Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.

Mary Loyer: Founder of Red Lipstick Inc.

Welcome Ladies! As a Speaker and Relationship Coach, I will show you a new perspective on how to be confident woman as bold as red lipstick! If you've ever been frustrated by the men in your life or felt overwhelmed trying to find your own balance and harmony, you have come to the right place for some answers!

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MenGivingAttention Doesn’t it feel amazing when your man pays attention to you?  Sometimes it feels like I’m the center of his universe in that moment.  Imagine if you could get as much attention from him as you wanted.  What would that picture look like?  Would he be rubbing your feet?  Telling you how beautiful you are constantly? Perhaps he would notice every nice thing you did for him, and instantly show his un-ending gratitude by showering you with I love you-s?

I wonder, what does it mean to get “enough” attention?  I had the good fortune of listening to fifty-two men speak, about their need for “attention” from their woman, this weekend at a co-ed workshop.  I was surprised to hear that “attention” seemed to be just as important to them, and in some cases not getting it, was the cause of much heart-ache and eventually led to break-up.  I was even more surprised at what they described as “enough attention”.  Many of them agreed on the idea that attention was, in many cases, an instance or feeling of being cared about by their woman.  It might be displayed by her bringing him coffee in his favorite mug in the morning before work.  Perhaps she’ll notice that he is frustrated or cranky, and ask if he’s eaten yet.  Of course physical attention was ranked on the top of the list, simply because our feminine spirit has a great re-charging effect on men.  Above all, it appears that while the little moments of attention for the men might be different, they all included a consistent attitude of care and sincere interest for his happiness and well-being.  Everything she did for him was done with a smile, and he instantly knew she had his back.

I couldn’t help but think how similar the need for attention seems to be with men and women.  The women I’ve talked to agree that it’s the little moments of attention that count the most.  Sometimes it’s the text message that says “Thinking about you- Beautiful!”  Or the way he comes over and kisses her neck when she least expects it.  Those magic moments might be different for each of us, yet the magical connection we feel is the same.

So I ask you ladies, how do we get “enough” of whatever kind of attention we need and how to we give our man what he needs without feeling like we haven’t received any?  Think about that picture in your head of your man giving you exactly the kind of attention you love the most.  I invite you to write down what he is doing for you, and how it makes you feel.  Does it make you feel safe, cared for, loved, rejuvenated?  Now ask yourself, “Have I ever told him that these things are the magical things he does that have me feel safe, cared for, loved and rejuvenated?  You might think it’s obvious, and perhaps you think you’ve given him very clear clues as to what you need.  Keep in mind that he’s human, and he may have forgotten, or you might not have given him the proper appreciation the last time, so he may not know that he can win with you when he gives you that which you say you need.

Friendly reminders that include gratitude are so important; otherwise you may find yourself feeling neglected and resentful that he doesn’t appreciate how you care for him. When men and women don’t get the attention they need from their significant other, they may eventually give up on getting it from them, and find themselves more receptive to the attention they get from outside their relationship.  It seems unfortunate that this could happen, but sometimes our work, busy schedules, busy calendars, and responsibilities can get in the way, and have us forget to give each other what we need.  Before you  find yourself giving up on enjoying those “magical moments” of kisses on the neck, morning back rubs, or daily “I love you-s,” take the time to forgive each other for being human, and remind your man how much you love those little things he does that have his attention on you, and make you feel so special.

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442495a-i1-01Last week, I talked about the mystery of men being “Emotionally Unavailable.”  One friend shed light on what it felt like when her boyfriend lacked in this area, causing her to break up with him.  After further discussion and much research, I discovered that we may not really want men to have all the emotions that we as women do, but we DO want to feel their “presence” with us.  We want to feel them connecting with us in that moment we are with them.  The men I spoke to admitted that they are most able to be present and feel their woman when they are get to transition from their previous task or “hunt” from that day.  So the question I proposed last week is, “How do we allow men to transition?” 

