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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Doesn’t it feel amazing when someone you love appreciates you?  As women, we are naturally so nurturing as we adapt to the needs of our family, our friends, that we may even put ourselves last.  Many women I’ve talked to have expressed heartfelt sadness when they don’t feel appreciated for all they do for their family, and even the company they work for.  It can then feel like a burden to continue to give to people who we don’t feel appreciate us.  Believe it or not, the same is true for men!   In fact, this is often the secret ingredient to getting what we need from men.  However, It seems appreciation may be under-rated and sometimes forgotten when stress takes us over.  The amazing thing about this last step in the Harmony Process, is that it can be as simple as one moment, and one smile.  Review all four steps below, and complete your journey to Confident Harmony with appreciation!  Who knows—perhaps you’ll find yourself feeling more appreciated too!!  Enjoy!!

 

Step 1:  Identify the so-called “Stupid” Behavior without Evaluation
Rather than see the behavior for what you think it means, try observing the actions only.

Step 2:  Get Clear with Your Expectations
Ask yourself: What were you expecting him to know or do in that situation? Is it possible that he had no idea you had this expectation? How did it make you feel when he didn’t do it?  Do you think he was purposely trying to make you feel that way? 

Step 3: Clearly Requesting What You Need & Getting it!
Specifically Request what you need—even if you think it’s obvious.   Clearly state why it is important to you, what it really gives you, and give him a clear result to shoot for.

Step 4: Offer Him Your Appreciation and Reveal the Hero!

As simple as it is to show appreciation, I remember moments when I didn’t always feel so generous with it.  I’ve talked to some women who also found it difficult to offer it, especially if THEY didn’t feel appreciated for what they do.  One woman said, “Why should I appreciate every little thing he does, when I do so much more, and I hardly ever get a – thank you!”  I could understand the burden she felt, as she was overwhelmed by her to-do list and responsibilities as a wife and mother.  She explained to me that she didn’t have the luxury of waiting for appreciation to get things done.  I couldn’t help but think of the saying I’ve heard to “Give the thing you most want.”

When we are tired and exhausted, it might be difficult to even think about having gratitude when we just need the trash to be taken out, or help with the groceries.  What would happen if we decided to offer our appreciation anyway?  This is one those situations when we might ask, “Which came first—the chicken, or the egg?”  In this case, which came first– the hero or the appreciation?  The amazing thing I realized is that even in our most exhausted state, appreciation can be as simple as a smile, and that smile can be enough to have a man want to move mountains for us.

The other night, my friend Danielle told me about how amazed she was when she showed her husband appreciation for helping her with tasks around the house.  The next day, she said he was asking her what else she needed, and what else he could do for her! Appreciation is really like “fuel” for men—even more so than we think.  This is especially true when we are requesting the things we need and want.  As step 4 in the harmony process, it’s the key to revealing the Hero in the men around you.  Even when he doesn’t do something exactly the way you needed it done, appreciating him for his efforts and desire to give you what you need will have him want to try harder next time, and he will likely come to your rescue more often! 

This week, practice your appreciation for even the smallest things you ask men to do for you, and see what happens!  Behold the power of your smile, your thank you-s, and your hugs of gratitude.  You may find Heroes coming to life all around you!

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thumbnailCAQUMSOYCalling all Confident Women! I know you are out there, and as much faith as you have in yourself, and as good as you are at getting things done, do you ever have a moment of feeling over-whelmed? Do you ever just wish that the man in your life would SEE how over-whelmed you are and rescue you once in a while? I have had many, many moments like that, and I even thought the men in my life were clueless, until I finally learned this next step in the harmony process. Try it, and enjoy getting what you need instead of always having to do it yourself for change!

Step 3: Clearly Request What You Need
This step might seem simple to do– and you might even think you are really good at it. Think about how many times you’ve asked your man do do something, and after the third or fourth time, you finally gave up when he didn’t do it. He may have even complained that you keep nagging him, right? I added the word “Clearly” in this step, because I noticed that as clear as I always thought I was being, given that men and women think differently, I found that my requests were not being received and understood in a way that would have them act.

