who got to see who she really was. He was charmed and enchanted by her authentic self, and actually wanted to be with her beyond the physical attraction.
Whether you’re in a relationship or single and dating, perhaps you’ll notice those moments when the chemical reaction of intense physical attraction is clouding your thinking and having you behave like someone else. Your friends may also be a great radar to sound the alarm, when you are twisting yourself like a pretzel to get the guy. Instead, try dating off-type or spending time with guys that don’t have you be speechless in their presence. Remember, the physical attraction will lead to sex, but being your authentic self can lead to finding someone who wants to spend time with you and make you happy in addition to all the other fun activities you will share together…
December 9, 2009
In the midst of your days of taking care of the kids, running errands, or working your full-time job, do you ever wonder how on earth you could possibly transform yourself into the sensual goddess that your boyfriend or husband might like you to be?
I know I often get so caught up in the throws of everyday life, I forget that as a woman, I’m actually a feminine being. I got a huge reminder one day, when I read that one of the top four qualities that attract men to women is: “Sensuality.” I had to stop mid-sentence to ask out-loud — what exactly does sensuality look like? My mind immediately drifted to images of Victoria Secret models in barely-there angel bras and lingerie with air-brushed skin. I suddenly found myself saddened at my misfortune of not having a whole crew to help me look like a freshly coiffed model who sat in a make-up chair for two hours, revealing a picture of perfection. Then I came back to reality, and decided to find out what this sensual business was all about.
As I embark on this short quest to the island of Sensuality, I invite you to join me. Together, perhaps we’ll discover that our own sensuality may not be hidden in the Bermuda triangle after all. According to Captain Webster, sensuality means: to arouse or excite the senses or appetites. Well, that certainly doesn’t sound like it even involves anyone else, does it? Could it be that by simply exciting our own senses, we can embody sensuality? Perhaps what men are really responding to is our own excitement and pleasure. Hmm, I wonder if the Victoria’s Secret models have figured this out yet? Could be one of their many secrets!
When I think of exciting my own senses, I remember how amazing my skin feels when I slather on vanilla lotion, or how I moan with delight, when I slowly take a bite of my favorite dessert, creme brulee. It seems, these are the moments, when we give our senses a real treat and are present to that pleasure. Listening to my favorite song that gets me in the mood to dance, or smelling my own perfume on my wrist, has me be in the moment and witness my own joy, that I can’t help but let it show. Often my boyfriend will look at me with a huge smile when I’m really enjoying one of these moments. Now I know that he’s probably noticing my sensual side.
This must be what my friend Victor meant the other day, when he described a woman he was with at Starbucks. He said that she had a look on her face as she sipped her latte that seemed as though she was experiencing both joy and pleasure in that very moment. He said the way she also seemed to take her time with her own experience was so attractive and very inviting.
Who knew that by having a party with our own senses and giving ourselves the permission to enjoy our own little moments of pleasure that we could actually be “Sensual?” Whether it be enjoying each bite of a good meal, listening to each note of sweet music, or slowly feeling the softness of your own skin, these can be very sensual, inviting experiences, and you don’t have to look like an orgasmic model in a Herbal Essence commercial. Perhaps this week in the midst of your busy schedule, you’ll take an extra moment and pause to enjoy whatever treats you give your senses. You might even notice who else is noticing you…enjoy!
December 2, 2009
Did you ever find yourself talking to a man who seemed too pushy with his opinion? I’ve come across many men in my life who I thought were so opinionated and stubborn especially when it was about something as trivial as Toyota being the best brand of car to buy, or that shapely arms are the sexiest part of a woman’s body. It even seemed at times that they would defend their opinions to the death. I couldn’t relate–in fact I thought they were behaving so silly and ridiculous over nothing. You may be nodding your head in agreement…
What I didn’t realize back then is how men relate to their opinions differently than women. For a man, his opinion is a window into his soul, to see what he really cares about, and values. Men base these values on facts and information they trust. When my friend was adamant about Toyota being the best brand, it was based on the facts he gathered. After I got over what I thought was completely stupid behavior at the time, I asked him why he thought that way? He finally shared some of the data he studied that showed Toyota having the safest, and the most economical cars at that time. Then I finally got it! Safety and getting a good return on investment were both important values that were part of who he was. No wonder he seemed a little disappointed when I didn’t see his point at first. It must have appeared as though I was rejecting him as a person.
Of course, as women–this may still not make sense, since we may often base our opinion about someone or something on our feelings about them. This is one of our many gifts that help us relate to people and be sensitive to what is needed by others. We can be so in touch with our feelings that we may rely on them to help us make decisions. Often I choose my outfit for the day, based on how I want to feel–girlie, professional, or maybe relaxed. I think that’s where the term, “shoe confidence” might have came from. I have found myself even deciding if I like people based on how I feel when I’m around them.
This was made clear to me when I use to work at Staples in the corporate sales department. On many occasions, I got excited about a big order I was about to get. I had such great relationships with my clients, and felt so good about the great job I was doing, that my enthusiasm was very obvious–especially to my manager who made me really uncomfortable. He always rained on my parade by asking with a sarcastic tone,”Have they signed the contract yet? Don’t hatch all your eggs until the order is delivered.” I remember feeling like he just didn’t like me, and I couldn’t leave his office fast enough. One day he shared with me how he once lost a big order because of problems with delivery, so after that he played by the book, and didn’t report any sales until they were officially delivered. I laughed inside, remembering how personal I took his previous remarks. The next time I showed enthusiasm about my future successes, I gave him a few more facts like the delivery dates, and watched as his face lit up with excitement too!
The next time you hear a man sharing his opinion you don’t agree with or understand, rather than try to argue with him, or think he’s being stubborn and dismissing your feelings like I did, perhaps you’ll see an opportunity to learn more about what he values and cares about. Try asking him, ” What has you believe that way?”, or “Can I ask what had you make that decision? Who knows, You might be surprised by what he shares about himself.
As I research for my upcoming book about men, I’d love to hear your stories of the men you love and their opinions you just don’t understand. Please send them my way to: email@example.com.