The men I interviewed all differed a little in the ways that they transitioned from task to task, but they all seem to have some kind of transition ritual.  One man who works as an EMT, giving emergency medical treatment to trauma patients, mentioned that his transition ritual involves playing video games for thirty minutes.  He said, he gets to take all of his frustrations out on the bad guys in the games, and he can transition away from his stressful job to being present with his wife and two kids. After thirty minutes of game-playing, his wife mentioned that he comes over to her, and the first thing he does is ask about her day, and focuses on what she needs in that moment.  She recalls this being a far cry from the short,flat response she use to get from him when she rushed him at the front door– first thing with hugs, and details of her day with the kids.

I also remember my previous boss who use to get a cup of coffee on his way to his desk every morning.  It seemed almost a religious practice for him.  On the days when he didn’t get to enjoy his cup of coffee before my colleagues and I  all started bombarding him with the issues of the day, he seemed scattered, a bit frustrated, and didn’t appear to want to hear anything we had to say.  I see now that, he was probably reacting to not getting his coffee “transition ritual” to go from being at home with his family to his new “hunt of the day” at work.

I notice my boyfriend has his own transition ritual when he gets home from his last “hunt” too.  He empties his pockets, takes off his shoes, and checks his email for about 15-20 minutes.  His transition appears complete, because then he looks up at me, and asks about what I want to do or talk about next.  The focus is on me and I must say, feeling his amazing presence and connection with me is sooo worth it!

The next time you don’t feel like your man is connecting with you, perhaps you’ll consider that maybe he didn’t get his transition time.  Think about what his last hunt might have been?  Was he solving a problem at work, dealing with an intense situation, or analyzing a complex matter?  Chances are he hasn’t transitioned to being with you in that moment.  Understand that he would much rather be connecting with your feminine yumminess, but he might not be complete with his current “hunt” that is taking all of his attention.  He may also not even be aware that you are feeling deprived of his connection.  Remember…he can’t read your mind.  Although,  I know sometimes we think they should be able to, right?

To help him transition, you might asd, “Would you like some time to unwind before dinner?” Or “You seem distracted, is there something you needed to finish before we go out tonight?”  You might even ask your man what he likes to do when he gets home from work to transition to being at home?  Honor whatever it might be, even if he tells you he likes watching T.V. for a while.  Remember, it’s a ritual, and be ready to receive the amazing after-effects of him getting that time he needs. 

Men experience feeling through the physical, which is why they like playing contact sports, and why they like being touched.  I’ve never talked to a guy who didn’t light up at the thought of a massage.  You may find your man more “present” with the help of your gentle hands.  A nice neck rub, or back scratch can often help a man be more present to “feeling.”  Feeling then leads to connecting and being more available to you!  Enjoy it Ladies!


Please do write back with any aha! moments you have when you find your man is getting his transition time.  Was he more present and available to you?  Tell me everything!

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Unemotional-Men As I continue my research for my book about men, I find myself confronted with many questions and  frustrations from the many women I talk to.  I only hope there is enough room in my book to fit them all in.  Just this week, over lunch—the topic of men being “emotionally unavailable” came up, as one woman sited it as the cause for her recent break up with her boyfriend.

  As she unveiled her understandably emotional story,  my mind envisioned a soap opera episode in which her boyfriend failed the emotional availability test.  Perhaps he didn’t cry enough?  Perhaps he didn’t show enough anger when another man ogled her?  Or maybe he wasn’t willing to discuss his feelings at the drop of a hat?  When she told him the reason for their break-up, I wonder if he understood what it meant?

Surely he couldn’t have understood her thirst for connection with him, and her feeling of living in a drought after he failed to be the tall glass of water she hoped he’d be.  I know I’ve seen it on shows like Sex and The City, and many girlie-flicks, as women collaborate in their frustration that their men are “still not evolved enough to be in touch with their emotions.”