Clearly requesting what you need means, stating even what YOU think is obvious. Remember, last week, we talked about our expectations? Well, knowing exactly what you’re expecting will help you ask for what you need specifically. One woman I interviewed named Betty told me about the time she sent her husband to the store for some parmesan cheese. She assumed he would get the same brand she always got- to her it was obvious. When he got back, she couldn’t believe–he bought the first parmesan cheese he saw–which turned out to be an imported brand that cost twenty dollars. She mentioned that he had this proud look on his face that he got the right type of cheese that she didn’t have the heart to tell him it was not the kind she really wanted.

Even this simple example of the cheese illustrates the importance of being specific and clear with what you need. Men are so good at being single-focused on a RESULT like: Get the cheese– that they are not destracted by the details. I remember Betty saying, “Well, I guess I’ll just have to buy the parmesan cheese from now on.” I suggested that she use her husband’s strength of single focus to her advantage. So she took my advice and gave him a different result, by writing down the name and price of the cheese she likes before he went to the store the next time.

This week, try “Clearly Requesting What You Need.” If it is something like taking out the trash, or doing something around the house that you think obviously needs to be done, honor the fact that it’s not obvious to him, since he is probably single-focused on a different result. You can clearly ask by saying : “I know you’re busy with work during the week, and you may not notice the trash when it’s full. If I let you know when it’s full, would you be willing take it out FOR ME? It makes me so happy when the kitchen smells clean.” Be sure you let him know how it will make you feel. When he knows that he can win with you by doing this for you, you may find him asking you what else you need. Practice this step, and stay tuned for the final step in the Harmony Process next week!

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Expectations Last week, I spoke of being an unstoppable woman by cultivating a state of Confident Harmony.  I outlined the first step in the Harmony Process to help you on the road to getting what you need from the men in your life.  So how’d you do this week with Step 1?  Did you Identify lots of so-called “Stupid” Behavior in the men around you?  When I first started observing this, as you can imagine there was no shortage of actions by men that I assumed were evidence of stupidity.  I  know your list may be just as long, and detailed… so for Step 2, you can simply use one “stupid” action to focus on to continue the Harmony Process.

Step 1:  Identify the so-called “Stupid” Behavior without Evaluation
Rather than see the behavior for what you think it means, try observing the actions only.

Step 2:  Get Clear with Your Expectations

This one is tricky, as sometimes we think we don’t have an expectation, because we just assume that everyone does something the way we do it.  I use to have the belief that, “Everyone knows that you shake a person’s hand when you meet them, therefore its not my expectation and if someone doesn’t shake my hand, they are clearly being rude on purpose.”

I’ve come to learn that EVERYTHING I assume is going to happen with people around me– is simply an expectation.  I assume that all women like pedicures because I do.  I assume that all women like wearing lipstick, because I do.  I assume that all women like chic flicks because I do.  I admit that in the past when I met women who didn’t fit some of my assumptions, I thought they were very odd, and again assumed something must be wrong with them.  My expectations were definitely getting the best of me in those moments.  These expectations even effected the men in my life.  Years ago, I really thought my Dad was stupid, because he didn’t seem to express love the way I did .  I expected a certain type of behavior from him, because that is how I would have expressed my love and care.

I lived for eight years, ignoring my father’s existence.  I was so hurt—thinking he was stupid, and incapable of loving me—that I decided to reject him instead.  Later, I realized that my expectations were based on how I express my love, and the whole time my Dad had no idea why I was so hurt.   I was able to open up with curiosity, and I asked him, “ How do you like to express love and care?”  He mentioned that he likes to inquire about people to show interest, do nice things for them, and offer advice to show he cares.  Then I remembered that a big difference between men and women is that men judge each other by their actions, so they are used to taking action and solving problems, rather than using words, or emotion to express themselves.  After that new revelation about my Dad, I started to see the ways he cared for me all the time, and I began learning how to request the kind of care that I needed. 

