Get What You Want: 3 Key Communication Techniques for Eliciting Cooperation from Men

We can all see the physical differences between women and men, but the psychological differences aren’t so obvious. Men’s and women’s communication styles are so different that often women end up feeling like nothing they say gets through. If you’ve ever wondered if the man you’re in a relationship with is totally insensitive or just stupid, I’m about to offer you three ways of asking for what you want which will greatly increase your chances of being heard and getting the response you want.

1. Make him feel like a hero. Appealing to the male ego is a sure-fire communication method of gaining his cooperation.

Want him to do the dishes? Present it to him not as a chore that the relationship requires, but as an opportunity to slay a dragon for the princess. “Sweetie, I’ve had such a long day and I still need to get the kids bathed and in bed, and the dishes are piled up so high. I know you have other things you want to get done too, but I feel like I need to be rescued. Could you help me?”

Want him to stop leaving his clothes on the bathroom floor after his shower? Make your communication sound like you’d feel like he was giving you a diamond. “Honey, I’d like to ask you to do something that would make my whole week. Next time you take a shower, if you could put your dirty clothes in the hamper in the hall, I would just love that.”

The key to communication that makes a man feel like a hero is to be universally positive, praising, adoring, and grateful. You don’t point out to a hero how obligated he is, and you don’t expect him to do anything. Heroic actions go above and beyond the call of duty- and even if you don’t actually see doing the dishes as “above and beyond” in a relationship, you’re more likely to get the cooperation you want if you treat it as though you do.

2. Get turned on.
As a group, men really do think about sex more than women do. The relationship between men and women is defined by this difference. If your mode of communication lets your man know that his little favors and errands turn you on will reward him, which encourages him to do them again.

Ask for things the way you might ask for foreplay. “I’d really like it if you’d fold the laundry,” you say softly, tantalizingly, pressing a warm, freshly-dried sheet against his chest. Make eye contact, look away, then look back – it’s the eye-contact semaphore for “you’re hot.”

Reward him for making you happy. When he comes in from mowing the lawn, comment positively on the smell of a man who’s been working hard. When he fixes the toilet, rub his back and whisper to him that you love it when he’s so domestic and masculine. When he cooks dinner, slurp pasta enticingly and give him a coy glance, saying, “A man who can cook like this sure knows how to please a girl.”

If you can make him feel that fixing a toilet is an erotic act, wouldn’t that make it more enticing?

This technique has the additional benefit of awakening and revitalizing the more sensual aspects of your relationship!

3. Grant him autonomy and have patience.
It’s all too easy to generate a “chasing dynamic,” where the more you ask for something, the less he wants to give it to you. When you feel impatient with him, your communication style will reflect that. If he senses your impatience, he’ll feel like you’re demanding him to do something, and too often he’ll dig his heels in like a mule.

To avoid this dynamic, remember to treat the request as a true request, where his cooperation is a gift to you. The hero/lover method is all about reward, never punishment, all carrot and no stick.

Ask once and give him time. Some men need a transition time between what they’re doing at the moment and what you want them to do. Allow a window of time where he can move from one task to another at a pace that feels comfortable to him. If you’ve asked using one technique and you didn’t get the result you wanted, try again with the other technique.

Ultimately, any man worth his salt really does want you to be happy – but between their lack of understanding of women’s communication styles and their resistance to being told what to do, a lot of men just can’t get the message. Softening your requests by filling him with pride in himself and offering a sense of warm physical connection is much more likely to make him feel respected and allowed to be who he is. And when he feels respected and autonomous, he’ll feel more ready to respond to your needs.

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