At first, I did agree, after all—I grew up hearing from my Mom, and many of my friends that men need to be more in touch with their feelings.  As women, we are so good at expressing how we feel, it’s natural that we would think men should do the same.  But then I wondered, what if we think we want them to be “emotionally available,” but what we really want is something else completely?  As I set out to find the truth, I started with Webster’s Dictionary for some clues and discovered the following revelation:

emotional: expressing an intense feeling (as of love, hate, or despair)
available: capable of being used or seen

Could it be that we are expecting men to express their intense feelings the same way we do when we are sad, or angry?  Do we want them to share with us, because it will help us connect with them the same way we do with our girlfriends?  As hunters who are used to being focused on their hunt, I can imagine having easy access to intense feelings might create a challenge when going in for the kill on a daily basis.  His boss might not respond well, if he was to have hurt feelings because he didn’t get the promotion he was hoping for.  So maybe it’s a good thing that men can be “emotionally unavailable”? 

During my lunch date, my friend who recently suffered a break-up, further explained that when her boyfriend was being “emotionally unavailable”, she got this feeling that he wasn’t able to connect with her, share with her, and  over-all he seemed distant and not present in each moment with her.  “Aha!” I thought.  Perhaps what we want from men is their “presence,”  which means : now existing.   Have you ever felt the presence of a man whose attention was on you and the current moment you were together?  In my experience it can feel like being enveloped in a moment of being seen with appreciation that is warming to my spirit.    This doesn’t seem to have anything to do with emotions, does it?  I now remember these moments of presence I often share with my boyfriend, and now I’m actually quite thankful that he’s “emotionally unavailable,” as it seems he is better equipped to hunt as a result.  The better hunter he is, the more I notice he can protect and provide for me.  I’m all for that!

After talking with several men about this, they confirmed that while they aren’t able to access their emotions as readily as their women, they really appreciate when they get to transition from a day of “hunting,” to being with her and have a moment to turn their focus on her and whatever they are doing together.  So the question is, How do we allow them to transition from their day or their current hunt, so that they can, and want to be present with us?    Stay tuned for the answer next week… 

EmpoweredWomeniYesterday I read an interesting study about women, by The Boston Consulting Group in 2009.  The study of 100,000 women in the United States revealed three major challenges plaguing women in their lives:

-Managing their household and finances

-Too many demands on their time

-Not enough time for themselves

I found these results so interesting, and I could relate as I know I have discussed these same three things with many of the women I know.  It does seem that in our society where a woman may have a successful career, a family, and other community responsibilities, all at once, she can feel as though someone always needs her at any given moment.  It might even seem impossible to get the time she needs to take care of herself.

I notice in my life, sometimes, I’ll even commit to certain responsibilities with out realizing that I didn’t plan for ME time in the midst of it all.  It’s a natural instinct as women to want to nurture and take care of the people in our lives.  We can be so good at adapting, that we may forget to fill our own tanks before continuing the marathon.  Who fills us up when we are approaching empty?

After reading this study, I started to wonder –Do the people in these women’s lives know that they are overwhelmed in these three areas of their life?  I wonder if their husbands, boyfriends, children, friends, or co-workers knew that they were having these challenges, might they want to help or relieve their stress in some small way?

I admit that I forget to ask for help and it can seem quicker to do things myself.  Then I finally have to listen to my body when it’s boycotting any clear thinking until I give it some well-deserved sleep.  Sometimes– time for ourselves is demanded by our bodies, and we have no choice ( I am experiencing this as we speak, while my body is demanding I give it much rest to recover from the flu).  When this happens, it can pose an inconvenience, and really disrupt our lives.  Though, isn’t it interesting, how when we’re sick, the people we love all come out to give us a helping hand? 

Why not empower ourselves to ask for help before we are desperate for it?  If you are experiencing certain challenges in your life, especially with the demands of your time—perhaps you’ll decide to make 2010 the year of your liberation.  Rather than assume you must do it all alone, I encourage you to make a list of all the things that demand your time, and take away from filling your tanks of love, patience, fun and any of the other amazing qualities that make you–YOU.   If it involves your kids or your family, discuss those tasks with your husband.  Who knows, you might find that he can help you find a solution, especially if it means he can experience his loving, patient, fun wife being less over-whelmed.

If your tanks are on empty for other reasons, be sure to reach out to your friends who can support you and lend a helping hand, even it’s a ride to the gym to make sure you exercise that day.  Here’s to an amazing 2010 filled with many empowering moments and full tanks to help us be the women we want to be!!

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