Using one stupid action on your list, try this step for yourself.  Regarding the man who committed this so-called “stupid” action, ask yourself: What were you expecting him to know or do in that situation? How did it make you feel when he didn’t do it?  Do you think he was purposely trying to make you feel that way?

After answering these questions, you might find that you have some expectations that this man has no idea about.  He may simply be reacting or behaving in a way that is natural to the hunter-single-focused ways of men.  To be sure, try asking him, “What had you do that, or not do that?”    What had you make that decision, or say what you said?  How do you like to give_________ create___________, do _________, clean__________?  Fill in the blank with whatever action or behavior caused you to think he was being stupid.  Most likely, his answer won’t be anything you expected!  Try to be open to being surprised, and be curious without making his answer wrong.  It will be worth it when you get what YOU need from him in step 3!  Stay tuned next week for step 3:  Clearly Requesting What You Need, and GETTING it! 

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Remember last week I spoke of finding Confident Harmony with the men in my life?  Well, a few of you wrote back asking what that actually looks like, and curious if it is something you might even want in your life?  

As I thought more about how to describe this state of Confident Harmony, I remembered that every woman I’ve ever talked to would love to be more confident.  We even have our own role models for confidence.  I look up to Arianna Huffington as a great example of a confident woman.  I love her elegant way of always speaking her mind.

So what happens when you add harmony into the mix?

Confidence is defined as: to have, or show faith.  So when a woman is described as confident, it may seem that she has faith in herself.  She makes decisions well, she is clear about what she wants, and has faith in her abilities.  When you add harmony to the mix (a pleasing combination of elements in a whole), imagine a woman who has faith in herself, and faith in the pleasing combination of people with different abilities around her. What you will notice, is a woman who is strong, uncompromising in her values, and alert to the strengths in the people around her, so that she can accomplish what she needs and wants.  I call that woman unstoppable!

I often experience this state of “Confident Harmony” as a result of practicing something I call the Harmony Process.  I say “often” because as imperfect human beings, we may have our moments when our fear, anger, and frustration can take over, and all our faith goes out the window.  When those moments happen to me, this Harmony Process helps bring me back to where I wanna be to get what I need with grace.  It consists of four steps to follow any time you encounter a frustrating situation with a man behaving in a way you might think is “stupid,“ or just plain wrong in your opinion.  This week, I’ve outlined step one for you to practice!

Step 1:  Identify the so-called “Stupid” Behavior without Evaluation

This might seem to be an easy thing to do, but in the heat of the moment, when we are frustrated, our observation skills may not be as accessible, and it can be easy to jump to conclusions about what a man just did, and how he possibly could have done it, especially if it really hurt us or someone else.  My friend Nathali really thought her husband leaving his socks on the floor was his way of saying, “He didn’t care about how much work it took for her to clean the house.”  In this case she was able to see that the only thing he was ACTUALLY doing was leaving his socks on the floor. Acknowledging this was the first step for her to get what she needed from her husband John.  She realized that this action of leaving socks on the floor was merely that—one action she didn’t understand or agree with.  By not taking it personal, she became free to see what was really going on, and deal with it.  She realized that he was so single-focused on his other tasks (a strength of men), that he didn’t even see the socks!

Be easy on yourself this week as you practice this step of “identifying” the behavior of men that is standing in the way of you getting what you need.  Remember how different men are from women.  They have twenty times more testosterone than we do, and that changes how their brains are designed and the strengths they’ve developed.  Rather than see the behavior for what you think it means, try observing the actions only.  If your man brings his laptop to the table at dinner, he didn’t insult your cooking and your hard-work, he simply brought the laptop to the table, period. Practicing this step this week will help you ease into Step 2 of gaining Confident Harmony:  Getting Clear on Your Expectations.  Stay tuned for that next week!

P.S.   I’d love to hear about the biggest thing your man did that you thought was stupid!  Please do send them my way, by commenting on this post, or sending me a question on my site: www.redlipstickinc.com