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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April 4, 2010
In the last several weeks, I’ve outlined the four steps in the Harmony Process for all of you strong, confident women out there who may wonder why men seem so clueless sometimes. These four steps have saved me much frustration and have helped me to achieve a state of Confident Harmony, in which I experience the men in my life being my heroes. In the moments when they are doing something I might think is stupid, this process has helped me to always get what I need. What a relief I have felt when I don’t have the burden of doing everything myself. I admit it hasn’t always been easy to follow these four steps, especially when I’m in a stressful situation, and my patience is in short supply.
I finally found an easy way to remember these steps and a way for me to catch myself in these moments so that I can reveal the heroes in my life, rather than over-look them, and continue to be frustrated by their supposed acts of “stupidity.” Use the acronym, H.E.R.O below to start using the Harmony Process in your own life, and watch all the heroes in your midst strive to give you what you ask for.
His Behavior: Identify the so-called “stupid” behavior without evaluating what it means.
Expectations: Get clear on your expectations. What were you expecting him to know or do?
Request What You Need: Clearly request what you need and how it will make you feel.
Offer Appreciation: Appreciate his efforts to give you what you need, and behold your hero rise up.
Recently, I remembered the steps in this process with my Dad, and I was so happy to have seen him be my hero, after feeling disappointed by him for much of my life. Before dinner with my parents one day, my Dad was asking me twenty questions about my new job, and his questions were all about the facts, and detailed data about how each part of the company operates. At first, I felt overwhelmed, and thought he was being clueless—even stupid to think that I should know all these facts. After-all, I’m not the President of this company, and why does he need to know these details anyway?
In that moment, I remembered, H.E.R.O, and reminded myself of the following:
His Behavior: My Dad was asking a lot of fact-based questions. Rather than evaluate the meaning, I remembered that by nature, men use facts and data-based information to form opinions about things. He needed to know these facts in order to know his daughter found a good company to work for.
Expectations: I expected my Dad to know that I wouldn’t know all this information. I also expected him to know that I just got home from work, and rather than interrogate me with questions, I might just want to relax, and tell him what I liked about my new job. It made me feel like he didn’t care about me, and that he wasn’t listening when I exclaimed how tired I was after work that day. I reminded myself that he had no idea I had these expectations of him.
Request What You Need: I took a deep breath and smiled as I told my dad, “I know you are interested in all the details in my job and want to make sure I am working for a great company. However, It makes me feel interrogated when you ask me so many questions at once. It would really help me relax, if I could have thirty minutes to unwind from my busy day, and then I’d love it if you would just ask me, “How was your day at work?” That one question will have me share everything with you. If you forget to ask, is it okay if I ask you, “Can I tell you about my day?” At first my Dad didn’t seem to understand how I could be overwhelmed by all the questions. To him, they were essential. He still agreed to my request, because I clearly explained how it would help me. He said, “Oh, I don’t want you to feel interrogated!”
Offer Appreciation: The next time we had dinner, I was so delighted when my Dad came to me about thirty minutes after my arrival, and asked, “So, how was your day at work?” You can only imagine the smile on my face! I felt so free to share what I wanted to share about my day. I saw a huge smile on my Dad’s face too, as I continued to talk and give details—even some facts about the company I work for. Thirty minutes later, I thanked him for asking about my day, and for helping me relax after work.
After that experience with my Dad, he continued being my hero! The next time I saw my Dad, he was on his way to the drugstore. He asked me, “Do you need anything from the store?” At first I thought, “I need facial cleanser, but he may not get the right one.” I just gave him a list, and let him get it for me. I thanked him later for thinking of me and for saving me the trip to the store.
This might seem small and trivial act, but since then, my Dad has approached me many times wanting to help and provide for me in various ways. I encourage you to continue practicing the Harmony Process with the men in your life. Behold the Confident Harmony you feel, when you have faith in the different strengths of those around you, and get what you need with a lot less effort! Enjoy!
March 7, 2010
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